Heptune presents:

Mama's Got the Blues

    (Clarence Williams - Sara Martin)

Transcribed from vocals by Sara Martin, accompanied by Fats Waller, recorded 12/14/1922.
From Fats Waller 1922-1926; The Chronogical Classics, 664.

Some people say,
The weary blues, they ain't sad,
Some people say,
The weary blues, they ain't sad,
But it's the worst old feeling that I ever had.

Woke up this morning,
Blues all around my bed,
Woke up this morning,
Blues all around my bed,
Didn't have no daddy to hold my aching head.

The man that I love,
He was a teasing brown,
The man that I love,
He was a teasing brown,
Strictly tailor made, he was no hand-me-down.

But brown-skinned men are deceitful,
And yellow men are worse;
Brown-skinned men are deceitful,
And yellow men are worse;
Going to get me a black man, and play safety first.

Oh, you can never tell
What's on a brown-skinned man's mind;
Oh, you can never tell
What's on a brown-skinned man's mind;
They'll be hugging and kissing you, and quittin' you all the time.


Mama's Got the Blues

    (Clarence Williams - Sara Martin)

Photograph of Bessie Smith.

Transcribed from vocals by Bessie Smith, recorded May 28, 1923.
From Bessie Smith: 1923; The Chronological Classics 761.

Some people say that the weary blues ain't bad;
Some people say the weary blues ain't bad;
But it's the worst old feeling that I've ever had.

Woke up this morning, with a jinx around my bed.
I woke up this morning with a jinx around my bed;
I didn't have no daddy to hold my aching head.

Brown skin's deceitful, but a yellow man is worse;
Brown skin's deceitful, but a yellow man is worse;
I'm gonna get myself a black man and play safety first.

I got a man in Atlanta, two in Alabama, three in Chattanooga,
Four in Cincinatti, five in Mississippi, six in Memphis, Tennessee,
If you don't like my peaches, please let my orchard be!


Return to the Heptune Jazz and Blues Lyrics Page.

Find lyrics and musical scores in Bessie Smith Songbook!

Published 4/7/99.
Updated 10/1/99.


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