Memphis Blues, The (1909)
(w 1913) George A. Norton (m) W. C. Handy (I in vaudeville) by The Honey Boy Evans Minstrels. (First recording) The Victor Military Band (CR) Prince’s Band (R) 1954 Louis Armstrong
Folks I’ve just been down, down to Memphis town,
That’s where the people smile, smile on you all the while.
Hospitality, they were good to me.
I couldn’t spend a dime, and had the grandest time.
I went out a-dancing with a Tennessee dear,
They had a fellow there named Handy
With a band you should hear.
And while the whi’ folks gently swayed,
All the band folks played real harmony.
I never will forget the tune that Handy called the Memphis Blues. Oh, them blues.

They’ve got a fiddler there that always slickens his hair
And folks he sure do pull some bow and when the big Bassoon
Seconds to the Trombones croon, croon,
It moans just like a sinner on Revival Day, on Revival Day.
That melancholy strain, that ever haunting refrain
Is like a darkie’s sorrow song.
Here comes the very part that wraps a spell around my heart.
It sets me wild to hear that loving tune a gain,
The Memphis Blues.