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Origins: Some Dark Holler

richlmo 28 Sep 03 - 11:29 PM
GUEST,pdq 28 Sep 03 - 11:51 PM
Gene 29 Sep 03 - 01:46 AM
GUEST 29 Sep 03 - 07:20 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 29 Sep 03 - 07:15 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 29 Sep 03 - 07:47 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 29 Sep 03 - 10:31 PM
Little Robyn 30 Sep 03 - 03:38 AM
GUEST 13 Dec 10 - 10:32 AM
mikesamwild 13 Dec 10 - 12:24 PM
GUEST,charlie frederick 14 Dec 10 - 06:35 AM
GUEST 30 Oct 12 - 05:04 PM
maeve 30 Oct 12 - 11:55 PM
GUEST,leeneia 31 Oct 12 - 10:54 AM
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Subject: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: richlmo
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 11:29 PM

I love the Dwight Yoakum version on the Will The Circle Be Unbroken #3 album. Where did this song come from and what are the traditional lyrics?


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Subject: Lyr Add: DARK HOLLOW (Bill Browning)
From: GUEST,pdq
Date: 28 Sep 03 - 11:51 PM

Check the lyrics search right here on Mudcat. It is probably the real reason people come to this place.

Here is one version:


DARK HOLLOW
Writer: Bill Browning

I'd rather be in some dark holler
Where the sun don't never shine
Than to be at home alone, knowin' that she's gone
That'd cause me to lose my mind.

CHORUS
So blow your whistle freight train
Take me far on down the track
I'm goin' away, I'm leavin' today
I'm a-goin', but I ain't comin' back.

I'd rather be in some dark holler
Where the sun don't never shine
Than to be in this big city
In a small room with you on my mind.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: Gene
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 01:46 AM

I remember JIMMIE OSBORNE's version very well.

Tho' he didn't write the referenced song, he did write:

MOM IS DYING TONIGHT and
DEATH OF LITTLE KATHY FISCUS
among others...


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 07:20 AM


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 07:15 PM

In a lot of versions of East Virginia- see thread 35233: East Virginia
Carter Famiy, Doc Watson, etc.

Holler rhymes with foller and dollar, so it appears in "Greenback Dollar" as well.

The second verse of Osborne's version is reminiscent of "In the Pines" (where the sun never shines).


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 07:47 PM

Lyr. Add: THE DARK HOLLOW

Little birdie, little birdie,
Come sing me a song,
I want to live in a dark holler
Where the sun never can shine!

I'd ruther be a sailor
Way out on the sea,
Than to be a married man
With a baby on my knee.

Litle birdie, little birdie,
What makes you look so queer?
You've no cause for to worry,
No sorrow for to bear.

And-
Purty woman, purty woman,
Just see whut you've done.
You've caused me to murder
Another woman's son!

From Randolph, Ozark Folksongs, pp. 121-122, with music.

There are many floating verses and similar songs.
Also see Dark Holler Blues, "a modernized hillbilly song as sung by Clarence Ashley (Columbia records 15489D)." Quote from Randolph, p. 122


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 29 Sep 03 - 10:31 PM

"I'd Rather Be in Some Dark Hollow," sung by Dave Bailey, Homer Petty and Dean Bone, at American Memory. Can't make it out, but have a listen.
Search
(Enter dark hollow in the blank)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: Little Robyn
Date: 30 Sep 03 - 03:38 AM

Isn't it a 'floater' verse that pops up in lots of songs?

I'd rather be in some dark holler
Where the sun refuse to shine
Than to see you be another man's darlin'
And to know that you'll never be mine.

Come all ye fair and tender ladies, The cuckoo, what else?


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Dec 10 - 10:32 AM

The post referencing Bill Browning is wrong; he may have wrote that version, but he didn't write the song (that's like people thinking Merle wrote "Nine Pound Hammer" when he wrote that version, but he didn't write the song). It relies quite a bit on traditional, passed down stuff. Further proof is...


Clarence Ashley's version of "Dark Holler" that came out in Archive of American Folk Music, from late 1920s has these lyrics:

I was born in old Virginia
South Carolina I did go
There I caught a pretty little woman
but her age I did not know

Well her hair was brown and curly
Oh her cheeks were rosy red
On her breast she wore white lillies
Oh the tears that I have shed

When I'm asleep I'm dreaming about you
When I wake I have no rest
Every moment seems like an hour
Oh the pains roll through my breast

I'd rather be in some dark holler
Where the sun don't ever shine
For you to be some other man's darling
When you ain't no longer mine

Papa says I must not marry
Mama says it'll never do
But little girl if you are willing
I will run away with you

For I'd rather be in some dark holler
Where the sun don't ever shine
For you to be some other ma's darling
When you ain't no longer mine

When I'm asleep I'm dreaming about you
When I wake I have no rest
Every moment seems like an hour
Oh the pains roll through my breast


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: mikesamwild
Date: 13 Dec 10 - 12:24 PM

That last verse loks like one from 'I Live not Where I love.'

Random floting verses are useful


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: GUEST,charlie frederick
Date: 14 Dec 10 - 06:35 AM

Luke Gordon had the best version of this song. Luke was a member of the Jimmy Dean Show in Washington, DC


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Oct 12 - 05:04 PM

Agree. Of all the artists who have ever recorded "Dark Hollow", Luke Gordon's arrangement will always be remembered as the very best version of this song.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: maeve
Date: 30 Oct 12 - 11:55 PM

Luke Gordon - "Dark Hollow" on YouTube.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Some Dark Holler
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 31 Oct 12 - 10:54 AM

Thanks for the link, maeve. I enjoyed the true bluegrass sounds in that record. The train whistle rendered by the fiddle at 48 seconds is especially to be prized.

The Union Pacific Railroad had its exhibition steam train, the X844 (see it on YouTube) in town a couple weeks ago. I had the magical experience of lying in bed early one morning and hearing its mournful whistle from a mile or so away. It's absolutely haunting.


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