The Gulf Of Mexico Songfacts reports that during the filming of the second season of Treme, a drilling rig exploded in the Gulf Mexico causing the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry. The spill caused extensive damage to marine and wildlife habitats as well as the Gulf's fishing and tourism industries. This ballad was inspired by the incident.
Come and gather 'round me people
And a tale to you I'll tell
Of my father and his father
In the days before the spill