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Origin: White House Blues (from Delia?)

DigiTrad:
CANNONBALL BLUES
MCKINLEY'S RAG
WHITE HOUSE BLUES
WHITE HOUSE BLUES (3)


Related threads:
Lyr Req: McKinley's rag (21)
Title of 'White House Blues'-Charlie Poole? (5)
what's the name of this song? - Solid Gone (29)
happy? - Sept 6 (Czolgosz shoots) (2)
Lyr Req: McKinley's Rag (Riley Puckett) (3)
Lyr Req: White House Blues (3)
Lyr Req: White House Blues (not Renbourn) (4)
Tune Req: White House Blues (5)
Lyr Req: White House Blues (John Renbourn) (14)
(origins) Origin of Tune: White House Blues (John Renbourn) (1)


Richie 26 Jan 07 - 07:15 AM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 07:17 AM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 07:36 AM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 07:43 PM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 08:01 PM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 08:58 PM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 09:01 PM
GUEST,Bob Coltman 26 Jan 07 - 09:11 PM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 09:31 PM
Goose Gander 26 Jan 07 - 09:35 PM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 09:46 PM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 10:14 PM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 11:04 PM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 11:32 PM
Richie 26 Jan 07 - 11:38 PM
GUEST,Scoville 26 Jan 07 - 11:48 PM
Azizi 26 Jan 07 - 11:52 PM
Richie 27 Jan 07 - 08:09 AM
Richie 27 Jan 07 - 09:54 PM
Richie 28 Jan 07 - 12:32 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 28 Jan 07 - 01:08 PM
Richie 28 Jan 07 - 01:18 PM
Richie 28 Jan 07 - 09:01 PM
GUEST,Phil d'Conch 08 Mar 16 - 12:38 AM
GUEST,Phil d'Conch 08 Mar 16 - 12:53 AM
GUEST,Lighter 08 Mar 16 - 07:01 AM
GUEST,Joseph Scott 26 Apr 16 - 11:32 PM
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Subject: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 07:15 AM

Hi,

I am looking at White House Blues and trying to understand it's origin and variants. Does anyone know the first collected version? Are there any references before Charlie Poole in 1926?

The song is based on 1901 assassination of McKinley. The melody is used in "Crazy War" and "Battleship of Maine" but I'm interested in the blues connection with Solid Gone/Cannonball Blues.

Seems like the Carter Family's 1930 version is based on a blues named Delia/Delia's gone which is based on a murder from 1901. Does anyone agree?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 07:17 AM

Here's some info from the Traditional Ballad Index:

Mister McKinley (White House Blues)

DESCRIPTION: "McKinley hollered, McKinley squalled; The doc says, 'McKinley, I can't find the ball.'" Describing McKinley's assassination by Zolgotz, his poor medical treatment, and his funeral. MacKinley is usually said to be "bound to die."
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1926 (recording, Charlie Poole)
KEYWORDS: death homicide doctor funeral political humorous
HISTORICAL REFERENCES:
Sept 6, 1901 - President William McKinley is shaking hands at an exhibition when he is shot by anarchist Leon Czolgosz, who felt McKinley was receiving too much attention.
MacKinley's wounds should not have been serious, but his inept doctor decided to operate immediately rather than wait for a specialist
Sept 14, 1901 - Death of MacKinley (due more to operative trauma than to his wounds). Theodore Roosevelt becomes President
FOUND IN: US(SE)
REFERENCES (12 citations):
BrownSchinhanIV 337, "Zolgotz" (1 short text, 1 tune)
JonesLunsford, pp. 215-216, "Czolgosz" (1 text, 1 tune)
Cohen-LSRail, pp. 413-425, "Cannonball Blues/Whitehouse Blues" (2 texts, 2 tunes, the first being "Mister McKinley (White House Blues)" and the second the "Cannonball Blues," plus a version of a song called "Mr. McKinley" from _The Week-End Book_, which is so different that I would regard it as a separate though perhaps related song, probably not traditional)
Cohen-AFS1, pp. 118-119 "McKinley" (1 text)
Lomax-Singing, pp. 256-257, "White House Blues" (1 text, 1 tune)
Lomax-FSNA 143, "Mister MacKinley" (sic) (1 text, 1 tune)
Asch/Dunson/Raim, p. 56 "White House Blues" (1 text, 1 tune)
Cohen/Seeger/Wood, p. 228 "White House Blues" (1 text, 1 tune)
Rorrer, p. 73, "White House Blues" (1 text)
Silber-FSWB, p. 287, "White House Blues" (1 text)
DT, WHITHOU*
ADDITIONAL: Tristram P. Coffin and Hennig Cohen, _Folklore in America: Tales, Songs, Superstitions, Proverbs, Riddles, Games, Folk Drama and Folk Festivals_, Doubleday, 1966, p. 90, "McKinley" (1 text)

Roud #787
RECORDINGS:
Warde Ford, "Buffalo, Buffalo (Death of McKinley)" (AFS 4198 B3, 1938; tr.; in AMMEM/Cowell)
Bill Monroe & his Bluegrass Boys, "Whitehouse Blues" (Decca 29141, 1954)
Charlie Poole and the North Carolina Ramblers, "White House Blues" (Columbia 15099D, 1926; on AAFM1, CPoole01, CPoole05)
Riley Puckett, "McKinley" (Columbia 15448-D, 1929)
Swing Billies, "From Buffalo to Washington" (Bluebird B-7121, 1937)

CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "Battleship of Maine" (tune)
cf. "The Cannonball" (words)
cf. "Joking Henry" (tune)
cf. "White House Blues (II)" (structure, tune, words)
cf. "Huey Long" (lyrics, form)
NOTES: I know of three derivative versions of this song: one collected in Kentucky in the 1930s, talking about Herbert Hoover (in this collection as "White House Blues (II)"), a second recorded by country-and-western singer Tom T. Hall in the 1970s, talking about Richard Nixon. Both share the title "White House Blues." The third is ""Governor Al Smith." - (PJS)
McKinley had been unpopular among farmers, most of whom had supported Democrat William Jennings Bryan, and his passing was not much mourned among country people -- thus the jaunty, humorous tone of this song. - PJS
The reference to McKinley's children earning a pension upon their father's death is completely unhistorical; McKinley married Ida Saxton (1847-1907) in 1871, but his two daughters, Katie and Ida, both died in infancy, and Mrs. McKinley was an epileptic and an invalid by the time her husband was elected President. - RBW
Last updated in version 4.0
File: LoF143

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The Ballad Index Copyright 2016 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 07:36 AM

I posted the lyrics to "Governor Al Smith" (version of White House Blues) by the Carolina Night Hawks last fall (maybe in Oct. or Nov.) and can't find it in the DT.

Can anyone find this thread? 12 Stringer posted on it also.


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Subject: Lyr Add: GOVERNOR AL SMITH FOR PRESIDENT
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 07:43 PM

Here's the missing post from my database, but where is it in the DT?

GOVERNOR AL SMITH FOR PRESIDENT
Carolina Night Hawks
Sung to the tune of "Whitehouse Blues"
Transcription 12-Stringer and Richie:

(Fiddle)

Down in the White House, preparing for his rest
Al and his buddies are doing their best
He'll win, bound to win

Hoover in the northland he's firing his guns;
Smith in Dixie is winning everyone.
Hard to beat, he's hard to beat.

(Fiddle)

You hear people shouting, "No booze!" they say,
It's running free now, you can get it any day,
From bootleggers and killers too

The sugar that they make now will make you bounce around
The brandy too will put you flat on the ground
Bad stuff, hard to drink

(Fiddle)

I won't be long now 'till she will be free
Then they'll make corn liquor as pure as can be
Free from lye, and sugar too.

When booze went out, we didn't think then
That we would ever get together back again
She's coming back, back again.

(Fiddle)

Let's nominate Al Smith, nominate I say
That he'll find it through on election day
Yes through, all the way.

He made a good governor you'll have to agree
He'll make a good president as good as can be
Yes he will, yes he will.

(Fiddle)

Let's nominate Al Smith, nominate I say
That he'll find it through on election day
Yes through, all the way.

The same day marked the recording debut of a third band from Ashe County known as the Carolina Night Hawks, who arrived in Atlanta prepared with an original song promoting the Candidacy of New York governor Al Smith in the upcoming 1928 presidential election. Smith was the leading contender for the Democratic nomination, and advocated the repeal of Prohibition. The song, entitled simply Governor Al Smith for President, was penned by the group's banjoist Donald Thompson, and sung in a high tenor by mandolinist Ted Bare to the tune of White House Blues. Providing the instrumental lead was 15-year-old Howard Miller on fiddle, backed on guitar by his father, Charles Miller. Charles, born in 1887 along Stagg Creek near Comet, North Carolina, had learned to play fiddle from his father, Monroe Miller. By the mid-1920s, the Millers had teamed with Ted Bare, playing for box suppers and square dances throughout the Lost Provinces. In 1927 they were joined by Donald Thompson, a school teacher and talented songwriter from Laurel Springs, who played both fiddle and banjo.
Of the four songs recorded by the Night Hawks, only Thompson's composition was issued by Columbia, released in time to exploit Al Smith's wave of popularity.

Donald Thompson later recalled the recording session: We went in a Buick and they paid all expenses. We got to Atlanta and went right to the studio building. We didn't know anything about recording, never even seen a studio. A fellow meet us and took us to a room and said we could start practicing, so we did. Finally the guy came back and took us into the studio. There was a whole jug of whiskey sitting there, and he said, "Do you all want a nip?"
Well, Ted took a nip, but the rest of us didn't. Ted took a little but not enough to hurt him. Then Ted, Howard, and Mr. Miller got up close to the microphone, and they put me about eight feet behind. That banjo was loud, you know. Then they said, "Now you watch the light. When the light comes on, you start."
So we watched, and when it came on we just started and went straight on through and never made an error. We never had to repeat a single song. I wasn't a bit nervous when we went in there, and the rest weren't either. Old Ted just went right into it!
After we got back home, they sent us checks. They paid us around $100 apiece and expenses and all that. We had to eat, you know. They paid that too. We had a good time!
I was a Democrat then, I'm a Democrat now! Dyed in the wool! I was hoping our record would help Al Smith, but I don't think it ever got far enough along to help him much. He got defeated. Even so, I think we did a pretty good job on our record. When we finished recording, they played it back to us, and it sounded mighty good.


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 08:01 PM

"Delia Holmes; a Neglected Negro Ballad"

"Will Win is a colored troupadore who has wondered all over the south and west, carrying a battered guitar and earning his meals and lodging by a song. He states that Delia originated following a murder in Georgia having been composed about 1900 by a white minstrel of Dallas, Texas known as Whistlin' Bill Ruff.

An unnamed man kills Delia (White p. 215) fragments in Odum and Johnson as "Pauly" Frankie or Lilly.

Anyone have the versions found in White or Odum and Johnson?


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Subject: Lyr Add: ONE MO' ROUNDER GONE
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 08:58 PM

This title and version may be the earliest, and is probably something Poole heard in his travels:

59. ONE MO' ROUNDER GONE
THE JOURNAL OF AMERICAN FOLK-LORE Vol. XXIV. —OCTOBER-DECEMBER, 1911—No. XCIV
FOLK-SONG AND FOLK-POETRY AS FOUND IN THE SECULAR SONGS OF THE SOUTHERN NEGROES
BY HOWARD W. ODUM

The term "rounder" is applied not only to men, but to women also. In general, the interpretation is that of a worthless and wandering person, who prides himself on being idle, and thus on the acquirement of as many passing accomplishments as possible. It is also a term of fellowship. In songs that follow, the chorus ''One mo' Rounder gone'' will be found to express fitting sentiment to the accompanying scenes. The song by that name gives a repetition of the burial-scenes and general feeling which was caused by the death of a girl. Its unusual feature lies in the fact that the song applies to a girl.

Rubber-tired buggy, double-seated hack,
Well, it carried po' Delia to graveyard, failed to bring her back,
Lawdy, one mo' rounder gone.

Delia's mother weep, Delia's mother mourn,
She wouldn't have taken it so hard if po' girl had died at home,
Well, one mo' ole rounder gone.

Yes, some give a nickel, some give a dime,
I didn't give nary red cent, fo' she was no friend o' mine,
Well, it's one mo' rounder gone.


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 09:01 PM

Delia is known as "One More Rounder Gone" or "One Mo' Rounder Gone"

From Rainbow Round My Shoulder: The Blue Trail of Black Ulysses - Page 48, by Howard Washington Odum - 1928 - 322 pages

ONE MO' ROUNDER GONE

She sent for doctors, doctors all did come,
Sometimes they walk, sometimes they run,
An' it's one mo' rounder gone.

WHITEHOUSE BLUES

Doctor come a-runnin', he took off his specs
Said, Mister McKinley, better cash in your checks
You're bound to die, you're bound to die


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: GUEST,Bob Coltman
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 09:11 PM

Hi Richie,

There's another whole string of songs running from the Carter Family's early "Cannonball Blues" through the Carter Sisters' He's Solid Gone.

She washed her jumper, starched my overhall,
Caught that train they call the Cannonball, etc.

I have long wondered whether "Cannonball Blues" goes back before A.P. Carter. I suspect it does ... maybe collected for him by Leslie Riddles, who sometimes brought him Afro-American material.

If "Cannonball Blues" has an African-American antecedent, it could be related to the various Delia songs, at least in framework and melody if not in lyrics.

Bob


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Subject: Lyr Add: DELIA'S GONE (Blind Blake)
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 09:31 PM

DELIA'S GONE
Words and Music by Blake Alphonso Higgs (Blind Blake)

Now Delia cursed Tony
Twas on one Saturday night.
And she cursed him such a wicked curse,
That he swear to take her life.
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.

First time Tony shot Delia
He show her right in her side.
The second time he shot her,
She gave up the ghost and died.
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.

The reason why Tony shot Delia
Because she cursed him a wicked curse
And if Tony hadn't shot li'l Delia,
She might have cursed him worse.
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.

Now Delia's friend is in prison
Drinking out the silver cup
Whilst Delia she lying in the grave
Fighting her level best to get up
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.

On Monday Tony was arrested
On Tuesday his case was tried
The juryman brought him down guilty
He began to rollin' his goo-goo eyes
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.

A rubber tire buggy
A double seated hack
Took little Delia to the graveyard
And they never brought her back
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.

I went down to the graveyard
Just to look in my Delia's face
I said "Delia girl, you know I love you"
But I just couldn't take your place."
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.

Jailer, Oh Jailer!
Tony said, How can I sleep?
When all around my bed-side,
I can hear little Delia's feet?
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.

The man that shot my Delia
He was riding on a wheel,
He rode that wheel so mighty fast
They think it was an automobile
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.

Some give Delia a nickel
Some give Delia a dime,
I didn't give her one red cent
Because she wasn't a gal of mine
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.

Sixty four years in prison
Tony told the judge that ain't no time
He said my younger brother's in the penitentiary
Servin' nine hundred ninety and nine.
Delia's Gone one more round, Delia's gone.


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Goose Gander
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 09:35 PM

Interesting how "one mo' rounder gone" became "Delia's gone, one more round," refering to the second shotgun blast.

Johnny Cash's version seems derived from the Blind Blake song.


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 09:46 PM

Hi Bob,

Thanks for your post.

I just looked at the John Garst post (origin delia)thread.cfm?threadid=32430
so that clears up some things for me. Q has also posted some good info. There's actually a lot of info in the DT. I just didn't see much in the Traditional Ballad Index relating the songs.

Here are two more lyrics from Delia that show up in White House Blues/Mr. McKinley songs:

"A rubber tire buggy,
A double seated hack
Took little Delia to the graveyard
And they never brought her back."


"Drinking out the silver cup"


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Subject: Lyr Add: LITTLE DELIA (Blind Willie McTell)
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 10:14 PM

LITTLE DELIA
Blind Willie McTell (edited by Richie from an on-line site)

Delia, Delia, how can it be?
You love that old rounder, but you don't love me
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Delia, Delia sitting all around
Some of your old rounders gonna pay my way back home.
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Sitting on the housetop, high as I can see.
You love that old rounder, but you don't love me.
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Delia's poor mother took a trip out West
When she returned, Delia lyin' in rest.
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Delia's mother wept, Delia's father moaned
They'd have wanted their poor child to die at home
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Rubber tired buggy, two-seated hack,
took Delia to the graveyard, never brought her back
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Kenny lookin' high, Kenny lookin' low,
Shot poor Delia with that hated .44.
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Delia, Delia, wouldn't take no one's advice
Last words I heard her say were, "Jesus Christ!"
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Judge said to Kenny, "Here's a natural fact:
you going to wait in jail till Delia come back"
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Kenny's in the basement, drinking from a silver cup
Delia's in the graveyard, never come back up.
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Kenny said to judge, "What's the fuss about?
Just that no good woman trying to put me out"
Well, that's one more rounder gone.

Blind Willie McTell
Born: May 05, 1901 in Thompson, Georgia
Died: Aug 19, 1959 in Milledgeville, Georgia

From an on-line site: The best example of McTell's dry-eyed empathy and focus on the telling detail may be "Little Delia". It's another ballad with a varied history, but here McTell's adaptation doesn't emphasize the narrative. Instead, he fractures it into a collection of vignettes rippling forwards and backwards from the central drop-in-the-bucket -- a verse is accidentally repeated without noticeable damage -- each principal and accessory given a piercing glance and passed by.

He changes the story's protagonists to professional lowlifes -- gamblers, "rounders" -- and then emphasizes their typicality, most insistently in the single-line chorus (that lyric form beloved of Yeats) "She's one more rounder gone." No one is granted dignity -- Delia's parents seem less upset by Delia's death than by her not having the decency to "die at home" -- and Delia herself is utterly disposable, only of interest to a court that, in turn, is only interested in punishing her unrepentant killer. But everyone is granted their given moment of fully-engaged attention, and in her very disposability Delia seems to drag an entire implied world of arbitrary injustice down with her. At her deathbed, as at Jesse's, McTell approaches transcendence through (as Manny Farber wrote of His Girl Friday) a sort of voluptuous cynicism.

Delia, Delia, take no one's advice.
Last word I heard her say was: "Jee-zus Christ!"


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Subject: Lyr Add: ONE MORE ROUNDER GONE (Reese DuPree)
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 11:04 PM

The earliest recording I could find is Reese DuPree "One More Rounder Gone" Okeh 8127, in 1924. It's basically a version of Frankie and Johnny with the Delia as the love object. "I'm gonna ride that cannonball" perhaps could relate to Cannonball Blues (different context tho). The first verse has no rhythm and is sung ad lib as an intro. The rest of the song can be sung to the Frankie and Johnny melody.

ONE MORE ROUNDER GONE- Reese DuPree Okeh 8127
(Similar melody to Frankie and Johnny)

(Guitar intro)

(Ad lib first verse)
Delia Brown lived, down in a Georgia town,
A man was jealous of her as a dog is of his bone.
Her called her up and then he numbered to her on the telephone.

Tell a-me tell a-me Delia,
How can it be?
You said you loved another man,
And that you don't love me.
Well, that'll be one more rounder gone.

I ain't no bully,
I sure don't like to fight
But there's one thing I'm crazy about,
A little, lovin' at night.
Cause that rounder got my gal and gone.

I'm goin' down to the Levee pool room
I'm gonna grab myself a cue.
And if I find that rounder,
I'm gonna try him out a few,
Cause that rounder got my gal and gone.

I went to the city,
To buy myself some meat and meal.
Come back and saw that rounder with my sweet Delia,
Hugging in the field,
Cause that rounder got my gal and gone.

I'm gonna buy myself a shot gun
Just as high as I am tall,
I'm gonna kill that rounder,
I'm gonna ride that cannonball
Cause that rounder's got me (he's) here and gone.


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 11:32 PM

Here are some interesting comments on John Garst's post:

John Garst, "Delia" (e-mail postings, June 10 & 14)
By Greil Marcus June 26, 2000

Two weeks ago I was praising David Johansen and the Harry Smith cover of Bob Dylan's rewrite of the traditional "Delia," from Dylan's 1993 "World Gone Wrong" -- a song so seemingly generic it sounds more written by its genre than rooted in any facts. The number appeared in print as "One More Rounder Gone" in 1911; early research was done in 1928 by Robert W. Gordon of the Library of Congress (who "supposedly traced the song's origins to Savannah," Michael Gray writes in his inexhaustible "Song and Dance Man III: The Art of Bob Dylan"). Blind Willie McTell recorded it, as have Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Bobby Bare and Ronnie Wood, not to mention Mr. Acker Bilk; Dylan first taped a living-room version in St. Paul in 1960. "Seems to be about counterfeit loyalty," he wrote in 1993. "the guy in the courthouse sounds like a pimp in primary colors ... does this song have rectitude? you bet. toleration of the unacceptable leads to the last round-up."

Garst, of Georgia, recently went looking for the story behind the song -- someone is passing for white, a woman is murdered ("You loved all those rounders, never did love me") and the killer is calm and humble -- "and within two hours I had it." With interpolations: "Delia Green, age 14, was shot and killed by Moses 'Coony' Houston, age 15" -- Dylan uses "Cutty" -- "in the Yamacraw section of Savannah (characterized for me by a local historian as 'poor, black and violent') at about 11.30 PM on Christmas Eve, 1900. She died Christmas day in her bed at home." ("Wouldn't have been so bad/If the poor girl died at home," Dylan has Delia's mother lament). "Delia and Coony had been 'more or less intimate' (newspaper) for several months and Coony said something to the effect that he would or wouldn't let her do this or that. Delia reacted with strong words to the effect that he had no control over her whatever. He then shot her. All accounts, from the very beginning, emphasize how calm, cool, deliberate and polite Coony was ... He appeared in court wearing short pants (on the advice of his lawyer, I suspect). The jury asked the judge for a clarification at one point, 'What would be the sentence for a murder conviction with a recommendation of mercy?' The judge replied that the law specified life imprisonment. Shortly thereafter the jury returned with that verdict and the judge sentenced Coony to 'life.' He replied, 'Thank you, sir.'" In other words, a Savannah murder that was no mystery when it happened, and as a song turned into one.

[Greil Marcus said, "The number appeared in print as "One More Rounder Gone" in 1911;"

Can anyone confirm this?


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 11:38 PM

In LITTLE DELIA by Blind Willie McTell above(see original in DT Version- Delia 5) I added the chorus: "Well, that's one more rounder gone." as found in the first verse to all the verses.


In his 'American Folk Poetry', Duncan Emrich includes a very long version under the title 'Delia Holmes' from the singing of Will Winn of Columbia, South Carolina. He also gives a reference to an article in the December 1937 edition of Southern Folklore Quarterly: Chapman
J. Milling 'Delia Holmes - A Neglected Negro Ballad'.

Anyone have these lyrics?


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: GUEST,Scoville
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 11:48 PM

There's a good "imitation" version recorded by David Bromberg, too, but it's essentially a carbon copy of . . . I forget if it was Blind Blake or Willie McTell. One of them. I'm not sure if the album on which I have it is in production (David Bromberg, 1971, with Norman Blake) but it's probably on one of his others as well.


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Subject: Lyr Add: FORTY-FOUR
From: Azizi
Date: 26 Jan 07 - 11:52 PM

This verse: From Rainbow Round My Shoulder: The Blue Trail of Black Ulysses - Page 48, by Howard Washington Odum - 1928 - 322 pages

ONE MO' ROUNDER GONE

She sent for doctors, doctors all did come,
Sometimes they walk, sometimes they run,
An' it's one mo' rounder gone.

reminds me of this rhyme from Talley's 1922 "Negro Folk Rhymes" {Kennikat Press edition, pps. 71-72

FORTY FOUR
If de people'll jes gimme
Des a liddle bit o' peace,
I'll tell 'em what happen
To de Chief o' Perlice.
He met a robber
Right at de do!
An' de robber, he shot 'im
Wid a forty-fo!
He shot dat Perliceman.
He shot 'm sho!
What did he shoot 'im wid?
A forty-fo'.

Dey sent fer de Doctah
An' de Doctah he come.
He come in a hurry.
He come in a run.
He come wid his instriments
Right in his han',
To progue an' find
Dat forty-fo', Man!
De Doctah he progued;
He progued 'm sho!
But he jes couldn' find
Dat forty-fo'.

Dey sent fer de Preachah,
An' de preachah he come.
He come in a walk,
An' he come in to talk.
He come wid' 'is Bible,
Right in 'is han',
An' he read from dat chapter,
Forty-fo' Man!
Dat Preachah, he read.
He read, I know.
What Chapter dis he read frum?
'Twus Forty-fo!


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 27 Jan 07 - 08:09 AM

After checking a bit, the reference to the "One Mo' Rounder Gone" being in print was to the 1911 version printed by Howard Odum in my post above.

The Ballad of Delia (Green) in the Bahamas 1929 is known more usually but incorrectly as Delia Holmes. In 1928 Robert Gordon, the first Archivist with the new Archive of American Folk Song at the Library of Congress, traced the origin back to Savannah, Georgia. The song first appeared in print in 1911 (published version by Odum) and was collected by Howard Odum between 1906 and 1908 in Newton Co. Georgia.

Azizi- There is some similarity to FORTY FOUR and Whitehouse Blues. Apparently when the doctor operaed on McKinley, he couldn't find the bullet. The operation to find and remove the bullet is what killed McKinley "not" the wound itself.


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Subject: Lyr Add: DELIA'S GONE (Will Winn)
From: Richie
Date: 27 Jan 07 - 09:54 PM

Here's the most complete version by Will Winn:

DELIA'S GONE
Will Winn; published by Chapman J. Milling, Southern Folklore Quarterly, 1937. From Joyner, Folk Song in South Carolina, 1971.
"Will Win is a colored troupadore who has wondered all over the south and west, carrying a battered guitar and earning his meals and lodging by a song. He states that Delia originated following a murder in Georgia having been composed about 1900 by a white minstrel of Dallas, Texas known as Whistlin' Bill Ruff." From Delia Holmes; a Neglected Negro Ballad.


Delia, Delia, Why don't you run
See dat deparado had a forty fo' smokeless gun
Cryin' all I had done gone

(Chorus; every so often)
All I had done gone
All I had done gone
Good-bye Mother friends and all
All I had done gone

Now Coonie an his little sweetheart settin' down talkin' low
Axed her would she marry him she said why sho.
Cryin' all I had done gone.

When the time come for marriage she refuse' to go
If you don't marry me you cannot live no mo'
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Shot her with a pistol number forty fo'
You did not marry me you cannot live no mo'
Cryin' all I had done gone,

Turned po' Delia over on her side very slow
She was cryin' Coonie please don't shoot no mo'
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Death had proceeded it wasn't very long
Till her mother come runnin' with a bucket on her arm
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Tell me my darlin' what have you done wrong
Cause Coonie to shoot you with that forty-fo' smokeless gun
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Some give a nickel some give a dime
Help to bury this body of mine
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Threw down his pistol an' tried to get away
Officers picked him up in just a few days
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Placed him in the jail till his trial should come,
Tell me now officer what have I done
Cryin' all I had done gone.

They axed did he remember this a girl that you were in love
An' spoken things unto her that instantly taken her nerve
Cryin' all I had done gone.

She move closely beside of me an' threw her arms around
Do you remember little Delia Holmes and which you shot down,
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Have I now any bond or can I get one
For the crime that I am charged I plead guilty I have done
Cryin' all I had done gone.

The judge that tried him handsome with the time
Say Coonie if I don't hang you I'll give you ninety nine
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Ninety nine years in prison workin' 'mont the stone
Hope that you'll get sorry that you have wrecked a home
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Coonie went to Atlanta drinkin' from a silver cup
Po' li'l Delia's in the cemetery I hope to never wake up.
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Delia's mother taken a trip out west
Just to keep from herin' the talk of po' li'l Delia's death
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Everywhere the train would stop you could hear the people moan
Singin' dat lonesome song Po' Delia's dead an' gone
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Rubber tire' buggy rubber tire' hack
Take you to de cemetary don't never bring you back
Cryin' all I had done gone.

Coonie wrote to the Governor asked him pardon me
I was charged with murder in the first degree.
Cryin' all I had done gone.

The judge was liberal in givin' me my time
Happened that he didn't hang me but he gave me ninety nine
Cryin' all I had done gone.

I am now a murderer serving a long, long time,
And if you will pardon me I'll not be guilty of another crime.
Cryin' all I had done gone.

This is Coonie in Atlanta workin' 'mong the stone
Have been here for forty five years and I'm now needed at home
Cryin' all I had done gone


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 28 Jan 07 - 12:32 PM

Here's a link to a UTube video of Maybelle & Sara Carter singing Cannonball Blues. I wonder if there are any earlier versions predating 1930?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GlFyGPNmOvI


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 28 Jan 07 - 01:08 PM

I hope Joe (or someone) gets around to linking the DT and major threads on the songs here.
Excellent versions of Delia here, for example, but not linked to either DT or the threads, which have still more, including the Gary Davis "All My Friends..." (Delia).

It is a complex stew; how to comprehend the interrelations, some close, some distant and some only connected by a floater or two, is difficult.


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 28 Jan 07 - 01:18 PM

The Carter Family got the song from an itinerant singer/guitarist Lesley Riddle (Born: June 13, 1905, Burnsville, NC Died: July 13, 1980, NC).

"In Kingsport, Tennessee in 1928, Riddle met A.P. Carter, founding member of the Carter Family country band. Carter learned the song "Cannonball" from Riddle, and Riddle began accompanying Carter on his "song-collecting" trips throughout the Appalachian region. Carter would write down lyrics he liked, and it was Riddle's job to remember the music. Maybelle Carter, A.P.'s wife and guitarist for the band, is noted as having learned much in the way of guitar technique from Mr. Riddle."

That pust the song back to the early 20's at least. It also has a different section that is sometimes sung to that is different from the standard White House Blues songs.


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Subject: RE: Origin & Lyr: White House Blues
From: Richie
Date: 28 Jan 07 - 09:01 PM

The verses to "If I Lose" by Charlie Poole also use the White House Blues melody:

The blood was a-runnin', and I was runnin' too
Give my feet some exercise, I had nothing else to do
One morning, before day.


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Subject: RE: Origin: White House Blues
From: GUEST,Phil d'Conch
Date: 08 Mar 16 - 12:38 AM

We have a couple of "Delia" threads. Posting these wherever the Bahamian version gets mention. My Gilbert-Lofthouse sheet music is still MIA. More to follow… hopefully.

Delia Gone

Tony shot his Delia, on a Christmas night,
First time he shot her she bowed her head and died–
Delia gone–one more round Delia-gone –
Delia gone–one more round Delia gone.

Send for the doctor, doctor came too late,
Send for the minister to lay out Delia straight.
        Delia gone, one more round! Delia gone.

Delia's mudder dressed herself in brown,
Went to the cemetery to see her daughter layed down.
        Delia gone, one more round! Delia gone.

Rubber tired buggy, double-seated hack,
Take my Delia to de graveyard an' never brought her back.
        Delia gone, one more round! Delia gone.

Tony axed the jailer, "What is my time?"
"Sixty-four years in ------- -------'s mine."
        Delia gone, one more round! Delia gone.

Sixty-four years, that ain't no time!
Old Joe Bagstack is servin' ninety an' nine!
        Delia gone, one more round! Delia gone.

All you gamblers that likes to bet,
Come down to de courthouse and witness Delia's death.
        Delia gone, one more round! Delia gone.


No doubt this popular tho' tragic ballad has its basis in some episode of Nassau history now forgotten. There is, however, a faint resemblance in theme to a song that originated in St. Louis called "Frankie and Johnnie."

"Thomas Beer, in his 'Mauve Decade,' places this ballad as early as 1850, but Emerson Hough dates it fully ten years ealier." –
Read 'Em and Weep. One stanza is particularly reminiscent:

                "O bring your rubber-tired hearses;
                        O bring your rubber-tired hacks.
                They're takin' your Johnnie to the buryin'ground
                        And they won't bring a bit of him back."



McCutcheon, John & Evelyn, The Island Song Book, (Chicago Tribune Tower, private printing, Jan. 15, 1927) p.11

Note:
History has not been kind to Thomas Beer and justly so. When did rubber-tired buggies, hearses, hacks and whatevers come to your neck of the planet?


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Subject: RE: Origin: White House Blues
From: GUEST,Phil d'Conch
Date: 08 Mar 16 - 12:53 AM

Part II

Delia's Gone
Words and Music by
BLAKE ALPHONSO HIGGS (BLIND BLAKE)

1.
Now Delia cursed Tony
'Twas on one Saturday night.
And she cursed him such a wicked curse,
That he swear to take her life.
Delia's gone one more round, Delia's gone.

2.
First time Tony shot Delia
He shot her right in her side.
The second time he shot her,
She gave up the ghost and died.
Delia's gone one more round, Delia's gone.

3.
The reason why Tony shot Delia
Because she cursed him a wicked curse
And if Tony had'nt shot lil Delia,
She might have cursed him worse.
Delia's gone one more round, Delia's gone.

4.
Now Delia's friend is in prison
Drinking out the silver cup
Whilest Delia she lying in the grave
Fighting her level best to get up.

Delia's gone, etc.

5.
On monday Tony was arrested,
On Tuesday his case was tried,
The juryman brought him down guilty,
He began to rollin' his goo-goo eyes.

6.
A rubber tire buggy
A double seated hack
Took little Delia to the graveyard
And they never brought her back.

7.
I went down to the graveyard
Just to look in my Delia's face.
I said, "Delia girl, you know I love you,
But I just couldn't take your place."

8.
"Jailor, Oh Jailor!"
Tony said, "How can I sleep
When all around my bed-side
I can hear little Delia's feet?"

9.
The man that shot my Delia
He was riding on a wheel,
He rode that wheel so mighty fast
They think it was an automobile.

10.
Some give Delia a nickle,
Some give Delia a dime,
I didn't give her one red cent
Because she wasn't a gal of mine.

11.
Sixty-four years in prison
Tony told the judge that isn't no time,
He said my younger brother's in the penitentiary
Servin' nine hundred ninety and nine.

© Copyright 1952 and 1954 Hollis Music, Inc., New York, N.Y.

Patterson, Massie, Heyward, Sammy (eds), Calypso Folk Sing, (NY: Ludlow Music, 1963) pp.26-27
©1963 Ludlow Music, New York, N.Y.
First released on: ART Records, ALP6, 10"LP, AEP6, 2x7"EP gatefold, 1952 (recorded in Nassau.)

(Same as mentioned elsewhere with copyrights, dates &c.)


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Subject: RE: Origin: White House Blues
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 08 Mar 16 - 07:01 AM

Possibly the earliest text of "White House Blues" came, astonishingly, from the English poet and novelist D. H. Lawrence (in "The Week-End Book" (edited by Francis Meynell et al.) in 1924.


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Subject: RE: Origin: White House Blues
From: GUEST,Joseph Scott
Date: 26 Apr 16 - 11:32 PM

"[D.H.]... set our brains jingling with an American ballad on the murder of President McKinley with words of brutal jocularity sung to an air of lilting sweetness." -- Lawrence's wife Frieda, 1915 letter


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