The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #38599   Message #604395
Posted By: Jim Dixon
05-Dec-01 - 03:00 PM
Thread Name: Lyr/Chords Req: Jug Band and Skiffle Songs
Subject: RE: Jug Band and Skiffle Song Lyrics and Chords
There's a certain verse form that I've heard only in jug band music, and I don't know if it's ever been described or named. It sounds like the performer has taken a 3-line blues lyric (that is, one where the first line is repeated) and adapted it to a 4-line tune by padding out the first line until it is roughly double its natural length. This is done by repeating words or phrases, and by adding "floater" expressions like well, baby, mama, I mean, I said, I say, you know, and so on. Then the line is repeated without the added words.

As an example, here are the first 2 verses of RACETRACK BLUES as performed by The Nashville Jug Band:

I don't need no racetrack just to watch my pony,
Watch my pony, I mean, see her run.
I don't need no racetrack just to watch my pony run.
But I don't need no million dollars, people, to have my fun.

Well, the doctor said to slow down. He said, "Please slow down, 'cause I'd
Hate to see you, I mean, fall down dead."
Yeah, the doctor said to slow down 'cause he'd hate to see me fall down dead.
Well, he might know my body but he sure don't know my head.

(The other 2 verses in this song don't fit the pattern. To see them, click here.)

Does anyone else know of any other songs that fit this pattern? I'm sure I've heard some, but I can't think of them right now.