Indie News

Bill Callahan, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy Tackle Steely Dan’s ‘Deacon Blues’

Bill Callahan and Bonnie “Prince” Billy have continued their cover series with Steely Dan’s “Deacon Blues,” with Bill MacKay lending a hand.

Directed by Michael Tully, the clip features a woman finding change on the ground, guzzling Gatorade, and eventually watching projections of Callahan and Billy on a house. They perform the Aja track across acoustic guitar: “Learn to work the saxophone/I play just what I feel/Drink Scotch whiskey all night long/And die behind the wheel.”

“Party got busted,” Billy said of the cover. “All clear. Let’s get our buzzes back buzzing. Cup size BBB.” Added Tully: “When the honorable Bill Callahan and Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy asked me to direct a music video for their cover of Steely Dan’s ‘Deacon Blues,’ my initial Covid-safe plan was to cut together an avant-garde montage of archival NFL Films footage of legendary lineman Deacon Jones wreaking havoc on the gridiron. But that idea died when the NFL quoted 15 THOUSAND DOLLARS for every 1 MINUTE of footage used. Bwahahahaaa!”

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“Deacon Blues” follows Callahan and Billy’s cover of Billie Eilish’s “Wish You Were Gay,” “Yusuf/Cat Stevens’ 1967 protest song “Blackness of the Night,” Hank Williams Jr.’s “OD’d in Denver,” Dave Rich’s “I’ve Made Up My Mind,” and more.

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