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Lyr Req: Waiting For You (Mississippi John Hurt)

DigiTrad:
BIG LEGGED WOMAN
MAKE ME A PALLET ON YOUR FLOOR
MY CREOLE BELLE
RICHLAND WOMEN BLUES
WORRIED BLUES


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PoppaGator 24 Jan 08 - 03:34 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 24 Jan 08 - 03:43 PM
PoppaGator 24 Jan 08 - 03:46 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 24 Jan 08 - 04:04 PM
Peace 24 Jan 08 - 04:21 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 24 Jan 08 - 04:36 PM
PoppaGator 24 Jan 08 - 05:18 PM
GUEST,Peace 25 Jan 08 - 09:24 PM
Jim Dixon 27 Jan 08 - 10:15 PM
PoppaGator 28 Jan 08 - 04:04 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: MJH 'Waiting For You'
From: PoppaGator
Date: 24 Jan 08 - 03:34 PM

"...Because of your cruel ways
I may never live to know
In justice to
My true love
I'll [?????] you before I go."

This is the refrain or chorus of the song, repeated several times, but I can't make out this one critical word. Sounds almost like "kill," which would be interesting but kinda weird.

I've searched the internet and found several blues-lyrics and even John-Hurt-lyrics sites, none of which include this song. Hurt recorded it for Vanguard in the '60s, on one of the three albums now marketed as a 3-CD set of "Complete Studio Recordings."

There used to be a site called "Uncle Tink's Lyrics" that featured lots of Mississippi John Hurt lyrics and may have claimed to offer the "complete" selection. But Tink is gone from the internet now.

Maybe someone somewhere copied all of Tink's lyrics before his site disappeared. It would have to be a truly obsessed MJH fanatic, of course, someone more rabid even than I.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: MJH 'Waiting For You'
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 24 Jan 08 - 03:43 PM

Youtube version (not MJH) has:

  "In justice my own true love
  I forgive you before I go"


I'll check if I've got the MJH version.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: MJH 'Waiting For You'
From: PoppaGator
Date: 24 Jan 08 - 03:46 PM

"Forgive" makes sense; he'd have to be pronouncing it as a single syllable, or maybe about 1.25 syllables: "I'll f'give you..." And that is just about how it sounds.

Thanks.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: MJH 'Waiting For You'
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 24 Jan 08 - 04:04 PM

Just listened to MJH and it does indeed sound like

  In justice to my own true love
  I'll 'give you before I go

(or possibly with the faintest of fs: f'give)

Mick


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: MJH 'Waiting For You'
From: Peace
Date: 24 Jan 08 - 04:21 PM

Then there's this . . . .


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: MJH 'Waiting For You'
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 24 Jan 08 - 04:36 PM

Seems unanimous then!

Mick


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: MJH 'Waiting For You'
From: PoppaGator
Date: 24 Jan 08 - 05:18 PM

Thanks, Bruce. Not only the lyrics, but tabs too!

For those who didn't feel a need to follow Peace's link, the lyrics and tablature are accompanied by this note:

(There are to guitars playing. The tab is based on Hurts guitar. The guitar is tuned a quarter, between F# og G)

I just bought that "Complete Studio Recordings" CD* and also noticed a second guitar in the background for a few songs. You only hear it here and there, for a half-measure or so, mostly during the "breaks" between vocal lines. I assume the second guitar is there all along, but inaudible because it's being played in strict unison with Hurt's guitar 90-99% of the time, by someone who had learned his arrangements very thoroughly. I can't imagine this uncredited "accompanyist" being anyone except Patrick Sky, listed as producer for all three Vanguard sessions.

Why?

The other note, about the unconventional tuning, is no surprise. MJH was notorious for not worrying about "concert pitch"; I suppose he played solo so much of his life, rarely working in a band or even in duos or trios, that "relative" tuning ~ being in tune with himself ~ was all he ever worried about.

Also, his repertoire included a number of songs in at least two alternative tunings as well as plenty of standard-tuning numbers in various keys, so he undoubtedly re-tuned fairly often, usually without reference to another instrument or tuner.

*I owned vinyl LPs of two of the three albums years ago, but haven't had 'em for years.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: MJH 'Waiting For You'
From: GUEST,Peace
Date: 25 Jan 08 - 09:24 PM

PG: I have it on excellent authority that the two guitarists on that album were 'Philadelphia' Jerry Ricks and Patrick Sky. In speaking with Pat he said he does not know who did the stuff on that cut. It was one or t'other of them. Best I can do, buddy. When I'm back to my own machine I'll message you and send the e-mail.


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Subject: Lyr Add: WAITING FOR YOU (Mississippi John Hurt)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 27 Jan 08 - 10:15 PM

Lyrics copied from Ultimate-Guitar.com. (That page also has chords and tab. -- Thanks to Peace for the link.)

WAITING FOR YOU (I FORGIVE YOU BEFORE I GO)
Mississippi John Hurt

Will you be faithful to me?
Is your heart good and true?
While you sow sorrow, and in pain,
Darling, I'm waiting for you.

Because of your cruel ways,
I may never live to know.
In justice to my true love,
I'll forgive you before I go.

If we cannot meet again
Till our troubles all are through,
Beyond the river of Jordan,
I'll still be waiting for you.

When you seek my grassy mount,
Then our trouble all is through.
My days have been shortened
Whilst I've been waiting for you.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: MJH 'Waiting For You'
From: PoppaGator
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 04:04 PM

The four quatrains above are verse 1, chorus, verse 2 and verse 3. The chorus/refrains repeats after each verse, of course. See Peace's link, above, for the tablature, which is fairly accurate, maybe a little oversimplified.

This lyric just might be the most deeply depressing (or depressed?) expression of unrequited love ever put to music.

And the music is a fairly sprightly, cheerful-sounding melody. Well, I suppose that's just John Smith Hurt in a nutshell...


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