Sunday, May 29, 2005

Parchman Farm


In the spirit o' the day, I dedicate this post to the souls of them that died in the most southern place on earth. -Blind Joe Death.

I'm sittin' over here on Parchman farm.
I'm sittin' over here on Parchman farm.
I'm sittin' over here on Parchman farm,
Ain't never done no man no harm.

Well, I'm putting that cotton in a never-full sack.
Well, I'm putting that cotton in a never-full sack.
Well, I'm putting that cotton in a never-full sack,
A twelve-gague shotgun at my back.

I'm sittin' over here on Parchman Farm.
I'm sittin' over here on Parchman Farm
Say, I'm sittin' here on Parchman Farm,
Ain't never done no man no harm.

Photo by Chester Arthur BurnettPosted by Hello

Comments:
Joe is learning from Jedi Master Leo.
 
I am taking Joe to the Delta on June 17th. Gonna see the old Parchman Farm and visit Robert Johnson, Memphis Minnie, Sonny Boy Williamson et al.
 
Additional lyrics performed by Johnny Winters and Jorma Kaukonen...

I'm sittin' down here on number 9.
I'm sittin' down here on number 9.
I'm sittin' down here on number 9,
All I done is drink a little wine

I'm gonna be down here for the rest of my life.
I'm gonna be here for my nachul born life.
I'm gonna be down here for the rest of my life,
And all I done is shoot my wife.
 
Is this post suggesting that The Blues was birthed in pain?
 
"Shoot, son. Blues ain't nuttin' but a good man feelin' bad." -Willie Brown
 
This is probably one of the bluest of the blues IMHO. Did Mose Allison write this song, or someone else? - my brain's a bit fuzzy today... Kari (Love the quote Leo!)
 
It would seem that "Parchman Farm" is derived from a traditional field holler. It was a call and response chant. The first recorded version was by Bukka White, though Mose Allison is credited with both lyrics and music. It's hard to tell with songs like this. It's like saying the Rolling Stones wrote "Satisfaction" when, indeed, Muddy Waters would be a better source. Even he "borrowed" it from traditional delta sources. But, in the end, does it really matter where it came from?

When Chester and Joe come back from Parchman in June, we'll see what two white boys from the suburbs have to say. I trust Chester with my life, though he'll probably steal me blind in a dice game.
 
What you say makes sense Leo - kind of an evolving over time, which in turn makes this song even more interesting. Thanks for the info. Hope your friends take some pics to share while they're down there. Kari
 
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