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Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue

Related threads:
Lyr Req: Duck Foot Sue (Harry Bennet) (35)
Lyr Add: Old Slew Foot (6)


GUEST,teamkitty 31 Mar 09 - 11:28 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 01 Apr 09 - 12:07 AM
Joe Offer 01 Apr 09 - 12:48 AM
Joe Offer 01 Apr 09 - 03:57 AM
Joe Offer 01 Apr 09 - 04:08 AM
GUEST,Bob Coltman 01 Apr 09 - 06:53 AM
GUEST 01 Apr 09 - 09:12 AM
DonMeixner 01 Apr 09 - 11:38 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 01 Apr 09 - 02:28 PM
GUEST,PeterC 01 Apr 09 - 04:12 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 01 Apr 09 - 05:06 PM
Joe Offer 01 Apr 09 - 06:01 PM
GUEST 21 Apr 09 - 06:16 PM
GUEST,abillings 01 Jun 09 - 02:05 PM
GUEST 01 Jun 09 - 02:07 PM
GUEST,TJ in San Diego 01 Jun 09 - 05:14 PM
GUEST 13 Jun 09 - 11:14 PM
GUEST 01 Jul 09 - 07:59 AM
GUEST,Kelly 07 Jul 09 - 03:20 PM
GUEST,Grandpa Borgie 13 Jul 09 - 12:42 AM
GUEST 29 Jan 10 - 04:17 PM
GUEST,guest 10 Feb 10 - 10:31 PM
Howard Jones 11 Feb 10 - 04:49 AM
Steve Gardham 11 Feb 10 - 11:13 AM
GUEST,Patience Prugh Schram 22 Mar 10 - 09:17 PM
GUEST,Aahz 27 Mar 10 - 11:57 PM
GUEST,Guest ,Utah 27 Sep 10 - 08:42 PM
GUEST,Jim O 18 Dec 10 - 01:55 AM
GUEST,Jim O 18 Dec 10 - 02:00 AM
GUEST,sharevision 19 Jan 11 - 04:11 PM
GUEST,Guest 15 Sep 11 - 12:46 PM
Max Johnson 15 Sep 11 - 01:31 PM
GUEST,Jenny 07 Dec 11 - 10:22 PM
GUEST,GRAMMY 01 Mar 12 - 01:42 PM
GUEST,pml4sail 18 Mar 12 - 02:39 PM
mayomick 19 Mar 12 - 10:06 AM
GUEST 27 Mar 12 - 11:59 AM
GUEST,marksamiam 11 Jul 12 - 03:56 PM
GUEST,Jim F. 21 Jan 13 - 11:13 PM
GUEST,Guest - April 22 Jan 14 - 09:10 PM
GUEST,Ariel 05 Feb 14 - 08:41 PM
GUEST,Kathy 15 Sep 14 - 12:33 AM
GUEST 21 Feb 15 - 06:56 PM
GUEST,kristie bell 23 Apr 15 - 07:12 PM
GUEST 22 Dec 15 - 11:21 AM
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Subject: Origins: Slough-foot Sue
From: GUEST,teamkitty
Date: 31 Mar 09 - 11:28 PM

Does anyone know the origins of this song or other lyrics?

"Her name was Slough-foot Sue
She had a face like a horse and buggy.
She was chief engineer at the shirttail factory,
Down by the riverside view.
Her form was all she had,
She had a face like a soft-shell crab.
Every night she'd tussle with her homemade bustle,
By gosh, that gal was bad!"

Sung to my by my grandmother, b. 1914


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 12:07 AM

You will find multiple varitions (ALL recent decades) and perhaps, THEY are a spin-off of your grandmother's.

Regarding a bear named: "Slew Foot" aka "Slewfoot" akd "Slew Foot Sue"

Search the Forum and DT

It is a fast rollicking tune. I knew the bear one from the early early 80's

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: Lyr Add: SLEWFOOT SUE
From: Joe Offer
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 12:48 AM

Well, I found the song here (click), but no songwriter attribution.

SLEWFOOT SUE
(songwriter unknown)

She was a big and brawny gal
They called her Slewfoot Sue
The folks of Texas was amazed at the things that she could do
Riding giant catfish up and down the Rio Grande
She'd send cayotes a'runnin'
Crackin' a whip in her hand

She was as wild as the west
Not the type to settle down
She could lasso buckin' broncos
And wrassle 10 men to the ground
Like the marshals and outlaw, her reputation grew
That gal became a legend
That gal named Slewfoot Sue

Sue could sure kick up her heels
When she heard a banjo play
Hootin' and a' howlin'
Cryin Yippee, yippeeay
Oh, Yippee yippeeay, yee-ha and howdy-do
She truly was amazing
Yes she was, she was, Slewfoot Sue

They say Sue tamed a cyclone
Stopped a stampede in its tracks
Though cowboys tried to win her heart
Slewfoot held them back
Some say that Sue had met her match,
when she fell for Pecos Bill
She became his lady love,
courtin' in the hills

Sue could sure kick up her heels
When she heard a banjo play
Hootin' and a' howlin'
Cryin Yippee, yippeeay
Oh, Yippee yippeeay, yee-ha and howdy-do
She truly was amazing
Yes she was, she was, Slewfoot Sue

Sue could sure kick up her heels
When she heard a banjo play
Hootin' and a' howlin'
Cryin Yippee, yippeeay
Oh, Yippee yippeeay, yee-ha and howdy-do
She truly was amazing
Yes she was, she was, Slewfoot Sue


I'm guessing this song is relatively recent. In American folktales, Slewfoot Sue was tied to Pecos Bill - but I couldn't find any songs about her that seemed traditional. There's another rockabilly-style song called "Slewfoot Sue," recorded by Jerry Arnold and the Rhythm Captains. Not the same song, believe me.
-Joe-


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Subject: ADD: Old Slew Foot (Howard Hausey & James Webb)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 03:57 AM

I think classic is the song gargoyle was thinking of. I found it at http://www.metrolyrics.com/ole-slew-foot-lyrics-johnny-horton.html

OLE SLEW FOOT
(Howard Hausey & James Webb)

High on the mountain, tell me what you see;
Bear tracks, bear tracks, lookin' back at me.
Better get your rifle boy before it's too late,
Cause the bear's got a little pig and headed through the gate.
    He's big around the middle and he's broad across the rump,
    Runnin' ninety miles an hour, takin' thirty feet a jump;
    Ain't never been caught he ain't never been treed,
    And some folks say he looks a lot like me.
[ harmonica ]

I saved up my money and I bought me some bees,
And they started makin' honey way up in the trees.
Cut down the trees but my honey's all gone,
Old Slew Foot's done made himself at home.
    He's big around the middle...
[ harmonica ]

Winter's comin' on and it's twenty below,
And the river's froze over, so where can he go?
We'll chase him up the gully, then we'll run him in the well,
And shoot him in the bottom just to listen to him yell.
    He's big around the middle...



There's a nice YouTube recording of Jim & Jesse singing it here (click)
The song was also performed a few times by the Grateful Dead


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue
From: Joe Offer
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 04:08 AM

Of course, none of these songs are the one requested. I searched for several phrases from the requested song, and came up with (almost) nothing.
I searched our Digital Tradition Folk Song Database for "face like a horse and buggy," and came up with two songs: Both sound like they could be related to the requested song.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue
From: GUEST,Bob Coltman
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 06:53 AM

teamkitty,

Did your grandmother ever say anything to you about when, how, or from whom she learned the song? Like, whether she heard it on the stage, on a record, learned it from a friend, a parent, whatever?

What did you mean when you said "origins of this song or other lyrics?" Were there other lyrics? Did she sing more verses?

It sounds like a comic song from about the 1890s, give or take a decade or two. Any additional phrases or lines you can remember?

Bob


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 09:12 AM

Thanks for all of the input. The "bustle" referenced does seem more 19th c. The part that puzzled me was the woman as "chief engineer". I couldn't figure it out, although a "shirt-tail factory" makes this even more nonsensical.

This is the only verse I ever heard her sing. She likely learned it from friends - her parents didn't speak English and I don't think they had a phonograph at home. It was about as daring as my grandmother ever got - but her eyes would twinkle when she sang the last verse.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue
From: DonMeixner
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 11:38 AM

I recall a variation done on a Disney show along with a cartoon. Rex Allen and The Sons of the Pioneers supplied the music as I recall. Rex had a long association with Disney as a narrator

Don


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 02:28 PM

Hausey spelled it Sleufoot. See Allmusic.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue
From: GUEST,PeterC
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 04:12 PM

Sung in Suffolk as "Duck Foot Sue". The link is to the transcription of a Veteran reissue of recordings made at the Eel's Foot in the late 30s.

According to Roy Palmers notes it was written by Harry Bennett in July 1884


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 05:06 PM

Many variations on the title, more than one song involved (Allmusic).

Ole Slew Foot- Hausey. Horton in 1957 or earlier, Johnny Cash, Buck Owens, the Stonemans, Porter Wagoner, etc.
Slewfoot Sue- Jerry Arnold (1950s)
Slewfoot the Bear- I want U2 to want me
Slewfoot Rag- Grady Martin
Ol' Slewfoot- Tobasco Donkeys
Sleufoot the Bear- Hausey (on a Bear compilation)
Slewfoot on the Levee- Nite Spots Blues
Slewfoot Joe- Nat King Cole, 1938-1941
Slewfoot and Cary B.- Cowboy song. Author?
Slewfoot Mama- Jan Up and Honey
Slewfoot Slew- ?
Slew Footed- Duane Eubanks
Slue Foot- Many artists. Arthur Lewis and Sanders, 1924 (composers), Johnny Mercer, Jimmie Noone 1923-28, Freddie Keppard, etc.
Slewfoot- Many artists, inc. Dizzy Gillespie, Doc Watson 1967, Cee Pee Johnson
Slufoot- Chad Smith, composer


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue
From: Joe Offer
Date: 01 Apr 09 - 06:01 PM

Peter C nailed it - the song is Duck Foot Sue (click for previous discussion).

I saw that thread the other day and didn't study it closely enough. Shame on me.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue / Slewfoot Sue / etc.
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Apr 09 - 06:16 PM

This is a song my mother used to sing a lot. I believe that she learned it when she was in a school musical show sometime in the 1930's in Canton, Ohio. I have a picture of everyone dressed up in 1890's outfits and singing silly songs.

I too have been trying to find out all the lyrics, but what I remember is

Once, there was a girl that I knew
Her name was slue(slew?)-foot Sue
She was chief engineer at the shirt-tale factory
down ....
she was ....
her face was just like a soft-shell crab
and when she used to hustle, in her patent-leather bustle
BOY she was GRAND!

I hope this message gets to you - if you want to email me, please try smith.2942@osu.edu


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue / Slewfoot Sue / etc.
From: GUEST,abillings
Date: 01 Jun 09 - 02:05 PM

This is how I learned it in camp..late 60's

There once was a girl that I knew by the name of Slewfoot Sue. She was chief engineer at the shirt-tail factory down by the riverside view. Her form was all she had she had a face like a soft-shell crab Every night she used to tussle with her patent-leather bustle BOY was she fat...WOW!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue / Slewfoot Sue / etc.
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Jun 09 - 02:07 PM

This is how I learned it in camp..late 60's


There once was a girl that I knew
by the name of Slewfoot Sue.
She was chief engineer at the shirt-tail factory
down by the riverside view.
Her form was all she had
she had a face like a soft-shell crab
Every night she used to tussle with her patent-leather bustle
BOY was she fat...WOW!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue / Slewfoot Sue / etc.
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
Date: 01 Jun 09 - 05:14 PM

Disney used Slue Foot Sue as the sweetheart of legendary Pecos Bill in a 1948 cartoon called "Melody Time" in which voice-overs were supplied by people like Roy Rogers and Dale Evans and music by the Sons of the Pioneers and Fred Waring and his Pennsylvanians, of all people. I suspect that at least one "Sue" song was composed or adapted for the cartoon.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue / Slewfoot Sue / etc.
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Jun 09 - 11:14 PM

I know a gal I do
And her name is Slew foot Lou
She's the chief engineer at the shirt-tail factory
Down by the Riverside zoo.
A form was all she had,
She had a face like a soft-shelled crab,
Every night she used to hustle in a patent-leather bustle
And the boys thought she was pretty bad.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue / Slewfoot Sue / etc.
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Jul 09 - 07:59 AM

AHEM!

Sluefoot Sue was "the chief engineer at the shirttail factory" -- meaning she was the #1 hooker down at the whore house.

And the real final lines are "Every night she used to hustle in her patent leather bustle -- Boy!, she was bad.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue / Slewfoot Sue / etc.
From: GUEST,Kelly
Date: 07 Jul 09 - 03:20 PM

Here's my grandmother's version. I never saw it written, and I always thought she was saying Suefaslew! Sounds like Slewfoot Sue wins on that from the other versions.
There once was a girl I knew.
Her name was Slewfoot Sue.
She was the chief engineer at the shirt-tail factory
Down on riverside view.
Her face was all she had.
She had a form like a soft-shelled crab.
Every night she had a tussle with her patent-leather bustle.
Oh gee but she was bad!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue / Slewfoot Sue / etc.
From: GUEST,Grandpa Borgie
Date: 13 Jul 09 - 12:42 AM

Her name was Loofy-Lou She was a colored lady who, Was chief engineer at the night shirt factory, down by the Riverside Zoo, A form was all she had, She had a face like a soft-shell crab, And everynight she used to hustle, With the buttons on her bussle, My gosh that gal was sad!

Heyyy, guess where my money goes, to buy my baby clothes, I buy her everything to keep her in style, (rippa-dada) And in her future life, She's goin' to be my wife, (how the heck dya find that out?) She told me soooo.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Jan 10 - 04:17 PM

These are the lyrics of the song my father,
born 1909 and raised by southern Indiana-born parents,
sang frequently enough for my entertainment when I was a child
that they became engraved somewhere deep in my memory.

If anyone is interested, I also remember the melody,
and can also sing it in my untalented way – -- without the ukelele.
The melody is quite distinct and fits the lyrics perfectly.

Best regards, Rarihokwats



Once there was a girl I knew,
Her name was Slewfoot Sue,
She was chief engineer at the shirttail factory,
Down by the river, ten by two.

And oh what a form she had!
She had a shape like a soft-shell crab;
Every night she would tussle
with her patent-leather bustle,
Oh but the girl was mad!

She promised . . . she would meet me . . .
When the clock struck seventeen
At the Union Stockyards just outside the town,
Where pigs' ears, and pigs' feet,
And tough old Texas steer
Sold for sirloin steak at ninety cents per pound.

Her teeth were getting false,
from chewing Epsom Salts,
She's my knock-kneed pigeon-toed
jelly-eyed consumptive Mary Jane .

Her teeth were getting fongy,
From chewing Swiss bolognie,
She's my knock-kneed pigeon-toed jelly-eyed consumptive
Maaaarrrrryyyyy Jaaaaane.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,guest
Date: 10 Feb 10 - 10:31 PM

My mon just sang this to me a few monthes back! We were remembering songs she sang to me at bathtime when I was a little girl. So heres my version:

I got a gal I do
Her name was Slewfoot Sue
She was chief enginer at the shirt-tail factory
Down by the riverside slough
Her form was all she had
She had a face like a soft shell crab
A stiff upper lip like the rudder of a ship
My god but she was sad!

Oh my gals a kappa
She chews tobacco
Sits on the fireside and spits on the floor
And in my future life she's gonna be my wife
How in the heck did you find that out?
Well she told me so

So we'll build a bamboo bungalow for two
Room enough for the whole fam-damily
Room enough for one, two, three, four
And when we marry happy we'll be
Underneath the shady bamboo b-a-m-boo tree

I love you b-e-s-t best of all the r-e-s-t rest
For l-o-v-e love you all the t-i-m-e time
If you'll be m-i-n-e mine I'll be t-h-i-n-e thine
For I'll l-o-v-e love you all the t-i-m-e time!

My mom heard it from her mom and she heard it from her mom who was born around 1900.
Hope that helps you out.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: Howard Jones
Date: 11 Feb 10 - 04:49 AM

Pardon my ignorance, but what does "Slough-foot" or "Slew-foot" mean?


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 11 Feb 10 - 11:13 AM

Check out the version at Bodleian Broadside Ballads Harding B11 (1016)
According to Kilgarriff it was in the repertoire of George Foster 1864-1946. And G W Hunter 1851-1936 who wrote most of his own material.

Surely slew-footed/duck-footed = splay-footed.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Patience Prugh Schram
Date: 22 Mar 10 - 09:17 PM

My father began singing this song to me when I was a little girl. He'd be playing the piano in our living room and I'd go to say goodnight. He'd sing,
    There once was a girl I knew by the name of Patience Prugh.
    She was chief engineer of the shirt tail factory down by the riverside view.
    Her form was all she had. She had a face like a soft shell crab.
    And every night she tusseled with her patent leather bustle.
    Oh, boy she's bad!
The first time he sang to me I cried and said I wasn't bad. My mother told me he sang it to me because he loved me so much and it was my own special song. He sang it often as I grew up and always when I came back home to visit. It always made me feel special. He was born in 1912 and I in 1941. We lived on the Mississippi River bluff in Iowa. My 39 year old son just called from Washington, DC to say, "Guess what?"


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Aahz
Date: 27 Mar 10 - 11:57 PM

I learned a version of this song decades ago that accompanied a hand-clapping game played by children (including me when I was a child). It was always sung quite fast, and the object of the game was to go as fast as you could without messing up.

The clapping game was on an 8-count rhythm, so I'll put in the counts with the lyrics as I learned them. If you want to play the game (or teach it to your kids), I've included the clap sequence at the bottom.

I .. know .. a gal, I do, and her
1 2 3      4    5    6 7   8

name .. is .. Slew-Foot Sue. She's
1       2 3 4 5       6       7      8

chief engineer of the old steam laundry
1       2    3      4      5    6       7   8

down by the Riverside Zoo. .. .. ..
1       2          3      4    5      6 7 8

Form .. is .. all she has, she has a
1       2 3 4 5   6    7          8

face .. like .. a soft-shelled crab. Every
1      2 3    4    5    6         7       8

night she has a tussle with her patent-leather bustle, and the
1            2       3       4          5         6          7         8

boys think she is .. pretty bad. ..
1      2       3    4 5 6       7      8

To play: Two people sit Indian-style, facing each other.
1 - Slap both hands on thighs
2 - Clap both hands together
3 - Clap each others hands - your right to other's left and vice versa
4 - Clap both hands together
5 - Clap each others right hands - you will reach across diagonally
6 - Clap both hands together
7 - Clap each others left hands - you will reach across diagonally
8 - Clap both hands together


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Guest ,Utah
Date: 27 Sep 10 - 08:42 PM

My folks and grandparents would sing it like this in the 1960's


I know a little girl, I do
Her name is slew foot
She's chief engineer
at the shirttail laundry
Down by the riverside slew

Her shape is all she has
she's shaped like a soft shell crab
Every night she would tussel
with a feather in her bussel
And I bet by gosh she's bad

Oh! that's where my money goes
to buy my baby clothes
I'd buy her any little thing
to keep her in style
Cuz she's worth her weight in gold
my coal black baby
Say boy's thats where my money goes

She wears my BVD"S
while I stand outside and freeze
Say boys that where my money goes


Then they would berak into thier own rendition of
" Someone's in the kitchen with Dyna"

Oh! thats where my money goes
to buy my baby cloths
I;d but her any little thing
to keep her in style
Cuz, she's worth her weight in gold
my coal black baby
Say boys that's where my money goes


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Jim O
Date: 18 Dec 10 - 01:55 AM

My grandmother was born in england in 1918 and move to chicago. My grandmother sang this song to my mother, who was born in 1938: My mother in turn sang the song to my sisters and me. The song went like this:

There once was a girl I knew and her name was slew foot Sue. She was the chief engineer at the shirttail factory down by the riverside view. Her form was all she had. She had a face like a soft shell crab. Every night she use to tussel with the buttons on her bussell boy was she mad.

It was sang quickly.

Oh the memories.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Jim O
Date: 18 Dec 10 - 02:00 AM

Would truly enjoy hearing back from you. Is this the song you sang? I didn't realize other people knew the song.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,sharevision
Date: 19 Jan 11 - 04:11 PM

The version offered by
GUEST,Guest ,Utah - Sept 27th 2010
rings the loudest bell with me, including the someone's in the kitchen with Dyna.
Mom from Tenn. and Dad's famly from W. VA.
I just decided to look up what a slewfoot was because the song was in my head. For me I got the best idea from a reference used for dogs, it is an outward turned foot. Also, very little seems to be known re; slewfoot (sp.?) anywhere.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Guest
Date: 15 Sep 11 - 12:46 PM

I like the last verse version from my Mom


Form, form was all she had,
She had a face like a soft shelled crab
Every night she had a tussle w/ the buttons on her bustle,
And the boys thought she was hmmm...not bad!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: Max Johnson
Date: 15 Sep 11 - 01:31 PM

I've heard the word used by an American to describe a policeman, or detective.

The word also occurs at the very end of Threadbare Consort's version of 'Your Feet's Too Big', (performed with Clive Harvey and Mick Hennessey of Roaring Jelly on guitar and bass), which can be heard on Lost Folk Tapes if anybody would like to investigate further.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Jenny
Date: 07 Dec 11 - 10:22 PM

Has anyone discovered where one can find a copy of this song?


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,GRAMMY
Date: 01 Mar 12 - 01:42 PM

These are the lyrics I sang all my life (93 years) and now my great grandchildren sing it.

The once was a gal I knew
by the name of slough foot Sue
She was chief engineer at the shirt tail factory
down by the river blue
Her shape was all she had
she had a face like a soft shelled crab
Every morning she would tussle with her patent leather bustle
Oh boy she's bad!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,pml4sail
Date: 18 Mar 12 - 02:39 PM

My father (b. 1906) used to sing this song when he was a little "tipsy" (to my mother's consternation)the following lyrics:

"There once was a girl I knew by the name of slough foot Sue-
She was chief engineer at the shirt tail factory, down by the riverside view.
Oh, a shirt was all she had and a face like a soft-shelled crab-
Every nite she wood hussle with a button on her bustle-
and oh boy was she bad!"


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: mayomick
Date: 19 Mar 12 - 10:06 AM

I would imagine that the original Sue had an awkward gait -she was flat-footed perhaps .

The music for Spla Foot Nance and first verse are given at this link.

http://www.folktunefinder.com/tune/190114/


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Subject: ADD Version: Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Mar 12 - 11:59 AM

It looks like lots of different versions kicking about all with more or less sense. My father (born 1933 Ohio) always sang it as follows - and explained it as a nonsense song - with the objective to sing it all in one breath. Lyrics:

    SLEWFOOT SUE

    There once was a girl I knew
    By the name of Slewfoot Sue
    She was chief engineer of a shirt tale factory
    Down by the riverside view
    Her form was all she had
    She had a face like a soft shell crab
    Every night she had a tustle, with the buttons on her bustle
    And boy was she mad, PHEW!

It always ends with a bit of a whoop! I do like the idea that shes from a cat house, which would make a lot of sense. The last line I always assumed was her frustrated reaction to trying to get out of her clothes, although if she had a nice form - one would imagine she wasn't fat.
Cheers,
PA


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,marksamiam
Date: 11 Jul 12 - 03:56 PM

As I remember it from my mother - and it made absolutely no sense:

There once was a girl I knew
by the name of Slewfoot Sue
She worked in a shirttail factory
down by the riverside view
A head was all she had
She had a figure like a soft-shell crab
But when she'd hustle that homemade bustle,
Ooh, that gal was bad!!!

Apparently in this version she's got a cute face but a shabby body! What a strange, fun memory from childhood.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Jim F.
Date: 21 Jan 13 - 11:13 PM

My Dad used to sing this song to me when were fishing/hunting and the lyrics went somthing like;

There was a girl I knew
Her name was Slewfoot Sue,
She was chief engineer at the water works,
Down by old riverside view

A figure was all she had
A face like a soft shell crab
A stiff upper lip like the rudder of a ship
Oh my that girl was sad!

But that's where my money goes
to buy her baby clothes
I'd buy her most anything to keep her in style

I buy her diamond rings
I dont' where anything

HOT DOG!
That's where my money goes

She has a pair of hips
Like two battleships

HOT DOG! That's where my money goes

She wears my BVD's
I stand outside and Freeze

HOT DOG!
That's where my money goes!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Guest - April
Date: 22 Jan 14 - 09:10 PM

How funny!

I'm 65 and My dad used to sing this song when I was a kid. I think he sang it in college. This is his version:

Oh, we love that gal we do,
And they call her Slew-foot Sue,
She's the chief engineer at the steam laundry,
Down by the riverside, down by the riverside,
A form was all she had,
She had a face like a soft shell crab,
And early in the morning,
She'd tussle with her bustle,
And the boys all called her ...
Bad, bad, biddly-bad, Shhhhhhhh


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Ariel
Date: 05 Feb 14 - 08:41 PM

My Grampa taught me different lyrics from all this! I love seeing these new ones.

I know a girl I do
Her name is slew foot sue
She's chief engineer at the shirt tail laundry
Down by the riverside view

Her form was all she had
It's shaped likes a soft shelled crab
Every morning she would hustle with a feather in her bustle by golly boys she was bad

That's where my money goes!
To buy my baby clothes
I buy her every little thing to keep her in style

She's worth her weight in gold
My coal black baby
Hey boys that's where my money goes

Without a shirt


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,Kathy
Date: 15 Sep 14 - 12:33 AM

Mom sang it to us kids in the 1950's. I think she must have learned it as a child.

There once was a girl I knew
Her name was Slue-Foot-Sue
She's chief engineer at the shirt tail laundry
Down by the riverside view
Her name was all she had
A face like a soft shell crab
A stiff upper lip like the rudder of a ship
Oh, boy! She sure looked sad


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Feb 15 - 06:56 PM

Here is my mother's version:
"There once was a gal I knew, her name was Slew Foot Sue,
She was a chief engineer in the soap factory way down by the riverside blue
Form was all she had, she had a face like a soft shell crab,
She had a stiff upper lip, like a rudder on a ship
my god but she was sad."

and then on into: "That's where my money goes, to buy my baby clothes
I buy her everything to keep her in style.(forgotten this part but different for above versions. .that's where my money goes"..we loved this song as kids in the 50s trying to imagine this woman!.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST,kristie bell
Date: 23 Apr 15 - 07:12 PM

I need to know where slue foot sue was born at. Please someone help me please


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Subject: RE: Origins: Slough-foot Sue? / Slewfoot Sue
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Dec 15 - 11:21 AM

I knew Slew Foot Sue as a jump-rope and clapping rhyme - it was very popular at my elementary school. This was in Gulf Coast Texas in the 1990s. I think one of my friends learned it at summer camp and taught it to us. The objective was to sing it as loud and fast as possible:

There was a girl, that, I once knew
By the name, of, Slew Food Sue
She, had, a shirt-tail factory
Down by the riverside (riverside, riverside...)
She had a face, that's, all she had
She had the body of a softshell, softshell crab
She was standin' in the middle of the shirt-tail factory
Man that girl was fat! WHOO!

We'd always clap, smack the jump-rope, or bang a lunch tray on the table to emphasize the "WHOO!"


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Mudcat time: 19 September 4:56 AM EDT

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