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Author Topic: Missippi Moaner Lyrics  (Read 927 times)

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Online Johnm

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Missippi Moaner Lyrics
« on: June 29, 2015, 02:46:41 PM »
Hi all,
The "Mississippi Moaner", Isaiah Nettles, recorded but two titles, in 1935.  "It's Cold In China Blues" is a re-working of Lemon Jefferson material, in A position, standard tuning.  If you grade it on how accurately Nettles was able to reproduce Lemon's playing, it's a failure, I suppose, but if you just judge it on its own merits, it's perfectly fine.  Isaiah Nettles was a good singer, gets some flow going with his guitar and does a really nice job of it, it's really engaging.  I'd appreciate some help with the last line of the song.  Here is his rendition:



So cold in China, birds can't hardly sing
So cold in China, eeee, birds can't hardly sing
You didn't make me mad 'til you broke my diamond ring

Hey, mama, won't be bad no more
Take me, mama, won't be bad no more
You can get my lovin' if you let that old black snake go

Black snake crawlin', crawlin' in my room
Black snake crawlin', crawlin' in my room
Some high brown woman better come and get this here black snake soon

Hey, mama, what have I said and done?
Hey, mama, what have I said and done?
Some joker your lover, says it's sure gonna be my ruin

Hey, cryin', mama, papa, says, I do love, I do, doub, do doub, do love you
Cryin', eeeee, your daddy do love you
You's a high-steppin' mama and I don't care what you do

I was a little boy, on my way to school
Was a little boy, ooooo, on my way to school
Met a high brown woman and she broke my mammy's rule

Mama say I'm reckless, Daddy say Im young and wild
Mama say I'm reckless, ooooo, Daddy say I'm young and wild
"Reason he's so reckless, he's my baby child ."

Edited 6/29 to pick up correction from One-Eyed Ross
Edited 6/29 to pick up corrections from CF
Edited 6/29 to pick up corrections from Bruce Nemerov
Edited 6/30 to pick up correction from banjochris

All best,
Johnm



 
« Last Edit: July 11, 2020, 06:29:32 AM by Johnm »

Offline One-Eyed Ross

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Re: Missippi Moaner Lyrics
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2015, 02:56:14 PM »
John:  Last verse looks right to me, but I hear the third verse's last line as:

Some high brown woman better come get your black snake soon
SSG, USA, Ret

She looked like a horse eating an apple through a wire fence.

Online Johnm

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Re: Missippi Moaner Lyrics
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2015, 03:08:11 PM »
Thanks for the catch, Ross, I made the change.  Thanks!
All best,
Johnm

Offline CF

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Re: Missippi Moaner Lyrics
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2015, 06:23:44 PM »
2nd verse could be

Hey, mama, won't be BAD no more
Take me, mama, won't be BAD no more

4th verse, 3rd line could be

Some joker's your lover & it sure gonna be your ruin

Last line sounds like

Reason he's so reckless, he's my baby's child
Stand By If You Wanna Hear It Again . . .

Online Johnm

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Re: Missippi Moaner Lyrics
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2015, 07:01:25 PM »
Thanks very much for the help, Mike, that is all great stuff.  That fourth verse third line sure enough ends with "room", at least phonetically, but the sense is certainly "ruin".  I have made the changes.  Thanks!
All best,
Johnm

Offline bnemerov

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Re: Missippi Moaner Lyrics
« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2015, 07:05:33 PM »
Hi John,

I'm hearing: "You can get my lovin' if you let that ol' black snake go"
for the last line of stanza two.

best,
bruce

Online Johnm

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Re: Missippi Moaner Lyrics
« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2015, 08:12:39 PM »
Thanks for the catch, Bruce, you are certainly correct, and I have made the change.  Thanks!  I'm getting the idea I did the initial transcription on this one way too fast!
All best,
Johnm

Offline banjochris

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Re: Missippi Moaner Lyrics
« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2015, 10:42:46 PM »
One other suggestion, John --
1.3 You DIDN?T make me mad?

Chris

Online Johnm

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Re: Missippi Moaner Lyrics
« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2015, 06:10:47 AM »
Thanks for the catch, Chris.  I've made the change.
All best,
Johnm

Online Johnm

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Re: Missippi Moaner Lyrics
« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2015, 01:29:29 PM »
Hi all,
The Mississippi Moaner's other title was, logically enough, called "Mississippi Moan".  Isaiah Nettles is once again playing out of A position in standard tuning, and getting a lot of his licks from Lemon Jefferson, but for his fills following his second and third lines of each verse, he also plays a lick that recalls Garfield Akers.  I think and hope I've done a better job for "Mississippi Moan" than I did for "It's Cold In China Blues", but I welcome corrections.  I'm least certain about the first two lines of the last verse.  I take the tagline of the last verse as being his father talking about how he's tried to stop beating his mother.  It's odd that the tagline of the last verse of "It's Cold In China Blues" quoted his mother.  It's an unusual lyric device.  Here is the song:



Ehhhh, something's going on wrong
Oh, when I come in, found my baby's gone

Uh, when she come in, rag tied on her head
She come in, rag tied on her head
Asked my baby a few questions, she swore she was nearly dead

If you treat me good, good Lord, I'll bless your soul
Treat me good, Lord, I'll bless your soul
And if you treat me bad, mama, to hell you'll surely go

SOLO

Said, I'm on my way back, to that lonesome hill
On my way back to that lonesome hill
Goin' back where I can look down, where this black man used to live

Aaaah, 't's gonna become of me?
I said, mama, what's gonna become of me?
Every time I leave home, it's tell my father it's where I'm gon' be

Lord, my father beat mama, caused me to leave my own home
Father beat her, caused me to leave my home
"Lord, I tried and I tried, and I just can't let her 'lone."

All best,
Johnm
« Last Edit: July 11, 2020, 06:30:33 AM by Johnm »

 


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