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Wednesday, 6 March 2019

State of the Union -North Dakota

George writes
Today, for number 9 in the series, it’s the home of the world’s largest french fry feed . This is held in the city of Grand Forks, which is in………..North Dakota. North Dakota also saw the world’s largest hamburger made and eaten. It weighed 3591 pounds and was shared by more than 8,000 people, that sounds terribly unhygienic. North Dakota  also saw the largest pancake feed (more than 34,000). That was in Fargo. No scenes of the Coen Brothers film Fargo were made in Fargo. And the film was based on events that happened in Minnesota. And the tv show Fargo is made in Canada.

In my long long search for some music I got terribly excited to have found a song with Grand Forks in the title, and it was also very good. Imagine my disappointment when I discovered that East Grand Forks is not, as I was hoping, a reference to the east part of the city but is in fact about a city called East Grand Forks. I bought the album anyway.

So here’s a song called North Dakota. The artiste is Sarah Everett who of course is not from the state. An acoustic track, it reminds of the Mountain Goats.

Speaking of Fargo, as I was,  it is illegal to go dancing there with a hat on, and it is illegal to wear a hat at a party where other people are dancing. Men Without Hats, the 1980s band, are from Canada and are not thought to be named in honour of those laws. North Dakota is the least-visited state in the USA, which must come as no surprise given it’s anti-hat stance.

I managed to  find a song called Fargo. Several, actually, and the vast majority were absolute nonsense. And the rest were worse! Except  one, by a band called Young Milly, who hail from New Zealand. And it’s not great.

But thanks to a man who grew up in the wonderfully named Slaughters, Kentucky, here’s a song that mentions the cold and snows of North Dakota. A slightly gothic americana track, it’s well worth a listen:

That’s North Dakota, the state with more cows than people (2:1).

More next week. I wonder which state it will be?

CC writes
I've seen Chris Knight but do not have any music by him
I've music by Lyle Lovett but not this


  1. Nobody getting excited about North Dakota!

  2. I have a Tom Brosseau album called North Dakota Impressions. The best track on it is A Trip To Emerado, which is a town in North Dakota...

    Beyond that, all I can offer you is Reno Dakota by The Magnetic Fields...

  3. I have never been to this state and doubt I ever will, but it was worth reading about North Dakota for this: "North Dakota is the least-visited state in the USA, which must come as no surprise given it's anti-hat stance." Brilliant, George.

    1. I'm sure it has its charms, Brian. I, though, will not travelling there any time soon...

  4. I have an album by a band called Dakota Suite (This River Brings Only Poison) - a bit low key as I recall, atmospheric, but it survived an earlier CD cull so I must have found something in it - not played it for years though. They were from........(bracing myself).....Leeds!

    1. A band I saw in Sheffield Spence!

  5. *This River Only Brings Poison*