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Having a phonograph without these records is like having pork chops without gravy - Yes indeed - Columbia advertisement for Bessie Smith's Hateful Blues/Frankie Blues

Author Topic: Bill Jackson Lyrics  (Read 200 times)

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Online Johnm

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Bill Jackson Lyrics
« on: September 23, 2023, 08:39:50 AM »
Hi all,
Bill Jackson was a Maryland songster who was featured on the first album on Pete Welding's Testament label, with a release entitled, "Long Steel Rail-Blues by Maryland Songster Bill Jackson". Jackson accompanied himself on a twelve-string guitar, and on several numbers he had a high octave B string on it, in addition to the more commonly-encountered octave E, A, D, and G strings, much as Willie McTell did in his later recordings. Bill Jackson's repertoire was interesting in that he did many songs from familiar song families but most often in versions I've never heard elsewhere. His "Freight Tran Runs So Slow" seems related to Libba Cotten's "Freight Train", but is a different song, really. Here it is:



INTRO SOLO

Oh, the freight trains runs so slow, my babe,
I can't get back home this-a way
Oh, there must be a wreck on that C & O line
That I can't get back home this (guitar finishes line)

SOLO

Oh, the freight train runs so slow, my babe, that I
Can't get a letter from home
Oh, there must be a wreck on that C & O line, that I
Can't get a letter from (guitar finishes line)

SOLO

My mother told me a long time ago, says,
"Son, never marry a woman you know.
She will cause you to weep and she'll cause you to mourn, and she'll
Cause you to leave your happy home."

Oh, me, oh, oh my, every
Man falls on hard luck sometimes

CODA

Edited 9/24 to pick up correction from Blues Vintage

All best,
Johnm

 
« Last Edit: September 24, 2023, 07:19:35 AM by Johnm »

Offline lindy

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Re: Bill Jackson Lyrics
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2023, 09:08:29 AM »
John:

You'll want to do some thread-combining here, there are Bill Jackson lyrics in threads on songs about the Titanic, a Red River Blues SOTM thread, and a "Miller's Breakdown" featuring his "Freight Train Blues," which is an entirely different song from "Freight Train Run So Slow."

I found this by checking the "Bill Jackson/Bill Jackson Lyrics" links in Weeniepedia. I coincidentally discovered it just this past week from a search I was doing for info on his "Titanic Blues" song, which I'm interested in learning.

Lindy

Online Johnm

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Re: Bill Jackson Lyrics
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2023, 10:07:58 AM »
Hi Lindy,
Thanks for the thought, but I'm loath to do that kind of moving of songs around after they've already been posted. A reasonably high percentage of musicians' song lyrics were first posted in the Miller's Breakdown or Song of the Month threads, and they already live in a context there. If folks want to see all the songs that have been posted by a particular musician, the best thing to do is try a dedicated lyric thread but also check Weeniepedia.
All best,
Johnm

Offline lindy

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Re: Bill Jackson Lyrics
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2023, 12:45:01 PM »
I was operating on the belief that in the past you had taken individual posts from various threads and combined them into a single dedicated lyric thread, allowing the original threads to remain intact. Obviously I was wrong.

Lindy

Offline Blues Vintage

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Re: Bill Jackson Lyrics
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2023, 03:28:24 PM »

1.4  That I can't get back home this (guitar finishes line)

Online Johnm

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Re: Bill Jackson Lyrics
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2023, 07:20:04 AM »
Thanks for the catch, Blues Vintage, I have made the change.

Online Johnm

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Re: Bill Jackson Lyrics
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2023, 09:24:07 AM »
Hi all,
Bill Jackson performed the title song on his Testament album, "Long Steel Rail" accompanying himself out of A position in standard tuning. The song is related to such songs as Peg Leg Howell's "Rolling Mill Blues" or Bill Monroe's "In The Pines". Like many of Jackson's songs, though, it is not like any version of such songs I've previously heard. On his refrains, he really swallows "but I won't". Here is "Long Steel Rail":



INTRO SOLO

On a long steel rail and a short cross-tie, honey, got to
Tramp my way back home

I don't have no money to pay my fare, has to
Tramp my way back home

REFRAIN: So worried now, babe, so worried, honey
Yes, I'm worried now, but I won't be worried long

I don't have nowhere, lie my poor achin' head, have to
Lyin' on a hard frozen ground

But if I had listened, what my mother said, I
Wouldn't be in here today

But by being so young and so foolish, too, I
Throwed myself away

REFRAIN: So worried now, so worried, honey
I'm worried now, but won't be worried long

SOLO X 2

Every time, every time, pass that old Oakwood Jail, I can
See my fair brown peepin' through the bars

But if ever I reach my home again, I'll 
Never come here no more

REFRAIN: So worried now, I'm worried, honey
I'm worried now, but I won't be worried long

On a long steel rail, and a short cross-tie, going to
Tramp my way back home

CODA

Edited 9/30 to pick up corrections from Blues Vintage

All best,
Johnm




 

« Last Edit: September 30, 2023, 02:39:02 PM by Johnm »

Offline Blues Vintage

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Re: Bill Jackson Lyrics
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2023, 02:28:41 PM »
I don't hear the "yes" in 2nd and 3rd refrain.

Online Johnm

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Re: Bill Jackson Lyrics
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2023, 02:44:08 PM »
Thanks for the catches, Blues Vintage, I have made the changes.

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