Nick Cave Monday #51: “Your Funeral, My Trial”


I loved you babe, but I had to kill you.

Nick once said that he kills people in his songs so he doesn’t have to kill them in real life.

So many times his violent lyrics are presented as something that sounds like a love song. Wouldn’t it be great if a couple getting married chose “Your Funeral, My Trial” as their wedding song just because it’s beautiful? Even better “Where the Wild Roses Grow.”

We’re coming to the end of the Nick Cave Monday project and I’m a little stunned this song almost didn’t make it in. I have actually wrote the NCM for “Your Funeral, My Trial” a few times, then my mood struck me in a different direction. Yes, these things may seem very planned, but I’m usually putting them together at 3 a.m. Monday morning. There has been no real sense to the songs that are picked other than how I feel at that moment.

Check out this amazing version of “Your Funeral, My Trial” by Sonny Boy Williamson:

How badass is that? I love that Nick doesn’t literally cover a song but tweaks it into something different. It’s more like his tribute to “Your Funeral My Trial.”

Here’s another video of Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds performing the song:

And while Nick and the band continue touring this year you have a chance to see it live as it sometimes pops up in the 2013 set list:

Extra Credit: “Higgs Boson Blues”:

There has been a lot of talk about Miley Cyrus the last week or so. Of course Nick was way ahead of all of you and already voiced his opinions in my current favorite song on Push The Sky Away.

That was “Higgs Boson Blues.” What kind of sedated crowd was that? It’s not movie theater kids, get up there, interact with Nick. He’s asking you with gestures.

The official video for “Higgs Boson Blues” is shot and we’re just waiting for The Bad Seeds to release it….I prayed it would happen before our Nick Cave Mondays came to an end but my prayers have not been answered and I no longer believe in an interventionist God.

Extra extra Credit: “Little Empty Boat”:

This was the B-side of “Into My Arms” and it’s such a fun song. A girl follows Nick at a party trying to impress him and essentially preach to him and here’s his reply:

“I respect your beliefs girl
And I consider you a friend
But I’ve already been born once
I don’t wanna be born again
Your knowledge is impressive
And your argument is good
But I am the resurrection babe
And you’re standing on my foot.”

Yet, he still kind of wants to go home with her and have a good shag. Later in the song:

“You keep leaning on me and you’re looking pretty pissed
That grave you’ve dug between your legs is hard to resist.”

Wow. Here:

Listen to the live version of the song which has a completely different vibe since Nick is solo on piano:

“Give to God what belongs to God and give the rest to me
Tell our gracious host to fuck himself the time has come to leave
Yeah give to God what belongs to God and give the rest to me
And you can all go fuck yourselves it’s time for me to leave.”

Thanks for reading, and come back next week for the last edition of Nick Cave Monday.

Tony DuShane is the author of Confessions of a Teenage Jesus Jerk. His writing has appeared in The Los Angeles Times, Mother Jones, Penthouse, The San Francisco Chronicle, and The Believer. And, if you’re a Nick Cave fan, check out Nick Cave Monday. More from this author →