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Lyr Add: I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes

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


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Dale Rose 28 Mar 98 - 05:30 PM
Joe Offer 24 Jul 15 - 03:55 AM
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Subject: Lyr Add: I'M THINKING TONIGHT OF MY BLUE EYES
From: Dale Rose
Date: 28 Mar 98 - 05:30 PM

In the Wild Side of Life thread, Dick asked for this one. Here you go.

There are a great number of songs that have been based on this tune. At the moment I can't think of them all, but here is Blue Eyes.

It is on Rounder 1065, My Clinch Mountain Home, volume two of the complete Victor recordings of A. P., Sara, and Maybelle Carter. Incidentally, the song is a fine example of the great guitar style for which Maybelle is so justly famous. Rounder will complete the series of Victor releases by the Carter Family with the release of volumes eight and nine next month. Each volume has 16 songs

From the notes by the well known scholar, Charles K. Wolfe: "I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes" is another Carter song that became a standard, echoing down through the years in country music. One historian has called it "the best known melody in country music," and it has been used for everything from Roy Acuff's "Great Speckled Bird" to Kitty Wells' "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky-Tonk Angels." Sara and Maybelle both recalled that they had known the song all their lives, certainly it shows up in dozens of folksong collections, and prior to the Carter version had been recorded by Welby Toomey (a Kentucky singer), Earl Johnson (a Georgia fiddler), the Stoneman Family (from the Galax, Virginia, area), and others -- though none of them actually used A.P.'s title. Sara and A.P. sing the duet again.

I'M THINKING TONIGHT OF MY BLUE EYES
as recorded by The Carter Family on either February 14 or 15, 1929

Would been better for us both had we never
In this wide and wicked world had never met
For the pleasure we've both seen together
I am sure, Love, I'll never forget

Chorus
Oh, I'm thinking tonight of my blue eyes
Who is sailing far over the sea
Oh, I'm thinking tonight of my blue eyes
And I wonder if he ever thinks of me

Oh, you told me once, dear, that you loved me
You said that we never would part
But a link in the chain has been broken
Leaves me with a sad and aching heart

Chorus

When the cold, cold grave shall enclose me
Will you come near and shed just one tear
And say to the strangers around you
A poor heart you have broken lies here.

Chorus


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Subject: RE: Lyr Add: I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 03:55 AM

Here's the Traditional Ballad Index entry on this song. Is this a Carter Family original, or is it one of the many that come from much earlier sources?

Broken Ties (I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes)

DESCRIPTION: "It would have been better for us both to have never In this wicked world never met." The singer recalls how the other once loved (her?); when she is dead, she asks if he will come and shed a tear on her grave
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1929 (recording, Carter Family)
KEYWORDS: love betrayal death burial
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MW,SE,So)
REFERENCES (8 citations):
BrownII 156, "Broken Ties" (3 texts plus mention of 1 more)
BrownSchinhanIV 156, "Broken TIes" (1 excerpt, 1 tune)
Randolph [811], "How Sadly My Heart Yearns Toward You" (omitted from the second edition)
Fuson, p. 140, "Broken Vows" (1 text)
Cambiaire, p. 60, "Blue Eyes" (1 text)
MHenry-Appalachians, p. 167, "Blue Eyes" (1 text)
Neely, pp. 229-230, "The Broken Heart" (1 text)
DT, BLUEEYES

Roud #460
RECORDINGS:
Gene Autry, "I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes" OKeh 06648 /Columbia 36587, 1942; Columbia 20049, n.d.)
The Carter Family, "I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes" (Victor V-40089, 1929; Montgomery Ward M-4230, 1933) (Perfect 35-09-23/Conqueror 8539, 1935)
Denver Darling & his Texas Cowhands, "I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes" (Decca 46225, 1950)
Montana Slim [pseud. for Wilf Carter] "I'm Thinking Tonight of my Blue Eyes" (Bluebird B-9032, 1942)
Saddle Tramps, "I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes" (Vocalion 04037, 1938)
Shelton & Fox, "I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes" (Decca 5184, 1936)

CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "The Great Speckled Bird" (tune)
ALTERNATE TITLES:
The Broken Engagement
NOTES: Paul Stamler suggests that we should call this song "I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes." Certainly that's the version most of us know today, thanks to the Carter Family and all its spinoffs. It appears, however, that the majority of versions are called either "Broken Ties" or "Broken Vows." Of course, the whole family is rather amorphous; I could argue, for instance, for splitting off Fuson's "Broken Vows." As it is, I split it more than Roud, who also includes the "Forget You I Never May" family here.
Pre-Carter Family texts of this seem to lack the "Blue Eyes" chorus, but some later versions (e.g. the "C" text in Brown, from 1930) add it; there may be some sort of cause and effect.
D. K. Wilgus, in Americo Paredes and Ellen J. Stekert, editors, The Urban Experience and Folk Tradition, American Folklore Society/University of Texas Press, 1971, pp. 156-157, makes an interesting point about the "I'm Thinking Tonight of my Blue Eyes" version: it inspired and supplied the tune for two of the most influential songs in the history of pop country music: "The Wild Side of Life" and "I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes." Plus "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky-Tonk Angels." It's also close to the "The Great Speckled Bird." - RBW
Last updated in version 3.6
File: BrII156

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The Ballad Index Copyright 2015 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.


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