It’s a song that Jutz wrote with his frequent collaborator, Tammy Rogers of The Steeldrivers, called In This House. In it we hear the voice of a man telling how his mother kept a brave face for her children when he was young, while she suffered abuse at the hands of her husband.
Thomm explains how this one came together. It’s quite a tale.
“Tammy Rogers and I write about once a week, typically on Wednesdays at 10:00 a.m. We’ve been doing so for over two years and have probably 100 plus songs at this point.
Tammy had the original idea for this. It was just a title. We often write like that, just starting with a title or a line instead of a whole story or concept. It’s fun to start with little more than an image that’s inspired by a title.
Stuff we’d heard and read about, that we had observed, and a good amount of fiction make up this song.
I remember a book turned into a TV series called Via Mala when I was a kid in Germany. A whole family conspiring to kill their paternal oppressor. It scared the hell out of me back then.
On a vacation with my parents we drove through Via Mala, a mountain gorge in Northern Italy. It was easy to see how secluded that area was 100 years ago, which is when the novel took place. The setting was very similar to the isolated hollers of Appalachia.
Since Appalachia, especially Western North Carolina, is on my mind so much these days, it makes sense that Via Mala found its way from my subconsciousness onto the page, 40 years later, and connected with Tammy’s title, In This House.
It took us about an hour to write this song and I immediately knew that I’d want to record it for one of my own albums. That’s what we did in May of 2019, and it will be the first single of my new record To Live In Two Worlds, Volume 2.”
Watch and listen…
Jutz is supported on this recording by Mike Compton on mandolin, Justin Moses on banjo, Tammy Rogers on fiddle, and Mark Fain on bass.