It's a town of just 13,000; a slice of country hidden amid a largely metropolitan Capital District. And unlike it's larger (and smaller) neighbors, the Town of Malta has its own song.
When I listened to the original song, I said 'Geez, this really kind of captures the spirit of Malta' and it immediately popped into my head, said Supervisor Paul Sausville. "I wondered if perhaps the singer would be willing to sing it for us."
That was about a year ago, when Sausville listened to country artist Dale Watson's "South of Round Rock Texas" and heard "Malta" in its lyrics. When the town initially reached out to Watson about recording a version for Malta called "In the Small Town of Malta," Watson was on board. Touring took too much time, though.
"He wasn't able to do it for us but said if [we] could get a local band to do it [he] would be glad to give us permission to do so," said Sausville.
Over the winter, Sausville asked local Celtic rock band Hair of the Dog if it'd do the honors and itsaid yes.
"Our home base is in Saratoga County at the Parting Glass, so we hold a great affection for Saratoga," said Rick Bedrosian, of Hair of the Dog. "We're rooted her in town we figured we'd have some fun with this song."
By late June, the track was complete. The town didn't have money available to pay for the recording, so Sausville said his wife offered to finance the project.
"We didn't make any money doing it, just broke even, and we were happy to do it," said Bedrosian.
The lyrics are essentially the same except instead of singing "south of round rock Texas," it's "in the small town of Malta."
"It's more than a country song. It's about hometown values, hospitality and it's very uplifting," said Sausville.