Steel Rails and Stealing Songs

two girls with instruments the pressley girls

Photo by Ron Priest

The girls have been doing Louisa Branscomb’s song “Steel Rails” for about ten years. They learned it from an Allison Krauss cd I used to play in the car as we drove to and fro.

Who can remember why Chatter started singing the verses alone. I’d guess it was because she’s the one who wanted to sing the song the most. Back then, Paul sung harmony with her on the song, but somewhere along the way Chitter figured out the harmony and she’s been doing it ever since.

Here’s a peek into our recent show at the Historic Union County Courthouse where we did the song “Steel Rails.”

I hope you enjoy the fussing and the music! The courthouse is one of our very favorite places to play. I’ll share more from the show in the coming weeks.


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  • Reply
    July 22, 2019 at 3:40 pm

    Good video. Picture was wonderful. Those girls have good harmony and I love seeing you there behind them. You always have supported them in such a great way.

  • Reply
    July 22, 2019 at 3:33 pm

    Great singing and fun ….I so enjoy watching y’all sing in this lovely place…. Have enjoyed videos on U-tube of other times you’ve sung there, especially … that was posted on Sept.9, 2018, and one posted on March 19, 2017, singing’ ”Never Grow Old” where Pap was helping Paul with some of the lines…. 🙂 .

  • Reply
    Paula Rhodarmer
    July 21, 2019 at 4:56 pm

    The girls did a beautiful job on that song. I would have loved to hear them sing it at the courthouse.

  • Reply
    July 21, 2019 at 12:09 pm

    Your statement about listening as you drove ‘to and fro’ brings up an interesting quirk in how we speak. One must go ‘to’ before they can come ‘fro’. Why does everyone say ‘back and forth ‘to work etc.? Don’t we have to go to work before we can come back?

    • Reply
      Ed Ammons
      July 21, 2019 at 2:39 pm

      If we walk in a circle why do we come back to where we started?

  • Reply
    Ron Pries†
    July 21, 2019 at 9:36 am

    Nice picture, good concert, the Girls are fun.

  • Reply
    July 21, 2019 at 9:36 am

    The video is wonderful, and you have such a talented family. I also know a lot of hard work all goes into your music.

  • Reply
    aw griff
    July 21, 2019 at 8:21 am

    Nothing beats a genetic blend and they really have that.

  • Reply
    Ken Roper
    July 21, 2019 at 8:08 am

    I wanted to go hear Chitter and Chatter do the “Steel Rails” song at the Historical Union County Building at Blairsville, but wasn’t able to.

    I remember a long time ago when you all were looking for Pap’s Spring and the girls got into it over something, as most families do. Paul was with you, and you was narrating a story as you went along. Somehow Chitter and Chatter got into it a little bit over something, but you just continued narrating. Like most folks, I tried to listen, but you kept on talking, the way most Good moms will and didn’t pay them no attention. They soon got over it.

    I got two girls also and they use to like to bother each other just to see if they could get on their nerves. Next thing, they were playing together and doing things together. …Ken

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