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Lyr Req: Lightnin' Hopkins song-Spelling Memphis

GUEST,Lew 29 Nov 04 - 06:38 PM
Cool Beans 29 Nov 04 - 08:11 PM
GUEST,Max 11 Jun 16 - 06:17 PM
Joe Offer 11 Jun 16 - 06:32 PM
Joe Offer 11 Jun 16 - 06:35 PM
leeneia 11 Jun 16 - 10:05 PM
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Subject: origins: They've got a new way...
From: GUEST,Lew
Date: 29 Nov 04 - 06:38 PM

There is a song I sing entitled, "They've Got a New Way of Spelling (Memphis) Tennessee" that was ALLEGEDLY written by Lightnin'(g) Hopkins. I need to know:-
a)Did he? If not, who?
b)Are there just the 3 verses?
c)What the hell does the title mean?

Attention:
I am NOT referring to Chuck Berry's,"Memphis, Tennessee".

Thanking you all in anticipation,
Lew


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Subject: RE: origins: They've got a new way...
From: Cool Beans
Date: 29 Nov 04 - 08:11 PM

Leadbelly (Huddie Ledbetter) sang a verse in "Good Morning Blues" that goes:
Got a new way of spelling Memphis, Tennessee
Got a new way of spelling Memphis, Tennessee
Doulbe E, Double T, WXYZ.

What's it mean?
Beats me. I'm thinking he's saying it's so hard to spell that he starts out and just gives up.
There are a few songs and verses about spelling in the folk canon. Like C-H-I-C-K-E-N.
And my father used to say there was a song that went "Chicken in the car and the car can't go. That's how you spell Chicago."
I never have found that song.


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Subject: Lyr Req: Lightnin' Hopkins song
From: GUEST,Max
Date: 11 Jun 16 - 06:17 PM

I've heard a cover of a Lightnin' Hopkins song called, "They've Got A New Way Of Spelling Memphis, Tennessee" but can't seem to find his version. Any suggestions?


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Subject: Lyr Add: LAWDY LAWDY WORRIED BLUES (Teddy Darby)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Jun 16 - 06:32 PM

Don't know if this will help, but the Michael Taft Concordance has two songs that mention "New Way of Spelling Memphis."

Lawdy Lawdy Worried Blues
recorded 7 Sept 1929 by Blind Teddy Darby

What's on your worried mind
You keep your poor man worried : and bothered all the time
Lord Lordy : Lord Lord Lord Lord
I'm a poor boy : been treated just like a dog
Got a new way baby : spelling Memphis Tennessee
Double M double E : double T double X Y Z
Baby baby : what makes you treat me so
I've done all : that a poor boy could do
I helped you baby : when your kinfolks turned you down
Now you loving someone else baby : and you done left this town
Look a-here baby : what more you want me to do
I sacrificed my mother : just to get along long with you
Ever lay down laughing : and wake up hollering and crying
And you think about the woman : you treated so nice and kind
Take me back baby : try poor me one more time
I'll bet you hundred dollar : that I will change your mind
When you got money : your friends will hear your plea
When you ain't got no money : then you have to come home to me
Take my woman : I won't get mad with you
For she's three times seven : and she knows what she wants to do
Woke up this morning : and I was half most dead
I was bone-down weary : a low and ache aching head
Baby baby : won't you forgive me please
You're the only woman : can give my poor poor heart ease

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sLNDO_zNL1M


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Subject: Lyr Add: JELLYROLL (Furry Lewis)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Jun 16 - 06:35 PM

Here's the other:

Jellyroll
recorded by Furry Lewis 20 April 1927

I went to the Gypsy : get my fortune told
Lord the Gypsy told me : boy you got a jellyroll
Ain't nobody in town : cook a jellyroll like mine
I was first on Main Street : Lord and I started down Beale
Looking for my girl : Lord that we all call Lucille
I know you don't want me : why don't you tell me so
Then you won't be bothered : with me around your house no more
Lord my good girl quit me : my kid done put me down
I wouldn't hurt so bad : but the doggone news across town
We got a new way of spelling : Memphis Tennessee
Double M double E : Lord A Y Lord Z
Ooh : my gal done quit me now
I'm going to the river : I'm going to jump overboard and drown

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L8MTXpaUJdk - listen at 4:40


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lightnin' Hopkins song-Spelling Memphis
From: leeneia
Date: 11 Jun 16 - 10:05 PM

It's hard to know what to make of this mix of woe and trivia.

The song did inspire me to really look at 'Tennessee' and learn how to spell it. Double N, double S, double E. And as P.G. Wodehouse would say, spread them around a bit.

I have a friend named Hennessey - or is it Henessey or Hennesey? Anyhow, she inspired me to list all my friends in my address book by their first names.


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