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Paul Cafcae - Banks of Marble (Cafcae Records)

25 May 2024

I guess the question here is not why Paul Cafcae would choose to look to the past to find inspiration for his latest single, “Banks of Marble,” but why he feels the need to. Having observed the lack of equality and the obvious manipulations of democratic processes as he toured around Canada, he realised that the things he wanted to express in this song were precisely the same ideas and political points as the folk activists of the ’40s and ’50s had been advocating.

And so, with lyrical inspiration taken from the 1949 song “The Banks Are Made of Marble,” written by the then president of the farmers’ union Les Rice although made famous by Pete Seeger, and with music inspired by older folk traditions, he has delivered a song that resonates with history and yet is still relevant today. Sadly, all too relevant.

In Paul Cafcae, you can see the same spirit as in The Band: a deliberate avoidance of current fads and fashions and a deeper exploration of what has gone before. And, like them, he has turned in a song that plays with nostalgic sound and timeless missives, messages surrounding the struggle of the working man but which sits wonderfully in the modern musical landscape.

I love what Paul has done here. It’s just a shame that people are still compelled to make the same, age-old arguments. Does nothing ever change?