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


Origins: Gold Watch and Chain

DigiTrad:
ANCHORED IN LOVE
ARE YOU LONESOME TONIGHT?
ARE YOU TIRED OF ME MY DARLING
BLUE EYES
BUDDIES IN THE SADDLE
CHEWING GUM
DEAR COMPANION
DIAMONDS IN THE ROUGH
GEORGIE ON THE IRT (parody on Engine 143)
GOD GAVE NOAH THE RAINBOW SIGN
GOLD WATCH AND CHAIN
I AIN'T GOT NO HOME IN THIS WORLD ANYMORE
I CAN'T FEEL AT HOME IN THIS WORLD ANYMORE
JUST A FEW MORE DAYS
LULU WALLS
RAILROADING ON THE GREAT DIVIDE
SAILOR ON THE DEEP BLUE SEA
SINGLE GIRL
THE CUBAN SOLDIER
THE LITTLE GYPSY GIRL
THE STORMS ARE ON THE OCEAN
THE WRECK ON THE C & O
WAVES ON THE SEA
YOU ARE MY FLOWER


Related threads:
Carter Family Songs: Summary of Sources (32)
Lyr Add: I'll Be All Smiles Tonight (Carter Family (36)
(origins) Origins: Was there really a train 'Lonesome Pine' (27)
Origins: The authors of the 'Carter Family songs' (393)
Carter Family'Forsaken Love'-who else recorded it? (15)
Info: Dark and stormy weather (Carter Family) (3)
Lyr Add: I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes (2)
(origins) Origin: Kitty and I (Carter Family) (15)
Lyr Req: Chewing Gum (Carter Family) (9)
Lyr Add: Over the Garden Wall (A. P. Carter) (7)
Lyr Req: Live On Down the Line (Carter Family) (10)
Lyr Req: Hello Stranger - is there an older song? (33)
Lyr Add: Jealous Hearted Me (Carter Family) (12)
Lyr Add: Some Carter Family songs. (48)
Lyr Req: Lonesome Pine Special (Carter Family) (6)
Lyr Req: Cup o' Tea (Don Williams) (5)
Lyr Req: songs by the Carter Family (22)
Lyr Req: How Do You Do (Carter Family) (26)
Lyr Req/Add: Grave on the Green Hillside (Carter) (10)
(origins) Origins: Dear Momma-Tribute to Maybelle Carter (2)
Lyr Req: Strumming My Guitaro (Mother Maybelle) (16)
(origins) Origins: Bury Me Beneath the Willow (41)
Lyr/Chords Req: I'll never see those blue eyes aga (16)
Orig: Little Girl That Played on My Knee (1)
Chord Req: You Are My Flower (banjo tab) (4)
Lyr Req: Aged Mother [Ten Thousand Miles Away] (6)
Lyr Req: Keep On the Firing Line (Carter Family) (7)
Lyr Req: Dixie Darling (Carter Family) (18)
Lyr/Chord Req: The Winding Stream (Carter Family) (13)
(origins) Origins: Dixie Darling (A Gillespie & P Wenrich) (26)
Lyr Add: Anchored in Love (The Tempest Is O'er) (4)
Lyr Add: We Will March through ... (Carter Family) (3)
Chord Req: The Storms Are on the Ocean (Carter) (5)
Lyr Add: Broken Hearted Lover (Carter Family) (8)
Lyr Req: Broken Hearted Lover (Carter Family) (3)
Carter family -Magic Water crystals? (9)
Lyr Req: Answer to Weeping Willow (Carter Family) (7)
Lyr Add: Buddies in the Saddle (Carter Family) (9)
Tune Req: Shady Grove (Maybelle Carter) (18)
Lyr Req: A Letter from Home (Maybelle Carter) (7)
Lyr/Chords Req: The Carter Family, 1927 Victo (5)
Carter Family Lyric Sites (15)
Lyr Req: Diamonds in the Rough (Carter Family) (13)
Lyr Req: When the Roses Bloom in Dixieland (13)
Lyr Req: Give Me the Roses While I Live (Carter) (5) (closed)
Lyr Req: When the Roses Bloom Again (A.P. Carter) (7)
Lyr Req: Dixie / My Dixie Darling (Carter Family) (5) (closed)
Lyr Req: Buddies in the Saddle (Carter Family) (2)


DADGBE 04 Mar 02 - 04:45 PM
Herga Kitty 04 Mar 02 - 04:48 PM
DADGBE 04 Mar 02 - 05:02 PM
little john cameron 04 Mar 02 - 05:17 PM
JohnInKansas 04 Mar 02 - 05:49 PM
Dicho (Frank Staplin) 04 Mar 02 - 06:03 PM
Dicho (Frank Staplin) 04 Mar 02 - 06:06 PM
RangerSteve 04 Mar 02 - 06:06 PM
Dicho (Frank Staplin) 04 Mar 02 - 06:17 PM
DADGBE 04 Mar 02 - 06:29 PM
Dicho (Frank Staplin) 04 Mar 02 - 06:41 PM
masato sakurai 04 Mar 02 - 08:48 PM
masato sakurai 04 Mar 02 - 09:23 PM
GUEST,amjp 03 May 10 - 12:07 AM
Joe Offer 03 May 10 - 12:42 AM
open mike 03 May 10 - 06:38 AM
Martha Burns 03 May 10 - 10:24 AM
GUEST,leeneia 03 May 10 - 11:01 AM
Artful Codger 03 May 10 - 01:53 PM
Martha Burns 06 May 10 - 10:43 PM
Ron Davies 06 May 10 - 11:31 PM
catspaw49 07 May 10 - 12:59 AM
Martha Burns 07 May 10 - 01:23 AM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:



Subject: Gold Watch and Chain
From: DADGBE
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 04:45 PM

Hi all,

'Gold Watch and Chain' as sung by the Carter Family sounds to me as if it were written well before the Carters recorded it(as do many of their songs). Does anybody have any info on original publishing dates and/or author?

Thanks, Ray


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 04:48 PM

Er, this wouldn't be the (fairly recent) Dave Webber song would it?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: DADGBE
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 05:02 PM

Sounds doubtful. It was recorded by the Carters in the late 1920's or early 30's.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: GOLD WATCH AND CHAIN (Carter Family)
From: little john cameron
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 05:17 PM

GOLD WATCH AND CHAIN
(Carter Family)

1. Darling, how can I stay here without you?
I have nothing to cheer my poor heart.
This old world would seem sad, love, without you.
Tell me now that we're never to part.

CHORUS: I will pawn you my gold watch and chain, love.
I will pawn you my gold diamond ring.
I will pawn you this heart in my bosom.
Only say that you'll love me again.

2. Take back all the gifts you have given,
But a ring and a lock of your hair,
And a card with your picture upon it.
It's a face that is false, but is fair.

3. Tell me why that you do not love me.
Tell me why that your smile is not bright.
Tell me why you have grown so cold-hearted.
Is there no kiss for me, love, tonight?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 05:49 PM

I have two "Bluegrass Fakebooks" - the words and chords only and apparently "home printed" kind, both of which show Gold Watch and Chain as by A.P. Carter.

I'm not sure I'd trust either of these as being "reliable sources," but Beppe Gambetta includes the tune on his Dialogs CD, and also credits A.P. Carter.

Of course, this doesn't necessarily mean that A.P. didn't lift it from something earlier.

John


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Dicho (Frank Staplin)
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 06:03 PM

Words and music currently Copyright A. P. Carter and Peer International/BMI. Recorded by Carter in 1933-1934, perhaps earlier.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Dicho (Frank Staplin)
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 06:06 PM

Forgot to mention it is on the cd, The Carter Family, "Gold Watch and Chain," The Complete Victor Recordings, 1933-1934; Rou 1070.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: RangerSteve
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 06:06 PM

AP is known for taking songs that weren't copyrighted and claiming authorship. I have a feeling that he didn't write this one.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Dicho (Frank Staplin)
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 06:17 PM

The Traditional Ballad Index (CU-Fresno) credits a 1930s recording by the Carter Family as the first. Also recorded by New Lost City Ramblers. No earlier record of the song.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: DADGBE
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 06:29 PM

Ranger Steve, I agree with you. While their recording is the earliest known, the Victorian style lyrics suggest that it may have existed on some pre-WWI sheet music. Since other songs they recorded and copyrighted (copyrit? copywrote?) have been found in earlier printed versions, I'm hoping that some mudcatter can pinpoint an obscure source. Dicho, you certainly have the goods on the officially accepted data. What I'm trying to find is an anticedent.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Dicho (Frank Staplin)
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 06:41 PM

Ok, go out and dig up the earlier version. Until you do, I will stick with A. P.
The gold watch and chain was still popular in the 1930s (yep, I am old enough to remember) and everything else in the lyrics is 1920s-1930s- nothing Victorian there.
Only since WW2 has a wristwatch replaced the pocket watch as a certified railroad timer. Maybe later; I occasionaly still use my US Military issue 17j Hamilton pocket watch, 1943 date.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: masato sakurai
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 08:48 PM

Musically a different song, but only a part of the lyrics derives from Is there no kiss for me tonight (original sheet music) written by Thos. P. Westendorf in 1879. Its chorus is:

Tell me why has your heart grown cold, love,
Tell me where are your smiles so bright,
Have you banished the joys of old, love,
Is there no kiss for me tonight.

~Masato


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: masato sakurai
Date: 04 Mar 02 - 09:23 PM

Seemingly related to a verse in "I'm Just Here To Get My Baby Out Of Jail," which in the DT. The following is Verse 4 of I'm Just Here to Get My Baby Out'a Jail from the Max Hunter Collection (with audio). There's a Grateful Dead version too (Click here):

I will pawn you my watch
I will pawn you my chain
I will pawn you my gold diamond ring
I will wash all your clothes
I will scrub all your floors
If that will get my baby out of jail

This is a floating verse, also used in "Nine Hundred Miles" ("I will pawn you my watch, / I will pawn you my chain / Pawn you my gold diamond ring"), which is in the DT too.

~Masato


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: GUEST,amjp
Date: 03 May 10 - 12:07 AM

I would have thought that those of you who post here would know this, but - A.P. Carter copyrighted a great number of songs, perhaps most of those attributed to him, that, in some version, were public domain at the time. This was, and is, not uncommon, but he was known for doing this. In most cases, he "refined" them to suit his own sensibilities, and that is probably a good thing, as he had a marvelous sense of their musicality. Many Carter Family songs probably would not have become as popular as they have did and have remained if A.P. had not tailored them to suit (no pun intended) the musical tastes of his time and since.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Joe Offer
Date: 03 May 10 - 12:42 AM

Hi, ajmp-
Most of us here would readily acknowledge the contribution A.P. and the Carter Family made, but somehow it doesn't seem right to be paying royalties to Ralph Peer's Peerless Music for Carter songs that have roots far older than the Carter Family.
The Traditional Ballad Index now says the earliest recording they've found was a 1929 recording by Ephraim Woodie & The Henpecked Husbands. It would be interesting to hear that version and see how close it is to the Carter song.
Richie's sources thread says the Carter Family June 17, 1933 Camden, NJ (Victor) Gold Watch And Chain 1879- Traditional chorus based on the Reuben's Train songs. The verses are from 1879 Westendorf song, "Is There No Kiss For Me Tonight, Love."

Gold Watch and Chain (I)

DESCRIPTION: Singer tells girl that he would pawn his gold watch and chain, his ring, and his heart if she would love him again. He demands that she give back the gifts he's given her, including a lock of hair and a picture, and laments her unfaithfulness
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1929 (recording, Ephraim Woodie & The Henpecked Husbands)
KEYWORDS: love betrayal floatingverses gift
FOUND IN: US(Ap)
REFERENCES (1 citation):
DT, GOLDWTCH
RECORDINGS:
Carter Family, "Gold Watch and Chain" (Victor 23821, 1933; Montgomery Ward M-7354, c. 1937)
New Lost City Ramblers, "Gold Watch and Chain" (on NLCR13, NLCREP2)
Ephraim Woodie & The Henpecked Husbands, "Last Gold Dollar" (Columbia 15564-D, 1930; rec. 1929; on LostProv1)

File: DTgoldwt

Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Instructions
Go to the Bibiography
Go to the Discography

The Ballad Index Copyright 2009 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Gold Watch and Chain
From: open mike
Date: 03 May 10 - 06:38 AM

this song always reminds me of the O. Henry story the Gift of the Magi
where two partners pawn their precious possessions to buy presents for each other...she sells her hair and he sells his watch. She gets him
a watch chain (fob?) and he gets her a barette, neither of which they
have use for in the end...well, it is the thought that counts!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Martha Burns
Date: 03 May 10 - 10:24 AM

Not to go too far astray, but there's a "Honeymooners" episode that's sort of like that. Ralph pawns his bowling ball to get a present for Alice, and Alice presents Ralph with a bowling ball bag.
    Kind of prefer this to "Gold Watch & Chain," actually. Have never much cared for the song because the objects -- "gold watch and chain," "diamond ring," and even "heart in my bosom" -- are such bland cliches. A song about a "bowling ball & bag" might have some interest, though.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Gold Watch and Chain
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 03 May 10 - 11:01 AM

Let's see if I have this right.

He's bought himself a gold watch, a gold chain and a diamond ring. He's given her some hair and a picture.

And he wonders why she's not giving him any nookie?

She probably knows that if she marries him, someday she'll be one of those women who writes to Dear Abby to say that she hasn't had a new dress in 10 years.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Artful Codger
Date: 03 May 10 - 01:53 PM

AP Carter copyrighted all the Carter Family songs in his own name, regardless of which of them actually did the most work writing, adapting or pirating the songs. He was probably the least musical of the three; though he did play fiddle, he didn't have a strong memory for tunes, and employed another musician (Riddle) to accompany him on his later song collecting trips to help him capture the music. Many of the songs they recorded came to them through Riddle, who also had a strong influence on Maybelle's guitar style. Of course, he has received virtually no credit for his contributions to the success of the Carters--and not a drop of the royalties.

Accounts of how they came by their songs show that the women were generally more involved in shaping the songs they recorded. So despite the "AP Carter" copyright attribution, it is most correct to speak of these songs as "theirs" rather than "his", except in those cases (only a handful) where it is known he wrote the songs.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Martha Burns
Date: 06 May 10 - 10:43 PM

Mark Zwonitzer, in his book on the Carter Family, describes the Carters' first recording session, in Bristol, Tennessee. Apparently Ralph Peer remarked to A.P., at the end of the session, "You didn't do very much," to which A.P. apparently responded, "No, I just bass in every once't in a while." Sara and Maybelle returned for a second session, the next day, without A.P.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Ron Davies
Date: 06 May 10 - 11:31 PM

One reason he copyrighted them is that he was pushed--hard-- to do so by his publisher. They always needed new material.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Gold Watch and Chain
From: catspaw49
Date: 07 May 10 - 12:59 AM

Don't know where it came from but Emmylou sings an additional verse:

Oh, the white rose that blooms in the garden
It grows with the love of my heart
It broke through on the day that I met you
It will die on the day that we part


There was yet another verse added in the rendition by Meryl Streep and Garrison Keillor in the "Prairie Home Companion" movie:

Don't you know that I gave you my heart, love
It was given and can't be returned
You have left me and gone to another
All my hopes and bridges are burned



Between the two, the Emmylou verse has an original lyric feel to it whereas the other seems more contrived and just has a different "feel" than the others.


Spaw


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Gold Watch and Chain
From: Martha Burns
Date: 07 May 10 - 01:23 AM

Actually, Mark Zwonitzer is helpful on the copyright topic, too. Ralph Peer gave the Carters a set fee for each side recorded. But if they could copyright the song, they got royalties, too -- a half-cent for each record sale, and two cents for each sheet music copy. The way it worked was, A.P. owned the copyrights, but assigned them to Peer. According to Zwonitzer, Peer used this arrangement to keep the Carters wedded to Victor, and -- as Ron notes -- to motivate them to search out new songs. "If A.P. could continue to come up with new songs (or songs that could be 'put over' as new), Peer would make sure Victor sold them. The more songs the Carters could come up with, the better for them all."
The book is Mark Zwonitzer with Charles Hirshberg, WILL YOU MISS ME WHEN I'M GONE: THE CARTER FAMILY AND THEIR LEGACY IN AMERICAN MUSIC (2004)


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: 24 February 10:11 AM EST

[ 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.