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Mississippi Sheiks Lyrics

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motmot:
Greetings!? First post, so please pardon any errors of protocol.
I've been working on the Sheiks' Lazy, Lazy River, and thought I'd share my progress, and invite others to comment, correct, chip in, whatever.
I've been focusing on guitar first, and later hope to attempt the fiddle part.

It sounds to be in Eflat.? I first tried it out of C fingering with capo at 3rd fret. But after noticing that low bass note at the "followed every rainbow" line, I put the capo at the 1st fret and played it out of D fingering. That also lets you do the bass-line walk down from the B chord to the E chord after "looked up in the moon."? I'm still trying to figure out whether that Bflat chord is right, or what shape it ought to be.

Anyway, here, as best I can figure or guess, more or less, are the lyrics and the general chord progression (I hope the spacing translates when I post):



D
I've been through all day, just walking here on borrowed ground.
A?
I've looked beneath the daisies, my pal could not be found
D
She's down the lazy river, & I'm just lost from you
E
That's the only place between heaven and earth
?A
that I long to get
D? Bflat? G
When I find that river, that lazy, lazy river
D? A?D
Then my life will be complete
?Bflat?G
I searched the whole world over, I've slept out on the clover
D?A?D
Hoping that the (?rest?) might see
F#? B
I searched beneath the daisies, and looked up in the moon
E?A?
I followed every rainbow, and I hope to be there soon
D?Bflat?G
When I find that river, that lazy, lazy river
D?A? D
Then I'm coming home for you

[about 32 bars of instrumental]

D? Bflat? G
If I could find that river, that lazy, lazy river
D? A D
Then my life would be complete
D?Bflat? G
I searched the whole world over, I've slept out in the clover
D? A? D
Hoping that the (?rest?) would be
F#? B
I searched beneath the daisies, and looked up in the moon
E?A?
I followed every rainbow, and I hope to be there soon
D? ?Bflat?G
When I find that river, that lazy, lazy river
D?A? D
Then I'm coming home for you

frankie:
Hi MotMot - this is one of my favorite MS tunes.? I once tried to get an old-time fiddler I know to parse it and he nearly lost it when it sounded in Eflat.? I don't think he ever really recovered from the experience...

It's hard to preserve the relationships between the words and the chords with variable width text - try using the pre tags:


--- Code: ---[pre]
D
When I find that river

?E? D
That lazy, lazy river

A?D
Then my life will be complete
[/pre]

--- End code ---

Now for real:


D
When I find that river

?E? D
That lazy, lazy river

A?D
Then my life will be complete


Anyway, I definitely agree that Walter Vincson is playing out of D position, either capoed or tuned up about a half step.? I don't hear the Bflat or the G chord, though.? As you can see in the example above, what I think I hear is that WV goes to an E chord (1st position), but strums no strings below the 4th.? In other words, strums from the 4th string (2nd fret) to the first string.? Then he returns to the tonic (D).? It's true - there's a Bflat in the melody.? You could even say that the vocal/fiddle line arpeggiates a Bflat chord.? WV plays a D - them's the harmonizing breaks in CB, I guess .? I wonder if Lonnie Chatmon got as fussy about chords as some fiddlers I know...

Here's my take on the words - uncertainties in brackets:

I've been blue all day
Just walkin here on [borrowed] ground
I've looked beneath of the daisies
My pal could not be found
She's down that lazy river
And I'm just [lost from here] (lonesome here?)
That's the only place between
Heaven and earth I long to get

When I find that river
That lazy, lazy river
Then my life will be complete

I searched the whole world over
I've slept out on the clover
Hoping there to rest my feet

I've searched beneath of the daisies
And looked up in the moon
I followed every rainbow
and I hope to be there soon

And when I find that river
That lazy, lazy river
Then I'm coming home for you

Break

If I could find that river
That lazy, lazy river
Then my life will be complete

I searched the whole world over
I've slept out on the clover
Hoping there to rest my feet

I've searched beneath of the daisies
And looked up in the moon
I followed every rainbow
and I hope to be there soon

And when I find that river
That lazy, lazy river
Then I'm coming home for you

Great tune!? Welcome to the board!

motmot:
Thanks, Frankie, for the welcome.? Actually, I think you and I e-corresponded a few years earlier, after posting on the old woodshed, about trying to find people adventurous (or eclectic (and maybe other adjectives, too)) enough to try and transport Joseph Spence tunes to fiddle and/or banjo.? As somebody noted in another thread about "top of the heap," this particular heap may be small.

Thanks also for the observations about Lazy, Lazy River.? Lonnie Chatmon sured seemed to favor flat keys and closed positions (even when the tune was in C or G) that I haven't found easy or intuitive on the fiddle.? I haven't found many of the guitar parts easy or intuitive, either!

Your take on the lyrics makes a lot of sense, and as for the guitar, I'm eager to try the E chord voicing you've suggested.? The chord I was playing was a D note on 5th string at 5th fret, and the 4th, 3rd, and 2d strings at barred at 3d fret.? It may be I tried that because, in trying to make sense of the song, I ended up replicating melody on guitar, instead of thinking of it as a separate part.

To my ears, the chord progression for the first section (from "blue all day" to "heaven and earth that I long to get") was very different from the progression for the rest . . .? But, I look forward to another session, with the benefit of your thoughts.

Thanks again, and good to be here.

uncle bud:
This one's playing on the Weenie Juke right now. Great tune. Very unusual tune, the Sheiks doing a pop tune masterfully.

frankie:

--- Quote from: MotMot on June 11, 2004, 07:42:56 AM ---Actually, I think you and I e-corresponded a few years earlier, after posting on the old woodshed, about trying to find people adventurous (or eclectic (and maybe other adjectives, too)) enough to try and transport Joseph Spence tunes to fiddle and/or banjo.? As somebody noted in another thread about "top of the heap," this particular heap may be small.
--- End quote ---

Sure is - glad you found your way here!? I think I remember that discussion about Joseph Spence on the banjo...


--- Quote from: MotMot on June 11, 2004, 07:42:56 AM ---Lonnie Chatmon sured seemed to favor flat keys and closed positions (even when the tune was in C or G) that I haven't found easy or intuitive on the fiddle.? I haven't found many of the guitar parts easy or intuitive, either!
--- End quote ---

Do you think it'd be easier to render in D?? Seems a lot of fiddlers do that with tunes in flat keys.? Just about everybody that I know who plays Mineola Rag seems to play it in D rather than Eflat.? Playing in Eflat is probably good therapy, but is unlikely to get a tune like this into a session!

Walter Vincson's guitar playing can get pretty fancy, and even his "simple accompaniments" are sophisticated.


--- Quote from: MotMot on June 11, 2004, 07:42:56 AM ---To my ears, the chord progression for the first section (from "blue all day" to "heaven and earth that I long to get") was very different from the progression for the rest . . .? But, I look forward to another session, with the benefit of your thoughts.
--- End quote ---

That's true - I think the chords you listed for that part and the Fsharp section are right on.? It was just the chorus that I was referring to specifically.? I guess the part where WV plays a D chord while singing a Bflat note could be thought of as combining to create and D+...?


--- Quote from: MotMot on June 11, 2004, 07:42:56 AM ---Thanks again, and good to be here.
--- End quote ---

Glad to have you!


--- Quote from: uncle bud on June 11, 2004, 09:34:36 AM ---Very unusual tune, the Sheiks doing a pop tune masterfully.
--- End quote ---

The Sheiks definitely had some serious pop sensibilities.? Seems like their musical interests were all over the map, but it all sounds like the Sheiks...

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