New Song Lyrics – Moonshine’s a Running

Hi folks,

I’ve just written a brand spanking new song called “Moonshine’s a Running”. Here are the lyrics and below that will be a brief explination of the song –

Moonshine’s a Running

Moonshine’s a running

From the side of the hill

I make my living

From the pot and the still

Moonshine’s a running

From the side of my hill

I feed my young un’s

From the pot and the still

I work all day toiling in the dirt

When the chillun’s cry from hunger, that’s when I hurt

Moonshine’s a running

Like my Pappy did before

As his Daddy did

When he washed upon this shore

Moonshine’s a running

It’s an honest man’s trade

The sheriff let’s me know

When it’s time for the raid

These hills are alive with the smell of mash

And quiet whispers at night and promises of cash

Moonshine’s a running

On an Appalachian night

I’ll brew my magic

By the harvest moon tonight

Moonshine’s a running

It’s time to move the shine

The dogs are a sniffin’

I’ve been given the sign

The sheriff said “I hear ya farmin’ the woods?

There’s new folks in town out lookin’ for your goods”

Moonshine’s a running

It’s time to move on

It’s the end of the verse

But not of my song

Moonshine’s a running

Little bellies full tonight

But who knows tomorrow

If their belts will be tight

It’s a life I never chose to be

But a man does what he does, for his family

Moonshine’s a Running

On the side of my hill

I made my living

On the pot and the still

Moonshine’s a running

Time to rest my bones

I died a moonshiner

Four miles from my home

The cold and wet got me in the night

Daddy won’t be home, but everything’s alright

Moonshine’s a running

On the side of a hill

They’ll make a new life

From the pot and the still

Moonshine’s a running

It’s the way it’s always been

It will always live on

In both kith and kin

A hundred fires in the woods tonight

A hundred souls will go on, fight the good fight

Written by Jamie McPherson

Sunday 10 June 2013

Words and music © 2013 Copyright Jamie McPherson

The line “moonshine’s a running” came to me while reading a Foxfire article about moonshining in the Appalachian Mountains called “The Fine Art of Moonshining”. It was a great article written in the 60’s of the dying art of Moonshining (the distilling of illegal whisky). One thing that touched me deeply was that it was accepted by all the locals, including the local law enforcement, as for many it was the only way they could feed their families. Life was tough for these folks, and they had to do whatever they could to survive. Their only real concern was the Federal law enforcement agencies, who could spell a lengthy prison sentence for them. But to feed their families, it was worth the risk. So, I hope I was able to catch the spirit of this within the song.

The song was really born out of the chords. I was noodling around with the guitar last weekend and started to play these chords. I recorded them on my mobile so I wouldn’t forget. Then, yesterday I played back the chords and wrote the music structure on a neet little program on my mobile. And this morning I sat down and wrote out the lyrics.

So, I hope you enjoy Moonshine’s a Running. Hopefully soon I’ll have a rough demo up so you can listen to it.

Beannach leibh,



4 Responses to “New Song Lyrics – Moonshine’s a Running”

  1. Hi Jamie,

    These are lyrics which made me smile. I guess buying into the romantic vision, although the reality was of course hardship.

    Your song could equally well have been sited in the west of Ireland. Although there they called it poteen!! Still do!!

    I really look forward to be able to hear it.


    • Hi David,

      Thank you so much for your comment. I’m glad it put a smile on that lovely Irish dial 🙂 Yes, there is a mix of romanticism and hard gruff in both the song and of their life. Life was hard for the majority of folks back then the world over.

      It’s funny that you made the comparisson with the folks of Western Ireland. Where do you think these folks originally learned their craft 😉 Yes, it was from their Irish and Scottish ancestors that settled the region who established to practice of moo shining in the Appelachian regions. Face it David, we are everywhere 😀

      I hope you have a brilliant and creative week my friend.

      Beannach leat,


  2. Hi Jamie,

    Congratulations!! on another song well written! I’m very, very proud of you. 🙂

    You’ve captured what would be for many a not very well known part of Appalachian history. I think you have done well in shining a light on the hardship of those times and the precarious living these people had to make in order to survive.

    I look forward to hearing how you go about bring this life and it was a treat to hear your first play through of it. 🙂

    Wishing you all the very best in continued lyrical inspiriation on your musical journey.

    Yours always in love

    • Hi Tikarma,

      Thank you for your lovely comment. I’m glad you liked the lyrics and especially glad you liked the preview performance. It gives me great joy to have you as the first person to hear my songs as I write them 🙂 It did seem to go down well in it’s first public performance on Sunday.

      I’m glad you feel I captured the hardship of these people. I do admire the tenacity of the human spirit to never give up. I have great respect to both these folks as well as our pioneering ancestors. Life was hard for them, but they kept on pushing through, mainly for their loved ones. I can relate to the feeling of nothing is more important than those you love.

      Once again, I am very glad you liked the song and hopefully you’ll like the next, whatever that may be 🙂

      With all the love in my heart, always and forever,


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