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Bill's a great promoter...instead o' voting once, the fool voted twice - Pink Anderson, does Jimmie Rodgers, He's in the Jailhouse Now

Author Topic: Hobart Smith's "Graveyard Blues"  (Read 807 times)

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Offline Johnm

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Hobart Smith's "Graveyard Blues"
« on: April 01, 2011, 08:19:34 AM »
Hi all,
Hobart Smith recorded "Graveyard Blues" in Bluefield, Virginia in 1959, for Alan Lomax, who had recorded him several times previously for the Library of Congress.  The performance was first made available on the old Prestige "Southern Journey" series and can now be found on "Hobart Smith: Blue Ridge Legacy", Rounder CD 11661-1799-2.  Hobart Smith was an almost unimaginably strong and versatile player--as good as any Old-Time banjo player ever to record, a fine fiddler, a powerful guitarist and a ripping piano (!) player, as well as a strong singer.  His playing on whatever instrument he happened to be holding at the time had a kind of electric intensity and engagement that commands the listener's attention.  Everything he played is worth hearing. 

"Graveyard Blues" is a 16-bar blues that Smith played out of E position in standard tuning.  Hobart Smith put a neat hitch in his timing at the end of his first vocal phrase to insert runs.  I've taught this tune in the past at Port Townsend and EBA Blues Week in years gone by, and find that returning to it after not having heard it for a while I appreciate it all the more.  Here is "Graveyard Blues":



   Lord, I went to the graveyard, looked down on her face
   Went to the graveyard, looked down on her face
   Went to the graveyard, looked down on her face
   I'm sorry, woman, I just can't take your place

   That's all right, baby that's all right for you
   That's all right, baby, that's all right for you
   That's all right, baby, that's all right for you
   You're low-down and dirty and I know the way you do

   Well, I hate to see the rising sun go down
   Hate to see the risin' sun go down
   Hate to see the risin' sun go down
   Ain't got nobody for to put my arms around

   Come here, woman, see what you have done
   Come here, woman, see what you have done
   Come here, woman, see what you have done
   You've caused me to love you, now your good man's come

   Oh, that's all right, baby, that's all right for you
   That's all right, baby, that's all right for you
   That's all right, baby, that's all right for you
   You're low-down and dirty, and I know the way you do

   Well, I hate to see the rising sun go down
   Hate to see the risin' sun go down
   Hate to see the risin' sun go down
   Ain't got nobody for to put my arms around

   Oh, take me to the graveyard, roll the sod over me
   Take me to the graveyard, roll the sod over me
   Take me to the graveyard, roll the sod over me
   I want to tell the world how you mistreated me

   Oh, that's all right, that's all right for you
   That's all right, baby, that's all right for you
   That's all right, baby, that's all right for you
   You're low-down and dirty and I know the way you do

All best,
Johnm

 
« Last Edit: June 30, 2020, 10:50:06 PM by Johnm »

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