Pre-war Blues Lyric Poetry: an Anthology

M - R

McClennan, Tommy. 13

Brown Skin Girl 13

Baby, Don't You Want to Go. 13

New Highway No. 51. 13

She's Just Good Huggin' Size. 13

My Little Girl 14

My Baby's Doggin' Me. 14

She's a Good Looking Mama. 14

Whiskey Head Man. 14

New Sugar Mama. 14

Down to Skin and Bones. 15

Katy Mae Blues. 15

Love with a Feeling. 15

Drop Down Mama. 15

Black Minnie. 15

Elsie Blues. 16

Cross Cut Saw Blues. 16

You Can't Read My Mind. 16

Deep Blue Sea Blues. 16

I'm a Guitar King. 17

It's a Cryin' Pity. 17

Mozelle Blues. 17

Mr. So and So Blues. 17

Bluebird Blues. 17

McClintock, Lil 18

Furniture Man. 18

McClure, Matthew.. 18

Prisoner's Blues. 18

McCoy, Charlie. 18

Last Time Blues. 18

That Lonesome Train Took My Baby Away. 18

McCoy, Joe. 19

That Will Be Alright 19

Goin' Back to Texas. 19

When the Levee Breaks. 19

I'm Wild About My Stuff 20

My Mary Blues. 20

Cherry Ball Blues. 20

Botherin' that Thing. 20

Pile Drivin' Blues. 21

I Called You This Morning. 21

Beat It Right 21

Preachers Blues. 21

Shake Mattie. 22

My Wash Woman's Gone. 22

Joliet Bound. 22

Someday I'll Be in the Clay. 22

Evil Devil Woman Blues. 23

Going Back Home. 23

You Got to Move‑Part 1. 23

Something Gonna Happen to You. 23

Oh Red. 24

What You Gonna Do. 24

Southern Blues. 24

The Garbage Man. 24

My Daddy Was a Movin' Man. 24

We Gonna Pitch a Boogie Woogie. 25

Hallelujah Joe Ain't Preachin' No More. 25

McCoy, Robert Lee. 25

Tough Luck. 25

Friar's Point Blues. 25

McCoy, William.. 26

Central Tracks Blues. 26

McFadden, Charlie Specks. 26

People People Blues. 26

Groceries on the Shelf 26

MacFarland, Barrel House Buck.. 26

I Got to Go Blues. 26

Mack, Alura. 27

West End Blues. 27

Wicked Daddy Blues. 27

McMullen, Fred. 27

Wait and Listen. 27

De Kalb Chain Blues. 27

Macon, Ed. 27

Wringing that Thing. 27

McPhail, Black Bottom.. 28

Down in Black Bottom.. 28

My Dream Blues. 28

Whiskey Man Blues. 28

McTell, Blind Willie. 29

Writin' Paper Blues. 29

Stole Rider Blues. 29

Mama, 'Tain't Long Fo' Day. 29

Mr. McTell Got the Blues. 29

Three Women Blues. 29

Statesboro Blues. 30

Atlanta Strut 30

Travelin' Blues. 30

Come On Around to My House Mama. 30

Kind Mama. 31

Drive Away Blues. 31

Love‑Changing Blues. 31

Talking to Myself 31

Razor Ball 32

Southern Can Is Mine. 32

Broke Down Engine Blues. 32

Stomp Down Rider. 33

Scarey Day Blues. 33

Georgia Rag. 33

Rollin' Mama Blues. 34

Searching the Desert for the Blues. 34

Warm It Up to Me. 34

It's a Good Little Thing. 35

Savannah Mama. 35

Broke Down Engine. 35

My Baby's Gone. 35

Death Cell Blues. 36

B and O Blues No. 2. 36

Weary Hearted Blues. 36

Southern Can Mama. 36

Runnin' Me Crazy. 37

Bell Street Blues. 37

Ticket Agent Blues. 37

Cold Winter Day. 38

Your Time to Worry. 38

Manning, Leola. 39

The Blues Is All Wrong. 39

Martin, Carl 39

Farewell to You Baby. 39

Badly Mistreated Man. 39

Good Morning, Judge. 39

Joe Louis Blues. 40

Let's Have a New Deal 40

Martin, Daisy. 40

Feelin' Blue. 40

What You Was You Used to Be. 40

Martin, Sara. 41

Blind Man Blues. 41

Death Sting Me Blues. 41

Mistreating Man Blues. 41

Mason, Moses. 41

Molly Man. 41

Shrimp Man. 42

Memphis Minnie. 42

Goin' Back to Texas. 42

'Frisco Town. 42

I'm Talking About You. 43

Bumble Bee. 43

I'm Going Back Home. 43

Bumble Bee Blues. 43

Meningitis Blues. 44

Don't Want No Woman. 44

Georgia Skin. 44

Memphis Minnie‑Jitis Blues. 44

Plymouth Rock Blues. 44

New Dirty Dozens. 45

New Bumble Bee. 45

I'm Talking About You‑No. 2. 45

I Called You This Morning. 46

Grandpa and Grandma Blues. 46

Garage Fire Blues. 46

What's the Matter with the Mill 46

North Memphis Blues. 47

I Don't Want that Junk Outa You. 47

Crazy Cryin' Blues. 47

Soo Cow Soo. 47

After While Blues. 47

Where Is My Good Man. 48

Ain't No Use Trying to Tell On Me. 48

Stinging Snake Blues. 48

Drunken Barrelhouse Blues. 48

You Got to Move‑Part I 48

Chickasaw Train Blues. 49

Squat It 49

Dirty Mother For You. 49

You Can't Give It Away. 49

Reachin' Pete. 50

He's in the Ring. 50

Black Cat Blues. 50

Man You Won't Give Me No Money. 50

Moonshine. 50

It's Hard to Be Mistreated. 51

My Baby Don't Want Me No More. 51

Lonesome Shark Blues. 51

Nothin in Rambling. 51

Boy Friend Blues. 52

It's Hard to Please My Man. 52

In My Girlish Days. 52

Me and My Chauffeur Blues. 52

Miles, Lizzie. 52

Shootin' Star Blues. 52

Miller, Lillian. 53

Dead Drunk Blues. 53

Miller, Sodarisa. 53

Sunshine Special 53

Mississippi Moaner (Isaiah Nettles) 53

Mississippi Moan. 53

It's Cold in China Blues. 53

Montgomery, Eurreal Little Brother. 54

The Woman I Love Blues. 54

Pleading Blues. 54

Vicksburg Blues No. 2. 54

Mama You Don't Mean Me No Good. 54

The First Time I Met You. 54

Vicksburg Blues‑Part 3. 55

Out West Blues. 55

Leaving Town Blues. 55

West Texas Blues. 55

Never Go Wrong Blues. 55

Mistreatin' Woman Blues. 55

Moore, Whistlin' Alex. 56

West Texas Woman. 56

It Wouldn't Be So Hard. 56

Moore, Alice. 56

Black and Evil Blues. 56

Prison Blues. 56

My Man Blues. 57

Broadway St. Woman Blues. 57

Lonesome Dream Blues. 57

Kid Man Blues. 57

Black Evil Blues. 57

Moore, Monette. 57

Black Hearse Blues. 57

Scandal Blues. 58

Moore, Kid Prince. 58

Bug Juice Blues. 58

Honey Dripping Papa. 58

Moore, Rosie Mae. 58

Staggering Blues. 58

Ha‑Ha Blues. 59

School Girl Blues. 59

Stranger Blues. 59

Mad Dog Blues. 59

Moore, William.. 59

One Way Gal 59

Midnight Blues. 60

Morand, Herb. 60

Root Hog or Die. 60

Moss, Buddy. 60

Daddy Don't Care. 60

Hard Road Blues. 60

Gravy Server. 60

Nelson, Romeo. 61

Gettin' Dirty Just Shakin' that Thing. 61

Dyin' Rider Blues. 61

Nelson, Sonny Boy. 61

Street Walkin' 61

Nelson, Blue Coat Tom.. 62

Blue Coat Blues. 62

Newbern, Hambone Willie. 62

She Could Toodle‑Oo. 62

Nobody Knows. 62

Shelby County Workhouse Blues. 62

Hambone Willie's Dreamy‑Eyed Woman's Blues. 63

Roll and Tumble Blues. 63

Nickerson, Charlie Bozo. 63

Everybody's Talking About Sadie Green. 63

Cave Man Blues. 63

It Won't Act Right 64

Going Back to Memphis. 64

Got a Letter from My Darlin' 64

You May Leave But This Will Bring You Back. 64

Move that Thing. 64

Round and Round. 65

You Got Me Rollin' 65

Noble, George. 65

The Seminole Blues. 65

Oden, Jimmy. 65

I Have Made Up My Mind. 65

Sitting Down Thinking Blues. 66

Going Down Slow.. 66

Owens, Big Boy George. 66

Kentucky Blues. 66

The Coon Crap Game. 66

Owens, Marshall 66

Texas Blues. 66

Try Me One More Time. 67

Palmer, Sylvester. 67

Broke Man Blues. 67

Patton, Charley. 67

Mississippi Bo Weavil Blues. 67

Screamin' and Hollerin' Blues. 67

Down the Dirt Road Blues. 68

Pony Blues. 68

Banty Rooster Blues. 68

It Won't Be Long. 68

Pea Vine Blues. 69

Tom Rushen Blues. 69

Going to Move to Alabama. 69

Devil Sent the Rain. 69

Green River Blues. 70

Hammer Blues. 70

When Your Way Gets Dark. 70

Heart Like Railroad Steel 70

High Water Everywhere‑Part I 71

High Water Everywhere‑Part II 71

Rattlesnake Blues. 71

Mean Black Moan. 71

Dry Well Blues. 71

Moon Going Down. 72

Bird Nest Bound. 72

Jersey Bull Blues. 72

High Sheriff Blues. 72

Stone Pony Blues. 72

34 Blues. 73

Love My Stuff 73

Revenue Man Blues. 73

Poor Me. 73

Perkins, Gertrude. 74

No Easy Rider Blues. 74

Petties, Arthur. 74

Two Time Blues. 74

Out on Santa Fe‑Blues. 74

Good Boy Blues. 74

Petway, Robert 75

Catfish Blues. 75

Bertha Lee Blues. 75

My Baby Left Me. 75

Cotton Pickin' Blues. 75

Pickett, Charlie. 75

Crazy 'Bout My Black Gal 75

Let Me Squeeze Your Lemon. 76

Down the Highway. 76

Poor Jab (Jab Jones) 76

Whitewash Station Blues. 76

Stealin' Stealin' 76

Come Along Little Children. 77

Pope, Jenny. 77

Whiskey Drinkin' Blues. 77

Doggin' Me Around Blues. 77

Bull Frog Blues. 77

Tennessee Workhouse Blues. 77

Pullum, Joe. 78

Black Gal What Makes Your Head So Hard???‑‑ No. 2. 78

Rachel, James Yank.. 78

Little Sarah. 78

T‑Bone Steak Blues. 78

Expressman Blues. 78

Sweet Mama. 79

Squeaky Work Bench Blues. 79

Gravel Road Woman. 79

Rainey, Ma Gertrude. 79

Bad Luck Blues. 79

Bo‑Weavil Blues. 79

Barrel House Blues. 79

Those All Night Long Blues. 80

Moonshine Blues. 80

Last Minute Blues. 80

Southern Blues. 80

Walking Blues. 80

Lost Wandering Blues. 81

Dream Blues. 81

Honey Where You Been So Long. 81

Ya‑Da‑Do. 81

Those Dogs of Mine. 81

Lucky Rock Blues. 81

Jealous Hearted Blues. 82

Cell Bound Blues. 82

Army Camp Harmony Blues. 82

Explaining the Blues. 82

Rough and Tumble Blues. 82

Night Time Blues. 83

Four Day Honory Scat 83

Memphis Bound Blues. 83

Slave to the Blues. 83

Bessemer Bound Blues. 83

Oh My Babe Blues. 84

Down in the Basement 84

Trust No Man. 84

Gone Daddy Blues. 84

Misery Blues. 84

Slow Driving Moan. 85

Black Eye Blues. 85

Ramey, Ben (Memphis Jug Band) 85

I Can't Stand It 85

Tired of You Driving Me. 85

Cocaine Habit Blues. 85

Ranger, Jack.. 86

T. P. Window Blues. 86

Red Nelson (Nelson Wilborn) 86

Crying Mother Blues. 86

Sweetest Thing Born. 86

Reed, Willie. 86

Dreaming Blues: 86

Texas Blues. 87

Leavin' Home. 87

Reynolds, Blind Joe. 87

Outside Woman Blues. 87

Nehi Blues. 87

Reynolds, Blind Willie. 88

Married Man Blues. 88

Third Street Woman Blues. 88

Rhodes, Walter. 88

The Crowing Rooster. 88

Leaving Home Blues. 88

Richardson, Mooch. 89

T and T Blues. 89

Mooch Richardson's Low Down Barrel House Blues Part 1. 89

Burying Ground Blues. 89

Robinson, Bob. 89

Selling That Stuff 89

Beedle Um Bum.. 90

Roland, Walter. 90

T Model Blues. 90

Dices' Blues. 90

Early in the Morning No. 2. 90

Big Mama. 91

Every Morning Blues. 91

45 Pistol Blues. 91

Penniless Blues. 91

Rupert, Ollie. 91

I Raised My Window and Looked at the Risin' Sun. 91

Ain't Goin' to Be Your Low Down Dog. 92


 

               McClennan, Tommy

      Brown Skin Girl

         Chicago, 22 Nov. 1939

         (044243‑1) BB‑B8444 RCA LPV‑518

Now I got a brownskin [girl, woman] : with her front tooth crowned with gold

She got a lien on my body : and a mortgage on my soul

Now friend don't never let your good girl : fix you like this woman got me

Got me stone crazy about her : as a doggone fool can be

Now I ain't going to tell nobody : baby about the way you do

Say you always keep : some some fatmouth following you

Now I told you once now baby now : ain't going to tell you no more

Next time I have to tell you : I'm sure going to let you go

Now when you get you one of them faulty women : she won't do the truck

Get you a two‑by‑four : and I swear you can strut your stuff

Mmm : baby that's all I want

Just a little bit of loving : and then you can be gone

      Baby, Don't You Want to Go

         Chicago, 22 Nov. 1939

         (044245‑ ) BB‑B8408 Rt RL‑305

Mmm : baby don't you want to go

To that land of California : sweet old Chicago

Now did you get that letter : dropped in your back yard

Wants to come to see you : your best man got me barred

Now I don't drink because I'm dry : or drink because I'm blue

The reason I drink pretty mama : now I can't get along with you

Now look a‑here baby : don't have to take no more

You can get my loving : if you just let him go

Now my my mama told me : papa started to cry

Son you're too young a man : to have the women at your side

She cried look a‑here baby : I know you want to go

To that land of California : sweet old Chicago

      New Highway No. 51

         Chicago, 10 May 1940

         (044986‑ ) BB‑B8499 RBF RF‑202

Highway Fifty : runs right by my baby's door

Now if I don't get the girl I'm loving : ain't going down Highway Fifty‑One no more

Now if I should die : [just] before my time do come

I want you to please bury my body : out on Highway Fifty‑One

Now yon come that Greyhound : with his tongue sticking out on the side

If you buy your ticket : swear 'fore God that man'll let you ride

My baby didn't have one five dollars : baby and I owned me a V‑Eight Ford

If I ever meet that Greyhound bus : on that Highway Fifty‑One road

Now any time you get lonesome : and you wants to have some fun

Come out to little Tommy's cabin : he lives on Highway Fifty‑One

      She's Just Good Huggin' Size

         Chicago, 10 May 1940

         (044987‑ ) BB‑B8605 Rt RL‑305

Oh my baby : just about good hugging size

Lord and if anybody wants to take her : I believe to my soul I'd die

Lord I tried to give the little woman : everything that she tell me she needs

But she will hold a conversation : with every lowdown dirty man she meets

That little woman she won't wash : now now she won't even iron my clothes

She won't do nothing I tell her : but she done bake me jellyroll

Now I ain't going to tell you babe : about the way you do

But I swear the way you do : it keeps on worrying me

Now I used to have a woman : now now she's [just] as good as any in this [white man's] town

But I caught her two‑timing me : and I swear I turn her damper down


      My Little Girl

         Chicago, 10 May 1940

         (044988‑ ) BB‑B8605 Rt RL‑305

I say my little girl : just as sweet as she can be

And every time she kisses me : cold chill run all over me

Now baby don't you worry : just because I'm out of town

All my love I have for you darling : swear it can't be turned around

Now you hurt my feelings : babe but [I swear] I wouldn't let on

I believe it's some dirty deacon : is done been here and gone

Now I love you baby : don't care what you do

But the way you doing : I swear it's coming back home to you

      My Baby's Doggin' Me

         Chicago, 10 May 1940

         (044991‑ ) BB‑B8545 Rt RL‑305

Now she dog me every morning : she dog me late at night

She keep on a‑dogging me : till I going to make everything all right

Now look a‑here mama : tell me where you stay last night

She said ain't none of your business : you know you don't treat me right

Now I done told you once pretty mama : ain't going to tell you no more

You can get all my loving : if you just let him go

I say look a‑here babe : I'm getting tired of the way you're dogging me

Because I like pretty mama : better than any woman that I ever seen

Mmm : my baby's dogging me

I love that little old woman : better than any woman that I ever seen

      She's a Good Looking Mama

         Chicago, 10 May 1940

         (044992‑ ) BB‑B8545 Rt RL‑305

She's a good‑looking woman : teeth don't even shine like pearls

But that old good disposition that woman got : I do swear it will carry her all through the world

Now please don't never let your good girl : treat you like this here woman got me

She got me stone crazy about her : as a good‑looking woman can be

Now you know that I love you baby : and that's why we can't get along

But some day you're going to be sorry : that you ever did your daddy wrong

Now some day you're going to want me back : baby now now and you going to acknowledge that you did wrong

But it's going to be too late pretty mama : your daddy will be gone

Ooh : Lord Lord Lordy Lord

Sure I love you sweet mama : but I sure ain't going to be your dog

      Whiskey Head Man


         Chicago, 12 Dec. 1940

         (053736‑ ) BB‑B8760 RBF RF‑14

Now he's a whiskey‑headed man : and he stays drunk all the time

Just as sure if he don't stop drinking : I believe he's going to lose his mind

Now every time I see this man : he's at some whiskey joint

Trying to catch a big bet : so he can get him one more half a pint

Now every time I see this man : he's standing on the street

Laughing grinning talking : with most every man he meets

Now every time I see this man : he at some whiskey joint

Sniffing around the back door : begging one more half a pint

      New Sugar Mama

         Chicago, 12 Dec. 1940

         (053737‑ ) BB‑B8760 Rt RL‑305

Sugar mama sugar mama : won't you please come back to me

Bring me that granulated sugar : sugar mama to relieve my misery

Now my coffee's sweet in the morning : you know I'm crazy about [that, my] tea at night

Don't get my sugar three times a day : great Lord I don't feel right

Now you been bragging about your whiskey : now now you've been bragging all over town

The bootlegger won't sell enough sugar to make whiskey : don't even sell but about four or five pounds

Now sugar mama sugar mama : [won't you] please come [on] back to me

Bring me that granulated sugar : that all it take to ease my misery

Now sugar mama sugar mama : you know you been gone all day long

You been doing something with my sugar : ooo Lord now I know it was wrong

Now sugar mama sugar mama : now won't you please come on back to me

You know I don't like nothing but my sugar : and that's what it takes to ease my misery

      Down to Skin and Bones

         Chicago, 12 Dec. 1940

         (053738‑ ) BB‑B8725 Rt RL‑305

I say my little woman : got me down to skin and bone

She done got me to the place : I hate to see my baby leave home

Now she leave me every morning : she don't come home till night

She know I know she doing something : oh Lord but she know it ain't right

Don't think because I love you : I'm going to be your dog

I'll drink muddy water : and I'll lives in a hollow log

Mmm : gal I don't know why I should

Because you go with every man : mmm in anybody's neighborhood

      Katy Mae Blues

         Chicago, 12 Dec. 1940

         (053739‑1) BB‑B8689 Rt RL‑305

Katy Mae's a good‑looking woman now : but she stays out all night long


Katy Mae be doing something : oh Lord well you know is wrong

You know I love you Katy Mae : and that's why we can't get along

Some day you going to be sorry : that you ever done poor Tommy wrong

I give you all my loving : Katy Mae what more can a poor man do

You's a sweet little girl : but I swear you won't be true

Now how can I do right : now baby you won't do right yourself

Before you love me baby : you wants to love somebody else

Now Katy Mae she won't wash : now she won't starch [and iron] my clothes

Katy Mae won't do nothing : oh but walk the road

      Love with a Feeling

         Chicago, 12 Dec. 1940

         (053740‑1) BB‑B8689 Rt RL‑305

If you're going to have a woman : love her with a thrill

And if you don't love her : some other man will

Now no woman no woman : *ever but halfway stuffed*

Because when you turn her loose : be sure she got enough

Now you know 'Berta : you ain't doing me right

And when you come home : we'll go to fuss and fight

Mmm mama told me : papa started to cry

The way you got doing babe : won't take your life

      Drop Down Mama

         Chicago, 12 Dec. 1940

         (053741‑1) BB‑B8704 Rt RL‑305

Drop down mama : let daddy see

You got something : really worry me

Now my mama she don't allow me : stay out the whole night long

Because you may be a *model* : and you may be treated wrong

Now my baby got ways soon in the morning : just like a squirrel

Get up every morning : grabbing them *covers* on the world

Now when you get your women : and she act funny in every way

Just D B all right : she'll be home some day

I'm going to write you a letter soon in the morning : mail it in the air

You can tell by that : babe I got a somewhere

Now if you get you a woman : now now treat her nice in every way

Because when you get to Chicago : these women walking around here any day

      Black Minnie

         Chicago, 12 Dec. 1940

         (053742‑1) BB‑B8704 Rt RL‑305

Black Minnie Black Minnie : you know you ain't doing me right

But the day you quit me Black Minnie : I swear that's the day you die


Black Minnie you know I love you : and I love you for myself

And I'd rather be with you Black Minnie : than to be with anyone else

I give my money Black Minnie : and everything that you told me you need

And one time done come and caught me : baby with my B V Ds

Now Black Minnie Black Minnie : I'm going to take you one more time

And if you don't suit me : I'm going to try to *fade the line*

Black Minnie Black Minnie : what in the world are you trying to do

I believe trying to love me Black Minnie : and my partner too

Now Black Minnie Black Minnie : you know you don't mean me no good

Because you going with the man : that lives right above my neighborhood

Black Minnie Black Minnie : girl you stays in the dark

And your no‑good way : I ain't going to never give you my last dime

Black Minnie Black Minnie : I'm going to try you one more time

And if you don't do : I'm going to break your neck a‑trying

      Elsie Blues

         Chicago, 12 Dec. 1940

         (053743‑ ) BB‑B8725 Rt RL‑305

Elsie : is sweetest girl I know

If you didn't love me Elsie : why didn't you tell me so

Now I followed Elsie : right to the jumping‑off ground

But I never felt sorry : till they let my baby down

Now I followed my baby Lord : long days and long nights

I followed my baby : till I see she wasn't going to treat me right

You can misuse me here now now : but you can't when I go home

Elsie I got somebody there : will really make you leave me alone

Now I give you all my loving : Elsie what more can a poor man do

You a sweet little girl : Elsie but I swear you won't be true

Now you can't have me Elsie : now now and my partner too

Because your no‑good way baby : oh baby that won't do

Now I followed you to them dance now : and you jook jook all the time

You jook jook so : that I wouldn't pay you no mind

You if you don't quit jooking baby : that's going to be all right

If your good man don't see you : I'll try to see you tomorrow night

      Cross Cut Saw Blues

         Chicago, 15 Sept. 1941

         (064885‑ ) BB‑B8897 Rt RL‑305

Now I'm a crosscut saw : drive me across your log

Baby I cut your wood so easy : you can't help but say hot dog

They call me wood‑cutting Sam : call me wood‑cutting Bill

But the woman I did the wood‑cutting for : she wants me back again

I got a double‑bladed ax : and it sure cuts good


But try my crosscut saw : it's evil to the wood

Now look a‑here mama : you stay last night

Said ain't none of your business : you don't do me right

Now when you go to fishing : now don't forget the pole

You you's a good girl : but you ain't been out long

      You Can't Read My Mind

         Chicago, 15 Sept. 1941

         (064887‑ ) BB‑B8897 Rt RL‑305

I say my good‑looking woman : honey she lives up on that hill

She been trying to quit poor Tommy : oh Lord but I love her still

She walks the street [late at, every] night : she won't treat nobody right

Oh she drinks her moonshine whiskey : but me and her will make everything all right

I say if you quit Mr Butler : we will make everything all right

If I can't see you today : we may get together tomorrow night

Now you can read my letter : oh but you can't read my mind

Sometime you think I'm crazy about you : I'm liable to be quitting you all the time

Now that's all right babe : what you did [last, one] Sunday night

If I hadn't been in my whiskey too : it's liable to cause our fussing and fight

      Deep Blue Sea Blues

         Chicago, 15 Sept. 1941

         (064889‑ ) BB‑B9005 Rt RL‑313

I'm going babe I'm going : and crying won't make me stay

Because the more you cry now now baby : the further you drive me away

Now I wished that I was a bullfrog : swimming in the deep blue sea

Lord I would have all these good‑looking women now now now : fishing after me

Now I went to my baby's house : and I sat down on her steps

She said walk on in now now Tommy : my husband just now left

Now it ain't none of none of my business : babe but you know I know it ain't right

Hit your kid‑man all day long : and play sick on your husband at night

Now Lord oh Lord : baby hear me blow the blues

Don't got nobody now now now : give me my last pair of shoes

      I'm a Guitar King

         Chicago, 15 Sept. 1941

         (064890‑ ) BB‑B8957 RBF RF‑1

I'm a guitar king : singing the blues everywhere I go

I'm going to sing these blues : till I get back in territor'

Now my mama told me : son you most too old

Oh don't forget : you got a soul

But that ain't none of your business : keep it to yourself

Don't you tell your kid‑man : please don't tell nobody else


Now I went to my baby's house : knocked upon her door

She had the nerve to tell me : that she didn't want me no more

I say that's all right babe : [most any, any old] way you do

If you mistreat poor Tommy : I swear it's coming back home to you

It's a crying pity : lowdown dirty shame

Crazy about a married woman : afraid to call her name

      It's a Cryin' Pity

         Chicago, 15 Sept. 1941

         (064891‑ ) BB‑B9005 Rt RL‑305

It's a crying pity : a lowdown dirty shame

Crazy about a no‑good woman : scared to call her name

Now where were you babe : when I knocked upon your door

You hadn't never tell poor Tommy : that you couldn't use me no more

But that's all right babe : got to reap [just] what you sow

But don't forget that night : I knocked upon you door

Now I done some last winter : don't expect to do it no more

Quit the best woman I had : and I have drove her from my door

But forgive me baby : won't do wrong no more

You can get all my loving : but you got to let that black man go

Now I love you baby : I don't see why I should

Because you going with the man : that lives right in my neighborhood

      Mozelle Blues

         Chicago, 20 Feb. 1942

         (074100‑ ) BB‑B9015 Rt RL-314

Mozelle : why we can't get along

Because you know you always doing something : baby when you know it's wrong

Mozelle you know you been rambling : rambling all night long

Yeah I know you been doing something : yeah Mozelle well you know is wrong

Mozelle you know you [like, love] your whiskey : don't forget I [likes, love] mine too

But I'll get my whiskey so strong : I'll forget about you

Mozelle : I love you for myself

Every time I hear somebody speaking about you : I will beat you in the *B W O L*

      Mr. So and So Blues

         Chicago, 20 Feb. 1942

         (074102‑ ) BB‑B9015 Rt RL-314

Babe I feel so worried : yeah and I feel so low

Because I believe you been out : with Mr so‑and‑so

Now baby I ??? : please get out of my face

Because I got myself a brand new woman : yeah girl to take your place

Ooo babe : you know that sure ain't right


*You're off having a binge* : you don't come home at all at night

      Bluebird Blues

         Chicago, 20 Feb. 1942

         (074107‑ ) BB‑B9037 RCA LPV‑518

Bluebird bluebird : please fly down south for me

If you don't find me on the M and O : you'll find me somewhere on that Santa Fe

Bluebird when you get in Jackson : don't tell nobody I'm home

Tell them I'm going back to Kansas City : that's where poor Tommy belong

Oh babe : you is on my mind

I hope to see you some of these days : you know I sure ain't lying

Now bluebird you get to Jackson : out on China Street

Tell them Tommy's too bad : go away girl you know I got the blues about me

Oh babe : please your Tommy be all right

If I can't see you today : it'll be all right tomorrow night

               McClintock, Lil

      Furniture Man

         Atlanta, 4 Dec. 1930

         (151016‑2) Co‑14575‑D Rt RL‑318

Well a‑this piano : and everything

Mr Cooper had it written down : under my name

               McClure, Matthew

      Prisoner's Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 22 Sept. 1932

         (18798) Ch‑18514 Riv RM‑8819

Did you ever get in trouble : and they take you down to jail

You didn't have a friend : to come and go your bail

When you got a lot of money: you've got friends for miles around

But any time that you're broke : your good friends they can't be found

When I lost all my money : no one would loan me a dime

I could hear them all saying : he ain't no friend of mine

It's tough when you're broke friends : you can't even get a dime

If you even go a‑begging : everyone will turn you down

I'm going back to prison : don't know what else to do

That's the only thing I know : to cure a prisoner's blues

               McCoy, Charlie

      Last Time Blues

         Memphis, c. 22 Sept. 1929

         (M‑176‑ ) Br‑7141 Yz L‑1001

Babe just as sure as a blackbird : flies in the skies above

Bet your life ain't worth living babe : if you ain't with the one you love

My baby tried to do me : like the tadpole do the trout

That's getting me out in the deep water baby : then she walks on out


Mmm good Lordy : send me an angel down

Son I can't spare you no angel : but I'll send you a teasing brown

I don't think : no woman in this whole round world do right

If they be good all day : they will do wrong at night

Baby you know it may be my last time : rider you sure don't know

It may be my last time baby : knocking on your door

      That Lonesome Train Took My Baby Away

         Jackson, Miss., 15 Dec. 1930

         (404726‑A) OK‑8863 RBF RF‑14

Woke up this morning : found something wrong

My loving babe : had caught that train and gone

Now won't you starch my jumper : iron my overalls

I'm going to ride that train : that they call the Cannonball

Mr depot agent : close your depot down

The woman I'm loving : she's fixing to blow this town

Now that mean old fireman : that cruel old engineer

Going to take my baby : and leave me lonesome here

It ain't no telling : what that train won't do

It'll take your baby : and run right over you

Now that engineer man : ought to be ashamed of himself

Take women from their husbands : babies from their mother's breast

I walked down the track : when the stars refused to shine

Looked like every minute : I was going to lose my mind

Now my knees was weak : my footsteps was all I heard

Looked like every minute : I was stepping in another world

               McCoy, Joe

      That Will Be Alright

         New York, 18 June 1929

         (148708‑3) Co‑14439‑D Yz L‑1021

Well look here mama : see what you done done

Took all my money : put me on a bum

??? : go to your knees

Try and bum jelly : to who you please

Going to buy me a dog : tired and old

Keep these men : from my jellyroll

I'm crazy about your loving : don't see why she can

Saw them going : with another man

Now you talk about jelly : you ought to see mine

Sharing her jelly : all over town

I had a good *cake* : *now sweet as mama's shelf*

*Now she gone to town : with somebody else*

I'm going to build me a house : out on the sea


So these women : come see poor me

Me and my brother : went around the bend

Heard my gal : putting *cider* in

      Goin' Back to Texas

         New York, 18 June 1929

         (148709‑2) Co‑14455‑D OJL‑21

Oh mercy dear : you caused my heart

It really is wrong : that we must part

You learned I love you : *mores* all the rest

Your leaving me : breaks my happiness

I'll count the hours : lover when I'm gone

Think of you : wish you back home

My lonesome heart : will shake with fear

The very hour : I call your name

Every hour :

Not at ease : with anyone else

I'll *haunt the line* : for you I know

I'm asking you dear : please don't go

Oh honey babe : mama *ray*

*Glory be* : I see that thing

      When the Levee Breaks

         New York, 18 June 1929

         (148711‑1) Co‑14439‑D BC‑1

If it keeps on raining : levee's going to break

And the water going to come : and we'll have no place to stay

Well all last night : I sat on the levee and moaned

Thinking about my baby : and my happy home

If it keeps on raining : levee's going to break

And all these people : have no place to stay

Now look here mama : what am I to do

I ain't got nobody : tell my troubles to

I worked on the levee : mama both night and day

I ain't got nobody : to keep the water away

On crying won't help you : praying won't do no good

When the levee break : mom you got to move

I worked on the levee : mama both night and day

When the levee break : mom you got to move

I worked on the levee : mama both night and day

Say worked so hard : keep the water away

I had a woman : she wouldn't do for me


I'm going back : to my used‑to‑be

Old mean old levee : cause me to weep and moan

Cause me to leave my baby : and my happy home

      I'm Wild About My Stuff

         Chicago, c. early June 1930

         (C‑5820‑A) Vo‑1570 His HLP‑32

All of my chicken : is dressed mighty fine

Can't get my chicken : take dressing from mine

Went to the henhouse : looked on the roof

Looking for my stuff : but it was no use

Take a boa constrictor : and a lemon stick

Wouldn't mind going : but my mama's sick

You can toot your whistle : you can ring your bell

Know you been waddling : by the way you smell

Good stuff good stuff : is hard to find

Kill my daddy : run my mama blind

Now I'm going girls : don't flirt after me

Got good stuff : and it's all I need

Listen boys : don't mean no harm

Go ahead on : let my stuff alone

Now somebody ask you : who sung this song

Kansas Joe : been here and gone

      My Mary Blues

         Chicago, c. early June 1930

         (C‑5830‑ ) Vo‑1576 Pal PL‑101

Early one morning : *my mind*

Was thinking about my Mary : didn't have no place to stay

Now tell me Mary : where did you stay last night

Come home this morning : the sun was shining bright

I met my Mary : way across the sea

She wouldn't write me no letter : she didn't care for me

You see my Mary : tell her to hurry home

Haven't been long loving : honey since you been gone

I love my Mary : tell the whole round world I do

I want some real good loving : why don't your heart be true

Goodbye Mary : goodbye and it's fare you well

That's when I get back home : can't anyone tell

      Cherry Ball Blues

         Chicago, c. mid June 1930

         (C‑5864‑A) Vo‑1535 Pal PL‑101


Ain't going to give you : no more cherry ball

Well you might get mad now : show your Santa Claus

Rocks and gravel : ??? road

Takes a get‑along woman : satisfy my soul

See you dead now : in some cedar grove

Than to see some man now : bothering with your clothes

Ain't no driver : but the driver's son

I can do your driving : till that driver comes

      Botherin' that Thing

         Chicago, c. mid June 1930

         (C‑5865‑A) Vo‑1570 His HLP‑32

I went to my window : my window was *cracked*

Went to my door : my door was locked

Old lady diamond : setting on a rock

Raising her hand : trying to *change* that knot

My old lady : ought to be ashamed

She kept the watch : and give me the change

Mama got the washboard : papa got the tub

Brother got mad : because they wouldn't let him rub

Drive up to the station : to catch that train

Got there too late : from bothering that thing

Went to the doctor : the doctor said

Bothering that thing : is going to kill you dead

      Pile Drivin' Blues

         Chicago, c. 14 July 1930

         (C‑6012‑ ) Vo‑1612 Yz L‑1002

Drove so many piles : my hammer's all worn out

That's when I do my driving : they began to jump and shout

Want all you people : just to understand

That's when I do my driving : drive just like a man

When I was young : driving was my crave

You drove me so hard : drove me to my grave

Get you a hammer : you can drive all the time

You have broke my hammer : my hammer's out of line

      I Called You This Morning

         Chicago, c. 14 July 1930

         (C‑6013‑ ) Vo‑1631 BC‑13

I called you this morning : about half past one

Told me : that you just got on

I called you this morning : about half past two


Told me : that you just got through

I called you this morning : about half past three

Told me : that you couldn't use me

I called you this morning : about half past four

Told me : that you didn't want me no more

I called you this morning : about half past five

You turned over : cried like a child

I called you this morning : about half past six

You told me : that it was out of fix

      Beat It Right

         Chicago, c. 31 Jan. 1931

         (C‑7246‑ ) Vo‑1643 Pal PL‑101

Some got both queens : some got both kings

I got both aces : I know I got the best hand

Oh I can beat it : I can beat it tonight

I can beat it baby : got something to beat it right

Now it's dark and cloudy : don't need no light

You want me to beat it : you got to move it just right

Oh I can beat it : I can beat it tonight

I can beat it baby : got something to beat it with

Now listen girl : don't be afraid

I hits every nail : right on the head

Now the men don't like me : because I speak my mind

The women like me : because I can beat it all the time

Now all you women : love to fuss and fight

Come on around : now let us beat it up tight

Now listen folks : don't mean no harm

I got to go : and beat my way back home

Well I went to the doctor : to get me a piece of advice

Keep on beating it : it's going to take your life

      Preachers Blues

         Chicago, c. 31 Jan. 1931

         (C‑7247‑ ) Vo‑1643 BC‑13

Some folks say : a preacher won't steal

I caught three : in my cornfield

One had a yellow : one had a brown

Looked over by the mill : one was getting down

Now some folks say : that a preacher won't steal

But he will do more stealing : than I can get regular meals

I went to my house : about half past ten

Looked on my bed : where the preacher had been


He will eat your chicken : he will eat your pie

He will lead your wife out : on the sly

I been trying so hard : trying to save my life

To keep that preacher : from my wife

I went out last night : came in late

I found out : where he had made his date

I done told you once : done told you twice

??? over that preacher : you be done lost your wife

      Shake Mattie

         Chicago, c. Feb. 1931

         (VO‑109‑A) Vo‑1668 Mam S‑3803

Shake shake Mattie : shake rattle and roll

I can't get enough now : satisfy my soul

Old shaking Mattie : meat shake on the bone

Every time she shakes them : poor man's dollar gone

Old shaking Mattie : and shaking Sue

I can't get by now : at the way they do

Old *gate‑foot* Mattie : and *gate‑foot bright*

They meets at the levee : every Saturday night

Well the bell rung for *dinner* : as I been *bad*

If you ask her about it : have to reckon with her man

Yonder come old Mattie : with a paper in her hand

Going to the sergeant : trying to free her man

Yonder come old Mattie : how in the world you know

I know old Mattie : by the dress she wore

      My Wash Woman's Gone

         Chicago, c. Feb. 1931

         (VO‑110‑A) Vo‑1668 Yz L‑1026

My baby's *deaf‑toweled* : can't hardly hear

Such fussing and fighting : this whole round year

Now my baby's gone : left my clothes in the tub

I ain't got no washwoman : *mean* nobody can rub

I got up this morning : said my morning prayers

Didn't have nobody : to speak in my behalf

I got an old tub now : so deep and wide

Keep me rubbing : from side to side

Well I got an old lady now : wash mighty clean

When she go to rub : she rub so mean

I feel like falling down : on bended knees

Cried Lord have mercy : if you please

      Joliet Bound

         New York, 3 Feb. 1932

         (11220‑A) Vo‑1686 Yz L‑1021

Now those police coming : with his ball and chain

And they accusing me of murder : never harmed a man

Now some got six months : some got one solid year

Now me and my buddy : got a lifetime here

Now the judge he pleaded : clerk he wrote it down

Now I hear my last jail sentence now : must be Joliet bound

Now cook my supper : let me go to bed

I've been drinking white lightning : and it's gone to my head

Now go and hurt me baby : do anything you want to do

Some day you going to want it : and then I won't want you

Now those police shifted : those pistol in my side

Now if you run big boy now : ??? bound to die

When they had my trial : you could not be found

Now I done got on that dock : and I'm Joliet bound

      Someday I'll Be in the Clay

         Chicago, 13 Aug. 1932

         (C‑9290) De‑7008 Rt RL‑329

I dropped my baby off : among my friends

First thing I know : she done had turned me in

But some day : I'll be in the clay

And I won't be long here : to be treated this a‑way

When I was a man : I tried to prove a friend

First thing I know : you had four or five men

There come a time : I can't say no more

I'll be a‑hearsing : out my door

But when I'm gone : don't cry over me

Just think about : your used‑to‑be

Now I can't stay : but fare you well

If I ain't gone to heaven : you know I gone to hell

      Evil Devil Woman Blues

         Chicago, 16 Aug. 1934

         (C‑9299‑A) De‑7822 BC‑5

I'd rather be the devil : be that woman's man

Because she was evil : wouldn't work hand in hand

On she's all right now : she's all right with me

But the devil is evil : evil as he can be

I tried : to be nice and kind

Oh she was evil : would not change her mind


I'll cut your wood baby : and I'll build your fire

I'll bring you water : through that muddy bayou

I'll give my money : to buy your shoes and clothes

But you was evil : throwed me out‑of‑doors

But that's all right baby : it's coming home to you

I tried to be : tried to be a man to you

      Going Back Home

         Chicago, 16 Aug. 1934

         (C‑9300‑A) De‑7087 Yz L‑1007

Lord wonder : will I ever get back home

Crying how long : you going to keep me away from home

I walked and I wandered : crying the whole night long

Crying wonder : will I ever get back home

I went to the station : looked up on the board

Crying is it possible : will I ever get back home

So long I traveled : the *way side and more*

Crying wonder : will I ever get back home

You may never never : see me anymore

But you will never forget the day : I knocked upon your door

      You Got to Move‑Part 1

         Chicago, 24 Aug. 1934

         (C‑9380‑ ) De‑7038 BC‑1

Say little girl : can I spend the night

Wife and I : just had a fight

I've got to move : out of the neighborhood

For the woman I love : don't mean me no good

Babe it ain't no use : you talking about no money tonight

Pay for everything : tomorrow night

If you can take it baby : it'll be all right

Pay you off : right here tonight

When I had her : she lived on Easy Street

Now she's begging : every man she meets

      Something Gonna Happen to You

         Chicago, 1 Nov. 1935

         (96262‑ ) BB‑B6260 Yz L‑1021

I'm going to ask my buddy now : how come he shares

Going to fool around :

Crying something bad now : sure is going to happen to you

That's when I done everything : that a poor boy could do

I'm have bought me a pistol : shotgun and some shells


Start some stuff : to show them raise some hell

Yes you talked about me : all through the neighborhood

Told everybody : that I was no good

Yes you called on the old law : and he brought his ball and chain

Accused me of murder : I never harmed a man

Yes my mother she told me : my daddy sat down and he cried

Some day son : you got to lay down and die

There'll be one of these mornings : you going to jump and shout

Open the jailhouse door : and you come walking out

I used to have so many women : I didn't know what Lord

Used to gang around me : like the ants on a bug

      Oh Red

         Chicago, 18 Apr. 1936

         (90691‑A) De‑7182 AH‑77

Oh Red : wish you were dead

I'm sick and tired : rubbing my baby's head

Oh Red : what you going to do

I'm sick and tired : chastizing you

Oh Red : baby's in jail

She ain't got nobody : come and go her bail

Oh Red : she's outdoors

She ain't got nowhere : carry her dirty clothes

Oh Red : she's all right

And we ain't going to fuss : and we ain't going to fight

Oh Red : all over now

You didn't have no right : raise no hell nohow

      What You Gonna Do

         Chicago, 2 July 1936

         (90782‑A) De‑7205 AH‑77

What you going to do : when they put you in jail again

Do like I would do : get out if you can

What you going to do : when they put you outdoors again

Do like I would do : get back if you can

What you going to do : when you lose your money again

Do like I would do : win it back if you can

What you going to do : when you lose your baby again

Do like I would do : win her back if you can

What you going to do : when she put the dog on you

Do like I would do : get loose if you can

What you going to do : when she close the door in your face

Do like I would do : open it if you can


      Southern Blues

         Chicago, 2 Oct. 1936

         (90913‑A) De‑7229 AH‑77

Blues jumped the monkey : and run him for a solid mile

And the poor fellow lie down : cried like a natural child

Blues is something : I just can't understand

And when they gets on me : talk like a natural man

      The Garbage Man

         Chicago, 2 Oct. 1936

         (90914‑A) De‑7229 AH‑77

Stick out your can : here comes the garbage man

Ain't nobody : stick it out like you can

      My Daddy Was a Movin' Man

         Chicago, 22 Oct. 1936

         (90949‑A) De‑7251 AH‑77

I want to do : like my daddy done

He loved women : from sun to sun

My daddy : was a loving man

And he make them like it : everywhere he land

When he start to loving : they cry for more

Even laid the woman : lived next door

Had twenty women : that I know

Each one told me : he sure could go

The only thing : he didn't do good

Was make his women : lay it on wood

      We Gonna Pitch a Boogie Woogie

         Chicago, 13 Nov. 1936

         (90982‑A) De‑7326 AH‑77

We drinking whiskey : champagne and wine

Want you to know : your woman from mine

We're going to pitch boogie‑woogie : going to have a ball tonight

And we ain't going to fuss : and we ain't going to fight

That's your woman : pin her to your side

She flag my train : I'm going to give her a ride

Everybody's talking : know what it's all about

Your man started some stuff : we're going to put him out

I'm taking one : to ninety‑nine

Don't be careful : you're liable to lose your mind

Ain't no use : your gal being afraid


He'll pay you off : if you use your head

Pull your dresses : above your knees

Sell your stuff : to who you please

      Hallelujah Joe Ain't Preachin' No More

         Chicago, 14 Jan. 1937

         (91074‑A) De‑7299 AH‑77

Everybody thought : he was through

And he made a little song : about what you going to do

All the sisters and brothers thought : he was dead

Then he wrote a little song : by the name of Oh Red

He made a little trip : down to New Orleans

And he wrote that song : weed‑smoker's dreams

Everybody knew : his preaching was grand

Then he wrote another blues : about move your hand

               McCoy, Robert Lee

      Tough Luck

         Aurora, Ill., 5 May 1937

         (07655‑1) BB‑B7115 Rt RL‑321

Now got in tough luck : all my people dead and gone

And I haven't got any money : no place to call my home

When a man gets in tough luck : nobody wants him around

If he haven't got any money : there is no friend to be found

When a man got lots of money : he'll have friend at every house

But if he haven't got any money : he'll be treated like a cat with a mouse

Now when I got in tough luck : my pigmeat didn't treat me right

But why should I worry about the pigmeat : sleeping with an old hog every night

So when I get out of this tough luck : I'm going to leave your home

Because you treats me mean : you know you done me wrong

      Friar's Point Blues

         Chicago, 5 June 1940

         (93037‑A) De‑7819 Rt RL‑319

Babe I know that you love me : you won't treat me right

If you do good in the day : you'll go and do wrong at night

Still I ain't going to worry : and I ain't going to raise no sand

I'm going back to Friar's Point : down in sweet old Dixieland

You can love me in the morning : you can love me late at night

You don't have to worry : I'm going to treat you right

Still I ain't going to worry : and I ain't going to raise no sand

Yes I'm going away : way down in Dixieland

Every time you kiss me : you make my love come down

Sometimes I believe : you the sweetest girl in town


Still I ain't going to worry : and I ain't going to raise no sand

Yes I'm going to leave you : going down to Dixieland

Babe I know you love me : you won't treat me right

All you want to do : is fuss and fight

               McCoy, William

      Central Tracks Blues

         Dallas, 8 Dec. 1928

         (147611‑1) Co‑14453‑D Yz L‑1018

Mmm : what's the matter now

Well you're trying to quit your daddy mama : and you don't know how

If you don't want me : hey [please] don't dog me around

Oh just hand me my suitcase : I'll leave your Dallas town

               McFadden, Charlie Specks

      People People Blues

         Grafton, Wis., c. Feb. 1930

         (L‑154‑1) Pm‑12928 Riv RM‑8819

People people : you don't know my mind

I'm sitting here thinking : about the girls that I left behind

Blues and trouble : have been my best friends

When my blues leave me : my trouble just begins

Blues come down the alley : backing up to my door

I've got the blues today : like I never had before

Take me back mama : you know that I have been true

??? *me* ??? : is the same thing that I've done for you

Left my baby : standing in the back door crying

You got a home : just as long as I've got mine

      Groceries on the Shelf

         Grafton, Wis., c. Feb. 1930

         (L‑155‑1) Pm‑12928 Riv RM‑8819

My name is Piggly Wiggly : I've got groceries on my shelf

Getting mighty tired : making these nights all by myself

My mama told me : my papa told me too

Don't let these Cadillac women : make no flat tire out of you

If I had a‑listened : to what my mama said

Wouldn't have had such a hard time : in this world today

I don't want no woman : wants to rove these streets night and day

A woman like that : always wants to have her way

I'm leaving you now mama : baby baby bye bye

Going to miss your daddy : cuddling by your cozy side

               MacFarland, Barrel House Buck

      I Got to Go Blues

         Chicago, 20 Aug. 1934


         (C‑9321‑ ) De‑7013 OJL‑20

I got to go : got to leave my baby be

And I love my woman : but my woman do not care for me

Baby : baby what more can I do

I done everything : cannot get along with you

Oh yes : babe oh yes oh yes I know

You don't want me woman : do like a *Mrs so‑and‑so*

My God : babe my God my God my God

I've got enough of you woman : I won't want to be your dog

Nero : make me a soldier with a cross

My babe quit me : then I know my soul is lost

Baby : baby why don't you answer me

I been a ??? fellow : babe I don't intend to be

Sometime : my woman too sweet to die

And again I believe : ought to be buried alive

Oh : babe it hurts me to my heart

But the Good Book says : that the best of friends must part

Because I'm black : I was born black 'fore my birth

And the women do tell me : I'm the sweetest black man on earth

And : baby what's the matter now

I'll always remember : you don't mean me no good nohow

Oh : baby what's the matter you

You worry me woman : babe I don't know what to do

               Mack, Alura

      West End Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 1 Mar. 1929

         (14847) Ge‑6813 His HLP‑4

I've got that *mainliner* feeling ooo : I'm full of gin

I'm on my way to the West End : and that's where the trouble will begin

Want to see some shooting : like there never has been before

I mean my man and my best friend : will never see the West End anymore

      Wicked Daddy Blues

         Richmond, Ind., 1 Mar. 1929

         (14848) Ge‑6797 His HLP‑4

I feel awfully : sad and blue

Won't somebody : please tell me what to do

My daddy left me : other day

Couldn't be surprised : I was a poison snake

Wicked daddy : I'll no longer be your slave

Wicked daddy : now I'm going to put you in your grave

I loved your pigmeat : so nice and so sweet

And your loving ways : brother was hard to beat


Now wicked daddy : you treat your mama cruel and rough

I ain't *your rough* : and I sure know when I've had enough

Oh wicked daddy : get out of my life

Because you won't *smother* me : another night

All of these mornings : how my poor heart aches

Wicked daddy all you do : is take and take

               McMullen, Fred

      Wait and Listen

         New York, 16 Jan. 1933

         (12913‑1) Ba‑32690 Yz L‑1012

Well you can't wait and listen : hear me when I cry

When you hear me crying : know there's something wrong

Well you can't wait and listen : *yeah there Willie Mae*

*When it's through* baby : *something* churches tone

Well he dug her grave : with a long‑handled silver spade

Well he let her down : with a great long leather line

Well I followed my baby : to the burying ground

What make it so sad eee baby : had done let her down

Mmm smoke like lightning : church bells shine like gold

*But with searching* I cry mama : see my baby laying on the bed

      De Kalb Chain Blues

         New York, 18 Jan. 1933

         (12936‑ ) Ba‑32784 BC‑5

And I'll tell all you people : that ain't no place to go

Where they treat you cruel : dog you from morning till night

Well they beat me and they search me : forty‑five in my side

??? : mama working all day long

Take these rings and chains : from all around my legs

Well I believe to the Lord : these going to kill me dead

               Macon, Ed

      Wringing that Thing

         Atlanta, 12 Mar. 1929

         (402289‑A) OK‑8676 Mel MLP‑7324

Now listen here folks : we don't mean no harm

Don't get mad : we going to sing a little song

There was a little black rooster : met a little brown hen

Made a date at the barn : about half past ten

I had a little woman : lived out Peach Tree Road

Made more money : than John Henry Ford

And the rooster crowed : and the hen looked around

The bum‑bum‑biddly : going to carry you to town

Now mama had a little dog : name was Ball


Give him a lick : and he want it all

Old Bill came in : about half past ten

Key in the hole : but he couldn't get in

Aunt Jane and Uncle Bud :

??? :

If you see my girl : hurry home

Had no breakfast : she been gone

               McPhail, Black Bottom

      Down in Black Bottom

         New York, 17 Mar. 1932

         (11512‑A) Vo‑1721 Yz L‑1019

Now down in Black Bottom : that is so they say

They drink good moonshine : and stay drunk all day

Yes I went down in Black Bottom : I didn't go to stay down there long

Police brought me out : by my right arm

Now go down in Black Bottom : and you don't know the rules

Black Bottom women : will try to make a fool out of you

I'm crazy about Black Bottom : mmm so they say

That's where they drink good moonshine : and stay drunk all day

If you go down in Black Bottom : put your money in your shoes

Don't them Black Bottom women : will give your pop the blues

Now if you go down in Black Bottom : put your money down in your britches

For them womens going to rob you : now you dirty mmm bitches

Now if anybody asks you : who composed this song

Tell them the Black Bottom Buddy : done been here and gone

      My Dream Blues

         New York, 17 Mar. 1932

         (11513‑A) Vo‑1690 Yz L‑1019

I'm going to tell all you people : my dream I had one week ago

I dreamed my baby was leaving me : and I was begging her please don't go

But whensoever you have a dream : always take you dream the other way

For now I've been mistreated : and I'm leaving town this very day

I'd rather be up on a mountain : or down in the deep blue sea

Than to be right here baby : treated like you treat poor me

Lord I cried last night : and I cried the night before

But there's one thing I hope : I won't have to cry no more

Now if you don't want me baby : why don't you tell me so

Then I can sleep at night : and won't have to dream no more

      Whiskey Man Blues

         New York, 17 Mar. 1932

         (11514‑A) Vo‑1721 Yz L‑1019


Well I drink so much whiskey : till they call me whiskey man

Lord I get drunk every morning : with a whiskey bottle in my hand

Lord my baby treats me mean : she keeps me worried all the time

And if I didn't drink my whiskey : I believe I would lose my mind

When I drink my whiskey : I don't mistreat my friend

I am sober now : but I'm going to get drunk again

Lord whiskey whiskey : it don't mean me no good

And I would stop drinking whiskey : baby if I only could

Lord Lord : whiskey is killing me

And why I can't stop drinking whiskey : Lord Lord I just can't see

My baby put me out : I'm just going from hand to hand

And I drink so much whiskey : till they call me whiskey man

               McTell, Blind Willie

      Writin' Paper Blues

         Atlanta, 18 Oct. 1927

         (40308‑1) Vi‑21474 Yz L‑1005

I wrote you a letter mama : put it in your front yard

I would love to come to see you : but your good mens got me barred

Oh you wrote me a letter : to come back to Newport News

To leave the town : and don't spread the news

I wrote you a letter mama : sent you a telegram

Not to meet me in Memphis : but meet me in Birmingham

Mmm : hear my weep and moan

Now don't you hear me pleading : hear my grieve and groan

Now if I could get me : one more drink of booze

I guess it would ease : these old writing paper blues

I caught a freight train special : and my mama caught a passenger behind

Because you can't quit me papa : there's no need in trying

      Stole Rider Blues

         Atlanta, 18 Oct. 1927

         (40309‑2) Vi‑21124 Yz L‑1037

I'm going to grab me a train : ride the lonesome rail

Liquor stole my baby: she's in the lonesome jail

He took my mama : ??? her to the town of *Rome*

Now she's screaming and crying : papa let your mama come back home

I stole my good gal : from my bosom friend

That fool got lucky : he stoled her back again

That little woman I love : got a mouth chock full of good gold

Every time you hug and kiss me : it make my blood run cold

When you see two women : running hand in hand

Bet you my last dollar : one done stole the other one's man

I'm leaving town : please don't spread the news


That why : I've got these old stole rider blues

      Mama, 'Tain't Long Fo' Day

         Atlanta, 18 Oct. 1927

         (40310‑1) Vi‑21474 Yz L‑1005

Wake up mama : don't you sleep so hard

For these old blues : walking all over your yard

I've got these blues : means I'm not satisfied

That's the reason why : I stole away and cried

Blues grabbed me at midnight : didn't turn me loose till day

I didn't have no mama : drive these blues away

The big star falling : mama it ain't long 'fore day

Maybe : the sunshine'll drive these blues away

      Mr. McTell Got the Blues

         Atlanta, 18 Oct. 1927

         (40311‑?) Vi unissued RCA  INT‑1175

I'm leaving town : baby going to leave my home

I'm going : where honey I'm better known

I walk these blocks : I got to buy me some shoes

That's the reason why : Mr McTell got the blues

Got drunk last night : mama and the night before

And if luck don't change : Mr McTell won't get drunk no more

Cigarettes is my ruin : whiskey is my crave

Some of these nice‑looking women : going to take me to my grave

      Three Women Blues

         Atlanta, 17 Oct. 1928

         (47185‑2) Vi‑V38001 Yz L‑1005

Got three womens : yellow brown and black

It'll take the Governor of Georgia : to judge one of these women I like

One for in the morning : one for late at night

I got one for noontime : to treat your old daddy right

These blues at midnight : they don't leave me till day

I didn't have none of my three women : to drive those blues away

One is a Memphis yellow : the other is a Savannah brown

One is a Statesboro darkskin : she'll really turn your damper down

Now if I had a‑listened : to what my three women said

I'd a‑been home sleeping : in a doggone feather bed

      Statesboro Blues

         Atlanta, 17 Oct. 1928


         (47187‑3) Vi‑V38001 Yz L‑1005

Wake up mama : turn your lamp down low

Have you got the nerve : to drive papa McTell from your door

My mother died and left me reckless : my daddy died and left me wild wild wild

Know I'm not good‑looking : but I'm some sweet woman's angel child

She's a mighty mean woman : do me this a‑way

When I leave this time : pretty mama I'm going away to stay

I once loved a woman : better than even I'd ever seen

Treated me like I was a doggone king : and she was a doggone queen

Going up the country : mama don't you want to go

May take me a fair brown : may take one or two more

Big Eighty left Savannah : Lord it did not stop

You ought to see that colored fireman : when he got them boiler hot

You can reach over in the corner mama : and hand me my traveling shoes

You know by that : I've got them Statesboro blues

We woke up this morning : we had them Statesboro blues

I looked over in the corner : grandma and grandpa had them too

      Atlanta Strut

         Atlanta, 30 Oct. 1929

         (149299‑2) Co‑14657‑D Yz L‑1037

Went up on Kinnesaw Mountain : gave my horn a blow

Prettiest girl in Atlanta : come stepping up to my door

Hug me and she kissed me : called me sugar lump

Throwed them sweet arms around me : like a grape vine around a stump

      Travelin' Blues

         Atlanta, 30 Oct. 1929

         (149300‑1) Co‑14484‑D Yz L‑1005

Mr engineer : let a [poor] man ride the blind

Said I wouldn't mind it fellow : but you know this train ain't mine

You's a cruel fireman : lowdown engineer

I'm trying to hobo my way : and you leave me standing here

Get up fellow : ride all around the world

Poor boy : you ain't got no girl

I love you Emery : I love you true

I love you Emerald : tell the world I do

      Come On Around to My House Mama

         Atlanta, 30 Oct. 1929

         (149302‑2) Co‑14484‑D Rt RL‑324

Come on around to my house mama : ain't nobody there but me

Call me a hot‑shot liar and a cheater : because I'm from Tennessee


Take it easy : don't get rough

Just want to tell you : that I knows my stuff

Come on around to my house mama : ain't nobody there but me

That's why you hear me [screaming and crying, moaning] : going back to Tennessee

Can't read and write : can't spell my name

I can really drive : your man's heart insane

I love my corn : and I love my booze

I'll really give : your man the blues

Pull down your windows : and lock up your blinds

I'll tell you something : that will change your mind

Went to the door : door was locked

Think my baby : done changed the lock

Wake up in the morning : about half past three

Think my baby : done quit poor me

      Kind Mama

         Atlanta, 31 Oct. 1929

         (149319‑2) Co‑14657‑D Yz L‑1037

She's a real kind mama : looking for another man

She ain't got nobody [in town] : [here] to hold her hand

Way down yonder : on Cripple Creek

Men all grow : over sixteen feet

Would go to bed : but it ain't no use

They pile up on the bed : like chickens on a roost

Rooster chewed tobacco : and the hen did the snuff

Bet he can't shimmy : but he struts his stuff

See that fellow : with that derby on

Looks good to me : just as sure as you're born

Tell you the truth : and it's a natural fact

*Could've built a road* : without being that black

See that fellow : that's standing right there

He don't live here : but he lives somewhere

*Got a batch of* hair : right around his mouth

He like he swallowed a mule : and left his tail hanging out

Wake up in the morning : at half past three

Think pretty mama : done fell on me

Soon in the morning : at half past four

Hot‑shot rider : rapping at her door

Went to the door : and the door was locked

Think my baby : trying to eagle rock

      Drive Away Blues

         Atlanta, 26 Nov. 1929


         (56599‑1) Vi‑V38580 Yz L‑1005

I believe that if I had my sweet woman's heart : in my hand in my hand

I believe I could teach her : how to treat a real good man

I drink so much whiskey : I can't hardly talk

Well it's done addled on my brain : people I can't hardly walk

How my poor heart weeped and worried : baby when you drove me away

It was crying for poor boy McTell : some old rainy day

Climbing on the Lookout Mountain : look dived in Niagara Falls

Seem like to me : I can hear my Atlanta mama call

Don't [fret, grieve] and worry : and don't [grieve, fret] after me

Don't you scream and cry : because I'm going back to Tennessee

Can't read and write : can't even spell my name

You drove me away : and drove my heart insane

      Love‑Changing Blues

         Atlanta, 29 Nov. 1929

         (56635‑1) Vi‑V38580 Yz L‑1005

My love don't change : there's going to be some stealing done

And if I backbite you : I don't mean no harm

What do you want with a woman : when she won't do nothing she say

What do you want with a rooster : when he won't crow 'fore day

If my love don't change : there's going to be some riding done

And if I take you woman : I just be made my run

Going in one of these alleys : get me [some lonesome, a quart of this] booze

My woman done left me : I got these love‑changing blues

      Talking to Myself

         Atlanta, 17 Apr. 1930

         (150257‑2) Co‑14551‑D Yz L‑1005

Good Lord good Lord : send me an angel down

Can't spare you no angel : but I'll swear I'll send you a teasing brown

That new way of loving : mama it must be best

These here Georgia women : just won't let Mr Samuel rest

There was a crowd out on the corner : wondered who could it be

It weren't a thing : but the women trying to get to me

I even went down to the depot : with my suitcase in my hand

Crowd of womens all crying : Mr Samuel won't you be my man

My mama she told me : when I was a boy playing mumblepeg

Don't drink no black cow's milk : don't you eat no black hen's eggs

Black man give you a dollar : mama he won't think it nothing strange

A yellow man'll give you a dollar : but he'll want back ninety‑five cents change

You may call me a cheater : pretty boy I'll real treat you

But if you'll allow me a chance : I'll gnaw your backbone half in two


I took a trip out on the ocean : walked the sand of the deep blue sea

I found a crab with a shrimp : trying to do the shimmy‑shee

I want to tell you something mama : seem mighty doggone strange

You done mess around gal : and made me break my yo‑yo string

Honey I ain't going to be : your old work ox no more

You done mess around baby : and let your doggone ox get poor

My mama she got a mojo : believe she trying to keep it hid

Papa Samuel got something : to find that mojo with

I even heard a rumbling : deep down in the ground

It weren't a thing : but the women trying to run me down

      Razor Ball

         Atlanta, 17 Apr. 1930

         (150258‑2) Co‑14551‑D Yz L‑1037

Down in Atlanta at the razor ball : even at the razor ball

Sluefoot Mose and cross‑eyed Joe : didn't go in at all

Big crap game in the hall : started in to fight

Joe got drunk that wasn't all : went and turn out the lights

And that *matcher* Charlie : shot his automatic twins

Charlie grabbed his girl : and he *crow forked* in

Playing baseball and football : and don't get enough

Playing baseball and football : and strutting the stuff

Mighty big chief : shot his automatic twin

The high sheriff took the couple : and double‑cross ten

Put you lights on calico : and fight it for game

Put me at the head of the list : and don't forget to call my name

      Southern Can Is Mine

         Atlanta, 23 Oct. 1931

         (151904‑1) Co‑14632‑D Yz L‑1005

Now look here mama : let me tell you this

Now if you wants to get crooked : I'm going to give you my fist

You might read from Revelation : back to Genesee

You get crooked : your southern can belong to me

If you go uptown : have me arrested and have me put in jail

Some hot‑shot got money : come in and go my bail

Soon as I get out : kiss the ground

Your southern can : worth two dollar half a pound

You might take it from the South : you might carry it up north

But understand you can't rule : and either be my boss

Take it from the east : hide it in the west

When I get it mama : your can will see no rest

Well ashes to ashes mama : and sand to sand


Every time I hit you : you think I got a dozen hands

Hit you first : through that barbed wire fence

Every time I hit you : you say I got no sense

Get me a brick : out of my back yard

Give you the devil : if you act kind of hard

Now if I catch you mama : down in the heart of town

Take me a brand new brick : and tear your can on down

You may be deathbed sick : and mama and graveyard bound

Make your can : moan like a hound

Sit here and study : with your eyes all red

What I said : kicked your grandma dead

Oh you got to stop your balking : and raising the deuce

I'll grab you mama : and turn you every way but loose

You might twiggle like a tadpole : let it jump like a frog

But every time I hit it : you going to holler God dog

      Broke Down Engine Blues

         Atlanta, 23 Oct. 1931

         (151905‑1) Co‑14632‑D Yz L‑1005

Feel like a broke down engine : ain't got no driving‑wheel

You ever been down and lonesome : you know how a poor man feels

I've been shooting craps and gambling : mama and I done got broke

I done pawned my pistol : mama and my best clothes in soak

I went down to my praying ground : and fell on bended knees

I ain't crying for no religion : Lordy give me back my good gal please

If you give me my baby : Lord I won't worry you no more

You ain't got to put it in my house : Lordy only leave it to my door

Don't you hear me baby : rapping on your door

Can I get off *snake living* and tapping : playing tip light across your floor

Feel like a broke down engine : ain't got no drivers at all

What makes me love my woman : she can really do the Georgia crawl

Feel like a broke down engine : ain't got no weather‑the‑bell

If you's a real hot mama : drive away daddy's weeping spell

      Stomp Down Rider

         Atlanta, 23 Oct. 1931

         (405002‑1) OK‑8936 Yz L‑1005

When I first met you mama : you were so nice and kind

You done got reckless : and change your mind

When I was down south baby : I was with my broad

I'm here in Atlanta : treated like a dog

Now if you don't want me baby : don't you dog me around

My home ain't here : and I can leave your town


Now if you don't want me : baby give me your right hand

I'll go back to my woman : you go back to your man

I even give you my money : *I admire*

I done all for you : that you require

Even hold your head : when you're feeling sad

Sing and dance for you : when you're sad

You done come in this morning : you won't tell me where you been

You got strange living : going back again

I'm walking around baby : with my head hung low

Look here mama : I ain't going to do right no more

I'm going to take me a trip : up on the mountain top

Come back and show you : how to eagle rock

      Scarey Day Blues

         Atlanta, 23 Oct. 1931

         (405003‑1) OK‑8936 Yz L‑1037

I wants to wait around here baby : until your fried *rice*  get done

Because I think I got a nickel : I wants to buy me one

I wonder could I find a woman : to do like my last rider done

She kept it all for her daddy : she didn't give nobody none

Said my baby got a bed : it shines like a morning star

And when I crawls in the middle : it rides me like a Cadillac car

My good gal got a mojo : she's trying to keep it hid

But Georgia Bill got something : to find that mojo with

I said she got that mojo : and she won't let me see

And every time I start to love her : she's tried to put them jinx on me

Well she shakes it like the Central : she wobbles like the L and N

Well she's a hot‑shot mama : and I'm scared to tell her where I been

Said my baby got something : she won't tell her daddy what it is

But when I crawls in my bed : I just can't keep my black stuff still

Well I done got reckless : and I broke my mama's rule

I been wandering around Georgia : with these doggone scary day blues

      Georgia Rag

         Atlanta, 31 Oct. 1931

         (405085‑1) OK‑8924 Yz L‑1005

Down on Atlanta : on Harris Street

That's where the boys and gals : do meet

Out in the alley : in the street

Every little kid : that you meet

Buzz all around : like a bee

Shake it : like a ship on the sea

Came all the way : from Paris France


Come into Atlanta : to get a chance

Grab your mama : and hold her tight

Let's mess around : the rest of the night

Grip your head : way up high

Grab your daddy : and make him cry

People come : from miles around

Get in Dark Town : to break them down

Down in dark town : night and day

Trying to dance : them blues away

Go all the way back : to Newport News

Singing : these doggone Atlanta blues

      Rollin' Mama Blues

         Atlanta, 22 Feb. 1932

         (71603‑ ) Vi‑23328 Rt RL‑324

I want you to start in the morning baby : and roll me with the setting of the sun

I want you to keep it all for your daddy : and don't give nobody none

And if you get some of my loving : you won't want your rider no more

You don't have to worry about your loving : I'm a deep‑sea diver and I don't go wrong

That's why I'm singing : these barrelhouse woman blues

      Searching the Desert for the Blues

         Atlanta, 22 Feb. 1932

         (71606‑1) Vi‑23353 RCA LPV‑518

You may search the ocean : you might go across the deep blue sea

But mama you'll never find : another hot‑shot like me

I followed my baby : from the station to the train

And the blues came down : like doggone showers of rain

I left her at the station : wringing her hands and crying

I told her she had a home : just as long as I got mine

I've got two women : and you can't tell them apart

I got one in my bosom : the other one in my heart

The one in my bosom : she's in Tennessee

And the one in my heart : don't even give a darn for me

I used to say a married woman : was the sweetest woman ever was born

But I've changed that thing : you better let married women alone

Take my advice : let these married women be

Because their husbands'll grab you : and beat you ragged as a cedar tree


When a woman say she love you : about as good as she do herself

I don't pay her no attention : tell that same lie to somebody else

I really don't believe : no woman in the whole round world do right

Act like an angel in the daytime : ??? at night

I'm going pretty mama : please don't break this rule

That's why : I'm searching these deserts for the blues

I'm going pretty mama : searching these deserts now

That's why : I'm walking my baby home anyhow

      Warm It Up to Me

         New York, 14 Sept. 1933

         (14008‑2) Vo‑02595 Yz L‑1005

Take a little trip : up on a mountain top

Show the Florida women : how to eagle rock

Tell you like the *bana* : told the *king of sal*

Get another man : I got another gal

Now if you don't believe : I can warm you right

Take me to your house : and let me stay all night

When you see me mama : standing in the door

Papa wound up : saying mama won't go

Don't be no *resting* : don't be no late

Don't let these women : leave your heart insane

Now look here boy : don't get rough

These here women : they really knows their stuff

I want you to set on a Cadillac : sit on a Ford

You do that strutting : on the running board

Don't be no rat : and don't be no fool

Don't let these here women : break your rule

Now look here boy : if you going to be my friend

Let's go drink : moonshine again

Now take it easy : late at night

One of these here women : ain't going to treat you right

      It's a Good Little Thing

         New York, 14 Sept. 1933

         (14010‑1) Vo‑02622 Yz L‑1037

Look a‑here mama : just a word or two

Said I get you : to let's go loo loo

Look here mama : just don't stop

I ain't going to be : your other man's stumbling block

Wait just a minute : let's get this right

We're going go a‑looing : till broad daylight

Going to Savannah : make some jack


Hold that cat : till I get back

What is that mama : you got in that sack

It's got hair on it : and I believe it's a cat

Well it looks pretty much : like Santy Claus

Best little something : I ever saw

Look here mama : just like a log

She gets kissing : like a shaggy dog

      Savannah Mama

         New York, 18 Sept. 1933

         (14035‑1) Vo‑02568 Yz L‑1005

Mmm : Lordy Lordy Lord

Say the woman I love : treats me just like a dog

I love you baby : but your ways I just can't stand

Say you walked away and left me : good gal with another man

Going back to Savannah mama : and sign my initial down

Atlanta mens all hate me : and the women don't want me around

Going back to Savannah baby : and write my initial on the wall

Because these North Georgia women : don't mean me no good at all

Mmm : babe ain't it hard ain't it hard ain't it hard

Says I'd like to love you baby : but your good men got me barred

      Broke Down Engine

         New York, 18 Sept. 1933

         (14036‑2) Vo‑02577 RBF RF‑15

Feel like a broke down engine : mama ain't got no driving‑wheel

You ever been down and lonesome : you know just how Willie McTell feels

I been shooting craps and gambling : good gal and I done got broke

I done pawned my thirty‑two special : good gal and my clothes in soak

I even went to my praying ground : dropped down on bended knees

I ain't crying for no religion : Lordy give me back my good gal please

If you give me my baby : Lord I won't worry you no more

You ain't got to put her in my house : but Lordy only lead her to my door

Don't you hear [me, your daddy] baby : knocking on your door

Can I get off *sneak living and tapping* : playing tip light across your floor

      My Baby's Gone

         New York, 18 Sept. 1933

         (14038‑2) Vo‑02668 Yz L‑1037

My baby's gone : and I'm almost in my grave

But for your love : good gal I will be you slave

My baby left me : says she didn't mean me no good

And that's the reason why : I'm moving on back to the woods


My baby left me : she didn't even say goodbye

Says I'm drinking real good whiskey : that's the reason I did not *inquire why*

My baby's gone : says I ain't even worried at all

Before she even left me : says she riding that Cannonball

Mmm : Lordy Lordy Lordy Lord

Says my good gal she's gone : she didn't mean me no good at all

      Death Cell Blues

         New York, 19 Sept. 1933

         (14049‑1) Vo‑02577 RBF RF‑15

Mmm : chained down in this dark cell by myself

And my gal she skipped : guess she got somebody else

Well they've got me accused for murder : and I haven't even harmed a man

Oh they got me charged with burgling : and I haven't even raised my hand

Mmm : the judge won't give me no fine

Ain't but one thing could release me : and that's old father time

Goodbye : oh here comes the jailor with the key

I'll have to cry farewell to freedom : I want none of your women to pity me

I'll have to give you my number : five nine ninety‑four

Because I'll be there forever : I'll have no other place to go

They got me accused for forging : and I can't even write my name

And my eyes *filled on this* : my baby left my poor heart in pain

Mmm : Lordy Lordy Lord

Inside my breast felt lonely : my baby left my heart in pain

      B and O Blues No. 2

         New York, 21 Sept. 1933

         (14066‑1) Vo‑02568 Yz L‑1037

I'm going to grab me a train : I'm going back to Baltimore

I'm going to find my baby : because she rode that B and O

I'm going to act like a rambler : and I can't stay home no more

Because the gal I love : she rode that B and O

She says daddy I'm leaving : and I can't come back no more

And if she don't come back : I'm going down in Ohio

I never would have thought : that my baby would treat me so

Oh she broke my heart : when she grabbed that B and O

Now she wants to come back : and I can't use that child no more

Because I got another hot mama : and she lives in Baltimore

      Weary Hearted Blues

         New York, 21 Sept. 1933

         (14067‑1) Vo‑02568 Rt RL‑324

Look a‑here pretty mama : I'll tell you what I'll do


I'll make these lonesome dollars : and bring them all home to you

Now I'm weary : weary‑hearted and blue

And that's why I'm crying : these weary‑hearted blues

I'll give you my money : and baby I *admire*

I does all for you mama : you require

I even hold your head : when you are feeling bad

I sing and dance for you : mama when you sad

I want to tell all you men : nice and kind

You lose your best woman : don't you fool with mine

Now a white man go to the river : take him a seat and sit down

The blues overtake him : he jump overboard and drown

Now a colored man go to the river : take him a seat and sit down

If he takes the blues : he come on back to town

I wants all you men : to let my good gal alone

I'll give her a dollar in the street : and I'll give her two at home

      Southern Can Mama

         New York, 21 Sept. 1933

         (14069‑2) Vo‑02622 Yz L‑1037

Now look a‑here mama : let me explain you this

You wants to get crooked : I'll even give you my fist

Read from Revelation : back to Genesee

You get crooked : your southern can belongs to me

You might go uptown : and have me arrested and have me put in jail

Some hot‑shot got money : come in and go my bail

Soon as I get out : kiss the ground

Your southern can : worth two dollars and a half a pound

You might take it from the South : you might carry it up north

Understand you can't rule : and either be my boss

Take it from the east : hide it in the west

When I get it mama : your can won't see no rest

Ashes to ashes : and sand to sand

Every time I strikes you : you know I got a dozen hands

Give you a punch : through that barbed wire fence

Every time I hit you : you know I ain't got no sense

Look here women : don't get hard

I'll get me a brick : and use it out of my back yard

If I catch you mama : down in the heart of town

Take a brand new brick : and tear your can on down

You may be deathbed sickness : graveyard bound

I'll make your can moan : like a graveyard hound

You got to stop balking : and raising the deuce

I'll grab you woman : and turn you every way but loose


      Runnin' Me Crazy

         New York, 21 Sept. 1933

         (14070‑1) Vo‑02595 Rt RL‑324

Says I'm almost crazy : and I'm all here by myself

All these women about to run me crazy : Lord she's got someone else

Lord she's about to run me crazy : these reckless women are worrying me

She don't have to treat me so bad : because she lives in Tennessee

Lord you'll either run me crazy woman : or either make me lose my mind

Because you keep me worried : and troubled all the time

Lord these womens will run you crazy : they'll drive your heart insane

They'll spend all your money : turn around and run you insane

Well she spent all my money : and then she drove me outdoors

And I was almost crazy : because I had nowhere to go

Lord if you got a reckless woman : man don't never let her break your rule

And when you know anything : you'd be almost crazy with the blues

      Bell Street Blues

         Chicago, 23 Apr. 1935

         (C‑9946‑A) De‑7078 Rt RL‑324

I live down in Bell Street Alley : just as drunk as I can be

Seem like them Bell Street Crow Janes : have done got rough with me

I drink so much Bell Street whiskey : they won't sell [McTell, poor boy] no more

I've got the *cavenglass* boys : playing all around my door

This Bell Street whiskey : make you sleep all in your clothes

And when you wake up next morning : feel like you done laid outdoors

You can get booze down on Bell Street : for two bits and half a *throw*

They'll make you *send* out your mother and father : to just break down the jailhouse door

Walked in my room : the other night

Man come in : he want to fight

Took my gun : my right hand

??? : I don't want to kill no man

When I said that : he rapped me across my head

The first shot I fired : then the man fell dead

Bell street whiskey : drove me to the county jail

Got me laying back here on my bunk : nobody in the world to go my bail

      Ticket Agent Blues

         Chicago, 25 Apr. 1935

         (C‑9954‑A) De‑7078 Yz L‑1037

Good Lord good Lord : send me an angel down

Can't spare you no angel : will spare you a teasing brown

That new way of loving : swear to God it must be best


Because these Georgia women : won't let Willie McTell rest

There was a crowd down on the corner : and I wondered who could it be

Weren't a thing : but the women boy trying to get to me

I went down to the shed : put my suitcase in my hand

Crowd of women run crying : that McTell be my man

Ticket agent ticket agent : which a‑way has my woman gone

Say describe your woman : and I'll tell you what road she's on

She's a long tall mama : five and a half from the ground

She's a tailor‑made mama : and she ain't no hand‑me‑down

Mama if you ride the Southern : I'll ride the Santa Fe

When you get in Memphis : pretty mama look around for me

You can't never tell : what a double‑crossing woman will do

They'll tip out with your buddy : and come home play sick on you

I got two women : you can't tell them apart

I got one in my bosom : the other one's in my heart

Now the one in my bosom : she's in Tennessee

And the one in my heart : don't even give a darn for me

I used to say a married woman : was the sweetest woman ever was born

I changed that thing : you better let married women alone

Take my advice : let all married womens be

Because their husbands will grab you : and beat you ragged with a cedar tree

Now love ain't nothing : single women loving married men

It will do for a while : but it will jam you after a end

When a woman says she loves you : about as good as she do herself

Don't pay her no attention : tell the same lie to somebody else

She'll tell you that she love you : and love you all her life

She'll have a man on the corner : and tell that same lie twice

My baby she got a mojo : I believe she trying to keep it hid

Mctell got something : to find that mojo with

I want to tell you pretty mama : exactly who I am

When I walk out the front door : I hear that back door slam

      Cold Winter Day

         Chicago, 25 Apr. 1935

         (C‑9956‑A) De‑7810 Yz L‑1037

I did everything baby : that I could do

Fell on my knees : mama get along with you

I give you my money baby : my last dime

Soon as you got up mama : you changed your mind

I gave you my money mama : buy you shoes and clothes

Soon as you got bid change : you put me outdoors

I took you mama : your shoes were thin

No man wanted you : no one took you in


When I took you mama : *feet'll* on the ground

Ain't no man baby : wanted you around

Took your breakfast : brought it to your bed

Took my comb baby : combed your head

Make no difference mama : take your lock and key

Too many women : want a man like me

Going away mama : it won't be long

I know you'll miss me : the days I'm gone

I took you mama : treated you nice and kind

Soon as you got on your feet : you wouldn't pay me no mind

      Your Time to Worry

         Chicago, 25 Apr. 1935

         (C‑9957‑A) De‑7117 Rt RL‑324

I done told you mama : right from the start

I ain't going to let no one woman : break my heart

Your time to worry : my time to be alone

Your reckless disposition : done drove your good man away from home

I told you in my days : things I do

Go out and work hard : and bring my money home to you

You drink your whiskey : run around

Get out in the street : and act like a sand‑foot clown

Went out with you baby : trying to treat you right

I drinking whiskey woman : and drunk all night

Need not come here pleading : holding up your hands

I got myself a woman : you better get yourself a man

Leave me alone baby : best you can do

I would have been a murderer : if I'd a‑fooled around with you

Now go ahead baby : leave me alone

Mess around with you : the chain‑gang will be my home

               Manning, Leola

      The Blues Is All Wrong

         Knoxville, Tenn., c. Apr. 1930

         (K‑8089‑ ) Vo‑1529 Yz L‑1015

*Feel like voting* : fall in line

While I sing : this song of mine

This song's all right : if you thinks it's wrong

It's all right : it's a ??? song

This song's all right : it just won't jump

It's all right : it just won't

This song brings joy : to our *cry*

We're baptized : with fire

This song's *composed* : the blues too tight


Got the blues tune : but the words all right

This song's all right : it just won't quit

It's all right : we're singing it

You can talks about me : treat me mean

You got the *train* :

               Martin, Carl

      Farewell to You Baby

         Chicago, 8 Jan. 1935

         (C‑877‑1) OK‑8961 Yz L‑1016

I'm leaving you baby : just because you won't be true

Oh you don't love me : after all I done for you

You know I worked hard all winter : when the snow was on the ground

You mistreated me then baby : Eli wouldn't throw you down

You made a mistake baby : after you made your vow

But your mistake‑making : is all over now

You going to miss [your daddy, me] : some old lonesome day

And you going to be sorry : you did me this way

Now I'm leaving you [baby] : with my clothes in my hand

Farewell to you baby : get yourself a monkey‑man

      Badly Mistreated Man

         Chicago, 8 Jan. 1935

         (C‑881‑2) OK‑8961 Yz L‑1016

I worked hard baby : I worked hard every day

I even turned over in your hand : every cent of my pay

I been done so dirty : treated so lowdown mean

You've even accused me of women : that I ain't never seen

People what's the use of loving : when I can't see why I should

Especially when you got a woman : and she don't mean you no good

I woke up this morning : got on a stroll

Met my baby : got her told

Look a‑here baby : you thinking wrong

Let your papa help you : to sing this song

I grabbed my coat and hat : down the road I'll start

Before I'd worry : I'd rather part

I wouldn't work : for no human being

Neither no woman : that I ever seen

Eighteen hundred : ninety years

All of my women : sit in rocking chairs

But ever since : nineteen and twenty‑three

All of my women : been working for me

I got a mind : never work no more

I've been badly mistreated : I've been drove from door to door


      Good Morning, Judge

         Chicago, 8 Jan. 1935

         (C‑882‑ ) Vo‑03047 OJL‑18

They arrested my baby : accused her of selling moon

Judge they found whiskey : but it wasn't even in her room

Now good morning judge : judge how do you do

I just came here : to have a few words with you

Please kind judge : listen to my plea

And let my baby : go back home with me

      Joe Louis Blues

         Chicago, 4 Sept. 1935

         (90293‑A) De‑7114 Yz L‑1016

Now listen all you prize fighters : who don't want to meet defeat

Take a tip from me : stay off Joe Louis' beat

Now he won all his fights : twenty‑three or four

And left twenty of his opponents : lying on the floor

They all tried to win : but the test was too hard

When he laid the hambone : *couple jumped out for it*

Listen all you prize fighters : don't play him too cheap

If he lands with either hand : he'll sure put you to the seat

Now he packs dynamite in his left : he carries a punching right

He's the one will make you balky : or as high as a kite

He charges on his opponents : from the beginning of the gong

He batters them into submission : then they all sing a song

I bet on the Brown Bomber : for he knows his stuff

And lays it on his opponents : until he get enough

Now he's a natural born fighter : who likes to fight them all

The bigger they come : he says the harder they fall

That terrific left : boys is all he needs

But that six‑inch right : come with lightning speed

Listen all you prize fighters : don't play him too cheap

Take a tip from me : stay off Joe Louis' beat

      Let's Have a New Deal

         Chicago, 4 Sept. 1935

         (90294‑A) De‑7114 BC‑14

Now everybody's crying : let's have a new deal

Relief station's closing down : I know just how you feel

Everybody's crying : let's have a new deal

Because I've got to make a living : if I have to rob and steal

Now I'm getting mighty tired : of sitting around


I ain't making a dime : just wearing my shoe soles down

I ain't making a dime : just wearing my shoe soles down

Now I woke up this morning : doggone my soul

My flour barrel was empty : swear I didn't have no coal

We're going to dance : till *another* sun

Now you go to your wicket : put in your complaint

Eight time out of ten : you know they'll say I can't

They don't want to give you no dough : won't hardly pay your rent

Now it ain't costing them : one doggone cent

Now I ain't made a dime : since they closed down the mill

I'm sitting right here : waiting on that brand new deal

               Martin, Daisy

      Feelin' Blue

         New York, c. late July 1923

         (5237‑1) Ba‑1262 VJM VLP‑40

Does anybody : does anybody feel like me

Now if they do : I know the feeling is sad as can be

Now I'm going home : to take a snooze

Try to wear away : a thing they call the feeling blues

I'm tired of fooling around : with one who don't love me

If I ever find a way to leave him : if we cannot agree

      What You Was You Used to Be

         New York, c. late July 1923

         (5238‑1) Ba‑1262 VJM VLP‑40

Because what you was you used to be : but you ain't no more

I'm giving you your dispossess : welcome's off the door

Be on your way : you got yourself in wrong

You'll get flat feet : from standing too long

Let this be a lesson : now that I have left you flat

There's someone sitting pretty : in the place where you once sat

You ought to see him do his stuff : my latest loving man

Because where you left off : is just the place where he began

You said you craved a gal with speed : that's why I wouldn't do

But now the gal you left behind : is way ahead of you

But what you was you used to be : but you ain't no more

Just make your exit *smiling please* : there's no use getting sore

You ran away : and left me on the shelf

Keep right on running : go chase yourself

               Martin, Sara

      Blind Man Blues

         New York, c. 1 Aug. 1923

         (71711‑B) OK‑8090 Sw S‑1240


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

I'm going to stay down here : and swing these men around

Just when you think : that your loving man is true

Then he's your man my man : somebody else's too

Oh big fat woman : with the meat shaking on her bones

Every time she shimmies : a skinny woman leaves her home

      Death Sting Me Blues

         Long Island City, Nov. 1928

         (278‑A) QRS‑R7042 BYG‑529073

I want all you women : to listen to my tale of woe

I've got consumption of the heart : I feel myself sinking low

Oh my heart is aching : and the blues are all around my *loo*

Blues is like the devil : they'll have me hell bound too

Blues you made me roll and tumble : you made me weep and sigh

Made me use cocaine and whiskey: but you wouldn't let me die

Blues blues blues : why did you bring trouble to me

Oh death please sting me : and take me out of my misery

      Mistreating Man Blues

         Long Island City, Dec. 1928

         (306) QRS‑R7042 BYG‑529073

I've got the blues : since I made up my mind

I want to stop loving you : because you mistreat me all the time

Oh this game called love : I played it on the square

But you think : a good woman can be found anywhere

You never meant me no good : you've always had your way

But things can't go on forever : they are bound to change some day

So now I'm leaving you : some day you'll understand

*That's why* I can't go on : loving a mistreating man

               Mason, Moses

      Molly Man

         Chicago, c. Jan. 1928

         (20283‑2) Pm‑12605 OJL‑8

Molly man's coming : I hear his voice

He's got hot tamales : and it's just my choice

Come on boys : and don't wait too long

All my 'males  : soon will be gone

I can judge : by the way you act

Somebody around here : had on a cotton‑picking track

Feeling tired : shoulder's getting sore

If you see 'male : you're going to take some more

Two for a nickel : four for a dime


Thirty cents a dozen : and you'll sure eat fine

Good times have come in : don't you see the signs

Cotton bolls are open : you can make a‑many dimes

I can judge : by the way you walk

You going to carry : half a dozen off

If my holler boys : trouble your mind

You had to come running : with a dime

Good times have come in : don't you see the signs

White folks standing around here : spending a‑many dimes

'Males so hot : it burns my hand

Says I can't hardly get them : out of my can

      Shrimp Man

         Chicago, c. Jan. 1928

         (20302‑3) Pm‑12605 Rt RL‑325

Shrimp is the thing : you love best

*Ring them nice : and they'll*<