I just caught the tail end of the Summer of Love.. I was never into drugs but I did love music.. I would listen to the local radio stations and I began to hear this song called, “Polk Salad Annie”… I don’t know why.. but I fuckin’ loved it.. I would crank it up and beat the dashboard like it was a drum set… The song was by this cat from Louisiana .. Tony Joe White… At that time lots of rock stars would have three names… Since I had only two names.. first and last.. being a rock star would be that much more difficult… oh… I have absolutely no talent…
“Polk Salad” reached the Top 10 across the globe… Hey, maybe Polk Salad would do for me as spinach did for Popeye?
Tony Joe White released what would become his signature song, the grooving, growling “Polk Salad Annie.” A cautionary tale about a Southern girl from a family of miscreants, it’d be covered by everyone from Elvis Presley.. Johnny Cash to the Foo Fighters, who performed with White on the David Letterman show.
White died last year at 75, but a few months before his passing, he re-recorded the Top 10 hit at his Leipers Fork, Tennessee, studio with blues guitarist Robert Cray. Produced by White’s son Jody, the 50th anniversary of “Polk Salad Annie” premieres today — on what would have been the swamp-rock pioneer’s 76th birthday.