“The nativity scene is pitched lke a big adventure, and I grew up fascinated by it,” says Mindie Lind, the singer-songwriter behind “Ain’t Going Nowhere Blues (A Tale of Nativity).” “But they always had a sad look on their faces.” Lind says the only traveling done by her family’s nativity figurines—which included Mary, Joseph, infant Jesus and the Three Wise Men—was between the attic and the mantlepiece every December. “So that’s where the whole ‘We Ain’t Going Nowhere Blues’ is from.”
Lind wrote the song a couple Christmases ago but recorded it this past November with pal Katie Blackstock on backup vocals and producer Jon Pontrello on minimal percussion. It’s a bluesy, soulful number, low-key but not exactly a bummer. The mixed emotions, Lind says, reflect the reality of the season.
“There’s a great sadness to Christmas that doesn’t get talked about. Jesus came into this world in these really sad conditions. And aside from that, not everybody has a place to go for Christmas. It’s not a great, celebratory time for me necessarily. So I like those somber, reflective tones, but I think the song still sounds Christmas-y despite the minor key.”
Maybe it’s those sleighbells. Listen and watch for yourself below.