It was a beautiful summer's day when I brought my father and his fiddle into the studio to record this song. He had never been in a proper studio before and was a little intimidated by the technology at hand. Perhaps my biggest mistake was not bringing an ale or two for him to nurse while he tuned up and ran through the arrangement. He always told me a pint of cold ale loosened him up a little. I told him not to worry, he'd do just fine. Funny, after all those years growing up in his shadow, there's not one recording of us together until now ... and I hope it's not the only song he'll ever play on.
Like "Santa's On His Way", I've always been a little perplexed about this number ... it just doesn't sit and play in the sandbox nicely with the rest of my catalogue. The inspiration for this song is owed to The Quiet Man, the old John Ford/John Wayne film. Lyrically, I've tried to take the listener back to a time when life was much simpler. More carefree. Hopefully, I've done that ... well, you be the judge.
The Ballad Of Cora Grey
Oh, her name is Cora Grey and her folks live over yonder
I've walked her home from school every day since I was ten
Every time I see her mother, I ask after Cora
Is there any news of my friend
She left one sunny day to live with friends in Ireland
We traded our good-byes as the train came 'round the bend
Many nights I've pined, thinking of my Cora
Waiting on some news from my friend
We'd walk from here to the end of the pier
And watch the tide go out
And ever since the age of ten she's all I've thought about
When I saw her mum today she kissed me on the cheek and said...
Today Cora Grey's coming home
Now I'm rushing home from work to find my fanciest attire
I plan to go a-calling on a lady friend I know
She'll be waiting at the station 'cause the folks are all at my house
Today Cora Grey's coming home.