Thursday, February 23, 2012

What Is a Blunderbuss, You Might Ask?

The cover art for the Jack White's upcoming solo album Blunderbuss has been released (pictured above), as well as a complete track listing from the album.

You may be asking yourself "What does blunderbuss mean? Is it an object or a whimsical sort of word that could mean a storm of some kind, or a sort of frenzy?" At least, these are the things that I've been asking myself.

Well, I looked it up and (according to Wikipedia) it's a firearm (a type of shotgun, to be more specific) that was used primarily in the 17th and 18th centuries, and the early part of the 19th century. The word is Dutch in origin and means "thunder pipe".

Early versions of the gun were decorated with a carved mythical dragon's head around the muzzle, thus making the muzzle blast that much more dramatic. Because of this detailing, the blunderbuss was also known as a "dragon", which led to the eventual naming of the infantry which used these guns as "dragoon".

Pretty cool stuff, right? I think it's a great word. Very expressive. And I enjoy the history behind it.

Jack White will be appearing as musical guest on Saturday Night Live on March 3rd. I'm so very excited.

Check out Jack White's self-directed video for "Love Interruption" (the first single from the album), and/or visit Third Man to order your very own 7-inch record.