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Hambone Willie Newbern wasn't as well thought of in the area as maybe he should have been... when Yank's mother heard he'd traded the pig for a mandolin she said 'Well, that's OK son, this winter, when we're all eating meat, you can eat that mandolin' - Yank Rachell, as told by Steve James, Port Townsend 97

Recent Posts

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1
Country Blues Lyrics / Re: Larry Johnson Lyrics
« Last post by Johnm on Today at 04:02:07 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions, Harry. I made most of the changes you suggested and found some other things I needed to change, as well. Thanks!
2
Country Blues Lyrics / Re: Larry Johnson Lyrics
« Last post by Harry on Today at 02:16:55 PM »
Love "Fast And Funky". Some suggestions;

1.3 Now if I clean up, baby, now, tell me now, can I go home with you

3.1 Well now, don't mistreatment mistreat me, baby, 'cause, 'cause I was young and wild

4.3 not sure about "friends"

5.1 Well now, tell me, baby, says and say said I said a, how can I live in here (Spoken: How can I do it?)

5.3 When this woman that I'm lovin', Lord she, sure don't want to do ?  (I don't hear "don't want to do")

6.1 Well, I'm leavin' in the mornin' and, if I have to ride the blind
3
Country Blues Lyrics / Re: Larry Johnson Lyrics
« Last post by Johnm on Yesterday at 10:16:53 AM »
    Hi all,
    Here are the lyrics of Larry Johnson's version of "Ragged and Dirty", which he recorded for his Blue Goose album, "Fast and Funky", along with his performance of the tune:



INTRO

Lord, I'm broke and hungry, baby, ragged and dirty, too
Broke and hungry, ragged and dirty, too
Now if I clean up, baby, tell me now, can I go home with you?

Now if I can't come in, just let me, sit down in front your door
I can't come in, let me sit down in front your door
Child, I'll leave so soon that your man won't never know

Well now, don't mistreat me, baby, 'cause, 'cause I was young and wild
Well don't mistreat me, 'cause I"m young and wild
Well, you must try to remember that you, that you was a child

Well, I went up to my window and I, peeped in through my blind (Spoken: What you see?)
Went to my window, peeped in through my blind
Seen my best friend's a-humpin', thought I heard my baby cryin'

Well, tell me, baby, says, said I say, how can I live in here (Spoken: How can I do it?)
Tell me, baby, how, can I live, live in here (Spoken: How can I?)
When this woman that I'm lovin', Lord, she sure don't want to do

Well, I'm leavin' in the mornin', if have to ride the blind
I'm leavin' in the mornin', have to ride the blind
'Cause I'm broke and hungry, people, people, I ain't lyin'

CODA

Edited 8/3 to pick up corrections from Harry and Johnm

All best,
Johnm



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4
Hi all,
For the Song of the Month lesson in August, 2021 at my website, johnmillerguitar.com, I have selected Larry Johnson's version of "Ragged And Dirty", which he played out of D in standard tuning. One of the hallmarks of Larry's style was that even when playing Blues warhorses like "Ragged And Dirty" or "Two White Horses", and never played a recreation of another musician's earlier version of the song--he always came up with his own way of playing the song. Here is Larry's arrangement of "Ragged And Dirty":



Because Larry played the song (at least in this recorded version) very much as a set piece with minimal variations, the transcription that accompanies this lesson is relatively short, with his intro and verse one accompaniment. The verse is a long form, by the way, with 23 bars. If you order the lesson, you'll receive the TAB transcription and very thorough talk-throughs of Larry's intro and verse one accompaniment. For the month of August, 2021 only, I'm offering this lesson for $35.00. To order it, go to www.johnmillerguitar.com , in the Teaching section, and follow the instructions for placing a lesson order. I hope folks will take advantage of this opportunity to learn this strikingly original arrangement of "Ragged And Dirty".

All best,
Johnm
5
Country Blues Lyrics / Re: Ishmon Bracey's Lyrics
« Last post by Johnm on July 31, 2021, 06:22:24 AM »
Hi David,
"Trouble Hearted Blues" is a one-off structurally, I believe. Chordally, it is pretty simple, with each verse beginning on a IV chord which rocks to a I chord. That phrase is answered by a second phrase that starts on a V chord which then resolves to a I chord. The meter is mostly 4/4, but with an unusual accenting pattern, with the thumb hitting on beats one and three and the fingers answering the thumb strokes on "+ 2 +" and "+ 4 +", so that if you diagram that with T indicating thumb strokes and F indicating notes struck by the fingers it looks like this:

    1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +
    T  F F F T  F  F F

As performed by Bracey, the song's structure ends up being more complicated than what I've described so far, because Bracey "goes long" at the end of some phrases, sticking on two extra beats in the last measure of a vocal phrase in some instances, in others, just vamping for a little while and holding a chord before moving on to the next phrase, and sometimes connecting chords with bass runs and breaking out of the picking pattern. The phrasing is further complicated by Bracey hanging fire from time to time to allow his spoken word accompanist to comment on the song as it is delivered. Taken in sum, it has a looseness and "in the moment" quality that is almost never encountered in present-day music. Here is the song, for folks who have not heard it before or not heard it in a while:



All best,
Johnm
6
Country Blues Lyrics / Re: Ishmon Bracey's Lyrics
« Last post by tenderfoot84 on July 31, 2021, 02:11:25 AM »
Hi all,

How would you characterise the rhythm on Trouble Hearted Blues? It's not a waltz. Is the fourth beat just left hanging? I never really thought about it before but it is very distinctive. I love how precise his wee outro is as well. It really contrasts with the sparse playing in the rest of the performance.

David
7
Country Blues Lyrics / Re: Lee Green Lyrics
« Last post by waxwing on July 30, 2021, 04:19:14 PM »
I think the humor is that, as banjochris suggested, Napper weighs 4/5 ton, is a very large man, and the amount of fabric for a coat made it so expensive that he just stole it. The laugh was on him because the coat still didn't reach around his girth. Probably the expectation is that everyone knows the joke so he just needs to hit the high points and everyone gets it.

Wax
8
Country Blues Lyrics / Re: Lee Green Lyrics
« Last post by dj on July 30, 2021, 12:58:27 PM »
In Bad Man Napper, could the line "Stole a coat from a tailor, weighed sixteen hundred pounds" actually be "Stole a colt from a tailor, weighed sixteen hundred pounds"?  A draft horse, like a Clydesdale, Belgian, or Percheron, would weigh about that much.  Maybe Mr. Napper stole the horse that was pulling the tailor's wagon?
9
Country Blues Lyrics / Re: Mance Lipscomb Lyrics
« Last post by monts on July 30, 2021, 09:32:54 AM »
Thank you... I thought he might have said nail... now pulling out the wood makes perfect sense! What a great line!
I love Mance!
10
Country Blues Lyrics / Re: Mance Lipscomb Lyrics
« Last post by Slack on July 30, 2021, 08:02:59 AM »
It is or was a pretty common sexual metaphor, which makes sense in the context of the verse.  Mance ain't getting laid.
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