Country Music

This Is The Only Song My Father Requested Me To Play At His Funeral. So I Made That Happen (Josh Turner)

“Long Black Train” is a powerful, haunting song by country artist Josh Turner that explores themes of temptation, sin, and redemption. The song was written by Turner himself and released as the title track of his debut album in 2003. Since then, it has become one of his most popular and enduring hits, beloved by fans of traditional country music for its rich storytelling and evocative lyrics.

The song’s central image is the long black train of the title, which symbolizes the temptations and sins that can lead a person astray. As Turner sings, “There’s a long black train comin’ down the line / Feeding off the souls that are lost and cryin’.” The train represents all the vices that can ensnare us, from drugs and alcohol to greed and pride. It’s a powerful metaphor that captures the dangers of giving in to our darker impulses.

But even as the song warns of the dangers of temptation, it also offers hope and redemption. Turner sings of a man who resists the lure of the long black train: “I can hear the whistle blowin’, I’m-a thinkin’ ’bout my soul / There are only two ways off of this train, one is hell, the other’s the grace of God.” Ultimately, the song is a reminder that even when we’re confronted with the darkest aspects of ourselves, there’s always a way out if we’re willing to seek it.

In many ways, “Long Black Train” is a classic example of the kind of storytelling that’s at the heart of country music. It’s a song that takes a simple, timeless concept – the battle between good and evil – and imbues it with a sense of urgency and emotion that resonates with listeners of all backgrounds. And while Josh Turner may have released the song nearly 20 years ago, its message remains just as relevant today as it ever was.

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