Alabama Bound


The Lomaxes called this song a traditional levee-camp song (Lomax 1940). Collectors working for the Library of Congress recorded versions all over the South, including one by pianist Jelly Roll Morton (1885-1941). 'Ragtime' Henry Thomas (1874- ?), another blues singer working the area around Texas at the same time as Lead Belly, recorded a very similar version entitled 'Don't You Leave Me Here.'

I've recorded this on the 12-string in 'drop D' tuning, that is with the low E string tuned down to D.

[A] I'm Alabama bound
I'm [D] Alabama bound
And if the [A] train don't stop and turn around
I'm Alabama bound

Oh, don't you leave me here (2x)
But if you mus go anyhow
Just leave a dime for beer.
Oh don't you be like me (2x)
Drink your good sweet cherry wine
And let that whiskey be.
Oh well the bread is gone
Oh well the gravy's gone
And they're still standin' in that line
With their long clothes on