The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #3018   Message #2721974
Posted By: Q (Frank Staplin)
11-Sep-09 - 08:39 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Stagger Lee / Stack O'Lee / etc.
Subject: RE: Origins: Stagger Lee
Lyr. Add: Stackerlee
Bama, convict at Parchman

Now Stackerlee, he was a bad man
He wanted the round world to know
He toted a 32-20 and a smokeless 44.

Now Stackerlee, Lord, and Billy Lyon
They was gamblin' early one day
Stackerlee losin' money
And he throwed the cards away.

Now Stackerlee, he told Billy Lyon
"Billy, I'm sho' gonna take yo' life
You have winned my money, Stack
And I have found a foul dice."

Now Billy Lyon he told Stackerlee,
He says, "Stack, please don't take my life!
I have two little chillen
And my po' little weasely wife."

"Now one of them is a boy, Stack,
And the other one is a girl."
"But if you love yo' chillen, Billy Lyon,
You will have to meet them in the other world."

Now Stackerlee, he told Billy Lyon,
"Billy I thought you was a gambling man
You know you passed leads in the second
And you know you done fouled yo' hand."

Now Stackerlee, he shot Billy Lyon
Way down on the barroom flo'
It was early one mornin',
Just about fifteen to four.

Now Billy Lyon mother, she come runnin'
She said, "Lord, have mercy on my son
Po' Billy Lyon done got murdered
And I know he didn't have his gun!"

Alberta, Lord, Alberta
Baby don't you hear me calling you?
But you three times seven, Alberta,
And you know what you want to do.

I'm going to call up the undertaker
Lord, I'm going to ring up Mr. Moss
I'm going to ask those people
What will Alberta funeral cost.

I wants a two hundred dollar coffin
Lord, I wants a hundred dollar hearse
And that will put Alberta, I know,
Six feet in the earth.

Now give me water, Lord, when I'm thirsty,
Honey, give me whiskey when I'm dry
Give me Alberta when I need her
And Heaven when I die.

Now when I gets all up in Glory
Lord I'm gonna sit down on the golden stool
And I'm going to ask St. Gabriel
To blow me the "Worried Blues."

Somewhat confused version, but interesting nevertheless. Sung at Parchman Penitentiary, Mississippi, 1947, by a prisoner known as Bama.
Collector not named.
From "Stagger Lee," 2006, Derek McCulloch, drawn by Shepherd Hendrix, Image Comics.