Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafemuddy

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Folklore: Stack a Lee, Delia, Railroad Bill, etc.

GUEST 13 Jun 12 - 12:26 PM
GUEST,leeneia 13 Jun 12 - 12:38 PM
GUEST 13 Jun 12 - 12:56 PM
Big Al Whittle 13 Jun 12 - 01:01 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 13 Jun 12 - 01:22 PM
GUEST,Paul Slade 13 Jun 12 - 02:22 PM
Amos 13 Jun 12 - 03:24 PM
GUEST 13 Jun 12 - 04:20 PM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:





Subject: Folklore: Stack a Lee, Delia, Railroad Bill, etc.
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Jun 12 - 12:26 PM

Does anyone have anything to help shine a light on these songs? Why are they so popular? The question is pretty much the key to everything, don't know if anyone could fully answer but I'd love to hear some thoughts. Murder ballads are some of the most interesting songs out there and these are the ones I know to be the most enduring.

Another thing about these, I've heard each of them all sung in the same melody. Blind Willie McTell plays it in his version of Delia. Heard a version of Stack a Lee played that way on a collection of rare gems. And Dylan sings Railroad Bill like that on an old play tape but I believe I've heard it elsewhere too. Anyway, does anyone know about this meolody's origins? It sounds ancient but so do a lot of things with this topic. I hope ya'll know what I'm speaking of. On guitar it goes like C E F.. something like that.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Folklore: Stack a Lee, Delia, Railroad Bill, etc.
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 13 Jun 12 - 12:38 PM

There's a YouTube video of Willie McTell doing 'Delia.' (Easily found by searching for "Willie McTell Delia.") Listen to it and tell us if that's the melody you have in mind.

As for me, I've never heard that melody before. I've heard Stagolee and Railroad Bill, but to different melodies.

Maybe Mudcat bluesmen can tell you more about the tune.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Folklore: Stack a Lee, Delia, Railroad Bill, etc.
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Jun 12 - 12:56 PM

I would watch the video, love the song and I'm sure that's the same one. However I can't access youtube being underway on this boat. :P


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Folklore: Stack a Lee, Delia, Railroad Bill, etc.
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 13 Jun 12 - 01:01 PM

They're all fun to play. And you have to be quite a good guitarist to get to grips with them in any meaningful way. You need to be able to pick C piedmont (east coast style) and you need to be able to roll into the E - Big Bill Broozy style.

The C to E change can be tackled in any one of half a hundred ways.

Also the tales of Morris Slater Bill and Stacker Lee and good time girl Delia - and their respective sad ends recalls a phrase of Kerouac - 'it was an age when America was full of all kinds of freedom for everyone'.

After the great bloodletting of world war one - the whole world - all of the the combatant states lost a period of comparative innocence. A pre-lapsarian America.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Folklore: Stack a Lee, Delia, Railroad Bill, etc.
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 13 Jun 12 - 01:22 PM

Variant tunes are part of the beauty of these old folk songs.
McTell has a nice version.

Recently posted in mudcat is a French Canadian folk song, with some seven tunes.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Folklore: Stack a Lee, Delia, Railroad Bill, etc.
From: GUEST,Paul Slade
Date: 13 Jun 12 - 02:22 PM

This might help, at least with the folklore aspect:

http://www.planetslade.com/stagger-lee1.html


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Folklore: Stack a Lee, Delia, Railroad Bill, etc.
From: Amos
Date: 13 Jun 12 - 03:24 PM

Paul Slade does a remarkable job of digging up the historic threads of Stagger Lee and Frankie and Johnny, two murders from the same neighborhood. He also unravels the dark history of a number of other broadsides and ballads. Highly recommended for a clear, informative, well-wrought style.


A


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Folklore: Stack a Lee, Delia, Railroad Bill, etc.
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Jun 12 - 04:20 PM

Wow that's amazing. Thank you for the link!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 22 June 9:46 AM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.