How I Live, How I’ll Die from Danny Roberts

Danny Roberts, founding mandolinist with The Grascals, is stepping out front again this year with another solo project with Mountain Home Music.

A second single from this next album, How I Live, How I’ll Die, which delivers a somber look at the life of a coal mine, hits this week. The lyrics paint a bleak image of the darkness by day and the health concerns of anyone who digs coal deep in the earth.

Danny says that this song went through a number of major changes on its way to this recording.

How I Live, How I’ll Die started off as a Monroe-style instrumental that I had written several years ago. I really liked the melody and decided it would actually be well-suited for a vocal song, and it just felt like it should be about coal mining.

I’ve never worked in a coal mine, but I have a good friend that grew up in West Virginia in a mining family, and my wife’s family is from Southwest Virginia with a coal mining legacy, and the lyrics came from the stories that I heard from them. I basically had the song written but felt like there was just something missing so I sent it to my friend and great songwriter, Daryl Mosley, and he added just what I felt like the song needed.

How I Live, How I’ll Die has a bit of a spooky, lonesome sound and feel, and I believe that’s exactly what it’s like living a coal miner’s life.”

Support comes from Tony Wray on guitar and banjo, Jimmy Mattingly on fiddle, and Andrea Roberts on bass. Dennis Parker sings harmony.

Have a listen…

How I Live, How I’ll Die, the single, will be available on February 3 from popular download and streaming services online. Radio programmers can get the track now from AirPlay Direct.

Share this:

About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.