Pre-war Blues Lyric Poetry: an Anthology

D - H

 

Daddy Stovepipe. 13

Sundown Blues. 13

Stove Pipe Blues. 13

Tuxedo Blues. 13

Daniels, Julius. 13

My Mama Was a Sailor. 13

Ninety‑Nine Year Blues. 13

Darby, Blind. 14

Lawdy Lawdy Worried Blues. 14

Deceiving Blues. 14

Built Right on the Ground. 14

Davenport, Charles Cow Cow.. 15

I Ain't No Ice Man. 15

Davenport, Jed. 15

Save Me Some. 15

Davis, Carl (Dallas Jamboree Jug Band) 15

Elm Street Woman Blues. 15

Davis, Madlyn. 15

It's Red Hot 15

Too Black Bad. 16

Davis, Walter. 16

M. and O. Blues. 16

That Stuff You Sell Ain't No Good. 16

Howling Wind Blues. 16

M. and O. Blues No. 3. 16

L and N Blues. 17

Sloppy Drunk Again. 17

Travelin' this Lonesome Road. 17

Sad and Lonesome Blues. 17

Minute Man Blues‑Part 1. 17

Minute Man Blues‑Part 2. 18

Sweet Sixteen. 18

Root Man Blues. 18

I Can Tell By the Way You Smell 18

Santa Claus. 19

Moonlight Is My Spread. 19

Ashes in My Whiskey. 19

Jacksonville‑Part 2. 19

Think You Need a Shot 19

Let Me in Your Saddle. 20

Call Your Name. 20

Can't See Your Face. 20

Please Don't Mistreat Me. 20

Why Shouldn't I Be Blue. 20

The Only Woman. 21

New Come Back Baby. 21

Don't You Want to Go. 21

Just Want to Talk Awhile. 21

Day, Texas Bill 21

Goin' Back to My Baby. 21

Elm Street Blues. 22

Billiken's Weary Blues. 22

Day, Will 22

Central Avenue Blues. 22

Sunrise Blues. 22

Dean, Joe. 23

I'm So Glad I'm Twenty‑One Years Old Today. 23

Delaney, Mattie. 23

Down the Big Road Blues. 23

Tallahatchie River Blues. 23

Dickson, Pearl 23

Twelve Pound Daddy. 23

Little Rock Blues. 24

Dickson, Tom.. 24

Death Bell Blues. 24

Happy Blues. 24

Labor Blues. 24

Dooley, Simmie (Pink Anderson) 25

Gonna Tip Out Tonight 25

Dorsey, Thomas A.(Georgia Tom) 25

Grievin' Me Blues. 25

Broke Man's Blues. 25

Pig Meat Blues. 25

Second‑Hand Woman Blues. 25

Maybe It's the Blues. 26

Levee Bound Blues. 26

Gee, But It's Hard. 26

Terrible Operation Blues. 26

Terrible Operation Blues. 27

Where Did You Stay Last Night 27

Fix It 27

Been Mistreated Blues. 27

Come On In. 27

If You Want Me to Love You. 28

Doyle, Little Buddy. 28

Hard Scufflin' Blues. 28

Grief Will Kill You. 28

Renewed Love Blues. 28

Bad in Mind Blues. 28

Easton, Amos. 29

No Woman No Nickel 29

I'm Waitin' On You. 29

Green Country Gal 29

Edwards, Frank.. 29

Terraplane Blues. 29

We Got to Get Together. 30

Edwards, Joe. 30

Construction Gang. 30

He Likes It Slow.. 30

Edwards, Susie. 30

Construction Gang. 30

He Likes It Slow.. 30

Edwards, Big Boy Teddy. 31

Louise. 31

Estes, Sleepy John. 31

The Girl I Love, She Got Long Curly Hair. 31

Broken‑Hearted, Ragged and Dirty Too. 31

Diving Duck Blues. 31

Black Mattie Blues. 32

Milk Cow Blues. 32

Street Car Blues. 32

Watcha Doin' 32

Poor John Blues. 32

Stack O' Dollars. 33

My Black Gal Blues. 33

Down South Blues. 33

Stop That Thing. 33

Someday Baby Blues. 34

Who's Been Tellin' You Buddy Brown Blues. 34

Married Woman Blues. 34

Drop Down Mama. 34

Government Money. 34

I Wanta Tear It All the Time. 35

Vernita Blues. 35

I Ain't Gonna Be Worried No More. 35

Floating Bridge. 35

Need More Blues. 36

Jack and Jill Blues. 36

Poor Man's Friend. 36

Hobo Jungle Blues. 36

Airplane Blues. 36

Everybody Oughta Make a Change. 37

Liquor Store Blues. 37

Easin' Back to Tennessee. 37

Fire Department Blues. 37

Clean Up at Home. 38

New Someday Blues. 38

Brownsville Blues. 38

Special Agent 38

Mailman Blues. 38

Time Is Drawing Near. 39

Mary Come On Home. 39

Jailhouse Blues. 39

Tell Me About It 39

Drop Down. 39

You Shouldn't Do That 40

Lawyer Clark Blues. 40

Little Laura Blues. 40

Working Man Blues. 41

Evans, Joe. 41

New Huntsville Jail 41

Sitting on Top of the World. 41

Down in Black Bottom.. 41

Shook It This Morning Blues. 42

Ezell, Will 42

Pitchin' Boogie. 42

Florence, Nellie. 42

Jacksonville Blues. 42

Midnight Weeping Blues. 42

Foster, Dessa. 43

Tell It to the Judge No. 1. 43

Tell It to the Judge No. 2. 43

Fox, John D. 43

The Worried Man Blues. 43

The Moanin' Blues. 43

Fuller, Blind Boy. 43

I'm a Rattlesnakin' Daddy. 43

Rag, Mama, Rag. 44

Stealing Bo‑Hog. 44

Bye Bye Baby Blues. 44

Pistol Snapper Blues. 44

Piccolo Rag. 45

Big House Bound. 45

You've Got Something There. 45

Step It Up and Go. 45

Somebody's Been Talkin' 46

Three Ball Blues. 46

Good Feeling Blues. 46

Crooked Woman Blues. 46

Bus Rider Blues. 47

You Got to Have Your Dollar. 47

Thousand Women Blues. 47

Gaither, Bill 47

Georgia Barrel House. 47

Gibson, Cleo. 47

I've Got Ford Movements in My Hips. 47

Nothing But the Blues. 48

Gibson, Clifford. 48

Beat You Doing It 48

Whiskey Moan Blues. 48

Tired of Being Mistreated Part 1. 48

Tired of Being Mistreated Part 2. 49

Stop Your Rambling. 49

Sunshine Moan. 49

I'm Tired of Being Mistreated. 49

Ice and Snow Blues. 49

Don't Put That Thing On Me. 50

Drayman Blues. 50

Old Time Rider. 50

Bad Luck Dice. 50

Levee Camp Moan. 50

Hard‑Headed Blues. 51

Blues Without a Dime. 51

Keep Your Windows Pinned. 51

Jive Me Blues. 51

Brooklyn Blues. 51

Society Blues. 52

She Rolls It Slow.. 52

Gillum, Bill Jazz. 52

You're Laughing Now.. 52

I'm Gonna Get It 52

Let Her Go. 53

She Won't Treat Me Kind. 53

I'll Get Along Somehow.. 53

Got to Reap What You Sow.. 53

Keyhole Blues. 53

Key to the Highway. 54

Riley Springs Blues. 54

I Got Somebody Else. 54

It Looks Bad for You. 54

Me and My Buddy. 54

It's All Over Now.. 55

One Letter Home. 55

You Drink Too Much Whiskey. 55

I'm Gonna Leave You on the Outskirts of Town. 55

Woke Up Cold in Hand. 55

Glaze, Ruby (Blind Willie McTell) 56

Rollin' Mama Blues. 56

Lonesome Day Blues. 56

Glover, Mae. 56

Shake It Daddy. 56

Pig Meat Mama. 56

I Ain't Giving Nobody None. 56

Gas Man Blues. 57

Grant, Bobby. 57

Nappy Head Blues. 57

Lonesome Atlanta Blues. 57

Graves, Blind Roosevelt 57

New York Blues. 57

Green, Lil 57

Just Rockin' 57

What Have I Done. 58

Give Your Mama One Smile. 58

My Mellow Man. 58

Knockin' Myself Out 58

Why Don't You Do Right 58

Love Me. 59

What's the Matter with Love. 59

Country Boy Blues. 59

How Can I Go On. 59

If I Didn't Love You. 59

If I'm a Fool 59

I'm Wasting My Time on You. 60

Gross, Helen. 60

Hard Luck Blues. 60

Strange Man. 60

Hannah, George. 60

Freakish Man Blues. 60

Hardin, Lane. 61

California Desert Blues. 61

Harris, Magnolia. 61

Mama's Quittin' and Leavin'‑Part 1. 61

Mama's Quittin' and Leavin'‑Part 2. 61

Harris, Otis. 61

Waking Blues. 61

You'll Like My Loving. 61

Harris, William.. 62

I'm Leavin' Town. 62

Bull Frog Blues. 62

Hot Time Blues. 62

Harris, Willie. 62

Lonesome Midnight Dream.. 62

Harrison, Smoky. 63

Hop Head Blues. 63

Iggly Oggly Blues. 63

Hart, Hattie. 63

Memphis Yo Yo Blues. 63

Oh Ambulance Man. 63

I Let My Daddy Do That 64

Coldest Stuff in Town. 64

Hawkins, Walter Buddy Boy. 64

Shaggy Dog Blues. 64

Number Three Blues. 64

Jailhouse Fire Blues. 64

Snatch It Back Blues. 64

Awful Fix Blues. 65

How Come Mama Blues. 65

Voice Throwin' Blues: 65

Hayes, Nap (T. C. Johnson Groups) 66

Violin Blues. 66

Henderson, Bertha. 66

Lead Hearted Blues. 66

Let Your Love Come Down. 66

Henderson, Katherine. 66

West End Blues. 66

St. Louis Blues. 66

Have You Ever Felt That Way. 66

Mushy Love. 67

Henderson, Rosa. 67

Get It Fixed. 67

Henry, Hound Head. 67

Low Down Hound Blues. 67

My Silver Dollar Mama. 67

Henry, Lena. 68

Low Down Despondent Blues. 68

Hicks, Robert (Barbecue Bob) 68

Barbecue Blues. 68

Cloudy Sky Blues. 68

Poor Boy a Long Ways from Home. 68

Easy Rider Don't Deny My Name. 68

Motherless Chile Blues. 69

Crooked Woman Blues. 69

'Fo Day Creep. 69

Blind Pig Blues. 69

Chocolate to the Bone. 70

Hurry and Bring It Back Home. 70

Ease It to Me Blues. 70

She's Gone Blues. 70

California Blues. 71

Black Skunk Blues. 71

Freeze to Me Mama. 71

Me and My Whiskey. 71

unnamed title. 72

Yo‑Yo Blues No. 2. 72

We Sure Got Hard Times Now.. 72

The Spider and the Fly. 73

Atlanta Moan. 73

Doin' the Scraunch. 73

Hill, Bertha Chippie. 73

Low Land Blues. 73

Kid Man Blues. 74

Pleadin' for the Blues. 74

Pratt City Blues. 74

Lovesick Blues. 74

Lonesome Weary Blues. 74

Hill, King Solomon. 74

Whoopee Blues. 74

Whoopee Blues. 75

Down on My Bended Knee. 75

The Gone Dead Train. 75

Tell Me Baby. 75

Hill, Robert 76

I Had a Gal for the Last Fifteen Years. 76

Hill, Sammy. 76

Cryin' for the Blues. 76

Needin' My Woman Blues. 76

Hite, Mattie. 76

Graveyard Dream Blues. 76

Mason‑Dixon Blues. 77

Hogg, Andrew.. 77

Family Trouble Blues. 77

Hollins, Tony. 77

Stamp Blues. 77

House, Son. 77

My Black Mama‑Part 1. 77

My Black Mama‑Part 2. 78

Preachin' the Blues‑Part 1. 78

Preachin' the Blues‑Part 2. 78

Dry Spell Blues‑Part 1. 78

Dry Spell Blues‑Part 2. 79

Howell, Peg Leg. 79

Coal Man Blues. 79

Tishamingo Blues. 80

Too Tight Blues. 80

Doin' Wrong. 80

Skin Game Blues. 80

Please Ma'am.. 80

Low Down Rounder Blues. 81

Ball and Chain Blues. 81

Away from Home. 81

Hull, Papa Harvey. 81

Gang of Brownskin Women. 81

France Blues. 82

Two Little Tommies Blues. 82

Don't You Leave Me Here. 82

Mama You Don't Know How.. 83

Hurt, Mississippi John. 83

Nobody's Dirty Business. 83

Ain't No Tellin' 83

Avalon Blues. 83

Big Leg Blues. 83

Candy Man Blues. 84

Got the Blues Can't Be Satisfied. 84

Blue Harvest Blues. 85


 

               Daddy Stovepipe

      Sundown Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 10 Mar. 1924

         (11861‑A) Ge‑5459 Rt RL‑325

Mama I woke up this morning : mama had the sundown blues

And my fair brown told me : I refuse to go

Mama I had so much chicken : mama cackles in my sleep

You don't like my potatoes mama : oh don't you plow so deep

I got nineteen fair browns : said I want you all to know

Mama if you want to see me : mama I'll let the nineteen go

Now you see my little fair brown : tell her to bring me meat

When the wintertime gets here : I'll wear the B V Ds

      Stove Pipe Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 10 Mar. 1924

         (11862‑A) Ge‑5459 Rt RL‑325

When you get down to Memphis : won't find me there

Just lightning and smoking : on the road somewhere

I was born in Texas : raised in Tennessee

Good Lord oh when you get to Memphis : won't find me there

Well they call me Daddy Stove Pipe : turn your damper down

Good Lord now when you get to Memphis : won't find me there

      Tuxedo Blues

         Birmingham, Ala., c. 13 July 1927

         (GEX‑730‑A) Ge‑6212 OJL‑14

I don't want no sugar : stirred up in my rice

That long *short* yellow : gives me my appetite

Mama toot your whistle : you can't blow your horn

Your little bow‑legged daddy : left you all alone

Mama I don't like chicken : neither no piece of cake

Takes a big fat fan‑belt : drive a Cadillac Eight

When you get through to Bessemer : almost to Birmingham

When you love your daddy : give me your right hand


               Daniels, Julius

      My Mama Was a Sailor

         Atlanta, 19 Feb. 1927

         (37931‑2) Vi‑20658 Rt RL‑326

My mama was a sailor : she love the ocean life

She ride top and bottom : sometime on the side

Said I'm going to China : honey what you want me to bring you back

Said a bobtailed coat : and a *hot ??? China* hat

Lord I told Mr Russell : don't you broke my plow

Says he got bull‑headed : and broke it off anyhow

Standing on the corner : talking with my brown

Up stepped this policeman : take both of us down

Honey where was you : when thirty blows was sound

Standing on the corner : teasing with my brown

Lord a lowdown fireman : dirty engineer

Say they took my brown : left me standing here

All you jealous men : better keep your women tied

If they flag my train : I'm sure going to let them ride

If anybody asks you : who composed this song

Tell them Julius Daniels : done been here and gone

      Ninety‑Nine Year Blues

         Atlanta, 19 Feb. 1927

         (37932‑2) Vi unissued Fwy FA‑2953

I'm take me my pistol : three rounds of ball

Going kill everybody : *broke the poor boy law*

On a Monday I was arrested : on a Tuesday I was tried

Judge found me guilty : and I hung my head and cried

Judge : what'll be my fine

Says a pick and a shovel : way down *Joe  Brown's* coal mine

Be light on me judge : I ain't been here before

Give you ninety‑nine years : don't come back here no more

               Darby, Blind

      Lawdy Lawdy Worried Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 7 Sept. 1929

         (15566) Pm‑12828 Yz L‑1003

What's on your worried mind

You keep your poor man worried : and bothered all the time

Lord Lordy : Lord Lord Lord Lord

I'm a poor boy : been treated just like a dog

Got a new way baby : spelling Memphis Tennessee

Double M double E : double T double X Y Z


Baby baby : what makes you treat me so

I've done all : that a poor boy could do

I helped you baby : when your kinfolks turned you down

Now you loving someone else baby : and you done left this town

Look a‑here baby : what more you want me to do

I sacrificed my mother : just to get along long with you

Ever lay down laughing : and wake up hollering and crying

And you think about the woman : you treated so nice and kind

Take me back baby : try poor me one more time

I'll bet you hundred dollar : that I will change your mind

When you got money : your friends will hear your plea

When you ain't got no money : then you have to come home to me

Take my woman : I won't get mad with you

For she's three times seven : and she knows what she wants to do

Woke up this morning : and I was half most dead

I was bone‑down weary : a low and ache aching head

Baby baby : won't you forgive me please

You're the only woman : can give my poor poor heart ease

      Deceiving Blues

         Chicago, 29 Sept. 1931

         (67583‑1) Vi‑23311 OJL‑20

You deceived me babe : about the things I did not want you to do

Now I've lost confidence in you : because you won't be true

I regarded you : like I were your baby child

But when it comes to find out : you was misusing me all the while

But me and my baby : we going to make everything all right

And if we don't tomorrow : we will tomorrow night

Beef to me baby : me and pork chops do not agree

I love you : but I don't like the way that you are jiving me

I'll work up to you : or you'll slip back [down] to me some day

And you going to be sorry : that you done me this a‑way

      Built Right on the Ground

         Chicago, 29 Sept. 1931

         (67584‑1) Vi‑23311 Yz L‑1003

I never cried : till my babe got on the train

And the tears went down : great God like drops of rain

Now let me tell you : what that mean old train will do

It will take your woman : and blow the smoke at you

And it's oh my baby : don't treat me good no more

And I ain't got no babe : ain't got nowhere to go

And this woman I'm loving : don't pay me no mind


And she keeps me worried : and bothered all the time

I believe I believe : I'll stop my barrelhouse ways

For I feel myself : sinking every day

And it's oh my baby : don't act right no more

And I can't feel welcome : babe nowhere I go

If whiskey don't kill me : I'm doomed to lose my mind

For I'm worried and bothered : and drinking all the time

Farewell farewell : I bid this world goodbye

Little babe done quit me : and I'll give on up to die

               Davenport, Charles Cow Cow 

      I Ain't No Ice Man

         New York, 8 May 1938

         (63764‑A) De‑7462 AH‑158

I ain't no iceman : I ain't no iceman's son

But I can keep you cool : until the iceman comes

I ain't no wood chopper : I ain't no wood chopper's son

But babe I can chop your kindling : until the wood chopper comes

Baby I ain't no stove man : I ain't no stove man's son

But I can keep you heated up : babe until the stove man comes

Baby I ain't no butcher : and I ain't no butcher's son

But I can furnish you plenty of meat : baby until the butcher comes

I ain't no milkman : I ain't no milkman's son

But I can furnish you plenty of cream : baby until that milkman comes

               Davenport, Jed

      Save Me Some

         Memphis, 20 Oct. 1930

         (MEM‑774) Vo‑1513 OJL‑19

Work now mama : both night and day

Make my money : bring it all away

Liquor sure : is a craving sin

Steal it from the white folks : now and then

Up to my lips : then down to my toes

That's the way : ??? ten gallons goes

Went to the doctor : and the doctor said

Don't stop drinking : going to kill you dead

Mama told me : papa told me too

Doing that stuff : will be the death of you

               Davis, Carl (Dallas Jamboree Jug Band)

      Elm Street Woman Blues

         Dallas, 20 Sept. 1935

         (DAL‑103‑ ) Vo‑03092 BC‑2

Now if you're ever in Dallas boy : please visit old Elm Street

You can see the snuff‑sniffing women : like a police on his beat


Lordy I'm so glad I'm so glad : police is back on the beat

So he can stop them women : from begging every man they meet

Lord I ain't going to marry : ain't going to settle down

I'm going to hang around Dallas Texas : and run old pigmeat down

Now if you ever come to Dallas : yes and get put in jail

Yes sweet papa Charlie Chicken : he will pay your bail

I'm going to tell you something mama : every word is true

Lord I'm crazy about my pork and beans : wild about my good beef stew

               Davis, Madlyn

      It's Red Hot

         Chicago, c. Oct. 1928

         (20908‑?) Pm‑12703 Yz L‑1039

Now you talk about rags : boys but you ought to hear mine

My red‑hot shaker : plays it all the time

It's called : the red‑hot shaker rag

It's the best rag : that I ever had

Now you can talk about pepper : boys but it ain't hot

You ought to hear my boys : making up their plot

Let's play : the red‑hot shaker's rag

Now blow it boys : you know it's just too bad

      Too Black Bad

         Chicago, c. Oct. 1928

         (20909‑?) Pm‑12703 Yz L‑1039

I'd rather be in the *cripty* river : floating like a log

Than to stay around here : be treated like a dog

Now all the little children : playing around in a ring

Playing hooky from school : just to rag that thing

Now it's some folks says : a preacher won't steal

But I caught a preacher : in the potato field

Now one had the sack : the other had the hoe

If that ain't stealing : boys I'd like to know

Here come my father : with his gun

You ought to see : them preachers run

               Davis, Walter

      M. and O. Blues

         Cincinnati, 12 June 1930

         (62907‑2) Vi‑V38618 RCA INT‑1085

My baby's gone : and she won't come back no more

Oh she left me this morning : and she caught that M and O

Listen here people : I've done everything that I could

But she's gone and left me : she didn't mean me no good

There is one thing baby : I just can't understand myself


When the gal I love quit me : I don't want nobody else

But that's all right babe : I can't stand the way you do

You are running me crazy : and it's going to worry you

When she left me she bought a ticket : just as long as she was tall

She didn't know how much I loved her : or else she wouldn't have left at all

      That Stuff You Sell Ain't No Good

         Louisville, 10 June 1931

         (69416‑2) Vi‑V23282 RCA INT‑1085

That stuff you sell : ain't no good

Smell just like : old rotten burnt wood

That stuff you sell : ain't no wine

One thing about it : you serve it so kind

The stuff you sell : ain't no booze

One thing about it : mama give you the blues

The stuff you sell : in a jug

You don't give me some : I'm going to raise a bug

I know you're sick : can't get well

When you sell any more : it take God to tell

You can go down on the corner : Market and Tenth

Get that stuff : for fifty cents

That stuff you sell : ain't so good

I wouldn't buy none of that : even if I could

      Howling Wind Blues

         Chicago, 29 Sept. 31

         (67579‑1) Vi‑V23308 RCA INT‑1085

The north wind has begin howling : [and, but] the skies are pretty and blue

And winter is coming : wonder what the poor people are going to do

People talk about the time : that they never have seen before

But hard times : is knocking on everybody's door

Poor people are like prisoners : but they just ain't got on a ball and chain

But the way they are faring : I do swear it's all the same

There ain't no need to worry : times will bring about a change

And if it don't : I swear it will always be the same

      M. and O. Blues No. 3

         Dallas, 10 Feb. 1932

         (70676‑1) Vi‑V23333 RBF RF‑12

I'm a railroad man : and I love that M and O

And when I leave this time : I ain't coming back no more

Now don't the moon look pretty : shining down through the trees

I can see my baby : but I swear that she can't see me


I'm in a world of trouble : and I believe I've got to go

I'm going to leave here people : going to catch that M and O

      L and N Blues

         Chicago, 2 Aug. 1933

         (76802‑1) BB‑B5143 RCA INT‑1085

The L and N is a fast train : also that I N C N

If I ever leave Chicago : going to ride that Sunshine Special again

L and N L and N : bring my baby back to me

You keep me bound down in trouble : just as long as I can be

Don't your house look lonesome : when the one that you love is gone

And you ain't got nobody : just to keep a happy home

I wonder will my baby : ever come back to me again

When she left me good people : she rode that L and N

      Sloppy Drunk Again

         Chicago, 25 Feb. 1935

         (85479‑1) BB‑B5879 OJL‑20

My gal done quit me : found somebody else

And now I'm tired : of sleeping by myself

I love my moonshine whiskey : and I love my cherry wine

Sloppy drunk : about to lose my mind

I'm going to get sloppy drunk : tell everything I know

Another half a pint : mama will see me *Joe*

Ooo : ooo wee

Wonder what will : what will become of me

Water when I'm thirsty : whiskey when I'm dry

A brownskin woman : tell her when I come to die

      Travelin' this Lonesome Road

         Chicago, 25 Feb. 1935

         (85480‑1) BB‑B5982 RCA INT‑1175

I am traveling this lonesome road : if I never get back no more

I have something to tell you : people just before I go

Take care of my wife and my children : I hope to come back home some day

The racket that I am now in : Lord it make *white slavery*

I'm going to rob and I'm going to hijack : until I get satisfied

And if the freight train leaves me : Lord I got a mule to ride

I thinking about the times : when I was laying in my mother's arms

She always told me : son don't you do nothing wrong

But people before I will stand to see : my good woman go down

I will pack my suitcase : while I hunt from town to town

      Sad and Lonesome Blues

         Chicago, 25 Feb. 1935

         (85481‑1) BB‑B5982 RCA INT‑1175

I was sad and lonesome : when I walked into my baby's door

And here's the words she told me : I can't use you no more

I folded up my arms : and I slowly walked away

That's all right baby : you going to need my help some day

Oh Lord : oh Lord oh Lord oh Lord

Don't you remember the day : you treated me like a lowdown dirty dog

Some day I'm going to see you : when you down and out just like myself

Mama just as I have told you : some day you going to need my help

So goodbye : I ain't got no more to say

I did not think : you would treat me this a‑way

      Minute Man Blues‑Part 1

         Chicago, 25 Feb. 1935

         (85482‑1) BB‑B5965 RCA INT‑1085

Every since every since : I [first] left my mother's door

I don't have the good times people : that I have had in my life so long

So in believe I will go : right down I Paris Tennessee

Because this life that I'm living : Lord it's bad luck *here*

Going to write and tell my mother : to look for me on my way

I'm going back home people : Lord and I'm going back there to stay

And if you see my black angel : please don't tell her the way I've gone

Tell her there ain't no need to worry : neither cry or weep and moan

I'll try to travel if I want to : but I believe I will go by *mail*

I've got a V‑Eight Ford now sweet mama : Lord you know I'm a minuteman

      Minute Man Blues‑Part 2

         Chicago, 25 Feb. 1935

         (85483‑1) BB‑B5965 RCA INT‑1085

My tires ain't going to fail me : and my motor it is good and strong

I have a V‑Eight Ford now sweet mama : Lord and you know it won't be long

All I want is my thirty‑two twenty : hanging by my side

I will pour in the high‑powered gasoline : and see how fast we can ride

I'm going to make traintime and over : and I ain't going to be one minute late

I'm going to hold it around ninety miles : and I ain't going to  break my gait

Won't you listen to my V‑Eight motor : won't you listen to how my motor hums

This minuteman is on that lonesome highway : and I swear it won't be long

      Sweet Sixteen

         Chicago, 25 Feb. 1935

         (85484‑1) BB‑B5931 RCA INT‑1085


Uncle Bert thought : he had *his daughter* trained

She's out there : shaking that little old thing

Shaking her *rumble* : just like she shake her *strike*

She say run into me baby : and make me break my back

She got a crankshaft motion : she got a cross‑town swing

She got *the regular* : doing that thing

She's out there : looking like a sugar lump

She say want to *pum‑pitty* : got to make me drunk

*I'm burn that* chicken : *and down handcuff*

Come on here darling : let's go and talk

*Aunt Dinah got a preacher* : *roll* above her knee

And she strutting her stuff : to who she please

      Root Man Blues

         Chicago, 28 July 1935

         (91430‑1) BB‑B6040 RCA INT‑1085

Mama here come your root man : open the door and let him in

It is just about time : you using some of your good roots again

You face is getting bumpy : and your skin looks awful bad

I believe my root do you more good mama : than any herbs that you ever had

There is one thing baby : you want the root all by yourself

But you know I'm a doctor mama : I got to give it to somebody else

The root that I'm selling : from it you can get lots of juice

And when I'm giving it to you mama : you don't want to turn your doctor loose

I was doctoring on a woman : she said Lord I can't see how can it be

She say go away from here doctor : you got too much root for me

      I Can Tell By the Way You Smell

         Chicago, 28 July 1935

         (91433‑1) BB‑B6059 Yz L‑1025

You hair all wrinkled : and you full of sweat

Your underskirt : is wringing wet

You show your linen : to any man

And that's something mama : that I just can't stand

Here you come in here walking : just like a goose

You look like : somebody just turned you loose

Run here mama : just look at sis

She got her hand in her toodle‑um : up to her wrist

Mama and papa's in the back yard : trying to *call up Knot Hill*

Papa ain't ready : so help me God

He got the motion : and she got the swing

Just look at papa out there : on that thing

      Santa Claus

         Chicago, 28 July 1935

         (91434‑1) BB‑B6125 Yz L‑1025

Santy Claus : won't you please hear my lonesome plea

I don't want nothing for Christmas : but my baby back to me

You know I loved you baby : that is why we could not get along

But some day you going to be sorry : that you ever done me wrong

Oh Lord it's near Christmas time : and I want to see Santy Claus

If you don't bring my baby : swear I'll break all the laws

Santy Claus Santy Claus Santy Claus : I'm down on my bended knees

I don't want nothing for Christmas : but my baby back to me

      Moonlight Is My Spread

         Chicago, 31 Oct. 1935

         (96234‑1) BB‑B6167 RCA INT‑1085

The blue sky is my blanket : and the moonlight is my spread

The rock is my pillow : that is where I rest my head

A ghost and a night owl : they come to see me sometime

And a Gypsy women : she comes and reads my mind

The woman that I was loving : she did not mean me no good

She give me so much trouble : I had to move back in the woods

I am friendless and I'm lonesome : people you would be the same old way

If the woman that you were loving : would mistreat you both night  and day

      Ashes in My Whiskey

         Chicago, 31 Oct. 1935

         (96237‑1) BB‑B6201 RCA INT‑1085

They put ashes in my whiskey : they put strychnine in my glass

Lord I went out car‑riding with them : and they carried me too fast

She put [castor oil, black drops] in my coffee : with that [black drops, castor oil] in my tea

Lord she's the meanest old woman : that a man most ever seen

I believe I believe : that they trying to carry me down

Lord the way they are feeding me : that they don't want me around

She carries a razor in her pocket : with them frowns all in her face

Lord I believe some other good joker : trying to root me out of my  place

      Jacksonville‑Part 2

         Chicago, 3 Apr. 1936

         (100338‑1) BB‑B6468 Yz L‑1025

I'm going to write you a letter : my wife and I ain't going to do right no more

I know the way you treat me baby : Lord you did not want me no more

What I've got on my mind : ain't nobody in this world can tell

And if I never see you no more baby : Lord I sure do wish you well


Now I'm having bad luck : and bad luck I can't understand

Got me out here scuffling mama : trying to make it if I can

Baby baby : I ain't going to worry with you no more

Lord I'm going down the country : let you have Mr so‑and‑so

      Think You Need a Shot

         Chicago, 3 Apr. 1936

         (100339‑1) BB‑B6498 RCA INT‑1085

You got bad blood mama : I believe you need a shot

Now turn over here mama : let me see what else you got

I doctors on women : I don't fool around with men

All right take it easy here mama : whilst I stick my needle in

Lord your ways is so loving : and your skin is nice and soft

Lord if you keep on drunk mama : you going to make me break my needle off

Lord my needle is in you baby : and you seem to feel all right

And when your medicine go to coming down : I want you to hug me tight

Yeah your medicine come now baby : put your [foot, leg] up side the wall

I don't want to waste none of it mama : I want you to have it all

      Let Me in Your Saddle

         Chicago, 21 July 1939

         (040511‑1) BB‑B8282 RCA INT‑1085

You is built for speed : and fast just like twenty grand

I would give more for you now : than a farmer would for land

I'm a well‑trained jockey : won't you please ma'am let me ride

I may not give a ride like you old jockey : but I'll try to make you satisfied

If you let me get in your saddle : and just try me one time

Lord I may can do something : baby that might change your mind

Twenty grand is the fastest race horse : that ever run around a track

And if you let me get in your saddle mama : I may ride the way you like

Just let me get in your saddle baby : I ain't going to never do no wrong

I'm a good jockey rider : and I don't stay there too long

      Call Your Name

         Chicago, 21 July 1939

         (040523‑1) BB‑B8470 Yz L‑1025

Have you ever been low in spirits : mama and you didn't know what was on your mind

Lord it hurts you so bad sometimes : Lord you can't keep from crying

The house where you were living : it don't [even] look right no more

And you can't find no consolation : nowhere in the world you go

Then you wonder what did you ever do : to make your poor heart ache and pain

Lord it hurts you so bad : to hear somebody call Mr so‑and‑so's name

I looked for you Sunday morning : till Monday in the afternoon


But I hope you'll be here Tuesday morning : hope you will be here Tuesday morning soon

If I don't never see you no more : please drop me a post card

Lord you know the way that you left me : mama it almost broke my heart

      Can't See Your Face

         Chicago, 12 July 1940

         (049320‑1) BB‑B8600 Yz L‑1025

Your picture has faded : mama that hangs up on the wall

It's been hanging there so long : I can't see your face at all

Even my old house seems haunted : mama and there ain't nobody around

Sometime it seem like at night : that the old house is falling down

I can hear my back door slamming : [seem like] I can hear a little baby crying

Lord I wonder baby : have you got me on your mind

My old clock is [still] ticking : that hangs up on the wall

But now you gone and left me : and I can't see your face at all

      Please Don't Mistreat Me

         Chicago, 12 July 1940

         (049323‑1) BB‑B8664 Yz L‑1025

Please don't mistreat me : if you don't want me around

Lord don't be mad with me baby : because your good man have left this town

You say you don't [even] love me : you don't even love yourself

I know there ain't a room in your heart for me : mama you loving someone else

I got myself a mama : she always keep me feeling blue

Lord she act just like the weather : and I don't know what she is going to do

If I really loved you baby : I would not tell you no lies

Lord I wouldn't say hard things to you mama : to make you hang your head and cry

      Why Shouldn't I Be Blue

         Chicago, 12 July 1940

         (049325‑1) BB‑B8737 Yz L‑1025

Mama why should I be worried : and why should I be so blue

Lord it's all on account : of all on account of you

How can I sleep and keep from worrying : how can I laugh and keep from crying

Lord every time I turn my back : you always doing something to change my mind

I just flutters when I see you : like a little bird up in his nest

Lord sometime I think I love you : sometime I think I love my little gal the best

I can't keep from worrying : Lord I can't keep from telling you lies

Lord I would do all right with you baby : but you know you try to be too wise

      The Only Woman

         Chicago, 21 Mar. 1941

         (053975‑1) BB‑B8773 RCA INT‑1085


Now this was my sad story : I never will forget the day

It was in the year of nineteen thirty‑five : on the twenty‑sixth day of May

As I walked into my bedroom : crowd all gathered around

They was standing seemed to be in mourning : with their heads all hanging down

In the midst there stood a doctor : he was standing gazing on

The only woman in the world that I ever loved : she's gone she's gone

Now I'm left here all alone : all in this great big world alone

That's the end of my happy days : and I can't have no more happy home

On the bed there laid a letter : said be as good as you can be

Lord I'm sorry you couldn't be here now : to have the last few words with me

      New Come Back Baby

         Chicago, 21 Mar. 1941

         (053979‑1) BB‑B8833 RCA INT‑1085

Now you must have a heart : like a rock in the sea

I been begging you baby : babe please don't leave

My nights are getting lonely : my days are getting long

Now tell me baby : I did not do no wrong

I don't want to hurt your feelings : either make you mad

I love you : better than anything I ever had

I like you baby : I like to see you smile

But I like to please you : every once in a while

      Don't You Want to Go

         Chicago, 5 Dec. 1941

         (070448‑1) BB‑B9027 RCA INT‑1085

I heard somebody calling me : papa don't you want to go

Mama dee‑da‑da calling me : papa so‑and‑so

Down in the land of California : sweet home Chicago

I begged you all night baby : all the night before

If I ever did you wrong : I won't do that no more

All last night baby : I tried to talk to you

But you told me : there was nothing I could do

I been good to you baby : did everything that I could

Now you want to leave me : don't mean me no good

Oh babe oh baby : down on my bended knees

Begging you now baby : don't leave me please

Oh babe oh baby : don't leave me now

All alone by myself baby : won't be satisfied

      Just Want to Talk Awhile

         Chicago, 5 Dec. 1941

         (070451‑1) BB unissued RC INT‑1085


Now I walked over to the table : and I picked up my telephone

But the line was busy : or if it ain't nobody home

Give me long long‑distance : I wonder what's wrong with my line

Lord I just want to talk awhile : to that little old girl of mine

All right operator : maybe it ain't nobody home

But I'm sitting here wondering : why is my baby gone

I'm calling long‑distance : and I wonder where could she be

Lord I wonder is she listening : and won't even answer me

               Day, Texas Bill

      Goin' Back to My Baby

         Dallas, 4 Dec. 1929

         (149512‑1) Co‑14494‑D Rt RL‑327

I woke up this morning moaning : with the worried blues on my mind

I was thinking about someone : who were left behind

It's oh Lord Lord : please get him off of my mind

I can't eat for dreaming : and I can't rest for crying

I'm going back to my baby : going to knock on my baby's door

I'm going to ask my pretty mama : baby can't you use me no more

Baby : can I lay down here till day

I'm a poor boy : and I got nowhere to stay

Love is like water : it turns off and on

When you think you got a good girl : Lord she done turn off and gone

      Elm Street Blues

         Dallas, 5 Dec. 1929

         (149538‑2) Co‑14514‑D Fly LP‑103

Elm Street painted in brass : Main Street painted in gold

I got a good girl live on East Commerce : I wouldn't mistreat her to save nobody's soul

Hey Billiken : these Elm Street women don't mean you no good

When your back is turned : they with every man in the neighborhood

These Elm Street women : Billiken they don't mean you no good

If you want to make a good woman : have to get on *Hospital* Avenue

      Billiken's Weary Blues

         Dallas, 5 Dec. 1929

         (149539‑2) Co‑14514‑D Rt RL‑335

Don't the moon look pretty : shining through the trees

Don't your house look lonesome : when your good girl is fixing to leave

Down on my knees this morning : I prayed to the good Lord above

Please let me live one more time : with the good girl that I love

I'm going to get me a wire : stretched across the deep blue sea

So when my good girl gets worried : she can sit down and talk to me


               Day, Will

      Central Avenue Blues

         New Orleans, 25 Apr. 1928

         (146186‑2) Co‑14318‑D Yz L‑1010

I'm going to build me a little mansion : on Central Avenue

So I can stick my head out the window : and see what my wicked women will do

Lord I got a pretty mama : lives on Central Avenue

Lord if that woman left and quit me *now* : what in the world that I would do

I pray to heaven Lord : I seen my pretty mama up there

She had one foot loose : and *curled up with the air*

Good girl used to live here : don't live here no more

Left here early this morning : carried all of her clothes

Boy I'd *better see my good girl* : leave me in this town

I'd beat the train to the *crossroads* : and I'd burn the depot down

Lord pretty mama I wonder : what you trying to do

*She make it trying* to run with me : and my buddy too

I'm going to West Texas : Lord I'm going to stay

Some little brownskin woman : *stepping* in my way

      Sunrise Blues

         New Orleans, 25 Apr. 1928

         (146191‑2) Co‑14318‑D Yz L‑1032

Well the sun rose this morning : and laid down on my floor

When I ended my dreams : it was all around my door

Good morning blues : what makes you come so soon

Here early this morning : *crying ???* soon

Now blues and trouble : boys what a nagging ache

These old women now baby : running from man to man

Just tell me pretty mama : what you trying to do

You didn't do no more : than I looked for you to do

You leave me laughing : some day you come back crying

You been gone so long darling : wear you off of my mind

Lord Lord : Lord Lordy Lord Lord

The girl I loving : treat me like a dog

My heart's in trouble : mind's in misery

Got the blues so bad : I really can't hardly see

               Dean, Joe

      I'm So Glad I'm Twenty‑One Years Old Today

         Chicago, c. 7 Aug. 1930

         (C‑5991‑ ) Vo‑1544 Yz L‑1028

Well I'm so glad : I'm twenty‑one years old today

Lord I'm so glad : my baby can't treat me that a‑way


Oh babe : what you want poor me to do

Driving a coal wagon babe : give all my money to you

Oh babe : don't play me for no fool

Lord I ain't no plumber : and I ain't nobody's stool

I send it to the river : river to the deep blue sea

Now your monkey ways babe : don't take no effect on me

Oh babe : don't make no fool of me

Lord I'm three time seven : baby why can't you see

That's why I'm so glad : I'm twenty‑one years old today

Lord I'm three times seven : I'm going to have my way

               Delaney, Mattie

      Down the Big Road Blues

         Memphis, c. 21 Feb. 1930

         (MEM‑785‑ ) Vo‑1480 Yz L‑1009

I can't go down : that big road by myself

If I can't carry you : I carry someone else

I asked him how about it : and he said all right

I asked him how long : and he said all night

I asked him how about it : said he didn't know how

But I will do you mama : like a calf will do a cow

I'm a traveling woman : I got a traveling mind

If you don't take me back daddy : sure going to lose your mind

My mother said : six months before I was born

She was going to have a good child : wouldn't never stay at home

I feel like crying : ain't got no tears to spare

I had a happy home : and I wouldn't stay there

      Tallahatchie River Blues

         Memphis, c. 21 Feb. 1930

         (MEM‑786‑ ) Vo‑1480 Yz L‑1001

Tallahatchie River rising : Lord it's mighty bad

Some peoples on the Tallahatchie : done lost everything they had

Some people in the Delta : wondering what to do

They don't build some levees : I don't know what become of you

High water rising : get me troubled in mind

I got to go : and leave my daddy behind

Lord this water rising : and I sure can't swim

But if it keeps on rising : sure going to follow him

Going pack my suitcase : go back to Tennessee

But this Tallahatchie River : done got the best of me

               Dickson, Pearl

      Twelve Pound Daddy

         Memphis, 12 Dec. 1927


         (145370‑3) Co‑14286‑D Yz L‑1008

Mmm : hey hey hey hey

Now the man I love : treats me like a dog

I've got a twelve pound daddy : and eight pound one too

And if my twelve pound one won't come : my eight pound one will do

I'm going to build me a castle : out of ice and snow

So when my blues come around : I can freeze them from my door

Oh pretty daddy : will you please tell me what to do

I will do anything : baby to satisfy you

And it's one thing baby : that I can't understand

If you are *loving* me : I don't want no partnership man

      Little Rock Blues

         Memphis, 12 Dec. 1927

         (145371‑2) Co‑14286‑D OJL‑6

I started to heaven : but I changed my mind

But I'm going to Little Rock : where I can have better time

Yes when I go to Little Rock : I can go three days without

I tell people there : it's a wonderful town

This is the place : where I have long to be

Because where I come from : the mens have mistreated poor me

Oh I don't know why : they treat me so lowdown and cruel

And if you don't want me baby : you don't have to use me as no fool

               Dickson, Tom

      Death Bell Blues

         Memphis, 27 Feb. 1928

         (400355‑B) OK‑8590 Yz L‑1002

Hey hey : death bells in my ear

It 'tain't going to be long : before they going to ring me away from here

I lay down last night all night : and the night before

Going back home to mama : won't have to lay down no more

I'm a stranger here : they're sending out in the sea

I'm broke and hungry : not a bite to eat

Going to stand right here : catch the first old gal I see

I'm going to beg her to take me : see what she make of me

I'm going to ask my rider : would she set my trunk outdoors

I don't mean quitting you : but I got another place to go

The woman I had : these men must have had her *foiled*

She loved me all this summer : but she put me out this fall

I began to study : and the wind begin to blow

I couldn't figure no place : for a man like me to go

My mama's dead : my papa's across the sea

That leaves no one : to love and care for me


      Happy Blues

         Memphis, 27 Feb. 1928

         (400359‑B) OK‑8590 Yz L‑1002

Just as happy : woman as I can be

Because the woman I'm loving : is going back to Kankakee

Woman I'm loving : done mistreated me

For another new morning : going to need your friend again

Treat me : like someone you never seen

Blues ain't nothing : good man on your mind

Well it keep you worried : bothered all the time

When you see me : with my head hung down

I ain't got the blues : but another gal on my mind

I'm going away baby : to see what could do

I done all I could : can't get along with you

I went to the station : I looked up on the board

Well my train ain't here : but it's somewhere on the go

      Labor Blues

         Memphis, 27 Feb. 1928

         (400360‑A) OK‑8570 Yz L‑1008

Said good morning captain : said good morning shine

'Tain't nothing the matter : captain but I just ain't going

I don't mind working : captain from sun to sun

But I want my money : captain when payday come

Work me all this summer : and you started on this fall

Now I've got to take Christmas : in my overalls

If you good men : want to keep her out of town at night

Just feed her little pork chops : suits her appetite

Lord it 'tain't no telling : what a Mississippi gal will do

She will get your money : then *poor gam* at you

It's one pretty mama : going to need a friend again

You can sing this song : when you want me to be your friend

Hey tell me woman : where did you stay last night

For your shoes unfastened : and your skirt don't fit you right

               Dooley, Simmie (Pink Anderson)

      Gonna Tip Out Tonight

         Atlanta, 14 Apr. 1928

         (146067‑1) Co‑14436‑D OJL‑18

I says go on girl : don't sing them blues to me

Because I'm sweet : as any man can be

She even told me : to my face


That any old rounder : sure can take my place

Said I'm getting tired : of your lowdown ways

I'm going back : to my babe today

So come on girl : honey you can't bluff

I'm going to tip out tonight : and I'm going to strut my stuff

               Dorsey, Thomas A.(Georgia Tom)

      Grievin' Me Blues

         Chicago, c. 6 Sept. 1928

         (   ) Vo‑1216 His HLP‑1

I went down on the corner : with my money in my hand

To kill my woman : about loving another man

You see it's grieving me : oh it's grieving me

Going to pack my grip : beat it back to Tennessee

I'm so sad and lonely : love has been refused

Can't have no loving : but I still have the blues

They call me pretty papa : swellest man in town

Women all screaming about me : but I can't give up my brown

Daddy's got the washboard : mama's got the tub

Sister's got the liquor : and brother's got the jug

My water pipe's all rusted : water's running cold

Someone's in the basement : trying to find the hole

      Broke Man's Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 8 July 1929

         (15306‑A) Ge‑7008 Riv RM‑8803

Just another evening : wasted away

Spending and a‑lending : and it left me broke today

Run here pretty mama : sit down on your daddy's knee

I'll tell you : how these women made a perfect fool of me

I wasted lots of money : went out every night

My pals done all forsake me : and the times is getting tight

I'm feeling like an outcast : looking like a tramp

Can't price a post card : can't even buy a stamp

Ah you used to call me papa : you used to call me dunce

You used to call me daddy : and you used to love me once

Some folks need the ice : some folks need the snow

If I could get you back : mama I wouldn't need nothing more

      Pig Meat Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 8 July 1929

         (15310) Ge‑7008 Riv RM‑8803

You may be little : you may have a tender snoot

But I know what you is mama : when you start to root


You go before the butcher : try to put on your stunt

He can stick a knife in you : and you won't even grunt

I see you got your squeal : you got your snoot

Still you got your grunt : but you done lost your root

Oh mama : you may have your snoot

Still you got your grunt : but you done lost your root

      Second‑Hand Woman Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 5 Feb. 1930

         (16221) Ge‑7130 Riv RM‑8803

All dolled up : looking keen

Like a girlie : in her teens

Strutting : down the avenue

Making eyes : and flirting too

Now the other night : when I phoned

You had another : in your home

Parts of me : big and fat

Can't blame nobody : for that

I want your love : I can't refuse

But I don't want it : if it's ever been used

Some is tall : some is cute

Some is sweet : and some is true

I don't mean : to speak so bold

Can't use it : if it's forty years old

      Maybe It's the Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 5 Feb. 1930

         (16222) Ge‑7190 Riv RM‑8803

Something pounding : in my breast

When I lay down : to take my rest

Horrid nightmares : scary dreams

Then the blues : steps on the scene

Oh maybe it's the blues : that keeps me worried all the time

If I could lose these weary blues : that's on my mind

Happiness that comes around : but never comes to stay

If I only had someone : just to drive my tears away

      Levee Bound Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 5 Feb. 1930

         (16224) Ch‑16682 Riv RM‑8803

I had a brown in my town : sweet as any gal could be

I loved my gal with all my might : she didn't love nobody but me

The other night : a man named Willie come and stole my gal away


Now I'm feeling down and out : and I've got the blues today

Say if you see my gal : don't you tell her what I've done

I got the blues : I going to sing them all night long

Now folks if you see my gal : tell her that I'm gone

Feel like riding : if it takes me all night long

Now back to the levee I'm bound : I'm through with high yellows and browns

Now I'm going to the levee : because my gal done turned me down

Now say folks if you see my gal : tell her that I'm gone

I feel like leaving : if it takes me all night long

      Gee, But It's Hard

         Richmond, Ind., 5 Feb. 1930

         (16225) Ch‑16682 Riv RM‑8803

Take me back sweet mama : try me one more time

If I don't satisfy you : I'll break my backbone trying

You lay in your bed : with your face to the wall

Thinking if you die : would that end it all

      Terrible Operation Blues

         New York, 17 Sept. 1930

         (10048‑2) Or‑8033 Yz L‑1035

Get up on the table : pull off that gown

Raise up that right leg : let the left one down

Pull off them stockings : that silk underwear

The doctor's got to cut you mama : Lord knows where

Got two or three tumors : shaped like a cube

Two or three leaks : in your inner tube

Bring on that ether : bring on that gas

The doctor's got to cut you mama : yas yas yas

Four monkey wrenches : and a two‑horse shay

Pair of old britches : and a bale of hay

Your ribs was kind of loose : they moved about

If I hadn't've sewed you up : everything would fell out

I put in new tubes : hide the exhaust

I went into your hood : and cleaned your spark plugs off

Your body's kind of weak : now don't be hard

From now on be careful : with them connection rods

Now your body's kind of weak : don't be hard

Go kind of easy : with them connection rods

      Terrible Operation Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 19 Nov. 1930

         (17276‑B) Ch‑16171 Riv RM‑8803


Get up on this table : pull off that gown

Raise up that right leg : let that left one down

Pull off them stocking : that silk underwear

The doctor's got to cut you : mama don't know where

You got two or three tumors : shape like a cube

Two or three leaks : in your inner tube

Bring on that ether : bring on that gas

The doctor's got to cut you mama : yas yas yas

Four monkey wrenches : two‑horse shay

Pair of old britches : and a bale of hay

Your ribs was kind of loosened : they moved about

If I hadn't sewed you up : everything would fell out

I put in new tubes : tightened up the exhaust

Went into your hood : and cleaned your spark plugs off

Your body's kind of weak : don't be hard

From now on you be careful : with them there connection rods

      Where Did You Stay Last Night

         Richmond, Ind., 19 Nov. 1930

         (17277‑A) Ch‑16171 Riv RM‑8803

Tell me pretty mama : where'd you stay last night

Shoes ain't buttoned : and you don't smell right

Now you all drawed up : you look half drunk

Your hair ain't combed : and you smell like a skunk

Train's in the depot : boxcar's on the track

My gal come home : with a tie across her back

      Fix It

         Richmond, Ind., 19 Nov. 1930

         (17278‑A) Ch‑16215 Riv RM‑8803

Now when I fix it lady : sure will be mighty good

I fixed so many of them : all over this neighborhood

      Been Mistreated Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 20 Nov. 1930

         (17290) Ch‑16237 Riv RM‑8803

I had a sweet woman : she done turned sour on me

I had a good woman : but the men wouldn't let her be

I had a new way of loving : but I done lost my stroke

I had a new gal : I lost her when I got broke

Now I'm a real kind fellow folks : and that ain't so bad

But I just ain't got them things : I once have had

I got my mind all made up : and I'm going to leave this town


I'm a‑going so far : till the women can't run me down

Now I had a speak‑easy: but the police come and closed it down

Now it sure is a hard thing : to sell booze around this town

I got a woman down in Florida : got two up in Tennessee

Got one in Indiana : keeps on pulling after me

Now the angels keep singing : the moon shines down at night

But the good Lord knows : that the women don't treat me right

      Come On In

         Grafton, Wis., c. Jan. 1931

         (L‑719‑2) Pm‑13104 Riv RM‑8803

Oh set right down : and let's have some fun

My wife's gone out : on a all‑night run

Oh take this : take some of that

Take anything : in the doggone flat

I'll fry some meat : cook some bread

You get sleepy : there's a great big bed

Oh take this liquor : drink this wine

Let's get drunk : and have one good time

Take off your shirt : hang it on the chair

Take off your socks : and give your feet some air

I'm drunk and disorderly : I don't care

If you want to : you can pull off your underwear

      If You Want Me to Love You

         New York, 5 Feb. 1932

         (11242‑A) Vo‑1682 Yz L‑1039

Now if you want me to love you : here's what you got to do

You want me to love you mama : and make [me, you] love [you, me] too

I got to have my loving : when my habit get on

Start at nine in the evening : and love me all night long

You got to get up early in the morning : fix your lunch

And get out early : with that scuffling bunch

If I wake up at night : and I wants to eat

It's up to you : to get me some of that western meat

You got to take all your money : throw it against the wall

You take what sticks : and I'll take what falls

Take a butcher knife : cut off your head

Send me a telegram : that your heart is dead

               Doyle, Little Buddy

      Hard Scufflin' Blues

         Memphis, 1 July 1939

         (MEM‑17‑1) OK‑05771 Rt RL‑329


Scuffling have got so hard : seem like I can't even make a dime

I must a‑have the wrong woman : seem like can't save money all the time

I never want another women : that don't do nothing but hang around

She will ??? to your weakness : she will keep you with a turned‑down hand

Life have gotten miserable : seem like no more happiness to be made

But life is really too short : to be worried about them old no‑good ways

Good Book trying to tell us : where there's a will there's a way

But it seem like the *many ways draining* out of me : more and more every day

      Grief Will Kill You

         Memphis, 1 July 1939

         (MEM‑18‑1) Vo‑05111 Rt RL‑319

Lord grief will kill you : it will get you down to skin and bones

And that devil *brother be upstairs* now : Lord after you are dead and gone

I once grieved so hard : until I wake up weeping in my sleep

But after you continue this life boys : you'll be living down in some graveyard deep

Women now about nowadays they don't want to love nobody : and don't worry about the man behind the *left*

Boys you better watch them women : because they're just slipping up the kingdom's steps

      Renewed Love Blues

         Memphis, 14 July 1939

         (MEM‑152‑1) OK‑05771 Rt RL‑329

Now baby let's stop our foolishness : and try to renew love over again

Because I can't stay here in this world *after* : in this condition my poor heart's in

Now baby I'm going to make you this promise : I make our home happy for you in every way

But I want you to take care of my money baby : and please don't give my belongings away

Now baby you know I love you : now why can't we get along

Maybe some day you will consider baby : Lord and acknowledge that you have done wrong

      Bad in Mind Blues

         Memphis, 14 July 1939

         (MEM‑153‑1) Vo‑05111 Rt RL‑319

Boys I ain't doing no good : this slow death is killing me

Every time *you going out swinging* : I'm just as blue as I can be

My mind in such a condition : until I hardly know the days in the week

Baby you give me plenty trouble : but some day you bound to see

When I'm sleeping deep down in my grave : don't let no high *flat flappers* worry you

You can just step out in any yard : that old jimson weed will sure ??? you

Now boys you can be cute with your woman : and see won't she do you dirty *ass*

She'll forever keep you working : working with your coffin on your back

               Easton, Amos

      No Woman No Nickel


         Grafton, Wis., c. Oct. 1931

         (L‑1120‑3) Pm‑13109 Yz L‑1012

I'm cold in hand : can't get nothing here

I'm hungry as a hound : I can't travel nowhere

I can't help but worry : how my good friend done

Spent my money by the dollar : now won't give me nickel one

Mama told me : times and times again

Anybody laughs in my face : just can't be my friend

Lord look down on poor me : pity my worried cares

Help me to rise once more : I'm going to change my free‑hearted ways

Just give me one friend : to keep me from feeling so sad

Lord you know I want a friend : like the one that Adam had

      I'm Waitin' On You

         New York, 16 Mar. 1932

         (11503‑A) Vo‑1719 His HLP‑31

Come here pretty mama : come here right now

I've been waiting on you so long : till I'm burning down

I'm waiting on you : I'm waiting on you

I'm waiting on you baby : tell me what you going to do

I know a good woman well : something going on wrong

You ain't never kept me waiting : this lonesome long

I wait all last night : all the night before

If I have to wait tonight : I'm going to pack my trunk and go

If you don't want me baby : just leave me alone

I can get another woman : to carry your business on

If you meant : to treat me right

You wouldn't keep me waiting : all day and night

That's all right baby : if you don't want me no more

There many more women : just rearing to go

      Green Country Gal

         New York, 23 Aug. 1936

         (61241‑A) De‑7440 AH‑158

Now I talked and I talked : now I ain't got no more to say

Hand me down my jumper : and I'll be on my lonesome way

I tried everything baby : don't nothing do no good

I can't blame you honey : I'd be the same way if I could

You came here from the country : just as green as green could be

Now you're a wise city city : and you dodge all over me

Well I ain't got no more to say : and I ain't going to chase you around

Some day I'll be running : with the biggest shots in town

               Edwards, Frank


      Terraplane Blues

         Chicago, 28 May 1941

         (C‑3811‑1) OK‑06393 BC‑6

I saying I sad and lonesome : Lord what I'm going to do

Say I'm going buy me a terraplane : I swear and a V‑Eight too

Well I'm going to put them both there together : put them out on the road

Paint both show mama : got a heavy load

Now I saying I sad and lonesome : Lord what I'm going to do

Say I'm going to step on that accelerator : till that gas come through

Say my gal just quit me now man : pulled in another lane

Didn't want to come back : till I bought that airplane

Crying please Frank : please let me ride with you

Say I got room for two or three more : I swear and you too

Says stop now Frank : let's get a sack of flour

How can I stop this airplane : making ninety mile an hour

Crying please Frank : please let me ride with you

Say I can *peel off* that accelerator : and that gas come through

      We Got to Get Together

         Chicago, 28 May 1941

         (C‑3812‑1) OK‑06393 BC‑6

Hitler cutting the world : gotten disturbed

Uncle Sam better decide : and gotten blood in his eye

You got to get together : you got to get together

Got to closen up together : join one hand in hand

Mussolini jumped back : up in the sack

Hitler kicked him out : so he couldn't get back

Uncle Sam called the men down : name by name

He ain't together : but they ready just the same

Uncle Sam need a champ :

A well trained man : when you leave camp

Well left my woman : standing in the door

Crying Lord they mustn't let him : please don't go

               Edwards, Joe

      Construction Gang

         New York, 12 Sept. 1924

         (72817‑B) OK‑8163 Sw S‑1240

Now there is something : you say that you expect

Now come and tell me what it is : that I neglect

Come and tell your papa : what you want me to do

Now just before : I got from you

Get up every morning : at half past three

Ease out to your job : without disturbing me


Now when you come back : you must have plenty of jack

Because any *??? still* : really hurts your papa's back

I want you to work hard : for me and my brother

I want you to come back from work : looking just like first one thing and then another

      He Likes It Slow

         Chicago, 18 June 1926

         (9750‑A) OK‑8355 Sw S‑1240

Says I never like to hurry : I just take my time

               Edwards, Susie

      Construction Gang

         New York, 12 Sept. 1924

         (72817‑B) OK‑8163 Sw S‑1240

Now here's all I ask of you : kind man

I want an answer : I can understand

How you get up every morning : at half past three

Bring the coal and kindling : make a fire for me

Cook your own breakfast : fix your lunch

Get your pick and shovel : work with that construction bunch

*Seven eighty‑three* : without neglect

So you bring me all your money : when they pay your check

      He Likes It Slow

         Chicago, 18 June 1926

         (9750‑A) OK‑8355 Sw S‑1240

He likes it slow : when he goes to *play*

He likes it slow : when he goes to pray

When he calls : he never brings no news

Always got : them slow‑down blues

Just like a snail : that man of mine

               Edwards, Big Boy Teddy

      Louise

         Chicago, 14 June 1934

         (80608‑1) BB‑B5826 CC‑3

Standing on the corner : *all ??? man*

Police come along : take me by his hand

Led me down : to the county jail

Looking for my Louise : to come and go my bail

Now the judge have sentenced me : out on the county road

On a horse : there's a man he rode

He count me in the morning : count me through the day

Count me every hour : see if I'd run away


It was early in the evening : sun was going down

Seen a lady coming : all dressed in brown

Looked in her face : and I looked down in her hands

Was Louise coming : coming to get her man

               Estes, Sleepy John

      The Girl I Love, She Got Long Curly Hair

         Memphis, 24 Sept. 1929

         (55581‑1) Vi‑V38549 RBF RF‑8

Now I'm going to Brownsville : take that right‑hand road

Lord I ain't going to stop walking : till I get in sweet mama's door

Now the girl I'm loving : she got this great long curly hair

And her mama and her papa : they sure don't allow me there

If you catch my jumper : hanging outside your wall

Now you know by that babe : I need my ashes hauled

Now what you going to do babe : your dough‑roller gone

Go in your kitchen : Lord and cook until she come home

      Broken‑Hearted, Ragged and Dirty Too

         Memphis, 26 Sept. 1929

         (55531‑3) Vi‑V38582 Rt RL‑307

Now I'm broken‑hearted : ragged and dirty too

And if I clean up pretty mama : may I stay all night with you

Now if I can't come in mama : then I'll sit out on your porch

Lord I will leave so soon : that your man he won't never know

Now I went to my window : but I couldn't see through my blinds

I heard the bedsprings popping : and I believe I heard my baby crying

Lord how can I feel misery : Lord and feel like you

I have a woman in Brownsville : and she *doing the coochie‑coo*

Now I'm going to Chicago : trying to

You know I'm bound to ??? :

      Diving Duck Blues

         Memphis, 26 Sept. 1929

         (55596‑2) Vi‑V38549 RBF RF‑8

Now if the river was whiskey : and I was a diving duck

I would dive on the bottom : never would come up

Don't never take a married woman : to be your friend

She will get all your money : give it to her other man

Now a married woman : always been my crave

Now a married woman : going to carry me to my grave

Now ain't it hard : to love someone else *dame*

You can't get her when you want her : have to use her when you can

Now the sun's going to shine : in my back door some day


Now the wind's going to rise : going to blow my blues away

Now went to the railroad : and looked up at the sun

If the train don't hurry : going to be some walking done

      Black Mattie Blues

         Memphis, 2 Oct. 1929

         (56335‑1) Vi‑V38582 Rt RL‑307

Oh Black Mattie : where did you stay last night

With your hair all tangled : clothes ain't fitting you right

Now when I had money : hello sugar pie

Now I'm spending all my money : goodbye country guy

Lord my eyes are sorrow : tears come a‑rolling down

Now you know by that babe : fixed to leave your town

Now life ain't worth living : if you ain't with the one you love

Now you three times seven : you know what you want to do

Now the day that you quit me : I won't be mad with you

      Milk Cow Blues

         Memphis, 13 May 1930

         (59918‑ ) Vi‑V38614 RBF RF‑202

Now asked sweet mama : let me be her kid

She said I might go buggy : and I couldn't keep it hid

Well she looked at me : she begin to smile

Says I thought I would use you : for my man awhile

Now went upstairs : to pack my leaving trunk

I never saw no whiskey : the blues done made me sloppy drunk

Now some say they *dream* : some say they was

But it's a slow consumption : killing you by degrees

      Street Car Blues

         Memphis, 13 May 1930

         (59919‑ ) Vi‑V38614 RBF RF‑8

Now I know the people : is on the wander everywhere

Because they heard of poor John : was going around electric car

Now catch it Smith and Park Lord : ride it down to Summer Street

Lord I'm going to ease it down in Roebust : catch my baby out on a midnight creep

Lord the reason why baby : I I been so long writing to you

Because I been studying so hard : Lord how to sing these blues

Lord I lost my papa : and my dear mama too

Lord I'm going to quit my bad way of living : and visit the Sunday school

      Watcha Doin'


         Memphis, 21 May 1930

         (59967‑ ) Vi‑V38628 Rt RL‑323

I married my baby : married her for myself

Then if I don't keep her : don't want nobody else

Now depot agent : don't tell me no lie

Did my baby stop here : did she keep in going

Now I hate to hear : Illinois Central blow

When my shoes get tickled : makes me want to go

When a man's out working : know he's doing what's right

Some old lowdown rascal : trying to steal his wife

Now I got up this morning : couldn't make no time

I didn't have no blues : messed all up in mind

Now take me baby : I'll be mean no more

You can get all my loving : let that black snake go

Get up in the morning : grey towel around your head

Ask her cook your breakfast : but she never did

      Poor John Blues

         Memphis, 21 May 1930

         (59968‑ ) Vi‑V38628 Rt RL‑323

Now I'd rather be dead : sleep in an old hollow log

And to be here baby : and you doing me like a dog

Now : what you want poor John to do

Lord I done everything : tried to get along with you

Now the woman I'm loving : she got one teeth solid gold

Lord that's been the onliest woman : got a mortgage on my soul

Now sure as the grass : on Texas earth grow green

Lord I ain't crazy : about nobody I ever seen

      Stack O' Dollars

         Memphis, 30 May 1930

         (62547‑2) Vi‑23397 Rt RL‑307

Stack of dollars : just as long as I am tall

If you be my woman : you can have them all

And I heard a rumbling : way down in the ground

Must have been somebody : slowly jumping down

You see see two women : they walking hand by hand

They just thinking of something Lord : how to fool some man

And I went on the mountain : I looked down in the sea

Niggers had my woman : Lord and the blues had me

Baby done quit me : ain't said a mumbling word

It weren't nothing that she knowed Lord : just something that she heard

      My Black Gal Blues

         Memphis, 30 May 1930

         (62548‑2) Vi‑23397 Rt RL‑307

Black gal she took meth : gave my brown *to her* death

If I hadn't've had my pistol : think I would run myself

When you see me coming : heist your window high

When you see me leaving : hang your head and cry

Now if I just had a‑listened : what my mama said

I would have been at home Lord : in my faro's bed

Got a man on your man : kid‑man on your kid

Lord she done got so buggy : don't try to keep it hid

Now I got up this morning : blues all around my bed

I turned back my *chivver* : blues all in my bed

      Down South Blues

         Chicago, 9 July 1935

         (90094‑A) Ch‑50001 Sw S‑1219

Now I'm going down south : and I'll stay until winter is gone

Time that wintertime is gone : I might come back home

Now I get up every morning : and I walk to Third and Field

And I'm just standing and I'm wondering : Lord just how to make a meal

Now the peoples in Memphis : they are walking the streets up and down

And you know the time is hard : peoples is starving all over town

Now I once have been a lover : baby back in my young days

But now baby was so mean : she done drove all my love away

Now I've got a girl in Brownsville : she lives down on *Buliphant* Lane

But my gal so mean : I'm scared to call her name

      Stop That Thing

         Chicago, 9 July 1935

         (90095‑A) Ch‑50001 Sw S‑1219

Now mama killed a chicken : and thought it was a duck

Put him on the table : with his legs straight up

??? : with your cup and glass

Catch the liquor : just to make me laugh

Now I went upstairs to sleep a little bit : went back to sleep a little more

The old bed fell down : had to sleep on the floor

Old Aunt Dinah : walking down the street

When she walk : she begin to creep

Skin on her head : just as tight as a drum

A little song : called deedle dee dum

One could beat it : and one could sing

One tell you : why don't you do that thing


Now a bow‑legged rooster : and a knock‑kneed hen

Both run together : but they ain't no kin

Now the monkey and the baboon : sitting on the fence

The monkey told the baboon : you got no sense

      Someday Baby Blues

         Chicago, 9 July 1935

         (90096‑A) Ch‑50068 Br‑87.504

I don't care how long you gone : I won't care how long you stay

But that good kind treatment : bring you back home some day

Now if that wind : that chilly old breeze

Come blowing : through your B V Ds

If you don't quit betting : boys them dice won't pass

It's going to send you a‑home : on your yas yas yas

It ain't but the one thing : that give a man the blues

He ain't got no bottom : in his last pair of shoes

I telled all the people : in your neighborhood

You's a no‑good woman : you don't mean no good

      Who's Been Tellin' You Buddy Brown Blues

         Chicago, 9 July 1935

         (90097‑A) Ch‑50068 Sw S‑1219

Baby who : I mean who been telling you

Babe whosoever told you : they did not tell you true

Now have you ever tried loving : and you can't get it out of your mind

And if you could find someone : to treat you loving and kind

Now you used to be sweet : but I can't name you sweet no more

Because every time I come to your house : some man hanging around your door

Now I'm going to get up in the morning : and I'm going to do like Buddy Brown

Know I'm going to eat my breakfast : I believe I'll lay back down

Now I know my dog : [anywhere, wherever] I hear him bark

Know I can tell my little woman : if I feel her in the dark

      Married Woman Blues

         Chicago, 17 July 1935

         (90175‑A) Ch‑50048 OJL‑21

Now don't never take : a married woman to be your friend

She will get all your money : to her same man back again

Now my sweet woman : she always *doing my cleans*

Now my little woman : won't help me sell my greens

Now I looked down the railroad : till my eyes got *green* and sore

If you don't stop tomorrow : then ??? will be my goal

Now it must've be traintime : I hear the whistle blow


Now it blow just like : it ain't going to blow no more

Now just as sure as the grass : on the ground grow green

I ain't crazy faro : woman that I ever seen

      Drop Down Mama

         Chicago, 17 July 1935

         (90176‑A) Ch‑50048 OJL‑21

Now drop down baby : let your ??? be

I know : just what you trying to pull on me

Well mama you don't allow me : to fool around all night long

Now I may look like I'm crazy : poor John do know right from wrong

Go away from my window : quit scratching on my screen

You were badly mistreated : I know just what you mean

Some of these womens : sure do make me *charged*

Have a handful of give‑me : a mouthful of much‑obliged

Woman I'm loving : wants *me sell this gold*

That's the onliest woman : a mortgage on my soul

See me coming : put your men outdoors

You know I ain't no stranger : done been here before

      Government Money

         New York, 2 Aug. 1935

         (62461‑A) De‑7414 Sw S‑1219

Now on the farm : they all have joined the government loan

Now the government give you three years chance : and you could have something of your own

Now the government furnish you a milkcow : a rooster and some portion of hen

You know long through the spring : then you can have some money to spend

Now the women used to [count, holler] on the bonus : but they are [hollering, counting] on the *rent* check now

You know I didn't go to the army : but I am using this government money anyhow

Now the governor he fought : for the plant of plenty corn and wheat

You know long through the winter : you can have something to eat

      I Wanta Tear It All the Time

         New York, 2 Aug. 1935

         (62462‑A) De‑7342 Sw S‑1219

Tear it long : tear it wide

Can tear it down : to my sides

Tear it for the young : tear it for the old

I can tear it : just dry long so

Tear it on the street : tear it on the shore

Know by that : I want to tear it some more

Tear it in the yard : tear it at the gate


Know by that : I can tear it of late

Tear it for Mae : tear it for Joe

You know by that : I want to tear it some more

Tear it in the morning : late at night

You know by that : I didn't tear it just right

      Vernita Blues

         New York, 2 Aug. 1935

         (62463‑A) De‑7342 Cor CP‑58

Vernita : honey what do you want me to do

Now I've done everything : but I can't get along with you

Now if you see Vernita : tell her hurry home

Had no loving : since she been gone

Vernita : baby where did you stay last night

Now you come home this morning : babe the moon was shining bright

Now I met Alberta : way out across the sea

Now she didn't write no letter : and she didn't care for me

Vernita : could anything I do to change your mind

Now I could come to love you : if you would treat me nice and kind

      I Ain't Gonna Be Worried No More

         New York, 2 Aug. 1935

         (62464‑A) De‑7414 Sw S‑1219

You know I worried last night : all night before

You know by that : I won't be worried no more

I was worried for you : I was worried for me

You know by that : I'm going to let it be

Now look here baby : see what you done done

Made me love you : now your man done come

Now my baby doing something : that I never could stand

I believe she's running : with a cooncan game

Now I bought some slippers : I bought some socks

Come home last night : had the back door locked

      Floating Bridge

         New York, 2 Aug. 1935

         (62465‑A) De‑7442 RBF RF‑8

Now I never will forget : that floating bridge

Tell me five minutes time : under water I was hid

When I was going down : I throwed up my hands

Please : take me on dry land

Now they carried me in the house : and they laid me across the bank

About a gallon and a half of muddy water : I had drank


They dried me off : and they laid me in the bed

Couldn't hear nothing : but muddy water running through my head

Now my mother often taught me : quit playing a bum

Go somewhere : settle down and make a crop

Now the people standing on the bridge : screaming and crying

Lord have mercy : where we going

      Need More Blues

         New York, 2 Aug. 1935

         (62466‑A) De‑7365 RBF RF‑8

Need‑more : it has hung a‑many men

And that's the reason : I believe I'll make a change

Now something to tell you : keep it to yourself

Don't tell your sister : don't tell nobody else

Now bought some gloves : bought you some socks

I believe poor John : he needs a box

Now look a‑here baby : see what you done done

Done made me love you : now your man done come

Now take me back : won't do you mean no more

Get all my loving : you let Mr so‑and‑so go

      Jack and Jill Blues

         New York, 3 Aug. 1935

         (62479‑A) De‑7365 RBF RF‑8

Now the sun going to shine : in my back door some day

Now the wind going to rise : blow my blues away

Now sure as the stars : shine in the world above

You know life is too short : to worry about the one you love

Now I ain't got no woman : ain't got no *child to school*

Reason I'm hanging around here : sticking here dry long so

Now you never have told me : how you want your rolling done

Now I believe you must a‑want me : to roll from sun to sun

Now it was late last night : when everything was still

Now me and my baby : was playing old Jack and Jill

      Poor Man's Friend

         New York, 3 Aug. 1935

         (62480‑A) De‑7442 RBF RF‑11

Well well when you see *lindy women* : I want you to throw your wives in the van

Well well probably next spring : hey I'm going to rig up my T Model again

Well well the T Model Ford : I say is the poor man's friend

Well well it will get you there : hey well when your money is spent

Well well one thing about the T Model : you don't have to shift no gears


Well well just let down the brake and feed the gas : hey and the stuff is here

Well well a V‑Eight Ford : and it done took to style

Well well they raised it all the way from ninety : hey down to a hundred miles

Well well somebody : they done stole my wine on the road

Well well it's find somebody : hey got a T Model Ford

      Hobo Jungle Blues

         New York, 3 Aug. 1935

         (62481‑A) De‑7354 Sw S‑1219

Now when I left Chicago : I left on that G and M

Then if I reach my home : I'll be changed all on that L and N

Now I came in all in that Main West : and I putted down at Chicago Heights

Now you know it didn't hobo John none : and that's where I stayed all night

Now if you hobo in Brownsville : you better not be peeping out

Now Mr Whitten will get you : and Mr Guy will wear you out

Now out east of Brownsville : about four miles from town

Now if you ain't got your fare : that's where they will let you down

      Airplane Blues

         New York, 3 Aug. 1935

         (62482‑A) De‑7354 Sw S‑1219

I'm going to get in my airplane I'm going to get in my airplane : I'm going to ride all over I'm going to ride all over your town

Then if I spy the woman I'm loving : poor John going to let this air poor John going to let this airplane down

Here's my hand here's my hand : you can lead me where you want you can lead me where you want me to go

Then if you lead me wrong this time : you won't lead me no and you won't lead me no more

I know my baby I know my baby : and she's bound to jump and she's bound to jump and shout

Now when she gets over to Atlanta : I done rolled them few I done rolled them few days out

You three times seven you three times seven : you ought to know what you want you ought to know what you want to do

Now the day that you quit me : and I won't be mad with I won't be mad with you

Just the day before Christmas just the day before Christmas : let me bring your present let me bring your present tonight

Now I will be your Santa Claus : even if my whiskers even if my whiskers is white

      Everybody Oughta Make a Change

         New York, 22 Apr. 1938

         (63647‑A) De‑7571 RBF RF‑8

Now change in the ocean : change in the deep blue sea

Take me back baby : you'll find some change in me

Everybody : they ought to change sometime


Because it's soon or late : we have to go down in that old lonesome ground

Now change my money : change my honey

I change baby : just to keep from being funny

Now change my pants : change my shirt

I change baby : to get shed of the dirt

Now change home : I change town

I change baby : all the way around

Now change walk : I change talk

I change baby : just to keep from being balked

      Liquor Store Blues

         New York, 22 Apr. 1938

         (63648‑A) De‑7491 RBF RF‑11

Now if you're ever on *Fourth Street* : I'll tell you what to do

Let Mr Peter Adams : get acquainted with you

Well you won't have to go : well you won't have to go

You can get what you want to : right here in my liquor store

He got a little whiskey : he got a little gin

All you got to do : is step in the back end

I met Mr Peter : down on Monroe Street

Come to Fourth Street : right around with me

He got some on his floor : he got some on his shelf

All you got to do : is just to help yourself

Mr Peter Albert : the discount man

You ask him for a favor : he won't make you ashamed

      Easin' Back to Tennessee

         New York, 22 Apr. 1938

         (63649‑A) De‑7516 Sw S‑1220

Now woke up this morning : couldn't hardly see

Snow on the ground : about eight foot deep

Lord have mercy : baby what become of me

You know I feel just like easing : back down into Tennessee

Now call William in the office : want to see you alone

I can't do nothing : with this white stuff on

Now I'm on the South Side : my buddy on the east

I don't know : whether he got any place to sleep

Say car can't go : margin too slick

Probably might slip back : off in a ditch

Now twenty‑two twenty‑four : West *Hubbard* Avenue

That's where you get : my nineteen and thirty‑two

      Fire Department Blues


         New York, 22 Apr. 1938

         (63650‑A) De‑7571 Sw S‑1220

Now go call the fire department : for my house is burning down

You know that must be little Martha Hardin : because it's on the north side of town

I said the people is running : and I wonder who could it be

You know that must be little Martha Hardin : I saw them turn down on Wilson Street

When you see the chief : boys please clear the street

Because you know he's going down : save little Martha Hardin's house for me

She's a hard‑working woman : you know her salary is very small

Then when she pay up her house rent : that don't leave anything for insurance at all

Now I wrote little Martha a letter : five days it returned back to me

You know little Martha Hardin's house done burnt down : she done moved on Bathurst Street

      Clean Up at Home

         New York, 22 Apr. 1938

         (63651‑B) De‑7516 Sw S‑1220

I washed my clothes : I hanged them by the fire

Get up in the morning : they be finally dry

I went to the ??? : trying to make me a dime

Say go away boy : clean up and get on some time

Five cent cap : and ten cent suit

Then you all think : I'm trying to act cute

I done something : that you can't do

Go down on State Street : get a one potful stew

I played for the colored : I play for the white

All you got to do : act kind of nice

      New Someday Blues

         New York, 22 Apr. 1938

         (63652‑A) De‑7473 RBF RF‑8

When trouble first started : down in my front door

Seems like I had more trouble : in my life before

Now trouble in the morning : trouble late at night

Seems like I'm treated : every way but right

Now you got a little woman : she won't treat you right

Feed you in the day : go out with some man at night

I wonder what's the matter : can't get no mail

Had a dream last night : black cat crossed my trail

I know my baby : tell you how I know

By the great long hair : same little dress she wore

Now look a‑here baby : see what you done done

You done made me love you : now your man done come

      Brownsville Blues

         New York, 22 Apr. 1938

         (63653‑A) De‑7473 RBF RF‑8

Now I can straighten your wires : you know poor Vasser can grind your valves

Man when I turn your motor loose : and it sure will split the air

Now Vasser can line your wheels : you know poor Vasser can tune your horn

Then when he set it out on the highway : you can hear your motor hum

Now my generator is bad : and you know my lights done stopped

And I reckon I'd better take it over to Durhamville : and I'm going to stop at Vasser Williams' shop

Now I were raised in Lauderdale County : you know I was schooled on Winfield Lane

Then what I made of myself : I declare it was a crying shame

Now Brownsville is my home : and you know I ain't going to throwed it down

Because I'm acquainted with John Law : and they won't let me down

      Special Agent

         New York, 22 Apr. 1938

         (63654‑A) De‑7491 RBF RF‑1

Now when I left for Richmond : the weather was kind of cool

Said boy you all be careful : probably you might catch the flu

Now I *swung that manifest* : I went down in the three rail *box*

Now I couldn't hear the special agent : when he come tipping over *soft*

Now some special agents up the country : sure is hard on a man


Now they will put him off when he hungry : and won't even let him ride no train

Now I was setting down in Centralia : and I sure was feeling bad

Now they wouldn't let me ride no fast train : they put me off on a doggone *drag*

Now special agent special agent : put me off close to some town

Now I got to do some recording : and I ought to be recording right now

      Mailman Blues

         Chicago, 4 June 1940

         (93004‑A) De‑7789 Sw S‑1220

Mailman : please stop by my box today

You know I'm looking for a letter from my baby : you know I want to hear from her right away

Reason I ain't been getting no mail : you know I done found out what it's all about

You know the mailman been getting drunk : he been leaving my mail at somebody else's house

Now I been waiting on the mailman : he usually come around about eleven o'clock

Now I guess he must have had car trouble : or either the road must be blocked

Mailman : please don't you lose your head

You know I'm looking for a letter from my babe : some of my people might be dead

      Time Is Drawing Near

         Chicago, 4 June 1940

         (93005‑A) De‑7789 Sw S‑1220

Now it used to be the time : be getting two bucks a day

But now we getting fifty cents : *running down* proper pay

Time : time is drawing near

Now can't you see : more and more every year

Now I remember back in time : before we got grown

Be damned : to let sundown catch a ??? on

Now my mother used to say : the sign will be

We couldn't tell summer from winter : no more by the birds and of the trees

Now it used to be the time : get a corn crop in March

But now we can't get one in June : and neither July

Now you'd go to the church : just to work for soul

But now we go : to buy one another's clothes

      Mary Come On Home

         Chicago, 4 June 1940

         (93006‑A) De‑7814 Sw S‑1220

Stopped little Mary : across the creek

Soon as I got her : somebody took her from me

Love little Mary : always will

Once in town : she liked to got me killed

Took little Mary : down to Tipton *bell*

All the time she was out : she was raising hell


Down in *Lake* County : in that gumbo mud

Where the mosquito bills : keep a‑biting through her tub

You get to *Stanford* : and look all around

Ask anybody : little Mary in town

      Jailhouse Blues

         Chicago, 4 June 1940

         (93007‑A) De‑7814 RBF RF‑8

Now I was sitting in jail : with my eyes all full of tears

You know I'm glad I didn't get lifetime : boys and I escaped the electric chair

Now I consulted lawyers : and I know darn well I was wrong

You know I couldn't get a white man in Brownsville : yes to even say they would go my bond

Now the sheriff he arrest me : and he march me around front of the circuit court

You know I knowed the thing was getting kind of *squally* : I heard the city judge when he set up his court

Now no more stewball : yes and neither no more white rice

Now you ought need not feel uneasy : you won't have to take this workhouse advice

      Tell Me About It

         Chicago, 4 June 1940

         (93008‑A) De‑7766 Sw S‑1220

*Some* was good : some said mean

All these *cotton nip* : ain't got no tea

Ever in Brownsville : go into nineteen

Old *Tim Lepson* : *get stoned on gin*

Tommy so tall : *no shine* low

Everybody in Brownsville : say he got a‑plenty of dough

He *rattle his field* : get *a ??? rule*

Ask for a little money : he say boys share the mule

*Stone* live in country : Mr ??? live in town

Soon that morning : Mr ??? hit that black line

??? on the ??? : ??? on the truck

*Men say why* : *and hog people's stuff*

      Drop Down

         Chicago, 4 June 1940

         (93009‑A) De‑7766 Sw S‑1220

My old lady coming : down the line

She was low in front : she was bouncy behind

I believe I'll drop down : I don't feel welcome here

Now I'm going to get me a woman : for the brand new coming year

Went to the barber shop : to get me a shine

Say go away darky : to that door around the line


Now an old lady : had a jug of wine

Say go away son : you can't play the *lion*

Look here baby : see what you done done

You made me love you : now your man done come

Way down yonder : in the old West End

Women out there : look like sex of men

      You Shouldn't Do That

         Chicago, 24 Sept. 1941

         (064916‑1) BB‑B8915 BC‑7

Don't a man do wrong : till a man make hisself at home

He may come back : catch his head while you lay on

Men goes and gambles : lose all his change

He come back home : his little wife has to bear the blame

Don't a man act funny : when a single woman ease in town

He stay out all night : he throw his home girl down

I knowed you never loved me : when you fell down on my knees

You had been drinking that old moonshine : trying to jive poor me

I won't play marbles : on my baby's marble ground

I won't be worried with the ??? : I'm going to move out to the edge of town

      Lawyer Clark Blues

         Chicago, 24 Sept. 1941

         (064924‑1) BB‑B8871 RCA LPV‑518

Now got offices in town : resident out on *Sentry* Road

He got a nice little lake : right inside the grove

But you know I like Mr Clark : yes he really is my friend

He say if I just stay out of the [grave, graveyard] : he see that I won't go to the pen

Now Mr Clark is a lawyer : his youngest brother is too

When the battles get hot : he tell him just what to do

Now he lawyers for the rich : he lawyers for the poor

He don't try to rob nobody : just bring *along to the store*

Now once I got in trouble : you know I was going to take a ride

He didn't let it reach the courthouse : he kept it on the outside

Now Mr Clark is a good lawyer : he good as I ever seen

He the first man that proved : that water run upstream

      Little Laura Blues

         Chicago, 24 Sept. 1941

         (064925‑1) BB‑B8871 RCA LPV‑518

Little Laura was a gal : she was sixteen

Her *dammy dam* won't listen : to her dream

Little Laura was a dreamer : dream those disturbing dreams


She's the dreamingest gal : dreamingest gal I ever seen

Now she dreamed : she was going with the man next door

She dreamed : she was kissing his oh oh oh

She dreamed : she was riding in some man's automobile

She's the dreamingest gal : dreamingest gal I ever seen

Now she dreamed : she was sitting in the grass by the mill

She dreamed : she had taken me from the gal on the hill

Little Laura was a dreamer : most all of the dreams *forecast*

She's the dreamingest gal : dreamingest gal I ever seen

Now she dreamed : I was hugging her close to my breast

She told Jimmy that much of the dream : but she wouldn't tell the rest

Now she dreamed about love : from kissing on down

She's the dreamingest gal : for miles around

Little Laura was a dreamer : most all of her dreams come true

She had dream all about loving : and she know just what to do

      Working Man Blues

         Chicago, 24 Sept. 1941

         (064926‑1) BB‑B8950 RBF RF‑8

Now you done spent all my nineteen forty rent : woman you done worked on my substitute

Then if you don't reach that nineteen forty‑one : ooh babe what in the world you going to do

Now you ought to cut off so many trucks and tractors : white folks you ought to work more mules and men

Then you know that would make : ooh boy money get thick again

Now when a man gets to gambling : you know he's turning his stocks into feed

He say he going to sell his corn and buy gas : ooh boys pour it in the automobile

Now I been studying I been wondering : what makes a man turn the ground over in the wintertime

You know let the snow and rain rot the grass : ooh boys that make fertilizer for the ground

Now the government give us a school in Brownsville : boy you know I think that's very nice

You know the children can go in the daytime : ooh boys and the old folks have it at night

               Evans, Joe

      New Huntsville Jail

         New York, 20 May 1931

         (10651‑2) Or‑8080 His HLP‑8002

Write me a letter : and send it by mail

I want you to tell my dear old mother : I'm in the New Huntsville jail

I want you to tell her beans is tough : and the meat is so fat

I want you to tell my dear old mother : it's hard for me to eat that

If I had a‑listened : what my mother said

I might have been rolling : somewheres in a folding bed

But I fooled around : with my long *harred*

Now I'm laying here in this New Huntsville jail : and I'm almost dead

Ashes to ashes : and dust to dust


And if God don't have me : you know the devil must

As I lay down in my cell at night : I tries so hard to take my rest

Cockroaches and chinches : begin to crawl over my breast

      Sitting on Top of the World

         New York, 21 May 1931

         (10659‑1) Ba‑32211 His HLP‑8002

Worked all the summer : and all the fall

Just trying to find : my little all and all

Was in the spring : one summer day

Just when she left me : she's gone to stay

Needn't come here running : holding up your hands

I can get me a woman : quick as you can a man

It have been days : I didn't know your name

Why should I worry : and cry in vain

Going down to the station : down in the yard

Going to catch me a freight train : when times got hard

The lonesome days : have done gone by

Why should you beg me : and say goodbye

      Down in Black Bottom

         New York, 21 May 1931

         (10664‑1) Or‑8083 Yz L‑1015

You go down Black Bottom : put your money in your shoe

Because the Black Bottom women gal : ain't going to do nothing but take it away from you

They don't care nothing : about what in the world they do

They'd sooner take that money : out of the bottom of your shoe

They'll take your money : and they'll take your clothes

And one of them tell the police next morning : *partner*

Now run here mama : and run here quick

Just take a look out here in the back yard : just look at sis

Come in here sis : you dirty little thing

Out there trying to be something : and you don't know how

I got me a woman : she lives way down in Tennessee

Just big as black and greasy : great God as greasy can be

Her head is nappy : and her feet done got long

Take God to tell : who she been waiting on

      Shook It This Morning Blues

         New York, 21 May 1931

         (10665‑2) Or‑8083 Yz L‑1015

Now I shook it this morning : baby until late last night

And when I come in twelve o'clock : ??? shake it up right


Said now if I could holler : just like a mountain jack

I would crawl up on some mountain : holler for that woman back

Two kind of people : baby I can't understand

A bow‑legged woman : likes a knock‑kneed man

Now when you see two women : running hand in hand

You can bet your life : one's got the other's man

??? *upped* and come here : caught me in a barrel

I ain't even got no friends : even got no gal

I got a rock for my pillow : treetop for my bed

I ain't got nowheres : to lay my weary head

               Ezell, Will

      Pitchin' Boogie

         Richmond, Ind., 20 Sept. 1929

         (15650) Pm‑12855 Mil MLP‑2018

Now look here girl : put on your best dress

We going to see : who can do the boogie‑woogie the best

Now look over : where them girls got them dress of green

I swear to God : this boogie too mean

Get a half pint of moonshine : two or three bottles of beer

I believe : I'll pitch the boogie right here

Get all your moonshine : get all your beer

Close the door : ain't going to let nobody up here

               Florence, Nellie 

      Jacksonville Blues 

         Atlanta, 21 Apr. 1928

         (146174‑1) Co‑14342‑D OJL‑6

Let me be your wiggler : until your wobbler come

If she beats me wiggling : she got to wobble some

Women crying danger : but I ain't raising my hand

I got a way of loving : they just can't understand

Men they call me oven : they say that I'm red‑hot

They say I got something : the other gals ain't got

I can strut my pudding : spread my grease with ease

Because I know my onions : that's why I always please

Wild about coffee : but I'm crazy about China tea

But this sugar daddy : is sweet enough for me

One John in the city : one lives up on the hill

But the man I'm loving : lives down in Jacksonville

      Midnight Weeping Blues

         Atlanta, 21 Apr. 1928

         (146175‑2) Co‑14342‑D OJL‑6

I moaned I moaned : I cried the whole night long


I was wondering : where in the world my man done gone

I'd rather be dead : in some lonesome place

Than for my man : keeps treating me this a‑way

When you see two of you women : going hand in hand

You can judge by that : they got one of the other one's man

I went to the Gypsy : to get my fortune told

*Said the evil* is hard luck : doggone your hard‑luck soul

I said Lord Lord : something going on wrong

Because the man I love : done been here and gone

I turned around : and two of them Gypsies I told

Say Nellie needs a man : most anywhere you go

I went to my bedside : hung my head and cried

Got a letter from my man : that my man had died

I hung my head : and I cried the whole night long

Said I'm right upset : and I've got those weeping blues

               Foster, Dessa

      Tell It to the Judge No. 1

         Chicago, c. 28 Jan. 1931

         (C‑7238‑A) Me‑M12117 Yz L-1031

I'm telling you this morning : I'm tired of you searching my house

I have a notion this morning : beating you up and throwing you out

The hell with the search warrant : go look and see what you can find

You ain't never found no liquor : and you searched my house two or three times

Give me a break : don't make me pay no fine

That judge is going to lick me : because I been here so many times

      Tell It to the Judge No. 2

         Chicago, c. 28 Jan. 1931

         (C‑7239‑?) Me‑M12117 Yz L‑1031

I'm guilty kind old judge : please treat me nice and kind

For I'll stay home and try my best : to get money to pay my fine

I never seen : a judge as mean as you before

Sending me a poor woman : and letting everybody else go

You can do as you please : thirty days won't make me cry

When I come back I'm going to gamble : and sell moonshine all my life

               Fox, John D.

      The Worried Man Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 14 Dec. 1927

         (GEX‑1011‑A) Ge‑6352 OJL‑10

On a Sunday morning : just about half past four

My babe took my hand : said daddy I can't use you no more

Lord I may get better : babe I can't get well

I'm going back to my used‑to‑be : and baby it's country farewell


Lord I'm worried now : but I won't be worried long

It takes a man like me : to carry this worried song

Baby I've been worried so long : that worrying don't bother me

But ain't nobody here babe : to take pity on poor me

I've got a good girl : and I've got a lazy friend

And if I tell about her : he always tell me where she been

I always will have trouble : until I'm dead and gone

If you will love me mama : you'd never treat me wrong

      The Moanin' Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 15 Dec. 1927

         (GEX‑1019‑A) Ge‑6352 Rt RL‑334

And I got a letter from my baby : and it said that she was dying

I have to catch this mail train : I'm going back home flying

Now when I came in your town babe : I didn't come here to stay long

Now *do you believe that I gone back to her people* : but my baby knowed that I was gone

Lordy Lordy : Lordy Lordy Lord

The only little girl that I love : she treats me like a dog

I'm going to leave you baby : your crying won't make me stay

But it's just like I told you : you're going to need my help some day

Mama I'm the same man : you just only changed your ways

??? *has beaten* mama : you're going to be sorry some day

               Fuller, Blind Boy

      I'm a Rattlesnakin' Daddy

         New York, 23 July 1935

         (17862‑2) ARC‑6‑01‑56 BC‑11

I woke up this morning : about half past four

Somebody knocking : on my back door

Yes he rattle this morning : about half past three

Half past four : he want to rattle some more

I got a range in my kitchen : bake bread nice and brown

Get my rattlesnake daddy : turn my damper upside down

I can rattle to the left : rattle to the right

My woman said I believe my rattlesnake daddy : can rattle all night

I rattle every morning : till late at night

Reason why : my rattlesnake mama don't allow me out of her sight

Now the old folks rattling : the young ones too

Ain't nobody rattle : just like the way I do

Yes I rattled this morning : about half past ten

Half past nine : I'm going to rattle again

      Rag, Mama, Rag

         New York, 25 July 1935


         (17863‑2) ARC‑35‑10‑32 BC‑6

Says I'm going up to town : hat in my hand

Looking for a woman : ain't got no man

Just as well be looking : for a needle in the sand

Looking for a woman : ain't got no man

Says I wouldn't have thought : my baby treat me so

Let another man : stayed at my back door

Mind mama : what you sow

You got to reap : just what you sow

Now if you get you one woman : you better get you two

One for your buddy : other one for you

I's got me a wife : and a sweetheart too

Wife don't love me : my sweetheart do

Cried my gal hollered murder : I ain't raised my hand