There are NEVER enough murder voices.
Love, heartbreak, jealousy and someone ending up in a grave are the recipe for the perfect murder ballad and I never tire of hearing them.
It really is country storytelling at its finest.
One tune that encapsulates all of this perfectly is The Steel Woods’ “Della Jane’s Heart,” and frankly, in the grand scheme of country music’s great murder ballads, this tune doesn’t get enough love.
From her 2017 album, straw in the wind, The honk tonk melody captures the complex emotions of Della Jane after being wronged and abandoned by the man she met.
The second verse captures those emotions perfectly through the lyrics… and after hearing this verse you know there’s a storm brewing in Della Jane’s head.
“The cold wind blew as she waited for his embrace
But it only got colder when she saw the look on his face
His blind words about his new love for Anna Lee
Filled her with rage when he told her of her plans to leave…”
In the final verse, the listener learns the tragic end of Della Jane’s lover. But before you get to that point you get a killer guitar solo.
“With her knees in the mud, she looked up and prayed
“Lord, please wash away all my sins and his body…”
The fast-paced country-rock song perfectly camouflages the dark story in the lyrics, but is so addictive to listen to.
And here’s the kicker, it’s part of a 5 song series that tells the story of this tragic love triangle between Della Jane, Anna Lee and the late Jimmy Sutherland.
Della Jane’s Heart is the first part of 2019 old news album we hear Anna Lee’s side of the story in “Anna Lee” and then the next track is an instrumental titled “Red River (The Fall Of Jimmy Sutherland)”.
And finally, we get even more follow-up on her 2021 album with “You Never Came Home” and what appears to be a song from Jimmy’s point of view, “You’re Cold.”
The Steel Woods are a staple on many of my playlists and you’ll often find yourself throwing these songs into the mix.
“Della Jane’s Heart”
“You never came home”
“You are cold”
https://www.whiskeyriff.com/2022/12/03/the-steel-woods-della-janes-heart-is-a-murder-ballad-we-need-to-talk-about-more/ The Steel Woods’ “Della Jane’s Heart” Is A Murder Ballad We Need To Talk About More