ON THE TRAIL OF NEGRO FOLK-SONGS

A Collection Of Negro Traditional & Folk Songs with Sheet Music Lyrics & Commentaries - online book

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NEGRO BALLADS
93
Stagolee, Stagolee, I'll tell you what I'll do, If you'll git me out o' dis trouble, I'll do as much for you. O dat man, bad man, Stagolee done cornel
Ain't it a pity, ain't it a shame, Stagolee was shot, but he don't want no name! 0 dat man, bad man, Stagolee done come!
Stagolee, Stagolee, look what you done done. Killed de bes' ole citizen; now you'll have to be hung. 0 dat man, bad man, Stagolee done come!
Stagolee cried to de jury an' to de jedge: " Please don't take my
life; I have only three little children an' one little lovin' wife." 0 dat man, bad man, Stagolee done come!
A version with a different tune is sung more commonly in Georgia.
I got up one morning jes' 'bout four o'clock; Stagolee an' big bully done have one finish fight; What 'bout? All 'bout dat rawhide Stetson hat.
Stagolee shoot Bully; Bully fell down on de fiV. Bully cry out, "Dat fohty-fo' hurts me so." Stagolee done killed dat Bully now.
Sent for de wagon, wagon did n't come; Loaded down wid pistols an' all dat Gatlin' gun Stagolee done kill dat Bully now.
Some giv' a nickel some giv' a dime;
I did n't give a red copper cent, 'cause he's no friend of mine.
Stagolee done kill dat Bully now.
Carried po' Bully to de cemetery; people standin' round, When preacher say Amen, lay po' body down. Stagolee done kill dat Bully now.
Fohty-dollar coffen, eighty-dollar hack,
Carried po' man to de cemetery, but failed to bring him back.
Ev'ybody been dodging Stagolee.
The stanza relating the contributions of various amounts, as a nickel or a dime, refers to a racial custom in certain colored districts which has interest for folk-lorists. When a Negro dies with no visible funds to provide the funeral considered desirable, a collection is taken up to defray expenses. Dr. Sidney Williams, of Mississippi, recently told me of a dramatic instance of this kind. One dark Mississippian







E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III