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I heard some bad news today....
Old 06-03-2019, 07:25 PM   #1
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I heard some bad news today....

....about Billy Joe McAllister.....
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Old 06-03-2019, 07:45 PM   #2
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Was it the bridge?
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Old 06-03-2019, 07:47 PM   #3
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Was it the bridge?
No, I think someone said that just to throw you off.
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Old 06-03-2019, 08:03 PM   #4
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I’m going with the bridge. It was the third of June, another sleepy, dusty Delta day.
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Old 06-03-2019, 08:23 PM   #5
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Just pass the biscuits, please.
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Old 06-03-2019, 08:41 PM   #6
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A few years back, I became obsessed with that song (surprised I didn't make the connection today!). Ran down a bunch of versions of it on youtube, read up the history. I found the hand written drafts of the song (much better after some editing). Looked up the places mentioned on Google maps.

I lived on a farm when that song came out, and though we were up North here in IL, that line about 'chopping cotton' didn't sound right to me. Would cotton be ready for 'chopping' by the 3rd of June, even in the warm South? I figured it was some LA or New York song writer.

But my recent research showed that 'chopping cotton' meant weeding it, chopping at the weeds, not chopping down the cotton for harvest. OK, that makes more sense.

I think that song is treasure, it runs the line of giving you enough information to paint a picture, but not too much, so you fill in details, and your picture can be different from some one else's, and there is no right/wrong.

The song takes place very near the sight of the tragic death of Emmett Till.

Bobby Gentry said the song really wasn't about what they threw of the bridge, it was about how the family did (and didn't) interact over the news.

Anyhow, here is my favorite version, it's a little more talked out with expression than sing-song-y, and surprisingly performed on the Andy Williams show!

I like the expression, the dragging/talking out of lines like "never had a lick of sense", and "it's a shame... about Billie Joe... anyhow", "when he...and Tom.... and Billie Joe, put a frog down my back" "you know it don't seem right"...

And Ms Gentry sure was a looker!



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Old 06-03-2019, 10:13 PM   #7
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A few years back, I became obsessed with that song (surprised I didn't make the connection today!). Ran down a bunch of versions of it on youtube, read up the history. I found the hand written drafts of the song (much better after some editing). Looked up the places mentioned on Google maps.

I lived on a farm when that song came out, and though we were up North here in IL, that line about 'chopping cotton' didn't sound right to me. Would cotton be ready for 'chopping' by the 3rd of June, even in the warm South? I figured it was some LA or New York song writer.

But my recent research showed that 'chopping cotton' meant weeding it, chopping at the weeds, not chopping down the cotton for harvest. OK, that makes more sense.

I think that song is treasure, it runs the line of giving you enough information to paint a picture, but not too much, so you fill in details, and your picture can be different from some one else's, and there is no right/wrong.

The song takes place very near the sight of the tragic death of Emmett Till.

Bobby Gentry said the song really wasn't about what they threw of the bridge, it was about how the family did (and didn't) interact over the news.

Anyhow, here is my favorite version, it's a little more talked out with expression than sing-song-y, and surprisingly performed on the Andy Williams show!

I like the expression, the dragging/talking out of lines like "never had a lick of sense", and "it's a shame... about Billie Joe... anyhow", "when he...and Tom.... and Billie Joe, put a frog down my back" "you know it don't seem right"...

And Ms Gentry sure was a looker!



-ERD50
That song had such a strong impact on many of us. It seemed so realistic. People think their death will affect those left behind, and will create such drama, when in reality often all it elicits is "pass the biscuits please". Also life is not easy and yet it goes on after we are gone; the song gets that across with quite an impact too.

When I was living in Mississippi (1975-1976), we drove by the Tallihatchie bridge because of that song. Probably the wrong one since we didn't do much research on it.
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Old 06-04-2019, 04:22 AM   #8
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"Wheres The Confounded Bridge".....Led Zeppelin.
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Old 06-04-2019, 05:10 AM   #9
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....about Billy Joe McAllister.....
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Was it the bridge?
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No, I think someone said that just to throw you off.
Thatís a bridge over troubled waters ..
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Old 06-04-2019, 06:35 AM   #10
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ďAs he passed around the blackeyed peasĒ. Come to think of it - I donít think that Iíve ever had blackeyed peas. I need to find some.
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Old 06-04-2019, 06:44 AM   #11
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All the production and takes for the original recording were for the accompanying strings. The guitar and vocals were from Bobbie Gentry's original demo tape.
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Old 06-04-2019, 06:57 AM   #12
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Come to think of it - I donít think that Iíve ever had blackeyed peas. I need to find some.

WHAT?


Maybe it's a southern thing, but everyone around here (well the natives anyway) eat black-eyed peas each New Years day. (For good luck)
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Old 06-04-2019, 07:47 AM   #13
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WHAT?


Maybe it's a southern thing, but everyone around here (well the natives anyway) eat black-eyed peas each New Years day. (For good luck)
It's regional. My sister lives in PA, pork and sauerkraut is what's for new year dinner.
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Old 06-04-2019, 03:31 PM   #14
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ďAs he passed around the blackeyed peasĒ. Come to think of it - I donít think that Iíve ever had blackeyed peas. I need to find some.

When I was about 5 my grandfather took me to the local family run grocery store in his small town. He said I could pick out anything I wanted thinking I would go for the jars of penny candy. I went for the black-eyed peas. You're missing out if you never had black-eyed peas cooked with a smoked pig knuckle. It's so good if you were to dab a little on your forehead your tongue will beat your brains out trying to lick it off.


Cheers!
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Old 06-04-2019, 03:47 PM   #15
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I never liked peas as a kid. My mom would hide a black eyed pea in my mashed potatoes every New Years Day meal, just so Iíd have luck on my side. Truly, moms are the best.
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Old 06-04-2019, 06:07 PM   #16
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ďAs he passed around the blackeyed peasĒ. Come to think of it - I donít think that Iíve ever had blackeyed peas. I need to find some.
Wow. I love blackeyed peas. We have them frequently. I had no idea they were a southern thing.

That's how Mary Ann and Wanda killed Earl, too.
https://youtu.be/Gw7gNf_9njs
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Old 06-04-2019, 06:13 PM   #17
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omg lol OP, Ode to Billy Joe was a favorite when I was young and mom played old country all day long while in his bedroom my brother played The Doors and in my room I liked a mix but I loved that song. It's a wonder we could hear ourselves think in our house :-).

Thanks for the memory
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Old 06-04-2019, 06:30 PM   #18
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WHAT?


Maybe it's a southern thing, but everyone around here (well the natives anyway) eat black-eyed peas each New Years day. (For good luck)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Badger View Post
When I was about 5 my grandfather took me to the local family run grocery store in his small town. He said I could pick out anything I wanted thinking I would go for the jars of penny candy. I went for the black-eyed peas. You're missing out if you never had black-eyed peas cooked with a smoked pig knuckle. It's so good if you were to dab a little on your forehead your tongue will beat your brains out trying to lick it off.


Cheers!


I got to get out more- or at least to the south. Black eyed peas sound delicious. Thought I would google them to see what they look like. It took a while for me to find pics of black eyed peas online. (Lots of articles though on why Fergy left the band).
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Old 06-04-2019, 06:40 PM   #19
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I got to get out more- or at least to the south. Black eyed peas sound delicious. Thought I would google them to see what they look like. It took a while for me to find pics of black eyed peas online. (Lots of articles though on why Fergy left the band).
LOL yep, the rapper group called The Black Eyed Peas.
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Old 06-04-2019, 06:47 PM   #20
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I got to get out more- or at least to the south. Black eyed peas sound delicious. Thought I would google them to see what they look like. It took a while for me to find pics of black eyed peas online. (Lots of articles though on why Fergy left the band).
Well this is NOT the best time of year to be visiting. The heat index was over 100 today in south Alabama. Give me a call in the fall and we'll watch some college football and I'll make you some blackeyed peas.
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