Deep Cuts

Deep Cuts: Mary Songs

Last week we surveyed the long history of songs about Johnny, but we can’t overlook his sidekick Mary.

Songs about Mary date at least to the eighth century, though those early ones are about one particular Mary. You know, the big one. Moms. The Blessed Virgin. The oldest secular Mary song, at least in English, probably dates to the 16th century, when Mary Tudor ruled as the Queen of England. (Mary, of course, was the daughter of Henry VIII, so maybe that first song was performed by Herman’s Hermits’ ancestors.)

Anyway, whether you start counting from 700 A.D. or 1553, when Mary Tudor ascended to the throne, we have plenty of Mary songs to choose from. Here are a few from my stacks:

“Johnny and Mary,” Robert Palmer.

“Mary,” Pete Townshend.

Sweet Lady Mary,” Faces.

“Riding With Mary,” X.

“Mary Pretends,” Fuel.

“Cross-Eyed Mary,” Jethro Tull.

“Mary of the Wild Moor,” Johnny Cash.

“Mary Mary,” Run DMC.

There you have it: Eight songs about Mary. What did I miss? I’m listening.

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