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Listen NowTitleFile NumberSubjectsRecording DateAlt TitleGenresInstrumentsCitiesCountiesStateSettingEditor NoteTechnical NoteOnline Resources
Toasts, folk tale, and interview (part 1)6614A7-22-1942

Title given is that on AFS card. Lomax and Edwards trade toasts from 10:30.

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Disc skips heavily for first six minutes.

toasts, folk tale, and interview (part 2)6614B7-22-1942

Title given is that on AFS card. Largely an interview about catching trains, hobo musicians, and itinerancy. Lomax and Edwards discuss blues lyrics about rambling, being lonesome, and the “crossroads.” Ends with a Titanic toast.

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Do You Want A Little Bit of This?6615A27-22-1942,

Followed by discussion of the song and adolescent sexuality.

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Wind Howlin' Blues6615B27-22-1942, ,

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Unloading steel from cars6647B18-8-1942

Followed by Lomax interview about “chunk[ing] iron” in advance of laying track.

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Interview fragment/ambience6647B28-8-1942

Fragment of the preceding interview amidst ambience (including the pouring of a drink and two burps).

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Sinking rails and joining iron6647B3, 8-8-1942

Followed by discussion of track-laying.

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Spiking down6648A18-8-1942,

Reenactment of spiking railroad ties with fragments of work song and reminiscences about various characters on the crew. Bacon keeps time by striking a tie.

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Shuffling/catching ties (#2)6648B, 8-8-1942, ,

Reenactment of lining/joining track with assorted work song verses (e.g., “I Got A Bulldog”; “Stewball”). Followed by discussion of the work song “Jumpin’ Julie/Judy.”

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Interview about the benefits of whiskey; maintaining at work; negotiating differences in foremen; Bacon's work history6649A, , 8-8-1942

Interviewed by Lewis Jones and Alan Lomax, with some comments by Elias Boykin. After discussing whiskey, bosses, Mexicans on a crew in Kansas, he explains his work history, first on a levee camp (at Wolf River Bottom, Tenn.) and later on the railroad. After getting laid off, he followed musician friends Joe and Buddy Davis into Memphis where he became “a little sheik on gamblin'” before he started following the harvest until 1929. “…a pint of whiskey, and go on home and drink it, and he stay by the fire, that’ll help him. When they fixed it so a man [who] went out in the exposure couldn’t get a whiskey that’s the worst thing they could do. That’s the life of a man, out, you see. When he come in and open the pores of his skin, see. He been out chill all day long, some time he wet, sometime he be in a place he can’t make a fire. Well, out in the exposure, and all that exposure and stuff goin’ in his skin—if he drink him a little whiskey—I don’t mean go and do like some folks, get on the streets and get sloppy drunk and things like that—which, why, you can’t take care of your job if you do that. But just drink a little whiskey, you know, along. That better for him, you see. He’ll live and last and be whole lots more super than a man who don’t never drink no whiskey. You catch a man who don’t never drink no whiskey and be out in the exposure, well, why, he’s always be hurting, or aching, or he can’t halfway pick up or somethin’ all the time. But if he drink him a little whiskey along, it help him. That gives him pep. Nerve.”

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Interview about Georgia Skin and gambling / Jack O' Diamonds6649B, , 8-8-1942, ,

Discussion of gambling and hustling cards interspersed with singing of “Jack O’ Diamonds” and assorted floating verses. Band begins with idle guitar picking. Band ends with a woman’s voice: “I wouldn’t let those boys sit on the bed.”

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

Lining/calling track6650A, 8-8-1942, ,

Reenactment of track-lining with assorted lining-song fragments (some vulgar). Bacon keeps time by striking a tie. Identified as “Lining or calling track” on AFS card, although Bacon and Boykin state at the disc’s end that this is called “calling track… nothin’ but call.”

Identified by Lomax as the Delta Tourist Camp (suggested by Chris Smith to be the Delta Tourist Courts • 1600 N. State St. in Clarksdale)

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