The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #5124   Message #29123
Posted By: Roger Himler
24-May-98 - 07:07 AM
Thread Name: REQ/HELP African-American Railroad Work Songs
Subject: RE: REQ/HELP African-American Railroad Work Songs

Lead Belly did a song called "Can't You Line 'Em" that is similar to the song Frank ITS provides above. It is on the CD Leadbelly, Complete Recorded Works 1939 - 1947 in Chronological Order, volume 2 on Document Records DOCD 5227. This is a reissue, so you should be able to find it or order it.

Alan Lomax in "Folk Songs of North America" lists the version Frank gives and another song called "Black Gal" as railroad working songs. He gives a short description of the work and how the songs fit into the work process. Both were songs he collected from African-American work crews. Lomax has a small section on general work-related songs from the South as well.

Good luck on your project!

Roger in Baltimore