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I'm not jealous but I'm superstitious, but most working men's that way - Willie 61 Blackwell - Four O'Clock Blues

Author Topic: Rising River Blues  (Read 2860 times)

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Offline GhostRider

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Rising River Blues
« on: January 10, 2007, 09:59:56 AM »
Hi:

This is my version of George Carter's "Risin' River Blues", from 1928. I learned the basics of this from Paul Geremia at PT, 2005. The E (I chord) section riff I stole from Ed Bell's "Snigglin' Blues". I also added a verse of my own composition (the 4th).

This is again played on my Gibson J-100XT, plugged in, with a separate mike for the vocal. One take, no rehearsal.

Had to clip the end of the tune to fit it under the limit. You're missing my snazzy ending!

Criticism more than welcomed! Be brutal!

Hope you like this,
Alex

« Last Edit: January 10, 2007, 10:47:03 AM by GhostRider »

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Rising River Blues
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2007, 10:17:17 AM »
Nice job, Alex. I like the Snigglin' riff, a subtle change but tasty. A great, relaxed feel here, too. Kudos! Sorry, I can't be brutal, you do too good a job here. (Albertans are destroying the planet. How's that?)

If you want to try to get the ending in, you could try encoding at 24 kbps instead of 32. Sound might get really crappy, but sometimes it works OK.

Offline dj

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Re: Rising River Blues
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2007, 10:40:08 AM »
Very good indeed.  The Ed Bell riff is a nice touch - it has that "rollin' river" feel, kind of in the same vein as Patton's "Green River".  What's that you're playing under the first 2 lines of the vocal?  It has almost a samba feeling.  It works well in conjunction with the lyrics - almost as if "the river's rising and everyone's running, but it's warm and the sun has come out and I can't be bothered to move".  I really like this arrangement.

I hope that was brutal enough.   ;D

Offline waxwing

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Re: Rising River Blues
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2007, 10:48:22 AM »
Really makin' this your own, which is cool. Still not keen on the sound of the pick-up, but your vocal is nice and relaxed.

I have a bone to pick with your mutation of the second verse, tho'. I hear it as:

I got to move in the alley, ain't allowed on the street(2X)
These risin' river blues sure have got me beat

This is one of the few instances in all of pre-war blues that the mistreatment of blacks by whites is pretty openly mentioned, blacks not being allowed to use the streets to escape the rising waters so that the whites would have a less crowded escape route. This led to many deaths of both blacks struggling though the muddy back alleys and those shot for disobeying the rule. To soften this verse to a mere domestic squabble, as you seem to have done, takes the heart right out of it if you ask me, and somewhat undermines the very interesting final verse, which profers the notion of the curative nature of expressing one's woes to a woman, also a rare sentiment in the blues. I never fail to point these things out to my audience when I perform the song, but I can see how that might not go over so well in Calgary.-G- Anyway, just my take on it.

All for now.
John C.
« Last Edit: January 10, 2007, 10:51:39 AM by waxwing »
"People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it."
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Offline GhostRider

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Re: Rising River Blues
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2007, 04:55:52 PM »
I have a bone to pick with your mutation of the second verse, tho'. I hear it as:

I got to move in the alley, ain't allowed on the street(2X)
These risin' river blues sure have got me beat

Hey, BJ

I had heard this verse as you have it, except I heard the last two words in the first line as "...her place", so I changed the last word in the second line to rhyme.

I just went back and listened, and I'm sure your "street" is right. But I still have problems with "the", I still hear "her". This one little change affects the meaning terrifically.

What do the rest of you think? Strange one three-lettre word could change things so much?

Unfortunately Paul Geremia, during his version of this piece, does not use this verse (as I recall, will check tonight).

Alex
« Last Edit: January 30, 2007, 12:13:48 PM by GhostRider »

Offline daddystovepipe

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Re: Rising River Blues
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2007, 07:54:32 AM »
Fine version Alex, relaxed and  enjoyable.  I don't mind the pickup - sounds a bit like a twelve-string this way, like the original version.  I agree with dj, you've chosen a more lighthearted route to play this one. 
The meaning of the song is another matter. If you stick to your version it's ok but if you go for the original lyrics you should approach it more with a downhearted feel.  Carter's version really expresses despair and since I know rhe real meaning of the second verse now (thanks JohnC) I understand the feeling/meaning of the song better.
By the way : the "Yazoo 1-20" lyricsbook by RR Macleod page 173 states for the second verse :
"I've got to move into the alley, I ain't allowed on the street".  Macleod is rarely wrong and if he's not sure about something he indicates it clearly.
Carl

Offline GhostRider

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Re: Rising River Blues
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2007, 12:11:20 PM »
Unfortunately Paul Geremia, during his version of this piece, does not use this verse (as I recall, will check tonight).

Wrong as usual, It's his third verse. Geremia sings:
"I've got to move in the alley, I ain't 'lowed on the street"

Alex
« Last Edit: January 30, 2007, 12:13:21 PM by GhostRider »

 


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