Lyrics - from Blues Records

 

Transcribed from recordings by Craig Morrison. Comments, corrections ? click
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Elmore James : The Sun is Shining
Memphis Minnie : Down By the Riverside
Blind Boy Fuller : Three Ball Blues
Noah Lewis’s Jug Band : Selling the Jelly
Whistlin’ Alex Moore : Blue Bloomer Blues

THE SUN IS SHINING by Elmore James

 1) The sun is shining although it’s raining in my heart (2x)
You know I love you baby, but the best of friends must part

 2) My baby left me this morning, and didn’t even say goodbye (2x)
She said she wasn’t going to leave me, but she told poor me a lie

 3) I had a dream, I had a dream one rainy night (2x)

That when I found my baby, she told me "daddy everything was all right"

DOWN BY THE RIVERSIDE by Memphis Minnie

 1) I live in a cabin, way down by the riverside (2x)
Just me myself, one old motherless child

 2) I have walked this walk, ’til my feets done got tired
Lordy lord, ’til my feets done got tired
Tryin’ to make it to my cabin, way down by the riverside

lonesome, lonesome [?] me
ooh look at the cloud

 3) I fall on my knees when the clouds begin to rise (2x)
In my little old cabin, way down by the riverside
 

THREE BALL BLUES by Blind Boy Fuller


1940 (with Sonny Terry, harmonica)

on New York City Blues 1940-1950 (label : Frémeaux & Associés)
 
 

1) I went walking down the street and somebody called me and I couldn’t
stop (2x)
I was broke and I was hungry on my way to the pawnshop

2) Says I went to the pawnshop, great god, with my shoes in my hand
(2x)
Said, “give me a loan Mr. Pawnshop Man and help me if you can”

3) Says I called up in Burlington asked my bossman to help me if he
please (2x)
Said “please hurry up and do something, great god, I’m ‘bout to freeze”

4) He wrote and told me, just as sure and one and two is three (2x)
That pawnshop someday, great god, is going to burn down on poor me

5) Says I’m about to lose my home, I’ve done and lost my car (2x)
I’m going down to the pawnshop see can I pawn my guitar

6) I asked that pawnshop man “what those three balls doing hanging on
that wall ?” (2x)
Said “It’s two to one buddy you don’t get your things back out of here
at all”

SELLING THE JELLY by Noah Lewis’s Jug Band (issued on Victor as by Carolina Peanut Boys)

JPEG - 20.3 ko
More of That Jug Band Sound - Origin Jazz Library

- vocal : Van Zula Carter Hunt
- harmonica : Noah Lewis
- guitar : John Estes (also known as Sleepy John Estes)
- mandolin : unknown
- jug : Ham Lewis
- recorded : Memphis, November 28, 1930

 1) I’m a jelly sellin’ woman I sell it ev’ryday 2x
These women go on by, hope I won’t give it away

 2) Two an a half a saucer, five dollars a cup 2x
Ten dollars to the one have me to wrap it up

 3) I’m not a cheap woman, I sell ’bout ev’ryday 2x
My jelly’s too expensive, you know I can’t give it away

 4) The jelly sellin’ woman is heard all over town 2x
You don’t get my jelly roll, oh Lord turn to brown

 5) I serve jelly, serve it fresh an cold 2x
Hurry buy my jelly, time for my baker shop to close

BLUE BLOOMER BLUES by Whistlin’ Alex Moore

recorded in Dallas, 1929

 1) Women winkin’ and wigglin’ at me, some other men they’ll tease (2x)
While I’ll sit down beside one and scratch her on her knees

 2) She said "Come an’ go home with me, Daddy, I stay all by myself" (2x)
I asked her would she give me carfare, she said "Yes, and anything else"

 3) While standing at the car line, reckon what that ol’ woman done (2x)
She hugged and kissed me, then bit me on my tongue

 4) I asked her to give me what mama did when I was three months old (2x)
She said "I’ll make you a sugar tit, Daddy, I can’t stand that to save my soul"

 5) I said "I believe I’ll go" and raised up out of my chair (2x)
She pulled off them blue bloomers and said "You ain’t goin’ nowhere"

 6) Next morning she said "Daddy, I hope you’ll be in good humor" (2x)
I said "Providing, Baby, I tie the string in them blue bloomers"

 

CRAIG MORRISON
is an ethnomusicologist, teacher, author, and musician
based in Montreal, Quebec, Canada
7 Nights Music Communications, 2006