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Big Bill Broonzy Lyrics

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gribbon:
This song is included on the first disc of the JSP collection "All the Classic Sides". I can post it here if someone tells me how.

I worked out most of the lyrics, but there are a few annoying phrases which i can't hear. It's a fun song I think. Obviously it's mistitled and should have been called "You Can't Do That" or "They're Trying to Tell Me" or something. Appreciate any help...

Lord they all, trying to tell me, boys, that you can't do that
Lord they all, trying to show me,  ??? , why I can't do that
I've been looked up in jail, and you couldn't get booked ( ???)
Then you say, oh well, I'm cooked.

Then the people all, singin and dancin, tell me that you can't do that
That's wrong!
Boy, you can't do that.

Lord they all, trying to tell me, boys, that you can't do that
Lord they all, singing and dancing, tell me that you can't do that
Then they caught me with the spirit,  ??? gallon of mash
Ten gallons of liqour, lord, and... one bowl of hash.

Then they all, trying to tell me, boys, that you can't do that.
No that's wrong!
Tell you that you can't do that

Lord they all, trying to tell me, boys, that you can't do that
They all, singing and dancing, tell me that you can't do that
Then they take me to the jail before they put me in the cell
Hit me so hard,  ???  ???  ???

Then the people all, trying to tell me, boys, that you can't do that
No that's wrong! No.
Boys, that you can't do that

You hear them all singing and dancing, tell me that you can't
You know, they're trying to tell med, boys, that

I was tried by an upright judge
And he give me ten years to serve.

Then the people all, trying to tell me, boys, that you can't do that
No that's wrong!
Tell me that you can't do that

Bunker Hill:
Wonderful song. About two decades back I attempted to transcribe this song for a little bit of nonsense I was trying to write. Usually I leave both writing and transcription to those better suited to the task but here's what I came up with from a 1985 BBB Matchbox LP using a not so good 78! Maybe between you, I and the rest of the good folk of Weneie Land a definitive transcription will emerge. Be as critical as you like with what follows as I seem to have misfiled the LP in question and unable to relisten.

Lord, they all tryin' to tell me
Why that they can't do that.
Lord, they all tryin' to show me
Just why they can't do that.
Have you ever been locked up in jail and you couldn't get booked?
Then you say, "Oh, well, I'm cooked."
Then the people all singin' and dancin',
Tellin' you that they can't do that, that's wrong
Why is they can't do that.

Lord, they all tryin' to tell me
Why that they can't do that.
Lord they all singin' and dancin'
Tellin' me that they can't do that.

Sayin', they caught rne with a still and two-fifty gallons of mash.
Ten gallons of liquor, lord, and one bottle of hash
Then they all tryin' to tell me,
Why that they can't do that, no, that's wrong
Tellin' you 'bout they can't do that.

Lord, they all tryin' to tell me
Why that they can't do that.
Hear 'em all singin' and dancin'
Tellin' you that they can't do that
Sayin', they take me to the jail before they put me in the cell.
Kick me so hard until both of us fell
Then the people all tryin' to tell me
Why that they can't do that, no, that's wrong, though
Why that they can't do that.

Lord, you hear 'em all singin' and dancin',
Tellin' you that they can't do that.
You know, they're tryin' to tell me
Why that they can't do that.
Lord, I was tried by an upright judge.
And he give me ten years to serve.
Then the people all tryin' to tell me
Why that they can't do that, no, that's wrong
Tellin' you that they can't do that.

gribbon:
Thank's a lot. Your transcription cleared up a few things. There's a lot of unimportant descrepancies between it and mine. Mostly things like "why" instead of "boys"...

Funny, I heard him singing "you can't do that", but know i hear it "they can't do that". At least in most places. Guess "you can't do that" made more sense to me.

I agree with the line "Have you ever been locked up in jail and you couldn't get booked".

"Two-fifty gallons of mash" also sound reasonable.

I too hear "Kicked me som hard" now, but I'm not totally convinced it is "both of us fell".

EDIT: Added MP3 to the first post of this thread, so you can listen to it...

Bunker Hill:
I think this needs a completely fresh pair of ears, I'm just hearing what I want to hear now. ;D

Now's the time for Weenie C's veteran transcribers to bring a bit of common sense and logic to it all. Over to you guys.

GhostRider:
Howdy gents:

I listened to this a number of times (great tune BTW). I agree with Bunker Hill's stuff ex. for a few "boy"s.

I think "bottle of hash" is right as well as "both of us fell"

Here's what I get. My changes from Bunker are in bold.

Lord, they all tryin' to tell me
Boy that they can't do that.
Lord, they all tryin' to show me
Just why they can't do that.
Have you ever been locked up in jail and you couldn't get booked?
Then you say, "Oh, well, I'm cooked."
Then the people all singin' and dancin',
Tellin' you that they can't do that, that's wrong
Why is they can't do that.

Lord, they all tryin' to tell me
Boy that they can't do that.
Lord they all singin' and dancin'
Tellin' me that they can't do that.

Sayin', they caught rne with a still and two-fifty gallons of mash.
Ten gallons of liquor, lord, and one bottle of hash
Then they all tryin' to tell me,
Why that they can't do that, no, that's wrong
Tellin' you 'bout they can't do that.

Instrumental break

Lord, they all tryin' to tell me
Boy that they can't do that.
Hear 'em all singin' and dancin'
Tellin' you that they can't do that
Sayin', they take me to the jail before they put me in the cell.
Kick me so hard until both of us fell
Then the people all tryin' to tell me
Why that they can't do that, no, that's wrong, though
Why but that they did do that.

Lord, you hear 'em all singin' and dancin',
Tellin' you that they can't do that.
You know, they're tryin' to tell me
Why that they can't do that.
Lord, I was tried by an upright judge.
And he give me ten years to serve.
Then the people all tryin' to tell me
Why that they can't do that, no, that's wrong
Tellin' you that they can't do that.


Alex

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