Mudcat Café message #3894367 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #17531   Message #3894367
Posted By: Jim Dixon
17-Dec-17 - 01:25 PM
Thread Name: Funniest Talking Blues Song
Subject: Lyr Add: TALKING HARD WORK (Woody Guthrie)
This is spoken over guitar accompaniment, but there seems to be no connection between the rhythm of the spoken words and the music. Placement of the line breaks is kind of arbitrary, but I tried to put them where Woody punctuates his speech with little pauses or inflections.

As recorded by Woody Guthrie

    While we're on the subject of hard work, I just want to say that I always was a man to work.
    I was born working and worked my way up by hard work.
    I ain't never got nowhere yet, but I got there by hard work, work of the hardest kind.
    I've been down and I've been out.
    I've been disgusted and busted and I couldn't be trusted.
    I worked my way up and I worked my way down.
    I've been drunk and I've been sober, and I've been baptized and I got hijacked.
    I've been robbed for cash and I've been robbed on the credit.
    Worked my way in jail and I worked my way out of jail.
    Woke up a lot of mornings, didn't know where I was at.
    The hardest work I ever done was when I was trying to get myself a worried woman to help ease my worried mind.
    I'm gonna tell you just how much work I had to do to get this woman I was telling you about.
    I shook hands with 97 of her kinfolks and her blood-relatives and I done the same with 86 people that was just her friends and her neighbors.
    I kissed 73 babies and I put dry pants on 34 of them as well as others.
    Done the same thing several times as well as a lot of other things just about like this.
    I held 125 wild horses and I put saddles and bridles on more than that.
    I harnessed some of the craziest and wildest teams in that whole country.
    I rode 14 loco broncos to a standstill and I let 42 hound dogs lick me all over.
    Seven times I was bit by hungry dogs and I was chewed all to pieces by water moccasins and rattlesnakes on 2 river bottoms.
    I chopped and I carried 314 armloads of stove-wood, 109 buckets of coal,
    Carried a gallon of kerosene 18 miles over the mountains,
    Got lost,
    Lost a good pair of shoes in a mud-hole,
    And I chopped and I weeded 48 rows of short cotton,
    Thirteen acres of bad corn,
    I cut the sticker-weeds out of 11 back yards,
    All on account of 'cause I wanted to show her I was a man that liked to work.
    I cleaned out 9 barn lofts, cranked 31 cars, all makes and models,
    Pulled three cars out of mud-holes and 4 or 5 out of snowdrifts.
    I dug 5 cisterns of water for some of her friends,
    Run all kinds of errands.
    Played the fiddle for 9 church meetings,
    I joined 11 separate denominations.
    I joined up and I signed up with 7 of the best trade unions I could find.
    Paid my dues six months in advance.
    I waded 48 miles of swamps and 6 big rivers.
    Walked across 2 ranges of mountains, crossed 3 deserts.
    I got the fever, sunstroke, malaria, flu, moonstruck, skeeter-bit, poison ivy, seven-year itch, and the blind staggers.
    I was give up for lost and dead a couple of times,
    Struck by lightning, struck by Congress, struck by friends and kinfolks as well as by 3 cars on highways and a lot of times, people's hen-houses.
    I've been hit and run down, run over, and walked on, knocked around.
    I'm just setting here now trying to study up what else I can do to show that woman I still ain't afraid of hard work.