Sometimes the Halloween music can get a bit silly (last night’s cockney two-fer being a good example of that). But for this lucky 13th day of the Countdown, I thought I’d move on to something a trifle more serious: a straight-up ghost story. Even better… It’s a PIRATE ghost story! And even yet still better than that… It’s also an Irish sea shanty, with Middle Eastern flourishes! It’s…
In the hands of many artists, that would be a train wreck. But this song’s by Irish folk-punkers the Pogues, who proved themselves capable of many things normal (or at least sober) men would fear. Not these guys, though. Lead by the inimitable Shane McGowan, the Pogues bashed and bawled their way through everything from punky moshable rave-ups to weepy ballads to cowboy sagas to Mexican party songs to… this.
The story behind this one is kind of funny. The title came from a German magazine article about the band The Damned. In reference to a tune called “The Turkey Song,” a strange accident of translation lead them to call it “The Turkish Song of the Damned.” The Pogues read that, and thought it was too good a title to pass up. So McGowan crafted a song around it, the story of a sailor who abandoned his shipmates to die, only to later be visited by them and pulled down to Hell.
Good Halloweenie stuff. Plus, it’s been adapted into comics by Roel Seidell, an artist from the Netherlands. That’s where our title picture up above came from, and the whole story can be read at the following link: https://www.behance.net/gallery/2143137/The-Turkish-Song-of-the-Damned. Go check it out. It’s good Halloweenie stuff, too.