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Cain killed Abel, but I wasn't going to let that cane kill me - Emmett Murray, on quitting his job in the sugar cane fields, notes to Drop On Down in Florida

Author Topic: Working Man's Blues (not Estes)  (Read 1760 times)

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Offline GerryC

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Working Man's Blues (not Estes)
« on: June 15, 2006, 04:29:32 AM »
Last night I was at my local club listening to one of the local blues heroes, Dave Speight (a long time member of the Leeds [Yorkshire UK] Blues Mafia that included Brendan Croker, Steve Phillips and Mark Knopfler). He played two storming sets and in the second one came a song I'd not heard him do before, despite having known him for years. It was called Working Man's Blues but was not the John Estes song of that title. It had a guitar part not unlike Blind Willie McTell's Statesboro Blues (though on 6-string) and included a verse which went (approximately):

A working man ain't nothin' but a married woman's slave [x2]
Get her in bed at night and she won't behave.

Being a right eejit I forgot to ask Dave about the song after the gig - can any weenies help? Who recorded it? Anyone know the full lyrics? I know it's not much to go on, but nothing has defeated the Weenies yet. In fact you are inweencible  :D

Cheerily,

Gerry C
I done seen better days, but I'm puttin' up with these...

Offline Slack

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Re: Working Man's Blues (not Estes)
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2006, 08:02:28 AM »
Quote
A working man ain't nothin' but a married woman's slave [x2]
Get her in bed at night and she won't behave.

Hi Gerry,

It doesn't ring a bell with me (not saying alot) -- but the lyric sounds modern to me -- you sure it is an old CB song?

Offline GerryC

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Re: Working Man's Blues (not Estes)
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2006, 08:11:14 AM »
Hi Slack. I'm not 100% sure, but it certainly had the 'feel' of an old song. The lyric I quoted was the only one I could remember [for probably obvious reasons  :P ] but the other verses were all "in the idiom". I've been visiting various info and lyric sites today, so far without success. I'm going to have to call a mutual pal and get Dave's e-mail address.... But that feels like failure  :(

Cheerily,

Gerry C
I done seen better days, but I'm puttin' up with these...

Offline GerryC

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  • Jest settin' here a-pickin' and a grinnin'
    • www.reverbnation.com/gerrycooper
Re: Working Man's Blues (not Estes)
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2006, 07:18:02 AM »
Mystery solved! Dave Speight (www.snakekings.co.uk) tells me it's his (fairly free!) adaptation of Blind Boy Fuller's Working Man Blues, recorded in NYC in July 1937. It's on the JSP box set of BBF, Disc C, track 3. Great song, but I have to say that DS does it somewhat differently - which will account for my not recognising it  ::) . Thanks to all the (equally puzzled?) readers of this thread.

Cheerily,

Gerry C
I done seen better days, but I'm puttin' up with these...

Offline Bunker Hill

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Re: Working Man's Blues (not Estes)
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2006, 10:00:52 AM »
Mystery solved! Dave Speight (www.snakekings.co.uk) tells me it's his (fairly free!) adaptation of Blind Boy Fuller's Working Man Blues, recorded in NYC in July 1937. It's on the JSP box set of BBF, Disc C, track 3. Great song, but I have to say that DS does it somewhat differently - which will account for my not recognising it  ::) . Thanks to all the (equally puzzled?) readers of this thread.
And I wouldn't mind betting that if you enquired further he'd probably recall first hearing it on a 1969 UK Saydisc Fuller compilation on which the title was first reissued and remained the only microgroove source for the song for a decade or more. ;D

 


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