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A strange combination, Blues music and the search for extra terrestrial life, but they did indeed come together in 1977 when the two Voyager spacecraft were launched into space to search for intelligent life outside of our solar system. On board each of the space craft was a golden record containing “The Sounds of the Earth”, a ninety minute selection of ¬†music from many cultures of our planet. One such song was Dark Was The Night, Cold Was The Ground by the great slide-guitarist Blind Willie Johnson. A depression era song from the early 20th century, Blind¬†Willie sings a wordless hymn of an unknown sorrow. Incidentally, this is the same song which Ry Cooder reworked for the Wim Wenders film Paris, Texas.

Dark Was The Night, Cold Was The Ground