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A hurricane theme: Hope for 'Goodnight Irene'

This NOAA satellite image taken early Thursday morning

This NOAA satellite image taken early Thursday morning shows Category 3 Hurricane Irene in the Bahamas. (Aug. 25, 2011) Photo Credit: AP

With thousands of folks already fleeing parts of North Carolina and news of its remnants already being tracked in the New York tri-state area. . .all eyes are definitely on Irene, but some ears are on Irene as well.

Some may look for solace in a song and the 20th century folk song, 'Goodnight Irene' is one that certainly comes to mind.

According to Wikipedia, the tune was written in 3/4 time, first recorded by American blues musician Huddie 'Lead Belly' Ledbetter in 1932.

The lyrics tell of the singer's troubled past with his love, Irene, and express his sadness and frustration. Unfortunately, there is a tragic water theme here, specifically in the line "sometimes I take a great notion to jump in the river and drown,"

In 1950, a musical group called The Weavers recorded what Time Magazine called, a "dehydrated" and "prettied up" version of the original. That version lasted 25 weeks on the Billboard Best Seller chart and became a number 1 hit.

Since that time, the song has had at least 20 more recorded versions from artists such as Jerry Lee Lewis, The Grateful Dead and Peter, Paul and Mary.

Eric Clapton even did a version on 'The Chas & Dave Christmas Special' in 1982.

So, if there's one song to try and wish the winds and rain away this weekend -- it just might be 'Goodnight Irene."

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