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'Race' records of the 1920's revealed only too obviously that the chastity projected by spirituals or groups like the Fisk Jubilee Singers did not truly reflect black social values, any more than Pat Boone represents the typical American male - Steve Calt's notes, Bo Carter, Banana In Your Fruit Basket, Yazoo

Author Topic: Big Joe Williams Lyrics  (Read 12986 times)

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Offline Johnm

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Big Joe Williams Lyrics
« on: February 03, 2004, 09:55:48 PM »
Hi all,
I just sort of got back into early Big Joe Williams this past week-end, and wanted to ask for some lyric help on one of his songs, "I'm Gettin' Wild About Her", that I've always really liked and just made a new guitar part for.  I think I have most of it, but would be grateful for any help on verses 1 and 7.

"Good morning, judge, give me the lowest fine
Killed a man 'bout this stuff of mine."
REFRAIN: I'm gettin' wild about her, yes I'm wild about her
I'm getting wild about that heavy stuff of mine.

Baby, want to keep your daddy from cryin'
Save me little more of that stuff of mine
REFRAIN: I'm gettin' wild about you, yes, I'm wild about you
I'm getting wild about that heavy stuff of mine

Now baby, don't be so fast
If you can't shimmy, shake your yas yas yas
REFRAIN: I'm gettin' wild about it, boys, I'm wild about her
I'm getting wild about that heavy stuff of mine

I get drunk walk the streets all night
All you got to do is treat your daddy right
REFRAIN: I'm gettin' wild about it, yes, I'm wild about it
Yes, I'm wild about that heavy stuff of mine

SPOKEN DURING SOLO:  Play it one time, boy.  Let's have a little fun, sure.

All I want is my regular right
Three meals a day and my lovin' every night
REFRAIN: And I'm gettin' wild about her, yes, I'm wild about her
I'm gettin' wild about that heavy stuff of mine

The lawyer told the judge, "Give me the lowest fine
Killed a man 'bout the stuff of mine"
REFRAIN: I'm gettin' wild about it, yes, I'm wild about it, hoo
I'm gettin' wild about that heavy stuff of mine

SOLO

Yeah baby, don't you be so rough
Daddy wild about my heavy stuff
REFRAIN: I'm gettin' wild about her, (spoken: Beat it, boy!) I'm gettin' wild about her
Yes, I'm wild about that heavy stuff of mine

Edited, 1/29/11 to pick up corrections from Johnm

This one is on the Vol. 1 of the early Big Joe Williams and, I think, was on an early country Blues re-issue album from the 60s or 70s called "Bluebird Blues".  It's a great song, and thanks for any assistance.
All best,
John


« Last Edit: June 05, 2013, 01:40:26 PM by Johnm »

Offline waxwing

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Re: "I'm Gettin' Wild About Her" Big Joe Williams
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2004, 02:28:08 PM »
Hey John,
Gave a listen to the Document BDCD6003 version today. It's a pretty good copy. You pretty much have it, I think. Here's what I hear for the first verse:

Good morning, judge, gimme lowest fine
Killed a man 'bout the stuff o' mine

Bob McLeod has:

Good morning, judge, give me the lowest fine
Killed a man 'bout the stuff of mine

I don't here 'the' or 'a' in the first line.

In the sixth verse I do hear an indication of the 'the' in the first line but he's goin' pretty fast:

The lawyer told the judge, gimme the lowest fine
Killed a man 'bout the stuff o' mine

Pretty much how Bob has it, too.
In both verses I hear 'the' in the second line. There just seems to be an infinitesimal glottal stop before the 's' sound of 'stuff', but I think I'm over analyzing.

Seventh verse I hear exactly the way you do. I think you might have meant the sixth verse.  Bob has 'Look here, baby' but I have no idea where he's gettin' that. Maybe 'Here, baby', but I don't think so.
Hope that helps. Workin' on some possible class material for PT? Great song. Thanks for gettin'me to listen to it about twenty times.
So, in the discography, William Mitchell is listed as playing imb., which is obviously a string bass, but how do they get that abbreviation? I can't find an index of abbreviations, although I know I've seen one somewhere.
All for now.
John C.
"People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it."
George Bernard Shaw

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Offline Johnm

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Re: "I'm Gettin' Wild About Her" Big Joe Williams
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2004, 10:42:44 PM »
Hi John C.,
Thanks for the help.  I thought I was close but some times it is really hard to tell.  This is a great song--it really sneaks up on you.  I had my guitar low-tuned to play "Hard Time Blues", and I just heard a way to do this tune.   I believe the imb. referred to in the disc notes is "imitation bass", something that appeared a lot on Joe Williams' and Tommy McClennan's recordings from this era, around the late '30s.  I don't know what it is that makes the bass an "imitation" bass, because it certainly sounds like a string bass;  perhaps it was a washtub bass.  Often it was played by Ransom Knowling.  The bass on this tune is pretty good, but on some of Tommy McClennan's, e.g. "New Highway 51 Blues" it is mystifying, sounding like it is from some kind of semi-musical Twilight Zone.  Hard to imagine what they thought it was adding to the music.
All best,
John   

Offline waxwing

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Re: "I'm Gettin' Wild About Her" Big Joe Williams
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2004, 11:53:24 PM »
In case anybody's thinkin' about pickin' up a disc or two of Big Joe, Hold your horses. Yup, JSP is at it again. Here's a post (edited by me) from the PWBL:

It's a pity !
Just got the JSP Big Joe Williams box.
It's a five cd box (again) .
They are not saying it has the complete Big Joe output til 1952.
It ends with the Trumpet recordings (1951).
But ,Ohhh how tragic, they forgot the the two unissued tracks "Freinds and Pals" and "Juanita".
These were released on the Trumpet cd Delta Blues 1951, Trumpet AA 702.
The JSP box has also the complete Tommy McClennan output.
Included the alt. takes of "Cross Cut Saw Blues" and "Bluebird Blues".
Also the Robert Petway recordings without the 2 unissued Bluebird tracks are
here.
First I thought they also left out "Boogie Woogie Woman" but they put it in as a McClennan track.
On Cd 5 we find the David "Honeyboy" Edwards tracks recorded for Library Of Congress (1942).
To get this cd filled up they put in the complete output of Willie "Poor Boy "
Lofton. (1935 ). Nice music but a little out of place, I think.
Greetings,
Andries van den Berg

Haven't seen any word on the quality, i.e. remastered or just ripped from Document or Yazoo or whoever, but, as usual, the price can't be beat for 5CDs, except maybe from emusic. Thought you folks'd be interested.
All for now.
John C.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2004, 11:54:55 PM by waxwing »
"People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it."
George Bernard Shaw

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Offline slidnslim

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Mellow Peaches lyrics
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2007, 05:01:49 PM »
I was wondering if anybody knows the lyrics to Big Joe's
 "Mellow Peaches" I learnt' the guitar parts from John Hammond
 But I need the lyrics!

 Any help appreciated, Kenny, ;D

Offline Bunker Hill

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Re: Mellow Peaches lyrics
« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2007, 11:29:22 AM »
As you'll see from this web page

http://www.wirz.de/music/willjfrm.htm

Big Joe recorded this number on mumerous occasions and, from memory, never the same way.

All you've got to do now is determine which one Hammond used for his rendition. The date of Hammond's will obviously narrow down the search to a Big Joe version prior to that! But if he learnt it on a one-to-one basis with BJW, that's another ball game....  ;D

Offline slidnslim

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Re: Mellow Peaches lyrics
« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2007, 03:11:13 AM »

 Thanks bunker,I got it on album somewhere in my attic!
  just to find it know!

 Kenny,

Offline Bunker Hill

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Re: Mellow Peaches lyrics
« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2007, 06:34:27 AM »
If Hammond learnt from an LP I'm guessing it's the 1958 Delmark release.

Offline Johnm

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Re: Mellow Peaches lyrics
« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2007, 10:32:11 PM »
Hi all,
Here are the lyrics from the 1958 Delmark recording Bunker Hill cited.  I'm curious--did John Hammond do this as an instrumental?  Why are you missing lyrics?

   Don't my peaches look mellow, hangin' way up in your tree? (spoken: Oh, babe)
   Don't my peaches look mellow, hangin' way up in your tree?
   Don't your house seem lonesome when your baby pack up and leave?

   I ain't got no woman, talk baby talk to me
   I ain't got no woman, talk baby talk to me (spoken: Oh, babe, oh, baby)
   Your peaches so mellow, I'm gonna climb way up in your tree

   I'm gon' get me a step ladder, climb way up on your limb (spoken:  Oh, babe)
   I'm gonna get me a step ladder, climb way up in your trees (spoken:  Oh yeah)
   Don't your house seem lonesome when your baby pack up and leave?

All best,
Johnm
 

Offline slidnslim

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Re: Mellow Peaches lyrics
« Reply #9 on: August 23, 2007, 03:20:14 AM »

 Thanks john!, I've got this on album somewhere and can't find it,
 I seen Hammond play this in the eighties and I remember the guitar
 part,now that I'm in a duo I want to add this song,
 He played it in spanish,

 Kenny,

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Mellow Peaches lyrics
« Reply #10 on: August 23, 2007, 07:47:53 AM »
Big Joe did an early version called Mellow Apples with the opening line being similar but slightly more graphic: "Don't my apples look mellow, baby, swinging down on your tree..."


Offline Johnm

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Re: Big Joe Williams Lyrics
« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2013, 02:09:49 PM »
Hi all,
Big Joe Williams recorded "Providence Help The Poor People" at a session in Chicago on February 25, 1935.  I had always assumed, without listening very carefully to the lyrics, that the title referred to God taking care of the poor people's needs.  In fact, listening to the lyrics (which really helps, by the way) makes it clear that Providence in this instance refers to a social welfare agency of some sort.  The first verse of Big Joe's rendition employs an AAB phrasing.  All of the subsequent verses use a lyric break at the front end of the verse followed by a variable chorus, based on the "Red Cross Store" model, with each chorus beginning, variously, with "I told them, "No", or "They told me, "No", "She told me, "No", et al.  Joe sort of swallows a word in the tagline of the first verse, between "a" and "meal".
Big Joe accompanied himself out of Spanish tuning here, as was his wont, and the barely contained ferocity of his time-keeping behind his singing and in between his vocal phrases is tremendously exciting.  The way he was able to combine thumb-popping of bass strings, occasional slide passages, rapid-fire strumming, and quicksilver shifts between underlying duple and triple feels in his rhythm makes him one of the most difficult of Country Blues players to copy, even at a greatly reduced level.  The kind of intense engagement his playing always had in the "here and now" provides a powerful argument for at least trying to add some of that quality to one's own playing.  It sure is thrilling playing.

Well, the Providence helpin' the poor people, Lord those could not help theirselves
Well, the Providence helpin' the poor people, those could not help theirselves, boy,
They give 'em all a meal a day, boys, then they help someone else

I went to the office this mornin', 'bout a-half past four,
Heard Mr. Roosevelt say they wasn't gonna help no more,
REFRAIN: Told them, "No, Providence, it ain't gonna help no more."
Well, well, it may be tomorrow, hoo-hoo, Lord, I don't really know

Well, Mr. Roosevelt told me ain't gonna be no hard times no more,
He gonna let the poor people go any place they wants to go
REFRAIN: I told him, "Yes, Providence, it ain't gonna help no more."
Well, well, it may be tomorrow, hoo, Lord, I won't be back no more

I got up this mornin', 'bout a-half past eight,
Started down Pine Street, boy, to get my meal ticket straight
REFRAIN: They told me, "No, Providence, it ain't gonna help no more."
Well, well, it may be tomorrow, hoo, Lord, might dust my bed to go

Well, it's some has a shovel, some has a spade,
You know, the Providence will give me and my babe a place to stay
REFRAIN: And I told them, no, he wasn't gonna help you no more.
Well, well, it may be tomorrow, hoo, Lord, I don't really know

SOLO

Well the rooster told the hen, the hen, "Go lay."
She told him, "No, the Providence, give me a place to stay."
REFRAIN: She told him, no, she don't have to lay no more.
Well, well, it may be tomorrow, hoo, Lord, I won't be back here at all

I aksed my woman this mornin' could I fill her place
She said, "No, Joe, the Providence give me a place to stay."
REFRAIN: She told me, no, Lord, I could not fill her place.
Lord, I believe I'll get up in the mornin', hoo, Lord, I believe I'll leave this place

Every mornin' the clock be strikin' eight
That's when I go down to Providence, boy, and I can't get my business straight
REFRAIN: They told me, no, they wasn't gonna help no more

Edited 6/7 to pick up corrections from banjochris

All best,
Johnm
 
« Last Edit: June 07, 2013, 09:21:56 PM by Johnm »

Offline dj

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Re: Big Joe Williams Lyrics
« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2013, 02:52:48 PM »
Hi, John.  Guido Van Rijn, in the book Roosevelt's Blues, states that charity organizations helping to feed and shelter poor people during the Depression were often called "provident" organizations, I guess because they provided for those in need.  Van Rijn transcribes the title word as "providents".  So the title is another example of a record company's mishearing or misunderstanding the actual song title.

Offline Johnm

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Re: Big Joe Williams Lyrics
« Reply #13 on: June 05, 2013, 02:58:28 PM »
That's interesting, dj.  I think in this instance, it is just as likely that Big Joe misunderstood the idea of using the word "provident" in the singular, and it then being made into a plural, 'providents", from that (no wonder!).  Since he was clearly talking about a particular place, referring to it in a plural usage would have felt and sounded really weird, I think.
All best,
Johnm

Offline dj

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Re: Big Joe Williams Lyrics
« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2013, 04:15:38 PM »
You're right, John.  Thinking about it while reading the lyrics, I think Big Joe was the one who misheard or misunderstood the word.