Caught by the River

Jeb’s Jukebox

Jeb Loy Nichols | 30th October 2021

Gordon Payne


A&M Records

On the Pembrokeshire coast, among the hard grasses and tangles of gorse, gulls come shrieking out of the ocean mist.  Dark winged, white bellied, hooked beak; The sea washes away the ills of men.  So Euripides said.

What I admire are black berries and whatever that little yellow flower is that grows near them.  And railway stations, empty railway stations, with posters trying to interest people in places like the South Downs or maybe Halifax.  Elderflower and then, later, elderberries.  And raisins.  I do like a handful of raisins. 

I come in, flip through some records, and pull out the single solo record that Gordon Payne ever made.  Gordon Payne was, at the time, guitarist for Waylon Jennings.  I remember Tony Joe White once telling me how great Gordon’s record was.  He wasn’t wrong.  It’s produced by J J Cale and mixed by Waylon; it’s funky and it’s humble and it sounds like a lot of friends hanging out enjoying themselves.  It’s got Gordon and JJ playing guitar, Tommy Cogbill playing bass, Richie Albright playing drums, Carter Robinson singing, Wayne Jackson playing trumpet – what more do you want?

You came all the way from the city
To find yourself a country girl
But she ain’t no fool, she ain’t no fool

We all know that the rich are very rich and the poor are very poor.  We know that the internet is very dangerous.  That politicians are very dull and very dumb and that the weather is getting crazier every day.  We know that things aren’t going well.  And no, it’s not getting any better.  And I’m not saying that listening to Gordon Payne is going to fix anything, but it might, for a few minutes, ease your heart.  And what more can we ask?


You can follow the Jeb’s Jukebox Spotify playlist here.