The song at number nine in the 5th annual Best Ever Alfie Boe Song is one that last year came in at number two, having been in and out of the top ten several times before that. The only representative from Storyteller for the second year running, it is Rank Strangers:
Alfie has performed this song many times over the years but never quite like this, at Joe’s Pub in 2013. To me, the closest to the recorded song.
Rank Strangers was written by Albert Brumley, a musician and singer born in Oklahoma in 1905. After studying at the Hartford Musical Institute, Arkansas, Brumley toured with the Hartford Quartet and went on to write / copyright an astonishing 800 songs. The most famous of these is I’ll Fly Away from 1932. In 1970 he was inducted into the Country Song Writer’s Hall of Fame and his songs have been covered by amongst others, Bob Dylan, who I’m sure introduced Alfie to the song. Here are the Stanley Brothers:
Storyteller is available here:
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