Collected by Merlin Mitchell Pete Martin
Transcribed by Mary C. Parler Lincoln, Ark.
November 12, 1950
Reel 75, Item 4
The Dust Bowl Blues
Mitchell: Pete says that he learned that song - the first
of it from a boy over near Farmington, and he liked it, and so
he started making up verses . . And he made up all that part in there
about the "gitter", and his traveling on the bum
Well, listen here, fellers, and I'll tell you
The sad old story of the Dust Bowl Blues,
It was way back there in '27
I had a little home that I called heaven,
But the wind come up and the dust come down,
And blowed my crops right into town,
Sold it got my money.
Well, I bought myself a lim-i-zine,
And I filled her full o' gas-i-line
She started rollin' a-rollin' and a rockin'.
I was goin' down the road a-rollin' an' a-rockin',
Jumpin' up and down like popcorn a-poppin',
Gome to a curve — didn't make it.
Well, listen here, fellers, I'm a-tellin' you,
The fiddles and the gee-tars they shore flew,
And scared my ole lady and kids all too
Till I found 'em.
I seed there was sumpm that need to be f i x .
I went back to town an' got a merican-ick
He said, Had en-gi-en trouble, didn't I?
He knowed as much about it as what I did.
So I shoved her offen the mountain side,
And I let my ole hind wheels slide,
Just dragging long there, I got her started,
All farred (fired) up.
Well, I was goin' down the mountain . .
I blowed down a row o' post
The barb-warr sung and the steeple flew,
And I split a haystack half-it-two.
Well, I stomped the brakes and the brakes didn't brake,
An I hit a gear and hit jist jist drake (dragged?)
...... Dust Blow Blues
Reel 75, Item 4
I got back an' my money was gone,
So I sit down, turn de radio on,
Jis' started list'nin' — didn't git no static.
But tere was a feller a-pickin' a gittar in sich a way
That he made me wisht I knowed how to play,
An' then he quit pickin' — started talkin',
Says I'll sell you a gittar for $4.95,
Pay the postman when it arrive,
Send you a pick an' a chord-chart too,
And the only thing you got to do
Is jis' start pickin' playin' —- gittin' them chords
Well, I sent in the order and the gittar come,
And this here is the very thing I done,
I set down, started pickin' couldn't hit a note.
But I picked and I thought the livelong day,
And I seen Maw's hair was a-turnin' gray,
So I lowed I wouldn't play no more
For the end o' my fingers was gittin' sore,
Couldn't mash the strings down.
An' now, that night, when Pat come home,
He said, Son, if you don't leave that gittar 'lone,
Well, me or you one is gonna haf to roam,
An' I ain't leavin' —
Just me an' him there, an' I thought that over right fast-like
Well, as soon as I got my clothes pack
An' my ole gittar slung over my back,
I moped off down tords the railroad track,
An' grab me a handful o' boxcars,
Started rollin' — ramblin'
Seein' the world an' a-goin' places.
Now, listen here, fellers, I'm a-tellin' you,
When it comes to travelin' I know a thing or two,
Cause I done it.
Talk about your headaches an' heartaches
An' handouts an' hangovers, I shore had 'em.
Jist a-ridin' that boxcar, beatin' the gittar,
Doin' the talkin' blues — he says talkin'.
Click tabs to swap between content that is broken into logical sections.