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Ain't no heaven and there ain't no burning hell, where I'm going when I die can't nobody tell - Son House, My Black Mama part 1

Author Topic: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell  (Read 2872 times)

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Offline drywud

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Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« on: September 25, 2014, 05:09:54 PM »
Hi every body , I am new to this forum and am very pleased to be among you talking about music and blues and old time and this kind of stuff.

I wanted to talk about Les Blank's movie Sprout Wing and Fly from 1984 starring fiddler and banjo picker Tommy Jarell.

This movie features awesome music and stories that I think are mostly about booze, but as I am french I have some difficulties to understand each and every words in Tommy Jarell's mouth. I would like to subtitle this movie and so I am looking for some people who would be interested in correcting and completing my transcription of this movie in English to make it understandable to a lot more people which would be wonderful. I thought i may find someone, asking in some old time music lovers boards over the internet.

I also came upon some very sharp discussions about old tunes lyrics that are very difficult to understand by ear on this board so i thought it may be the good place to ask about this.

there is just the beginning of the short film on youtube : but you can find the whole thing on the internet or if you don't find it and want it you can ask me

Thank you for your attention and have a great day/night bye bye

Offline drywud

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2014, 12:02:43 PM »
I transcribed the whole movie but there are a few holes. The zones in red , I either didn't understand anything or i wrote what it sounded like but it is most likely wrong.

my transcription is accessible through this link
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BxLXbfOs2ozwMUlScjQzSlljZ3M/view?usp=sharing

I would be very thankful to anybody who would like to help, english subtitles would help a lot of people throughout the world to experience this film.

Offline Gumbo

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2014, 07:39:15 AM »
I love this little film. Here's what I hear for the intro and first song. With capitals showing where my transcription differs to yours.


00:00
Well the old folks used to put them in there to keep the spider webs out of them when they hung 'em up on the wall 'FORE they had any fiddle cases. Spider's would web in there and IT BE den in there and them snake RATTLERS'D keep them cut out.

Some folks claimed it made the fiddle sound better, you know, the snake would be a charm in the fiddle, y'know. See the fiddle's CALLED THE DEVIL'S INSTRUMENT ANYHOW so I been told, but I never did believe THAT.

Corn whiskey and pretty women they've been my DOWNFALL
BEAT me and A-BANG me but I LOVE THEM for all

MY SHOES IS ALL TORE UP, MY TOES IS STICKIN' OUT
DON'T GET SOME CORN WHISKEY I'M A-GOING UP THE SPOUT

Gonna eat when I'm a-hungry A-gonna drink when I'm when I'm dry
LOOK I get to feeling much better I'm a gonna sprout wings and fly

JACK O'DIAMONDS, JACK O'DIAMONDS I know you of old
You've robbed my poor pockets of silver and gold

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck
I'd dive to the bottom LORD, and never come up
Now the ocean's not whiskey NO I ain't no duck
let's play THEY drunk HICKY-UPS AND CURSE TO MY LUCK

Offline drywud

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2014, 04:57:59 AM »
Thanks a lot for your help

the full movie can be watched here :

Offline Johnm

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2014, 12:12:23 PM »
Hi drywud,
I think the last line of "Drunken Hiccups" concludes "and TRUST to my luck".
All best,
Johnm

Offline David Kaatz

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #5 on: October 05, 2014, 05:08:00 PM »
Hi Drywud,
I'll take a try at corrections after the end of the first song, before the second song.

That MIGHT BE old man FOUNTAIN. Put stone or headstone one, I don't know WHICH. (Fountain might be the man's name)
HE WAS A man who cut his big toe off. WELL he had a corn on his toe, and he had a big horse trailer, HE'D GO OR BE GONE THREE WEEKS FROM HOME, he'd get drunk every time HE LEFT.
HE'D SWAP HORSES WITH ANYBODY THAT WOULD SWAP WITH HIM.
He come home one time and that old corn just about to kill him. He said "Get me that THERE wood chisel".
And IT was ground JUST AS SHARP as that BUTCHER KNIFE of mine.
And he PULLED his shoe off, and his sock, and he went out there and he set it on a, on a block, like that. And he SET THAT THERE CHISEL ON THERE AND HE GAVE IT A WHACK JUST LIKE THAT and cut it off JUST as smooth as could be.

...
He went into the house and got a little SOOT out of the chimney, he put it on it and stopped the blood, BOUND it up and it never gave him no trouble.

Dave

Offline drywud

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #6 on: October 05, 2014, 06:11:50 PM »
thank you a lot.

Do you have any ideas what he mean by "put stone or headstone one" ?

Offline banjochris

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #7 on: October 05, 2014, 09:46:45 PM »
He's walking through a graveyard and is saying: That might be old man Fountain's foot stone or headstone one.

In other words, either the foot or head of his grave. Not sure of the name though.

Offline drywud

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2014, 04:26:17 AM »
but why "one" ? would this old fountain man have multiple graves ?

Offline Gumbo

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2014, 06:51:15 AM »
One. As in "one or the other, I don't know which"

Offline Gumbo

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #10 on: October 06, 2014, 06:54:22 AM »
Hi drywud,
I think the last line of "Drunken Hiccups" concludes "and TRUST to my luck".
All best,
Johnm
Good catch, Johnm. Thanks.

Offline Gumbo

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #11 on: October 06, 2014, 07:28:39 AM »
Here's some additions and corrections to Dave's transcription:


I think I made that'n about the "Eat when I'm hungry gonna drink when I'm dry, get to feeling much better'm gonna sprout wings and fly" I think I put that to it.

02:50

That might be Old Man Fountain's foot stone or headstone. One, I don't know which. Now, he was a man who cut his big toe off, y'now. Well he had a corn on his toe and he was horse a trader, he'd go off and be gone two or three weeks from home, and he'd get drunk every time he left. He'd swap horses with anyone that would swap with him.

He come home one time and that old corn was just about to kill him. He said, "Get me that there wood chisel" And it was ground just as sharp as that butcher knife of mine. And he pulled his shoe off, and his sock, and he went out there and he set it on a, on a block like that. And he set that there chisel on there and he gave 'er a Whack! just like that and cut it off just as smooth as can be. Picked it up. He had a dog named Wash and he said "Here, Wash, here!"

He went into the house and got a little soot out of the chimney, he put it on it and stopped the blood, bound it up and it never gave him no trouble.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2014, 12:08:22 PM by Gumbo »

Offline David Kaatz

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #12 on: October 06, 2014, 09:49:42 AM »
Hi drywud,
Second song, John Hardy, first line:

John Hardy was a wild RECKLESS man, he carried two guns every day

end of song...

Charley Smith run over old man Houston, with a load of TANNIN' bark on a wagon and killed him.
(See this reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tanbark )
He was laying in the road up yonder. Well, he was pretty bad to drink I guess, he just took a notion he was going to lay down go to sleep I guess.
There wasn't no traffic on the road them days, you know.
Wasn't no cars. Just a wagon now and then, you know.
Charley, he started out there with a load of Tannin' bark and a yoke of steers, and they just walked right on over him.
If he'd a had horses or mules, well, they wouldn't have done that.
But they just stepped right on over him, and the wagon run over him.

And Charley, he's scared, he went over to Wes Birchum's, he lived over there not too far.
And Wes he come over and stayed with him til daylight.
And Uncle Charley and old man Wiley Cochram was making brandy right up the creek from where this happened.
And Uncle Charley he come down there. And Wes says, Charley says "how about going and getting me a half pint of brandy"? He says, "I've stayed here all night, I need a drink".
Well Uncle Charley went up on.. (laughs) and got him a half pint bottle full of brandy, brought it down and hand it to Wes.
He had two nickles laying on Houston's eyes. He reached down and got one of them off of Houston's eyes and said "Here's your pay Charley, hell fire".
He said "hell fire" at end of everything he talked about. (laughs)
Now if he could have got Uncle Charley to take that nickle he would of told Charley took money off a dead man's eyes.

Dave

Offline drywud

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #13 on: October 09, 2014, 05:27:24 AM »
Thanks every body for the great help

I updated the transcription file,(https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B1mIdjrCoH2BUUVtdlR4c09yakU/view?usp=sharing) the first half of the movie is practically done transcribing.

Offline David Kaatz

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Re: Les Blank 's Sprout Wings and Fly starring Tommy Jarell
« Reply #14 on: October 12, 2014, 05:29:45 PM »
Starting at about 8:16

Interviewer: Did Charlie Barnett Lowe especially like that tune Tommy?

(The rest of that section looks correct.)

Do you want help to transcribe the church song? It sounds pretty hard to do.

(The next section looks good too.)

@12:32
This table was my mother's, which she had 11 children. And we all ATE off of it.
Even it stayed in the kitchen until way after she died. Me and John used it until we got a new DINETTE set.

And every time she get a new table cloth, if it wasn't too thick, she would put one on top of it, and this is what it is, she'd put one on top of the other like this, see its STUCK TOGETHER.

(the rest up to 14:01 looks correct)

That's it for now.
Dave

 


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