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Lyr Req: Uncle Eph's Got the Coon

Stan 18 Feb 99 - 12:47 AM
Nathan Sarvis 18 Feb 99 - 08:48 AM
Joshua Newman -- jnewman@altavista.net 23 Feb 99 - 03:21 PM
Sandy Paton 23 Feb 99 - 06:31 PM
Joshua Newman -- jnewman@altavista.net 23 Feb 99 - 09:03 PM
Art Thieme 23 Feb 99 - 10:15 PM
Sandy Paton 23 Feb 99 - 10:42 PM
Sandy Paton 23 Feb 99 - 10:55 PM
harpgirl 21 Mar 03 - 09:34 PM
Joe_F 22 Mar 03 - 07:17 PM
GUEST,Q 16 Aug 03 - 02:20 PM
GUEST,Q 16 Aug 03 - 02:25 PM
GUEST,Q 16 Aug 03 - 05:29 PM
Art Thieme 16 Aug 03 - 10:10 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 03 Dec 06 - 09:34 PM
Stephen L. Rich 04 Dec 06 - 02:06 AM
GUEST,BANJO OLLIE 29 Dec 09 - 11:17 PM
Clontarf83 30 Dec 09 - 12:27 AM
GUEST,999 30 Dec 09 - 12:33 AM
Jim Dixon 02 Jan 10 - 08:44 AM
Jim Dixon 04 Jan 10 - 01:56 PM
GUEST 27 Mar 18 - 04:20 PM
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Subject: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: Stan
Date: 18 Feb 99 - 12:47 AM

Does anyone know the lyrics to a song by Grandpa Jones: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon and Gone home is the first line. Please send any information to Stan at jonesclan@iolusa.com. Thanks.


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Subject: Lyr Add: UNCLE EPH'S GOT THE COON
From: Nathan Sarvis
Date: 18 Feb 99 - 08:48 AM

Old Uncle Eph was a good old soul.
He washed his face in the butter bowl,
Bumped his head on the mantle piece,
And fell right into a bucket of grease.

(Chorus)
Uncle Eph's got the coon and gone on,
Gone on, gone on.
Uncle Eph's got the coon and gone on,
And left us lookin' up a tree.

Wake up, sister. Don't you sleep so late.
Keep your eye on the golden gate.
Get up and dance by the light of the moon.
See Uncle Eph come fetching in the coon.

What kind of slippers do the angels wear,
Slippin' and slidin' on the golden stairs?
Golden slippers and silver socks.
Drop your nickel in the missionary box.

When Ephraim told this world goodbye,
He went to heaven to his home on high,
Told Saint Peter to make room.
Here comes Ephraim, fetchin' in the coon.

HTML line breaks added. --JoeClone, 22-Mar-03.


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Subject: RE: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: Joshua Newman -- jnewman@altavista.net
Date: 23 Feb 99 - 03:21 PM

This sounds very like "Brother Ephus," which I believe Jody Stecher recorded ... though now that I've looked, I see I claimed to have learned it from Hedy West (what has become of Hedy West?)...

CHO: Where you going, Moses None of your business Come here, Moses Ain't gonna do it Brother Ephus got a coon and gone on, gone on, gone on Brother Ephus got a coon and gone on Left me barking up a tree

If you search for "Brother Ephus" in the Digital Tradition you'll find it.


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Subject: RE: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 23 Feb 99 - 06:31 PM

It's on Hedy West's Folk-Legacy recording, Old Times and Hard Times, now available as one of our classy "custom" cassettes, with lyric booklet, too. I hope I've finally learned to create one of these fancy "click on" links.

Poor Joe Offer's had his hands full, trying to bring me up to speed with HTML. Just want everyone to know how much we all appreciate you, Joe!

Sandy


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Subject: RE: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: Joshua Newman -- jnewman@altavista.net
Date: 23 Feb 99 - 09:03 PM

You did it, sir!

So ... what are your classy custom cassettes ? I've been out of touch with the music scene for quite awhile in general; forgive me if the answer to my question is very old news...


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Subject: RE: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: Art Thieme
Date: 23 Feb 99 - 10:15 PM

Say, Sandy,

I think this song (with a story o' some kind attached within) was on one o' the things this old folkie did on your label.


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Subject: RE: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 23 Feb 99 - 10:42 PM

You're right, Art! It's on That's the Ticket! (C-90), along with your tale of the great raccoon hunt, but Joshua had mentioned crediting Hedy West as his source, so I was pointing folks to her record, specifically. Now I'll point to both of 'em.

Once you open the Folk-Legacy web site, click on the word "browse" at the left of your screen. That will take you to an index page. Be patient, it's a long file. Then look for "West, Hedy" or "Old Times and Hard Times" and click on the C-32 that appears in green. That should take you right to her listing in our "custom cassette" pages.

To find Art's recording, now in our regular cassette catalog, scroll only as far as "Thieme, Art" or "That's the Ticket." Once again, click on the green "C-90" at the end of the title. You ought to be whisked away by cybermagic to Art's listing in the cassette pages. If this fails, try clicking on either "custom" (for Hedy) or "cassette" (for Art) at the left of the opening page. Click here.

By the way, Art, I saw your "last CD" reference in the thread about CD lengths. Don't despair, lad. When we can get some cash together, we'll try to get your two Folk-Legacy recordings out on CD, too. But don't hold your breath, dammit; pickin's are slim these days. So what's new?

Sandy


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Subject: RE: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 23 Feb 99 - 10:55 PM

Just realized that you'll need to click on the "Songs of Hearth and Home" section of the cassette menu page to get to Art's cassette. I should also point out that we've got Art's On the Wilderness Road back in the regular cassette catalog, but the web page hasn't moved it back as yet. You'll find it listed as a "custom" cassette, right below Hedy's listing, but it oughta be with his That's the Ticket! I'll remind our Web Guru of this tonight, Art. Rest easy, old friend.

Sandy (again)


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Subject: RE: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: harpgirl
Date: 21 Mar 03 - 09:34 PM

...anybody have the chords handy? Otherwise I'll have to dig out the record!   harpy


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Subject: Lyr Add: UNCLE REUBEN GOT A COON
From: Joe_F
Date: 22 Mar 03 - 07:17 PM

Possibly related, tho very different after the first stanza:

"UNCLE REUBEN GOT A COON"
on "Tom Glazer, Richard Dyer-Bennett Sing Olden Ballads"

REFRAIN:
Uncle Reuben got a coon, done gone, chck-a-chck,
Done gone, chck-a-chck, done gone, chck-a-chck,
Uncle Reuben got a coon, done gone, chck-a-chck,
And left me here behind.

Possum on the simmon tree, raccoon on the ground,
Possum say "Mr Raccoon, won't you shake one simmon down.

If you love me, Liza Jane, put your hand in mine.
You won't lack for no corn bread as long as the sun do shine.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 16 Aug 03 - 02:20 PM

Both songs are put together from "Brother Eben's Got a Coon," and verses borrowed of parodied from a number of other songs. A Negro folk song version was collected in 1909 by Perrow. The Traditional ballad Index refers to a song from 1878 by Bob Allen, "Old Uncle Eph."

Uncle Eph'm got de coon and gone on, gone on, gone on,
Uncle Eph'm got the coon and gone on,
And left me wathing up de tree.

Newman I White, in American Negro Folk-Songs, 1928 (1965 reprint) says Perrow has this refrain after a stanza that has antecedents in old minstrel books, so the blackface minstrels may have been the source of the song. (White, # 37, p. 223)
Scarborough, 1925, found the same refrain, also in combination with old minstrel songs from the 1840s-1850s:

Brother Eben's got a coon,
And gone on, gone on,
Brother Eban's got a coon,
And gone on, gone on.

OLd Dan Tucker, Possum Up a Gum Stump, Liza Jane. Shake dem 'Simmons and a parody of Golden Slippers also have contributed.

The Traditional Ballad Index, cufresno, lists some recordings.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 16 Aug 03 - 02:25 PM

Checked "Old Uncle Eph" by Bob Allen in American Memory. Not the same song; only the title is similar.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 16 Aug 03 - 05:29 PM

Looking for a cd with Grandpa Jones singing "Uncle Eph...," but only found it currently available on a 4-cd set called "Bluegrass Bonanza." Any others?
(Misleading title for the set)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: Art Thieme
Date: 16 Aug 03 - 10:10 PM

My version of it is now available on the CD of THAT'S THE TICKET from Folk Legacy Records.

www.folklegacy.com

Art


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 03 Dec 06 - 09:34 PM

Refresh


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Uncle Ef's Got the Coon
From: Stephen L. Rich
Date: 04 Dec 06 - 02:06 AM

Dick Feller had an odd verse for this one

My gal's got an ugly face
But it wouldn't stop a clock.
But every time she looks at one
She slows it down a lot.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Uncle Eph's Got the Coon
From: GUEST,BANJO OLLIE
Date: 29 Dec 09 - 11:17 PM

One day walkin' down the railroad track,
With a banjer strapped across his back,
On the bridge when the whistle blew,
So he jumped in the river with the banjo too!!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Uncle Eph's Got the Coon
From: Clontarf83
Date: 30 Dec 09 - 12:27 AM

Arkansas Sheiks did this one on their album---haven't been able to get a copy--just have a tape from a disc from the local library in the 90s---now long disappeared.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Uncle Eph's Got the Coon
From: GUEST,999
Date: 30 Dec 09 - 12:33 AM

Version here on YOUTUBE


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Subject: Lyr Add: UNCLE EPHRAIM GOT DE COON
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 02 Jan 10 - 08:44 AM

From "Songs and Rhymes from the South" by E. C. Perrow, in The Journal of American Folk-Lore, Vol. 26 (Lancaster, Pa.: American Folk-Lore Society, 1913), page 158:

32. UNCLE EPHRAIM GOT DE COON
(From Mississippi; negroes; MS. of R. J. Slay; 19x19)

[1] As I was coming through my field,
A black snake bit me on de heel;
Dey carried me home, and laid me on de bed;
De ole folks said, "Dat nigger is dead."

[CHORUS] Uncle Eph'm got de coon and gone on, gone on, gone on,
Uncle Eph'm got de coon and gone on,
And left me watching up de tree.

[2] What kind of shoes did de angels wear,
Slipping and sliding through de air?
A great big shoe and a gov'mint sox:
Just drap all de money in de missionary-box.


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Subject: Lyr Add: BROTHER EPHRUM GOT DE COON AND GONE ON
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 04 Jan 10 - 01:56 PM

From On the Trail of Negro Folk-Songs by Dorothy Scarborough (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1925), page 101:

An old song given me by Joseph A. Turner, of Hollins, Virginia, mentions a crude banjo. The music to this was written down for me by Ruth Hibbard, of Hollins College.


BROTHER EPHRUM GOT DE COON AND GONE ON

1. I went down to my pea-patch
To see if my ole hen had hatch.
Ole hen hatch and tellin' of her dream,
And de little chickens pickin' on de tambourine.

CHORUS: Brother Ephrum got de coon and gone on, and gone on, and gone on.
Brother Ephrum got de coon and gone on
And left me here behind.

2. I see a rabbit a-runnin' down de fiel';
I say, "Mister Rebbit, whar you gwine?"
She say, "I ain't got no time for to fool wid you,
Dar's a white man comin' on behind."

3. Marsa bought a yaller gal,
He brought her right from de South,
And de hayr on her head was wrop so tight
Dat de sun shone in her mouth.

4. Lips jes' like a cherry,
Cheeks jes' like a rose.
How I loves dat yaller gal
Lord Almighty knows!

5. I had a little banjo,
De strings was made of twine,
And de only tune dat I could play
Was, I wish dat gal was mine!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Uncle Eph's Got the Coon
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Mar 18 - 04:20 PM

I remember learning this from a radio programme for schools as Uncle Reuben - it was probably the Singing Together programme, mentioned on other threads.
The melody was a hash together of one old-time tune for the verse with the chorus tune being closer to the more familiar Uncle Eph melody.

The song also contained a verse from a completely different song:

Raccoon's got a bushy tail;
Possum tail is bare.
Rabbit's got no tail at all,
But a little bunch of hair.

This verse clearly comes from this song:

http://web.lyon.edu/wolfcollection/songs/detherowraccoon1239.html

Funny how the folk process works.


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