Johnny Oklahoma video from Mile Twelve

As Mile Twelve prepares for the release of their third full length, self produced album, they have created a performance video for a second single, a new song written by guitarist Evan Murphy called Johnny Oklahoma.

It explores novel territory for a bluegrass song, the fictional travails of a human cannonball.

Murphy says that he pulled from several sources in fleshing this one out.

“Johnny Oklahoma is in the prime of his life when he decides to sacrifice everything for his community by being blasted out of a cannon and straight into kingdom come.

This song combines so many raw materials that have been rattling around in my head for years. Shirley Jackson’s short story, The Lottery, about the ritual stoning of an innocent person chosen at random in order to keep the rest of the town safe; Lawnchair Larry who flew attached only to helium balloons; Casey at the Bat, who seemed so mythic and invincible until he struck out; and finally the Irish folk song, Mrs. McGrath, in which a mother mourns the loss of her son’s legs in a battle overseas.”

Evan is featured on lead vocal supported by fellow founding members B.B. Bowness on banjo and Nate Sabat on bass, with newly-joined bandmates Ella Jordan on fiddle and Korey Brodsky on mandolin.

Check it out…

Johnny Oklahoma is available now as a single from popular download and streaming services online. Pre-orders for the next album, Close Enough To Hear, are enabled online as well with a February 3 release date expected.

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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.