Justin Hall's personal site growing & breaking down since 1994

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There's many sites out there with the lyrics to Statesboro Blues. But nearly all of them cover the Allman Brothers cover version of the song, so it seems, because those abridged lyrics don't match the extended Southern community blues ramblings on love and loss that Mr. McTell intones in his soul-shaking squeaky voice.

I've transliterated this version of the song here, because I love it so. I had to do some guesswork; I found some nice sites that affirmed and corrected me.

Statesboro Blues
sung by: Blind Willie McTell (1928)

Wake up mama, turn your lamp down low
Wake up mama, turn your lamp down low
Have you got the nerve to drive Papa McTell from your door?

My Ma died and left me reckless,
My Daddy died and left me wild, wild, wild
Mother died and left me reckless,
Daddy died and left me wild, wild, wild
No I'm not good looking but I'm some sweet woman's angel child.

She's a mighty mean woman, treatin' me this a-way
She's a mighty mean woman, treatin' me this a-way
When I leave this town, pretty Mama,
I'm goin' away to stay.

Once loved a woman, better than I'd ever seen
I once loved a woman, better than I'd ever seen
Treated me like I was a king, and she was a doggone queen.

Sister, tell your Brother
Brother tell your Aunty
Now Aunty tell your Uncle
Uncle tell my cousin now
Cousin tell my friends
Goin' to the country, Mama don't you want to go
May take me a fair brown, may take one or two more.

Big Eighty left Savannah,
Running, did not stop
You outta saw that colored fireman when he got some boiler hot
you can reach over in the corner Mama, hand me my travelling shoes
You know by that I got them Stateboro Blues.

Mama, Sister got 'em
Aunty got 'em
Brother got 'em
Friend got 'em
I got 'em
Woke up this morning, we had them Statesboro Blues
I looked over in the corner; Grandma and Grandpa had 'em too.

Willie McTell | blooz | muzzik | life

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