By Abby Hassler
John Mellencamp covered Merle Travis’ 1946 song “Dark as a Dungeon” to support the National Geographic’s acclaimed documentary about the mining industry, From The Ashes.
Travis wrote to “describe the harsh and dangerous conditions that coal miners experienced every day.” Johnny Cash popularized the tune on his iconic 1968 live album At Folsom Prison.
“It’s dark as a dungeon and damp as the dew, where danger is double and pleasures are few,” Mellencamp sings as an accordion and tambourine play in the background.
The documentary premiered June 25 on National Geographic. It is also available, commercial-free via YouTube, Facebook, Hulu, Amazon, Google Play and VOD.
Watch Mellencamp’s video and the film below.