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Robbie Robertson — Showdown At Big Sky
Album: Robbie Robertson
Avg rating:
6.9

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1160








Released: 1987
Length: 4:38
Plays (last 30 days): 1
Soldier of fortune
He's a man of war
Just can't remember
What he's fighting for
Start a revolution
Right before your eyes
When you hear the big bang
Don't you be surprised

Showdown at big sky
Darkness at high noon
Showdown at big sky
That day may be soon

And people, people
Can you hear the sound
From every village and every town
Let the bells ring out (ring those bells)
Hear the bells ring in
Let the bells ring out (everybody)
Keep them ringing, ringing

Can't predict the future
Can't forget the past
Feels like any moment
Could be the last
All you believers
Standing inside this room
Can't you see it coming
Shooting out across the moon

Save this place
- In the valley of tears
- By the river of time
From weapons race
- In the Book of David
- In the holy night
When it's laid to waste
- It will be written
- By the children of Eden
I said save this place
- And the Holy Ghost

Showdown at big sky
Darkness at high noon
Showdown at big sky
That day may be soon

And people, people
Can you hear the sound
From every village and every town
Let the bells ring out (ring those bells)
Hear the bells ring in (ring those bells)
Let the bells ring out (everybody)
Keep them ringing, ringing

Save this place
- In the valley of tears
- By the river of time
From the weapons race
- In the Book of David
- In the holy night
When it's laid to waste
- It will be written
- By the children of Eden
I said save this place
- And the Holy Ghost
- And the Holy Ghost

Showdown at big sky
Darkness at high noon
Kiss tomorrow goodbye
And that day could be soon

Give us the strength
Give us the wisdom
And give us tomorrow

Let the bells ring out (ring those bells)
Hear the bells ring in
Let the bells ring out (oh those people)
Keep them ringing, ringing (ring those bells)
Let the bells ring out (ring out)
Hear the bells ring in (ring in)
Let the bells ring out (oh those people)
Keep them ringing, ringing (ring those bells)
Let the bells ring out
Hear the bells ring in
Let the bells ring out
Keep them ringing, ringing
Comments (138)add comment
Loved the album when I got it, and can recommend the movie Once Were Brothers. The Band was such a success for multiple reasons, the individuals each contributing. The breakup was painful but not unusual, and blaming anything or anybody is pointless. I will enjoy the Band and Robertson's solo projects equally.
Great song. As a lifelong fan of my home-based BoDeans, love the backing vocals as well!!
wow!  haven't heard this one in a while!
 annds wrote:
Makes me feel young again.  Wore out this cassette.  Loved all the guests artists.  
 

Same here, except I had vinyl.(stil have)
 steeler wrote:
Mugro wrote:
I respectfully disagree. I don't really think that any one of us could be President tomorrow and make the right decisions. It is a tough job, and I for one do not think that I would be capable of doing the job justice. I do agree that as part of a free society, it is necessary to have freedom of speech, and art/music is a key component of that speech. I will defend anyone's right to speak, but that does not mean that I think that everyone SHOULD speak. There is a difference. Just because you know how to play guitar does not mean that you are a genius of foreign policy.
This is supposed to be about the music itself, but I can't let this go. Huh? Under the reasoning you have employed here and in your previous post, no one, other than the politicians, should ever voice an opinion about foreign policy because, by definition, we are all on the sidelines. Just because musicians have more of a platform for voicing their views than most of us does not mean that they should not be permitted to use it for that purpose.
 must have clicked on the wrong window LoL

Makes me feel young again.  Wore out this cassette.  Loved all the guests artists.  
Great song, and one of those that stays relevant year to year, particularly in this dark time.
{#Devil_pimp}very zesty ! love the bodeans singing backup vocals

 

I loved this song (and album) back in 1987, and I love it still in 2018.  That's how I know that the music touched me.

As an ardent skier, "Showdown at Big Sky" has a different meaning ....
this deserves more than an average of 7, love it
Remember hearing this on the air back in the late 80's, wishing it was played more often.
Robbie put this out and I heard it on a great FM station just had to have it.  Vinyl is best..  The other night I rented The Last Waltz.  great concert. I haven't kept up with Robbie's career tho. This is a late night album for me, get the bozz going and this just sails away.
 

damn good rockin' man  
When this was first out, I really only jammed to Somewhere Down the Crazy River...then got blown away and captivated by his Music for the Native Americans...but for sure, this is a worthy song, and rocks along quite nicely! Robbie has really had an amazing career!
When this first came on I thought it was the Tom Petty person.
Gosh that chorus is so moving. I can almost see Robbie's neck muscles straining...
7 > 8 
Because of these our times.
Sing it, brother!  
 onelittlemoose wrote:
Bill, would you stop playing all these good songs grouped together? I'm trying to get some work done here on a Sunday afternoon, and I can't do that when I'm required to turn it up loud every second song. Sheesh!

 
{#Cheesygrin} I rated this an 8?  moved it up to a 9
Bill, would you stop playing all these good songs grouped together? I'm trying to get some work done here on a Sunday afternoon, and I can't do that when I'm required to turn it up loud every second song. Sheesh!
 unclehud wrote:
Ha, Ha, Ha!  "Showdown at Big Sky" = last year's ski trip with my old submarine buddy.  Gigantic place, and deserted except for the testosterone-saturated gondola ride to the summit.  (We tried our best to contribute a bit to the gondola atmosphere.)

 
I think you misspelled Ganjala.
Played the hell out this album when it was released.
A GREAT album
this whole cd excellent start to fini ! thanks bill
ROCKIN' IN GOOD COMPANY   
 fredriley wrote:

After Cynaera's sad and premature passing, I wish I wasn't an atheist and could believe that she's in a better place (still listening to RP, naturally). I and many others miss her. A unique person, and irreplaceable contributor to these boards. 

 
In circumstances like this, even we atheists can say, "Amen."
Ah......so good to listen to robbie again, what a great album!
 richlister wrote:
And what's he gonna call his kids? Robbie Robbieson? Will they form a band and call themselves Robbie Robertson and Robbie Robertsons son Robbie Robbieson? What if Robbie's dad Rabi Robbie Robieson gets in as well? Then it would be, Rabi Robbie Robbieson, Robbie Robertson and Robbie Robert's son Robbie Robbieson. Don't even start if Robbies Son, Robert joins the band...

 
Paul Winfield looking skeptically at Linda Hamilton in still from "The Terminator"

"Just how much speed have you ingested tonight, Mr. Lister?"
 richlister wrote:
And what's he gonna call his kids? Robbie Robbieson? Will they form a band and call themselves Robbie Robertson and Robbie Robertsons son Robbie Robbieson? What if Robbie's dad Rabi Robbie Robieson gets in as well? Then it would be, Rabi Robbie Robbieson, Robbie Robertson and Robbie Robert's son Robbie Robbieson. Don't even start if Robbies Son, Robert joins the band...

 
oh jeez.........it HAS been a long week!  {#Tongue}
And what's he gonna call his kids? Robbie Robbieson? Will they form a band and call themselves Robbie Robertson and Robbie Robertsons son Robbie Robbieson? What if Robbie's dad Rabi Robbie Robieson gets in as well? Then it would be, Rabi Robbie Robbieson, Robbie Robertson and Robbie Robert's son Robbie Robbieson. Don't even start if Robbies Son, Robert joins the band...
Ha, Ha, Ha!  "Showdown at Big Sky" = last year's ski trip with my old submarine buddy.  Gigantic place, and deserted except for the testosterone-saturated gondola ride to the summit.  (We tried our best to contribute a bit to the gondola atmosphere.)
 DD rabbi_phil wrote:
If you like the (Da) Bodeans influence here then listen to their 1st: Love&Hope&Sex&Dreams. T-Bone Burnett produced that album and helped shape their sound. It's most excellent.



 
Seems "Da Rabbi Dude" had heard about Love+Hope+Sex+Dreams!
 Lazarus wrote:

I miss Cynaera so much...

 

 

Some crackers to your whine...?


Pity he's output is so rather small!
OUTSTANDING song, especially considering it was created in the late 80's, a time period that was seriously devoid of good music
 fredriley wrote:

After Cynaera's sad and premature passing, I wish I wasn't an atheist and could believe that she's in a better place (still listening to RP, naturally). I and many others miss her. A unique person, and irreplaceable contributor to these boards. 
 

Yeah, man... I know what you mean...

we will probably all be back to do this again... we will do many different things, too... seems inevitable in infinity, sooner or later... probably much, much later...

seems like the Rapture begins for each of us the day we are born...

I miss Cynaera so much...

love this profound song...


Whoa...I missed that song...I feel like I'm in high school!
Good song. Bass part is worth at least half of the score alone.
 t00lur wrote:


sucks exactly the way peter gabrela does
 
That's be his Sicillian cousin you're thinking of.
One of my most favourite songs.
I was disappointed in this album back in the day, but this song is sounding pretty good to me now.
 
KermitDfrog wrote:
Really good song from a great album, with backup from U2, Maria McKee, Bodeans and Peter Gabriel. Nice to have friends in high places.
 

sucks exactly the way peter gabrela does
sucks
 Cynaera wrote:

Oh, Fred. I don't think Robbie Robertson's apocalypse has anything to do with what we stupid humans view as the "end of the world." I do agree, though - it'd make a great soundtrack to a Stephen King novel. (The Stand is still, to me, a book I wouldn't want to read twice because it's too close to the now-time reality.)

GUH!  Just caught it. You're an atheist! (I'm slow, but I can be taught...)

 
After Cynaera's sad and premature passing, I wish I wasn't an atheist and could believe that she's in a better place (still listening to RP, naturally). I and many others miss her. A unique person, and irreplaceable contributor to these boards. 
 fredriley wrote:
Hmm. Nice sound, shame about the christian apocalyptica. This would make a good soundtrack to Stephen King's christian kitsch series The Stand.
 
Oh, Fred. I don't think Robbie Robertson's apocalypse has anything to do with what we stupid humans view as the "end of the world." I do agree, though - it'd make a great soundtrack to a Stephen King novel. (The Stand is still, to me, a book I wouldn't want to read twice because it's too close to the now-time reality.)

GUH!  Just caught it. You're an atheist! (I'm slow, but I can be taught...)



profound...  I don't know why I have not rated this song yet...  big 10... we be dancing...



Love me some RR.....{#Music}
If you like the (Da) Bodeans influence here then listen to their 1st: Love&Hope&Sex&Dreams. T-Bone Burnett produced that album and helped shape their sound. It's most excellent.


 pousso wrote:


And to be fair, "end-time, rapture" Christians are a minority in Christendom (however, maybe not in North America).  Most Christians believe that this Earth is created by God, and we are mandated to take care of it (Gen 1:28).   Unfortunately, humanity sucks at it!   Yet, a major thrust of Scripture is environmental as it encourages the healing of our relationship with God, others, self, and all of creation.   So, Christians ought to care deeply about "this place" as part of their worship/obedience/gratitude to God.     

BTW:  Love this song, love this album!  

 
Agree wholeheartedly with your statement.

Also, love this song and great segue from The Church's "Under the Milky Way"!

This would be perfect after having just played Jackson Browne's Late for the Sky & Wilco's Sky Blue Sky...

Or perhaps Chris Whitley's Big Sky Country...?
Simply. Awesome.
Sounds like it would make a great soundtrack to a hybrid of Dukes of Hazzard and Miami Vice.
 passsion8 wrote:
Absolutely essential album in its time.

 
{#Yes}


I have always loved this song! Does not get played near enough!
 Ag3nt0rang3 wrote:


Christians who believe in the End Times as something coming in our lifetimes, don't care much about "this place."
 

 

And to be fair, "end-time, rapture" Christians are a minority in Christendom (however, maybe not in North America).  Most Christians believe that this Earth is created by God, and we are mandated to take care of it (Gen 1:28).   Unfortunately, humanity sucks at it!   Yet, a major thrust of Scripture is environmental as it encourages the healing of our relationship with God, others, self, and all of creation.   So, Christians ought to care deeply about "this place" as part of their worship/obedience/gratitude to God.     

BTW:  Love this song, love this album!  

...funny, i always interpreted this as a fusion contemporary native american and judaic imagery...
Forgot about this album,...  Think I'll put this cd in my car...
Not normally a RR fan... But I do like this one. It seems more rockin' than usual.
Always the best guys around,when Robbie is working. #9
Absolutely essential album in its time.
 
  well done Agent Orange {#Clap}

 fredriley wrote:
Hmm. Nice sound, shame about the christian apocalyptica. This would make a good soundtrack to Stephen King's christian kitsch series The Stand.
 

Though there's a lot of Christian apocalyptic imagery, a closer look at the lyrics suggests that maybe he's not on the Christians' side. 

Soldier of fortune
He's a man of war
Just can't remember
What he's fighting for
Start a revolution
Right before your eyes
When you hear the big bang
Don't you be surprised


This would suggest that the end will be started by "soldier's of fortune" acting blindly. And this:

Save this place
In the valley of tears
By the river of time
From weapons race


Would suggest that he's concerned about saving "this place" (i.e. the Earth) from the ravages of an apocalyptic holy war.  Which would seem to confirmed by this:

When it's laid to waste
It will be written
By the children of Eden
I said save this place


Christians who believe in the End Times as something coming in our lifetimes, don't care much about "this place."
 

yeah, i love this song. love the bodean background vocals!
Oh yeah, turn it up.  Great music and a superb album.  A fantastic mix/recording too!

 

Great Album, Great Artist 


 
Posted: Jul 08, 2007 - 19:03 

bdblinux wrote: good example of badtaste christian rock i suppose

mandolin
(...drifting...)..wherever did you get the notion that robbie robertson did christian rock?..

                                              {#Lol}


Hmm. Nice sound, shame about the christian apocalyptica. This would make a good soundtrack to Stephen King's christian kitsch series The Stand.
Proud to be a card carrying member of the RRR club (Robbie Robertson Rules)!
 coolpeople_rule wrote:
Great song...great artist!
 

YEP!
 joanbcn wrote:
Sorry but... Who is this guy?
 

He was with a little group affectionately known as "The Band" a long time ago..as well as "Little Feat"

Hoy-Hoy! cover
 joanbcn wrote:
Sorry but... Who is this guy?
 
Spend a bit of time researching The Band, then go from there.

Great song...great artist!

One of the background singers sounds like the one fellow from the Bodeans (the guy with the honey sandpaper rasp).

Edit:  Apparently I'm thinking of Sam Llanas.  And its confirmed that both Sam and Kurt Neumann were on that track.


Sorry but... Who is this guy?
 mandolin wrote:
...brilliant followup after under the milky way!..
 
Agreed...Bill does it again. {#Music}
Wow : ) This is the first time I've heard this on RP... I think... anyway it's one of the first CD's I ever had. Love it.
 mandolin wrote:

...wherever did you get the notion that robbie robertson did christian rock?..
  
You're right.  It isn't Christian rock but it definately is Church.  Awesome.  Amen.


...brilliant followup after under the milky way!..
That chorus - what a fine hook. The album reflects RR's complex semi-dark side all too well. Compelling and troubling verse noir.
Bill occasionally samples from that album here on RP. That should come as no surprise to any listeners in RP universe. FilmYak wrote:
Robbie Robertson followed up this amazing CD with another one a few years later. Then he did the soundtrack for a PBS special on American Indians, followed by another "rock" album that mixed American Indian rhythms with Western pop. Wow! Astonishingly good! Came out in 2000 or so. Look for it. Sorry I don't have exact title on me, but it's not hard to find.
shakitten wrote:
I LOVE this album! One of the best ever.... (edit) Apparently I've made this same comment before... Oh, well...bears repeating!
Well, I was going to say the same thing. Allow me to third your second. I'll probably forget that I made this comment too.
shakitten wrote:
I LOVE this album! One of the best ever.... (edit) Apparently I've made this same comment before... Oh, well...bears repeating!
Da bears.
randomprime wrote:
Yup and Yup. Although Rod Stewart nearly ruined Broken Arrow for me. Blech.
"testimony" is another great track, with Bono on back-up vocals....
bdblinux wrote:
good example of badtaste christian rock i suppose
...wherever did you get the notion that robbie robertson did christian rock?..
randomprime wrote:
Yup and Yup. Although Rod Stewart nearly ruined Broken Arrow for me. Blech.
Yeah, I hear ya. Rod kinda ruins everything, thought...
bdblinux wrote:
last 3 tracks were good.. but this song is screwing up up everything.. yuck.. good example of badtaste christian rock i suppose
Uhmmm....no. Great song, awesome album. A definite 10.
last 3 tracks were good.. but this song is screwing up up everything.. yuck.. good example of badtaste christian rock i suppose
folkalta wrote:
Yes! :guitarist: Volume up!
Exactly; Robbie Robertson makes me smile!
Yes! :guitarist: Volume up!
daedalus wrote:
I've been playing this CD ever since its release. There's a unique mood about the whole collection of songs that I've never heard anywhere else. Broken Arrow, Somewhere down the Crazy river - Love 'em.
Yup and Yup. Although Rod Stewart nearly ruined Broken Arrow for me. Blech.
teeyodi wrote:
Freaking rocks out and shakes me after almost 20 years...Made my morning to hear it.
Exactly. Well stated (beats the heck out of my cliche!)
Reduces me to the use of a cliche: I never get tired of this one.
Freaking rocks out and shakes me after almost 20 years...Made my morning to hear it.
woozurdaddy wrote:
One of my favs as well.... ...nice country up in your neck of the woods, Shakitten (former Evergreen guy here....)
Hey, Woozurdaddy! Had you stayed, we would have been neighbors...I'm up Conifer way...a little slice of heaven, it is!
I LOVE this album! One of the best ever.... (edit) Apparently I've made this same comment before... Oh, well...bears repeating!
Another fine track from a great disc. Thx Bill By the way, why the reference to Custer below? This is about Biblical armageddon, I always thought. P'raps I'm wrong.
love love love this album... it's not played at all that i know of where i've been (east coast us) i would never have known about it if U2 hadn't been on the album... now i own four of Robbie's discs
Nuance wrote:
not what I hope to hear on RP. seriously overplayed & ruined forever in my brain.
Well, if it's overplayed where you live, then Winnipeg is a Mecca of eclectic rock. Such a good record, it has to be overplayed just to get the full flavor of it.
stevo_b wrote:
I have always liked this tune.
I suppose that Custer fellow wouldn't have, though.
I have always liked this tune.
LOVE this album... :clap: :cheers: :jump:
I've been playing this CD ever since its release. There's a unique mood about the whole collection of songs that I've never heard anywhere else. Broken Arrow, Somewhere down the Crazy river - Love 'em.
steeler wrote:
This is supposed to be about the music itself, but I can't let this go. Huh? Under the reasoning you have employed here and in your previous post, no one, other than the politicians, should ever voice an opinion about foreign policy because, by definition, we are all on the sidelines. Just because musicians have more of a platform for voicing their views than most of us does not mean that they should not be permitted to use it for that purpose.
That's sums it up. Well said. Why not be political? You can't escape it...
Let's hear more from this album... very visual and detailed. Creates a full mood and world. Headphone music for sure.. Don't count out this one just from this one track. Beautiful production.
Is this song about some kind of holy war happening in Montana? Probably not.
Mugro wrote:
My point was that a lot of musicians don't know what the hell they are talking about in terms of politics and they should just stick to music. To me, it is as tiresome as in rap music listening to lyrics about "bitches and ho's".
Well, alot of rap musicians know more than most anyone else about bitches and ho's, so by that reasoning you should welcome their social commentary.
not what I hope to hear on RP. seriously overplayed & ruined forever in my brain.
steeler wrote:
This is supposed to be about the music itself, but I can't let this go. Huh? Under the reasoning you have employed here and in your previous post, no one, other than the politicians, should ever voice an opinion about foreign policy because, by definition, we are all on the sidelines. Just because musicians have more of a platform for voicing their views than most of us does not mean that they should not be permitted to use it for that purpose.
My point was that a lot of musicians don't know what the hell they are talking about in terms of politics and they should just stick to music. To me, it is as tiresome as in rap music listening to lyrics about "bitches and ho's".
Robbie Robertson followed up this amazing CD with another one a few years later. Then he did the soundtrack for a PBS special on American Indians, followed by another "rock" album that mixed American Indian rhythms with Western pop. Wow! Astonishingly good! Came out in 2000 or so. Look for it. Sorry I don't have exact title on me, but it's not hard to find.
Xeric wrote:
... Mugro's gist seems to be that music has no business in politics. He's wrong.
YES! RIGHT RIGHT RIGHT! (LEFT LEFT LEFT?) all forms of art not only can be in politics, they are OBLIGATED to be. they all reflect the world of their time. they all contribute something, positive or negative. either one can affect change.
His music changes alot....and I like it all. I wish he would have done more in the genre of "somewhere down the crazy river" RP I beg you to add that on again!
Mugro wrote:
I respectfully disagree. I don't really think that any one of us could be President tomorrow and make the right decisions. It is a tough job, and I for one do not think that I would be capable of doing the job justice. I do agree that as part of a free society, it is necessary to have freedom of speech, and art/music is a key component of that speech. I will defend anyone's right to speak, but that does not mean that I think that everyone SHOULD speak. There is a difference. Just because you know how to play guitar does not mean that you are a genius of foreign policy.
This is supposed to be about the music itself, but I can't let this go. Huh? Under the reasoning you have employed here and in your previous post, no one, other than the politicians, should ever voice an opinion about foreign policy because, by definition, we are all on the sidelines. Just because musicians have more of a platform for voicing their views than most of us does not mean that they should not be permitted to use it for that purpose.
Xeric wrote:
Well, tough situations are a given. The stupid decisions made in the face of them are not. There are a large number of people in Hollywood--or Podunk or Dogpatch--who may well have done better than we've recently seen from our . . . uh . . . existing leadership. Voicing that thought in music is part of what we have music for. . . . This song may not be a case in point, but Mugro's gist seems to be that music has no business in politics. He's wrong.
I respectfully disagree. I don't really think that any one of us could be President tomorrow and make the right decisions. It is a tough job, and I for one do not think that I would be capable of doing the job justice. I do agree that as part of a free society, it is necessary to have freedom of speech, and art/music is a key component of that speech. I will defend anyone's right to speak, but that does not mean that I think that everyone SHOULD speak. There is a difference. Just because you know how to play guitar does not mean that you are a genius of foreign policy.
Mugro wrote:
One thing that has not changed from the 60s, 80s and today is that musical artists love to display their arrogant elitism. As if they were in charge of the country that they would not have to make the same tough decisions that the people currently running the government face. It is easy to stand on the sidelines (Hollywood) and criticize and snipe.
Well, tough situations are a given. The stupid decisions made in the face of them are not. There are a large number of people in Hollywood--or Podunk or Dogpatch--who may well have done better than we've recently seen from our . . . uh . . . existing leadership. Voicing that thought in music is part of what we have music for. . . . This song may not be a case in point, but Mugro's gist seems to be that music has no business in politics. He's wrong.
billery wrote:
I rate this as and average example of the "nuclear apocalypse" genre of the era. Should be in a set with "It's a Mistake" by Men at Work, "Red Skies Tonight" by The Fixx, and whatever the others were by Mike and Mechanics and Duran Duran. How quaint! There was a time when we knew the threat and where it existed. . . Now, those years seem almost innocent.
One thing that has not changed from the 60s, 80s and today is that musical artists love to display their arrogant elitism. As if they were in charge of the country that they would not have to make the same tough decisions that the people currently running the government face. It is easy to stand on the sidelines (Hollywood) and criticize and snipe.
Beanie wrote:
I can't help it; Robbie's music may be 80's but it's still one of my guilty pleasures....... 8)
A good measure of music is whether you can hear it 20 or 30 years after the first time, and it still sounds just as good. The guy's talented. I wish he'd put out something new. Has he? Anyone?
I can't help it; Robbie's music may be 80's but it's still one of my guilty pleasures....... 8)
I rate this as and average example of the "nuclear apocalypse" genre of the era. Should be in a set with "It's a Mistake" by Men at Work, "Red Skies Tonight" by The Fixx, and whatever the others were by Mike and Mechanics and Duran Duran. How quaint! There was a time when we knew the threat and where it existed. . . Now, those years seem almost innocent.
Platypus wrote:
I can see Crocket and Tubbs speeding across the everglades as i type. :rolleyes: bad 80s, imho.
Not so! This is a song about the coming "Apocalypse" which Robbie dreamt about once. He said in an interview that a lot of his world view is affected by the fact that he is native american and his people believe that there is a coming cataclism which will purify the earth and destroy the unholy.
Platypus wrote:
I can see Crocket and Tubbs speeding across the everglades as i type. :rolleyes: bad 80s, imho.
i LOVE Miami Vice!!!!!!!!!!!! Bring on the Vice music!!!