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Blind Lemon Jefferson - Dry Southern Blu

DBov 19 Sep 17 - 03:06 PM
Thomas Stern 19 Sep 17 - 09:19 PM
GUEST,Joseph Scott 19 Sep 17 - 10:48 PM
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Subject: Blind Lemon Jefferson - Dry Southern Blu
From: DBov
Date: 19 Sep 17 - 03:06 PM

I recently revisited this song and some of the many transcriptions of its lyrics available on the internet. Whilst nearly but not quite all the words have now been identified it seems to me that there are still questions about their actual meaning and the context in which they are used. For example can anyone shed further light on verses 5 and 6.

Uncle Sam was no woman, but didn't he draft your man
Uncle Sam was no woman, but didn't he draft your man
Tell me them good lookin' womens on the border raisin' sand

Well, women on the border's drinkin' over the water trough
I say, women on the border's drinkin' over the water trough
I wished Uncle Sam would hurry up and pay these soldiers off

According to Wikipedia (not always accurate) conscription in the US ended in 1918 and was not reintroduced until 1940 so does this song date from WWI? Which border is referred to - is it the USA/Texas border with Mexico and did the US have troops stationed there and why? Presumably the women are "raisin' sand" because their men haven't been demobbed but what's the significance of "drinking over the water trough"? Any thoughts?

Oh yes - and why DRY Southern Blues. Dryness or aridity doesn't seem to be a feature of the song.


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Subject: RE: Blind Lemon Jefferson - Dry Southern Blu
From: Thomas Stern
Date: 19 Sep 17 - 09:19 PM

Texas and many southern states were DRY, i.e. no legal sale
of alcohol. Perhaps one had to cross the border to obtain
such drink ????

Thomas.


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Subject: RE: Blind Lemon Jefferson - Dry Southern Blu
From: GUEST,Joseph Scott
Date: 19 Sep 17 - 10:48 PM

"does this song date from WWI" From after. The government dragged its feet about paying WWI veterans promised monies and even in 1932 they were still protesting about it. "Uncle Sam ain't no woman..." present tense was already around in blues in about 1918.


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