Britain's Greatest Machines with Chris Barrie - Netflix

TV icon and vintage machine enthusiast, Chris Barrie, serves up a big dose of nostalgia in this exclusive series celebrating British design. From the Spitfire to the Mini Cooper, Chris salutes over fifty years of world-beating British know how, revealing how these mechanical icons helped shape Britain and changed peoples' lives in the process. Focusing on four decades - the 1930s, 1950s, 1960s and 1980s – Chris takes a trip down memory lane and familiarizes himself with everything from the world's fastest steam locomotive and the iconic Routemaster bus, to the ever-popular Mini Cooper and the unlikely icons of the Ford Transit Van and the Sinclair C5.

Britain's Greatest Machines with Chris Barrie - Netflix

Type: Documentary

Languages: English

Status: Ended

Runtime: 60 minutes

Premier: 2009-06-04

Britain's Greatest Machines with Chris Barrie - Rock Island Line - Netflix

“Rock Island Line” is an American folk song. Ostensibly about the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad, it appeared as a spiritual as early as 1929. The first recorded performance of “Rock Island Line” was by inmates of the Arkansas Cummins State Farm prison in 1934. The beginning of the most popular version of the song tells the story of a train operator who smuggles pig iron through a toll gate by claiming all he had on board was livestock, but this episode was a later addition not present in the traditional, 1929 version. The song's chorus includes:

Many artists subsequently recorded it, often changing the verses and adjusting the lyrics.

Britain's Greatest Machines with Chris Barrie - 1950s - Netflix

George Melly (single 1951) – Recorded for the small British Jazz label Tempo (which was subsequently acquired by Decca) under the name “The George Melly Trio”, and featuring Johnny Parker on piano and Norman Dodsworth on drums (both members of Mick Mulligan's Magnolia Jazz Band with whom Melly was the singer). Odetta as part of the duo Odetta and Larry The Tin Angel 1954 Lonnie Donegan (single 1955) – In July 1954 Donegan recorded this fast-tempo version of “Rock Island Line”, with Chris Barber's Jazz Band. It was the first debut record to be certified gold in the UK, where it helped trigger the skiffle craze. The single reached the top ten in the US, peaking at number eight. This record is quoted by various later famous musicians as a catalyst for their musical development. Donegan embellished Lead Belly's earlier lyrics with an account of how the locomotive engineer fooled a toll-collector by misrepresenting his load of pig-iron as livestock, which was not chargeable, but this is based on his misunderstanding of the railroad phrase “in the hole” (meaning in the siding); the original meaning was merely that the engineer avoided a wait in the siding because trains carrying livestock were given priority. Bobby Darin (single 1956) – Bobby Darin's debut single was a 1956 recording of “Rock Island Line”, with “rhythm accompaniment directed by Jack Pleis” for Decca Records. Don Cornell (single 1956) – Recorded for Coral, an early American cover version following the success of Lonnie Donegan's record in the US charts. Stan Freberg (single 1956) – This was a typical Freberg parody of Lonnie Donegan's “Rock Island Line”, following the latter's American chart success. Issued on Capitol, it was the B-side to Freberg's parody of Elvis Presley's “Heartbreak Hotel”. Merrill Moore with Cliffie Stone's Orchestra – single (April 1956) The Weavers – The Weavers' Greatest Hits (1957) Johnny Cash – Johnny Cash with His Hot and Blue Guitar (1957) Cash adds two verses to the song, one about a train coming down the track and the second about an engineer indicating two beverages he wants to try before he dies: “a hot cup of coffee and a cold glass of tea.” Milt Okun – America's Best Loved Folk Songs, Baton BL1203 (1957) Johnny Horton – 1956–1960, recorded in 1957, released posthumously Snooks Eaglin – New Orleans Street Singer, SFW CD 40165 (1959) The Tarriers (1957) Woody Guthrie and Sonny Terry (1955) Gateway Singers (1957)

Britain's Greatest Machines with Chris Barrie - References - Netflix