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One Hit Wonders - Mountain (1970)
One Hit Wonders - Mountain (1970) Photo


MUSIC VIDEO

"Mississippi Queen" by Mountain - 


Mountain guitarist Leslie West said of this song: "When Corky (Laing, drummer) brought me the idea, it was a one-chord dance song. We got real high, took out a napkin, and I came up with the main riff and the chords. Then we fit the words over the sound." Laing says of the song: "I was madly in love with The Band, and I decided to put a 'Cripple Creek' feel behind it. Later on, I told Levon Helm that I felt bad about ripping him off, but he said that he didn't hear any similarity between the 2 songs, and that we didn't owe them any money!"
 
Corky Laing started working on this song with David Rea, who was a friend of the band and frequent collaborator - he and Mountain bass player Felix Pappalardi were in Ian & Sylvia's band. The only Mississippi city mentioned in the song is Vicksburg, which according to Rea is because that's what he came up with when Laing asked him if he knew any towns in the state. Vicksburg is a small city on the Mississippi River known as the site of a famous Civil War battle in 1863.
 
The song is about a seductive woman who teaches the singer a thing or two about the ways of love, but with the success of "Proud Mary" a year earlier, it almost sounds like this could be another song about a riverboat. In 1976, the "Mississippi Queen" riverboat was put into service by the Delta Queen company, taking its last cruise in 2008.
 
This is one of the most famous cowbell songs of all time, but the band didn't envision the instrument in the song. In our interview with Leslie West, he explained: "The cowbell in the beginning was just in there because Felix wanted Corky to count the song off. So we used the cowbell to count it off - it wasn't put in there on purpose. And it became the quintessential cowbell song."
 
Mississippi is a special place for Leslie West not only because of this song, but because it's where he had part of his leg amputated. On June 18, 2011, the day after playing a show at the Hard Rock Cafe in Biloxi, West's right leg began to swell and he was taken to the emergency room in a Biloxi hospital, where it was amputated below the knee to save his life (West is diabetic). West told us: "When I play 'Mississippi Queen' now, I think about Jesus Christ. Of all places to lose my leg, it was Mississippi."
 
This was used in a popular commercial for Miller Genuine Draft beer where some guys traveling in a jungle open a bottle of the beer to magically freeze the body of water separating them from some lovely ladies who beckon.

http://www.songfacts.com/detail.php?id=6404



Billboard Top 10 Songs of 1970 - Year End Charts


1 Simon and Garfunkel Bridge Over Troubled Water
2 Carpenters (They Long To Be) Close To You
3 Guess Who American Woman / No Sugar Tonight
4 B.J. Thomas Raindrops Keep Fallin' On My Head
5 Edwin Starr War
6 Diana Ross Ain't No Mountain High Enough
7 Jackson 5 I'll Be There
8 Rare Earth Get Ready
9 Beatles Let It Be
10 Freda Payne Band Of Gold

78 Mountain Mississippi Queen

| Closed on 07/04/13 at 05:00PM
FanIQ Pts? No | Locker Room, Music | Multiple Choice Opinion Poll
12 Fans 
25%a. 10 (GREAT SONG)
33%b. 7-9 (Like that song)
17%c. 5-6 (Song is ok)
17%d. Who? What? Huh?
8%e. HORRIBLE!

 &nbp;
TOP COMMENT * * * * * * * * * * * *
#2 | 403 days ago

never heard of it
7-9 (Like that song)  
  
6 Comments | Sorted by Most Recent First | Red = You Disagreed
Vote for your favorite comments. Fans decide the Top Comment (3+ votes) and also hide poor quality comments (4+ votes).
#1 | 403 days ago

I liked them, their music, and especially that tune. Leslie West and Corky Laing went on to form a trio with Cream's bassist, Jake Bruce, and produced some cool projects, also. 

Good one. 
10 (GREAT SONG)  
#2 | 403 days ago

never heard of it
7-9 (Like that song)  
#3 | 403 days ago

Go tell it on it
#4 | 403 days ago
Nick__ (+)

ms_hippie_queen wrote:
never heard of it
Definitely thought of you when I saw who was featured today!  heart
7-9 (Like that song)  
#5 | 403 days ago

I liked the beat  .....
Who? What? Huh?  
#6 | 402 days ago

Loved the song, however until I saw this poll I couldn't of told you who sang it, or that it was a one hit wonder either.
7-9 (Like that song)  

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