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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246                         NEGRO FOLK-SONGS
Ain't got a friend in town, Ain't got a friend in town, Ain't got a friend in town, oh, babe, I ain't got a friend in town!
If I had a-lissen to what my mamma said,
If I had a-lissen to what my mamma said,
If I had a-lissen to what my mamma said, oh, babe,
I would n't a-been layin' round!
I heard dat whistle when she blowed,
I heard dat whistle when she blowed,
I heard dat whistle when she blowed, oh, babe,
I heard dat whistle when she blowed!
Blowed as she never blowed before, Blowed as she never blowed before, Blowed as she never blowed before, oh, babe, Blowed like my babe's on board!
I hope dat Katy train don't have a wreck,
I hope dat Katy train don't have a wreck,
I hope dat Katy train don't have a wreck, oh, babe,
An' kill my darlin' babe!
Tomorrow's my trial day, Tomorrow's my trial day, Tomorrow's my trial day, oh, babe, I wonder what the judge's goin' to say!
If I had a-died when I was young, If I had a-died when I was young, If I had a-died when I was young, I would n't a-had this hard race to run!
Mrs. Bartlett says, "Of course you know that the Negroes don't really say ' a-lissen' and l a-died,' but more correctly, as far as pro­nunciation is concerned, it should be 'uh-lissen' and 'uh-died.' But that looks unintelligible to anyone unacquainted with their soft speech. . . .
"Look Where de Train Done Gone is one of the most authentic 'blues.' The tune of the thing, as sung by the Negroes, is mournful enough to wring tears from the hardest-hearted. I believe I've been lucky enough to get it all for you. I send it as it was sung to me by Lottie Barnes, who also gave me the verses for Frankie,
"In Look Where de Train Done Gone, the first three lines are almost a monotone, until the mighty crescendo of the' oh, babe!' is reached!







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