Goodnight, Texas Reach Across America and Back in Time


Patrick Dyer Wolf and Avi Vinocur met in San Francisco and forged a musical bond that would span an entire continent. With a sound rooted in their Appalachian ancestry, the collaboration continued even after Wolf moved east to Chapel Hill, N.C.

Their clever name — Goodnight, Texas — represents the midway point between their homes, but their sound stays true to folk traditions ringing through foggy hollers and lush mountains of West Virginia, North Carolina and the like. For “Jesse Got Trapped in a Coal Mine,” you can almost hear the pick axes being swung in time to its steady rhythm.

“‘Jesse Got Trapped in a Coal Mine’ represents the type of tragic story that gets passed down between generations,” explains Vinocur. “The kind where your grandfather shows you an old tintype photograph of a distant relative. My family is from northern West Virginia and western Maryland, and we had relatives working in all aspects of life in that area. You’re never sure if stories like these are accurate after so many years of hearsay, but you choose to pass it down anyway.”

Strap on your hard hat and take a step back in time for the sad tale of Goodnight, Texas’ “Jesse Got Trapped in a Coal Mine.”