Michael Daly has always been a vocal artist with varied interests and the ability to sing a wide range of music genres. In his most recent album, Westward Ho!: Great Songs of the American West, Michael takes his turn at country western music. He takes on staples of the genre such as “Home on the Range” and “High Noon”. One of the album standouts is his cover of “Cool Water”.
“Cool Water” was ranked by the Western Writers of America as the third greatest Western song of all time. Unlike today’s country music that talks about red solo cups and dancing at tailgates, “Cool Water” is a more traditional song. It depicts the actual conditions of cowboys out on the range. The lyrics, “Keep a-movin’, Dan, don’t you listen to him, Dan. He’s a devil, not a man and he spreads the burning sand with water” stand out for their imagery of the elements in the desert. As Irish Tenor Michael Daly sings, you can hear the grit in his lovely voice.
The song “Cool Water” was written by Bob Nolan in 1936. The Son of the Pioneers recorded the song before they re-recorded in 1941 with Vaughn Monroe. Throughout the song, the listener hears the story of a man and his mule Dan. As they travel the desert they come across mirages of water and have to keep their head. Michael fully embodies that character as he sings, “The nights are cool and I’m a fool. Each star’s a pool of water, cool water, but with the dawn, I’ll wake and yawn, and carry on to water, cool, clear water”.
For more of Irish Tenor Michael Daly’s songs and albums, visit his website here.