The 1987 Robbie Robertson tune Showdown at Big Sky is a certified plutonium Song of Space and Nuclear War. Although the song is now old enough to drink, Robertson sings insightfully of the would-soon-end Cold War’s threats. As he opines on the need for strength, wisdom, and morality, the overall tone is one of concern without being overwhelmed or defeated. Check out the lyrics for yourself.

Certified plutonium: Showdown at Big Sky

I had ordered Robertson’s CD back in the day when it was new (I had heard the song or seen the video, or something and was attracted to it, perhaps the “ring those bells” line), and I ordered it as a part of my initial buy in the Columbia House Record (not kidding) Club. It was supposed to be in my first delivery lump of 12 or 13 CDs. They all showed up uneventfully, except for one, the Robertson CD, which was inexplicably empty. I never called or wrote to Columbia House–I didn’t think it would do any good–but the empty jewel box haunted me for years (but not enough to buy another copy). A couple of years ago, I bought Showdown on-line and today, my to-buy list is pretty much ‘bought out.’ The only remaining stuff I want is either not digitized or only sold as an "album." I still have stacks of vinyl that I bought just to get one song.

 

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