Nancy the Tavern Wench (2008)

I remember that day clearly. We were in the car and had decided that we were tired of the mainstream “alternative” station’s sameish hipster wuss-rock where whiny young men with soft voices complain to the sound of their beat up acoustic guitars seated under an oak tree in their college grounds. I simply couldn’t take it anymore.

At that time in my life I was definitely on a pirate theme. Talk Like A Pirate Day was my equivalent of a deeply significant holy day. My upcoming 30th birthday party was going to be a pirate theme and no one could stop me. We landed on the community radio station PBS’s frequency where the most gloriously piratey voice was singing about finding a treasure chest. It was like time stopped. I grabbed the notebook and pen I always had in my handbag and started scrawling down the lyrics. At the time I didn’t have the convenience of a smart phone and the Soundhound app and had to resort to trying to decipher the lyrics and then spend an agonising couple of hours shopping waiting until I could get home to search for the lyrics online.

That was my first introduction to ‘Nancy the Tavern Wench,’ sung by the Scottish pirate band Alestorm. I can credit this song for being my first serious foray into the folk metal genre. It opened up to me an incredible world of roleplaying European music. And all because I chose to listen to community radio that day. I have since discovered that, for reasons I can’t quite decipher, people who go to the types of live music concerts I do to see prog metal bands can often be seen sporting an Alestorm shirt (along with their Tool / A Perfect Circle tattoos).