Jungle Blues

by C.W. Stoneking

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RK
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RK One of the most strangely compelling records I have heard in a long time. Simple yet effective melodies and great production values really do transport you back in time and space. To wherever. Favorite track: Brave Son of America.
Sir Reginald Styles
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Sir Reginald Styles This cat has quickly become one of my very favorite artists. Amazingly creative and inventive both musically and lyrically. This album works like an invocation of a time period, an era that encompasses Colonialism up to the rough-edge of WWII viewed through a romantic lens. Such beautiful songs C.W. sings, it is mesmerizing. A unique and powerful artist, this will make you think long after the experience of listening is over. Favorite track: Talkin' Lion Blues.
Lute FP
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Lute FP A master of his craft, C.W. spins tales which hearken to the glory times of Western exploration, adventure and hard living. This is some of the best early blues/americana, lovingly crafted in contemporary times to pay homage to classic times. This isn't just music, it is entertainment.
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about

2nd studio album by C.W. Stoneking (2008)

"....One afternoon, back in Port of Spain, Trinidad, I met four scientists in a bar, they were on their way to West Africa to study a type of parasitic worm which attacks the eyeballs of human beings and turns them into blind men. At the time I was avoiding my two friends Mighty Avenger and King Sedition - two old calypsonians from the 1930s who had begun a campaign to get me into the upcoming stick fighting competition after an impromptu display by me of natural aptitude with a snooker cue late one evening.

On this particular afternoon I'd passed by my regular haunt and gone to one of the more upscale drinking joints in the waterfront district where I got to talking with these scientists. As it turned out, they were great admirers of the old-time blues and after regaling them with stories about my time as a root doctor's assistant in New Orleans - preparing mojo hands, hoodoo spells, and magic oils, they invited me back to their boat to continue our drinking session and play some songs on the banjo. If I could have fortold the calamitous disasters in store for me, I would have gone straight-away to my two old friends and let them enter me in any stick fighting competition they could find, near or far. - instead, I went with the scientists and so, almost to my doom.

We drank rum 'til late in the night, I sang every old-time blues I had ever known, calypsos, and requests from my four new friends. By the end of the night I had christened their boat 'The Mississippi song-O' and decided to join them on their journey, across the Atlantic and into West Africa. This is how I ended up with the dreaded Jungle Blues."

C.W. Stoneking - Composer of blues, hokum, and Jungle music

credits

released March 18, 2015

All songs by C.W. Stoneking except track 4 by W. Houdini

Musicians on this album:
C.W. Stoneking - Singer, Guitar, Tenor Banjo, Washboard
Kirsty Fraser - Singer
Jim White - Drums
Howard Cairns - Double Bass, Sousaphone, Electric Banjo Bass
Stephen Grant - Trumpet, Saxophones, Piano, Harmonium
Benny G - Trombone
Kynan Robinson - Trombone
Chris Tanner - Clarinet
Sue Simpson - Violin, Viola
Craig Woodward - Fiddle
Ed Fairlie - Trumpet
Adam Simmons - Baritone Saxophone
Dennis Close - Percussion
Jacob Kinniburgh - Percussion
J. Walker - Percussion

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Track Name: Jungle Blues
"That's right folks, who knows what strange wonders awaits our expeditioners
on this journey to the dark corners of the globe, for this scientific purpose,..."
"Uh, excuse me sir, there's been a problem with the boat. Ship's engineer wants to see you at once"
"Quieten down man. We sail by midnight"

An I went off sailin for the Congo,
In a sloop called the Mississippi Song-o
Now I'm here singin them Jungle Blues
In a shipwreck, way out on the ocean,
Swimmin blind, lord, prayin and a'hopin,
I washed up singin them Jungle Blues.

Can't you hear them Jungle Drums thumpin?
Buddy, that's what gets my heart to jumpin,
It ain't nuthin but them Jungle Blues,
And the monkeys, goin pitter-patter,
In the darkness, my teeth begin to chatter,
There ain't no cure for them Jungle Blues
Track Name: Talkin' Lion Blues
O-da-lay-eeeeeee
O-da-lay-ee-ee-ee
O-de-o-lay-ee-oh-oh
O-da-lay-eee

I was over in Africa minin' for gold
O-oooh, minin' for gold,
Come along a big lion, caught me in my hole
O-de-lay-eee, caught me in my hole

The lion said "Buddy, you plumb outta luck"
O-da-lay-eee, you plumb outta luck,
Made a lunge for me, lawd, I had to duck
O-de-lay-eee, I had to duck

I jabbed that lion right clean in the jaw
O-oooh, right clean in the jaw
Picked up his tail, dragged him cross the floor
O-de-lay-eee, dragged him cross the floor

I chained him up in the back of my truck
O-oooh, in the back of my truck
Said, "What's that you had to say about luck?"
O-de-lay-eee, that you said about luck

*(Verse omitted from album recording)
Right then I decided to quit that gold mine,
O-oooh, to quit that gold mine,
Now I had done caught me a talkin lion
O-de-lay-eee, a talkin lion*

The first place I took him was ten miles away,
O-ooh, ten miles away
Told the people, "Listen what this lion can say"
O-de-lay-eee, what this lion can say

The lion looked round, he started to cry,
O-ooh, he started to cry,
Said, "This man punched me and he blackened my eye"
O-da-lay-eee, and he blackened my eye.

The people got angry, they started to shout,
O-da-lay-ee-ee-ee-eee
Lion said, "That's what I was talkin about"
O-de-lay-eee, oh-oh, lawd, lawd.

They hauled me up the courthouse stairs,
O-oooh, up the courthouse stairs
The judge was a monkey in an old wicker chair
O-de-lay-eee, in an old wicker chair.

The monkey said, "Guilty", and the people all cheered,
O-oooh, and the people all cheered
He slammed his gavel, said "Twenty five years"
O-da-lay-eee, said twenty five years

I'm in Africa wearin a ball and chain,
O-de-lay-ee, a ball and chain,
I'll never mess with a talkin lion again
O-oooh, talkin lion again
Track Name: Jungle Lullaby
It was deep in the Jungles of Africa,
Where the bugs is thick as fleas,
And the heat will drive sane men crazy,
And the water's full o' disease
I went out walkin with a beautiful girl,
Where the spotted honeysteppers fly,
We lay down under the bamboo trees,
I sang that Jungle Lullaby

Singin, swingin,
On a lazy afternoon in paradise
Croonin, swoonin,
That old time song, where the days are long,
It's a Jungle Lullaby

Well we made it down to a riverbank,
Spied a steamboat comin along,
Then we hitched a ride, lawd, lookin over the side,
Everything was goin on wrong,
There was bird-eatin spiders, big as my fist,
Snakes that hung down like vines
And eyes that watched as we drifted along ,
I sang that Jungle Lullaby

Singin, swingin,
On a lazy afternoon in paradise
Croonin, swoonin,
That old time song, where the days are long,
It's a Jungle Lullaby

Bom - bow - domp,....
Bomp - ow - domp - ay - ohh..
lay - dat - omp
Folks you know, when we got back into town that night,
there was excitement in the air.
I heard there was a party over at the Officers Club, so I took that girl on over,
Man, we walked in the joint, orchestra playin so sweet I thought I'd die.
I got up on that old bandstand,
sang that Jungle Lullaby,

Singin, swingin,
On a lazy afternoon in paradise
Croonin, swoonin,
That old time song, where the days are long,
It's a Jungle Lullaby
Track Name: Brave Son of America
His name would always be, always be recorded in history
His name would always be, always be recorded in history
It gives me inspiration to sing, his heroic stand in the Phillipines
No man can be braver than General MacArthur, the Son of America

With his traditional warriors at his side, he gave the Japanese the first suprise,
For when they called on him to surrender, "I am an American" was his answer,
"And in the name of democracy, I will die for freedom and liberty",
They don't come no braver than General MacArthur, the Son of America

Let us go back in past history, go think George Washington and General Lee,
Hmm even hailin' Patrick Henry, Abe Lincoln - emancipator in slavery
But we'll read of MacArthur when he's gone, for he's a genius if one was ever born
They don't come no braver than General MacArthur, the Son of America.

When you hear me singing my characteristic song, from the book of editions that last so long,
This vocabulary that is list in me, it is owing to my high class propensity,
I am not versed in psychology, I'm a man who can sing intelligently,
I say they come no braver than General MacArthur, the Son of America

With the stars and stripes laying at his side, for this flag he intend to die,
MacArthur, the man with the heart of steel, to the invading Japs he wouldn't never yield,
He told the Japanese for a fact, "I'm leaving Corregidor, but I'm coming back"
They don't come no braver than General MacArthur, the Son of America.
Track Name: Jailhouse Blues
You hear me singin,
Down in the bottom of the world,
A thousand miles from nowhere, dreamin bout a girl
She used to love me but I, went away,
They gonna keep me here 'til the Judgement Day.
Lord, lord, lord, I got the Jailhouse Blues

Ain't no tellin,
What a man will do,
This old world, to make it through,
Some would murder with a gun or a knife,
Some would lock a man away the rest of his life,
Lord, lord, lord, I got the Jailhouse Blues

I got the Jailhouse Blues,
Just as blue as I can be,
My baby got a heart,
Like a rock in the bottom of the sea
I got the Jailhouse Blues,
An it ain't no lie, lawd,
Lock on the door, I broke the law,
I got the Jailhouse Blues, (play it for me..),

They says a blind man,
Don't see nothin when he dream,
There's plenty things, wish I never seen.
I wish I never seen her askin why,
When they come an taken me, the way that she cried,
Lord, lord, lord,
I got the Jailhouse Blues

I got the Jailhouse Blues,
Just as blue as I can can be,
My baby got a heart,
Like a rock in the bottom of the sea.
I got the Jailhouse Blues,
An it ain't no lie, lawd,
Lock on the door, I broke the law,
I got the Jailhouse blues

I got the Jailhouse Blues,
Just as blue as I can be,
My baby got a heart,
Like a rock in the bottom of the sea,
I got the Jailhouse Blues,
An it ain't no lie, lawd,
Lock on the door, I broke the law,
I got the Jailhouse Blues.
Track Name: Housebound Blues
Hmm mm mmm...
Ahhh...

All across this bad-luck land, a story keeps botherin' me,
concernin the woman and the man, and this inequality,
Men goes out drinkin all night long
Come in and think it ain't nothin wrong
I'm bound to bust and it ain't no lie,
And that's why you hear me cry....

Said I got them Housebound Blues,
Got them housebound blues,
You ask what's the matter, what's the matter with me,
I'm gonna tell you partner so it's plain to see,

I'm so tired,
Lord it's more than one woman can bear,
Washin' dishes, changin diapers, sweepin the floor,
While you puttin on your clothes, walkin out that door,

Housebound Blues,
While you out singin, drinkin your booze,
You bring some money, think you done alright,
Lay down snorin, keep me up all night.

Oh I tell you Willie I had enough of you,
I had it up to here. You just a big pain in my butt.

Housebound Blues,
Oh, got them Housebound Blues
Now that's it Willie. I had it, I had it up to here. It's over,
Oh, got them Housebound Blues
Track Name: I Heard the Marchin' of the Drum
Papa played a swingin' horn,
Back once in a dream
Left it underneath the bed,
Shipped outta New Orleans
There's his picture, it was taken before the war,
He's singin' from a sheet music score,
.."..C'mon along, C'mon along, hear the marchin' of the drum"

Out in the heat and the bugs,
Where the Jungle gave way,
Came a whistlin' of bullets,
That carved up the middle of the day
Papa's eyes is open, but the shutter speed was wrong
All the face is blurred in a song,
"..C'mon along, C'mon along, hear the marchin' of the drum"

I heard the marchin of the drum,
An' it pained my heart,
Heard the marchin of the drum,
When the church doors swung apart
The horns was gathered on the church steps,
A sound like snakes rose from the clarinets
All along, all along, I heard the marchin' of the drum.
Track Name: The Love Me or Die
I studied evil, I can't deny,
Was a hoodoo charm called a Love Me or Die,
Some fingernail, a piece of her dress,
Apocathery, Devil's behes'
I will relate, the piteous consequence my mistake,
Fallin slave to passin desire,
Makin' the dreaded Love me or Die.

Against a Jungle primeval green,
She had the looks of a beauty queen
No bangles or chain, wearin' broken shoe
Seventy-five cent bottle perfume.
I said, "Good mornin", I tipped my hat,
All the while I was cunning like a rat,
Smilin gaily, looked her in the eye,
I felt in pocket, the Love me or Die

My past history, one to behold,
I studied magic from days of old,
Membership, secret societies,
Power and wealth in my family
But Matilda, Darling,
Why you don't take my wedding ring,
Like a demon under the floor,
I buried the hoodoo down the back door.

Lawd, word broke through the town,
That a fever strike Matilda down,
Nine thirty, the doctor arrive,
Priest come runnin, quarter to five.
Standin in the weeds early next day,
I saw the meat wagon rollin away,
I seen Matilda layin in the back,
Her old mother wearin a suit of black

Sound the trumpet, and bang the drum,
I wait for me judgement to come,
I know her spirit is down beneath,
I hear the weepin and gnashing of the teeth.
Flames of Hell licks at my feet,
In the shadow of the Jungle I feel the heat,
Matilda's waiting in Hell for me too,
All cause she died from a bad hoodoo.
Track Name: Early In the Mornin'
Well I'm never goin back, to that country again,
If I live for a long, long time,
Where my guitar played itself, leanin by the wall,
It give me a worried mind

Well it's early, in the mornin,
Got my Sunday clothes,
I been out,
The side of the road,
Out where the four winds blow

When I lived there I was superstitious,
I felt like I was bout to die,
Knew every day, like I'd lived it before,
The Devil was in the corner of my eye

Well it's early, in the mornin,
Got my Sunday clothes,
I been out,
The side of the road,
Out where the four winds blow

Lord that dirt road long.... empty,
The fields, dark at night,
Ain't nothin for a person to do
'tween dusk, and the break o' daylight

Well it's early, in the mornin,
Got my Sunday clothes,
I been out,
The side of the road,
Out where the four winds blow.
Track Name: The Greatest Liar
Now ladies and gentlemen, we present for your entertainment tonight,
Down in the Starlight Hotel, all the way from New Orleans - King Hokum.
Hmmmm, Hmmmmm,
Hmmmmm, Hmmmmm,
Hmmmm, Hmmmmm,

Folks, I wanna tell you tonight about the World's greatest Liar,
That's right, the greatest that liar ever was, will be, has been, can a been
(And jelly bean!)
Hmph, ..Name of this this fella is Samuel, Jacob, Jackson......Jeremiah, Johnson...
any name that be fittin' his present situation
(Uh, usually a situation be presently fittin' him, pair a handcuffs, and leg irons)
Yes, yes quieten down please, quiet down.
Now, I'm gonna refrain from usin' this man's name here tonight,
to conceal, to conceal the fact of his true identity - which is unknown to me.

Now Samuel was born early one mornin, I tell you,
There was many important folks there to witness his birth, who was they?
(I don't know!)
Well, what I've learned, through years of investigation, misinformation, and inebriation,
is that that great liar was born to rich, but honest parents, who both died when he was only 12 years old.
My heart goes out to him. It was a blow he suffered again, with their passin, uh, in the street, eleven years later.
As an orphan, Samuel was subject to the most savage beatins, at the hands of the very folks
into whose homes he was sent for the sole purpose, of burglary.

Now, while servin in the Armed Forces,
Samuel Jacob Jehosophat Jellyroll Johnson,
was wounded at the battle of Hastings. That was back round ten sixty six, uh, in the mornin',
after which he was discharged with the high distinction of never havin' enlisted.
The memories of war scarred Samuel the rest of his life, because he remembered nothing,
and though he often raised toasts to his fallen, bank balances,
he never taken a drink of liquor the rest of his life - that he paid for.

That's right Ladies and Gentlemen, only the best blues , hokum, and Jungle music,
down in the Starlight Hotel, every night.