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Lyr Req: Hard Time Blues (sung by Lonnie Donegan)

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GUEST,licette 25 Oct 10 - 04:01 AM
Roger the Skiffler 25 Oct 10 - 06:39 AM
Roger the Skiffler 25 Oct 10 - 06:57 AM
GUEST,claude 25 Oct 10 - 07:39 AM
Jim Dixon 28 Oct 10 - 02:38 PM
Jim Dixon 28 Oct 10 - 05:41 PM
Jim Dixon 28 Oct 10 - 07:03 PM
Jim Dixon 28 Oct 10 - 09:02 PM
Jim Dixon 28 Oct 10 - 09:28 PM
GUEST 29 Oct 10 - 04:30 AM
GUEST 29 Oct 10 - 07:31 AM
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Subject: Lyr Req: HARD TIME BLUES by Lonnie DONEGAN
From: GUEST,licette
Date: 25 Oct 10 - 04:01 AM

Hi

Who knows "HARD TIME BLUES" sung by Lonnie DONEGAN in 1953
What are the lyrics?

The first and last verses look like
HARDTIMES AIN4T GO NOWHERE by Lonnie JOHNSON
but not second and third verses

Who wants help me
Thank you


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: HARD TIME BLUES by Lonnie DONEGAN
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 25 Oct 10 - 06:39 AM

I'll look through my LD recordings and see if I can find this one.
RtS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: HARD TIME BLUES by Lonnie DONEGAN
From: Roger the Skiffler
Date: 25 Oct 10 - 06:57 AM

I have the recording but not the written words. At times the banjo drowns out the words and his usual nasal style obscures others. It seems to be widely available for downloading if you want to try & transcribe it.

RtS


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: HARD TIME BLUES by Lonnie DONEGAN
From: GUEST,claude
Date: 25 Oct 10 - 07:39 AM

I think (maybe I'm wrong) the 2 first verses go like this

People was wonderin' 'bout hard times, and I don't know why they should.
Why they wonderin' 'bout hard times, well I don't know why they should.
And if some folks was like me, they didn't have no money when times was good

When I had plenty of money I spent it on my so called friends
Yeah! Aw! Aw!
When I had plenty of money I spent it on my so called friends
Aaaahh they left me ???


For the others I am stunned

Claude


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Subject: Lyr Add: HARD TIME BLUES (Bertha "Chippie" Hill)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 28 Oct 10 - 02:38 PM

I couldn't find any lyrics or recordings online of Lonnie Donegan singing HARD TIME BLUES so I tried to figure out what his source might be.

Allmusic.com has a track list for the Lonnie Donegan 8-CD compilation "More Than 'Pye in the Sky'" (Bear Family, 1993). There, HARD TIME BLUES is called "traditional." That's no help.

The Online 78-Rpm Discography Project says the following artists recorded HARD TIME BLUES:

Bertha Chippie Hill
Bessie Smith
Buddy Moss
Carrie Edwards
Francis Blackwell
Frank Blackwell
Harlem Harmony Kings
Josh White Trio
Joshua White
Novelty Blue Nine
Scrapper Blackwell
Tom Darby & Jimmie Tarlton
Wabash Trio

Furthermore, the following artists recorded HARD TIMES BLUES:

Buddy Moss
Charles Spand
Hall Sisters
Hardin Lane
Ida Cox & Her Allstar Band
Jim Miller (Buddy Moss)
Monkey Joe
Wabash Trio (Sannella)

Of course, these are not necessarily all the same song, or even two songs.

You can listen to a recording of Bertha "Chippie" Hill singing HARD TIME BLUES at The Red Hot Jazz Archive (or click to play).
Her accompanists are apparently Tampa Red on guitar and Georgia Tom Dorsey on piano. Here's my transcription:


HARD TIME BLUES
Bertha "Chippie" Hill, recorded 1928

Hard times, hard times, what makes you sink so low? (2x)
You see the snow is falling. Many people have no home.

It's cold, cold, no matter where you go. (2x)
Some people's shoes are thin that their feet all wet with snow.

INSTRUMENTAL INTERLUDE

SPOKEN: ...all right, Mister Tampa, look like them hard-time blues about to ruin you. Georgia, them blues 'bout to ruin you too, ain't they, over there?

I am goin' to Chicago. That's the best place to be.
I'm gonna stay in Chicago. That's the best place to be.
Hard times, hard times sure don't worry me.


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Subject: Lyr Add: HARD TIME BLUES (Bessie Smith)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 28 Oct 10 - 05:41 PM

You can also hear this song at The Red Hot Jazz Archive (or click to play). Below is my transcription.

The song seems thorough-composed; that is, it doesn't break conveniently into verses. Maybe somebody could figure out something better by analyzing the chord structure, but I figure the best I can do is represent it as all one verse:


HARD TIME BLUES
Bessie Smith, recorded 1926

My man says he didn't want me.
I'm getting tired of his dirty way.
I'm goin' to seek another brown.
I'm packin' my clothes. I'm leavin' town,
Getting outdo' [outdoors],
Lettin' him know
That he'll see a hard time.
Now there's no need of cry'n'.
Just lose me off your mind.
Then you'll see a hard time.
When your good woman is gone, you will see a hard time.
(SPOKEN: Don't say a word; just listen.)
The risin' sun ain't gonna set in the east no mo'.
The risin' sun ain't gonna set in the east no mo',
'Cause I'm a good woman; I can get a man any place I go.
You can sell what you please. You will miss me.
There's a lots of things you abandon me.
When your friends forsake you and your money's gone,
Then you'll look around; all your clothes is gone.
Down on your knees you'll ask for me.
There's no one else you will want to see.
Then you'll pray a prayer
That men pray ev'rywhere,
Lord, when your good woman is gone,
When your good woman is gone.


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Subject: Lyr Add: HARD TIME BLUES (Josh White)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 28 Oct 10 - 07:03 PM

Here's my transcription from a recording at YouTube:


HARD TIME BLUES
Josh White, 1941.

1. Well, I went down home 'bout a year ago.
Things so bad, Lord, my heart was sore.
Folks had nothin'; was a sin an' a shame.
Ev'rybody said hard times was to blame.

CHORUS: Great God Almighty, folks feelin' bad,
Lost ev'rything they ever had.
Great God Almighty, folks feelin' bad,
Lost ev'rything they ever had.

2. They had skinny-looking children, bellies pokin' out,
That old pellagra without a doubt.
Old folk hangin' 'round the cabin door,
Ain't seen times this hard before.

3. Now the sun was a-shinin' fourteen days and no rain.
Hoein' and plantin' was all in vain.
They had hard, hard times, Lord, all around,
Meal barrel's empty, crops burned to the ground.

4. Then I went to the boss at the commissary store.
Folks all sobbin', "Please don't close your door.
We want more food and a little more time to pay."
Boss man laughed and walked away.

5. Now your landlord comes around when your rent is due,
And if you ain't got his money, take your home from you.
He'll take your mule and horse, even take your cow.
Says, "Get off of my land. You're no good nohow."


Slightly different lyrics are given in Josh White: Society Blues by Elijah Wald (New York & London: Routledge, 2000), page 80.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hard Time Blues (sung by Lonnie Donegan)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 28 Oct 10 - 09:02 PM

From the recording at YouTube:


HARD TIME BLUES
Scrapper Blackwell, 1931

I'm goin' down to the river just to see the water run. (2x)
And to think about my troubles, and where all my money's gone.

Times is got so hard that I cannot find no job. (2x)
And ev'ry morning the rent man rattles on my doorknob.

I'm gettin' so ragg'dy, I ain't got no decent clothes. (2x)
And ain't got nobody, ain't got nowhere to go.

Now I'm worried and no tellin' what I'm goin' to do. (2x)
My friends don't know me, 'n' I can't get a dime or two.

Soon's hard times strike me, my baby puts me out. (2x)
Now I guess you know what these hard times is all about.


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Subject: Lyr Add: HARD TIMES BLUES (Buddy Moss)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 28 Oct 10 - 09:28 PM

Also from YouTube:


HARD TIMES BLUES a.k.a. HARD TIME BLUES
Buddy Moss, 1933

Hard times, hard times, how long are you goin' to stay? (2x)
I'm here today. Tomorrow I may be gone away.

You keep me worried an' bothered and you 'bout to make me lose my mind. (2x)
You have caused the woman I love to go away and leave me behind.

When I was makin' money, my baby treated me like a dog. (2x)
And hard times come along and left me without a job.

I bought me a horse and wagon to stay out some wooded cove. (2x)
I done hollered so much, I done wore my tonsils so' [sore].

I haven't got one penny. The rent man is standin' at my door. (2x)
I think I'll give it up and let hard times take its own toll.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hard Time Blues (sung by Lonnie Donegan)
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Oct 10 - 04:30 AM

Roger you're right banjo drowns out the words and Lonnie nasal style makes incomprehensible the song.
What a pity!

This song comes from the Bear Family boxset "More Than 'Pye in the Sky'" CD#7 track#27.

That's all

Thanks all the same
Licette


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Hard Time Blues ( Lonnie Johnson
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Oct 10 - 07:31 AM

Below Lonnie Johnson version

Hard Times Ain't Gone No Where (1937)

People is ravin' 'bout hard times, tell me what it's all about.
People is hollerin' 'bout hard times, tell me what it's all about.
Hard times don't worry me; I was broke when it first started out.

Friends, it could be worser, you don't seem to understand.
Friends, it could be worser, you don't seem to understand.
Some is cryin' with a sack of gold under each arm, and a loft of bread in each hand.

When I had plenty o' money, I spent it on my so-called friends.
When I had plenty of money, I bought 'em the best whiskeys, wine, and gin.
Find More lyrics at www.sweetslyrics.com
Now the sole of my shoes is thin and I'll soon be back on my feet again.

If you are a single man, you'd better drink and have your fun.
If you're a single man, you'd better drink and have your fun.
'Cause when that love bug bites you, then your worries ain't never done.

People ravin' 'bout hard times, I don't know why they should.
People is ravin' 'bout hard times, I don't know why they should.
And some people was like me, they didn't have no money when times was good.

Licette


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