Bill Monroe - Mule Skinner Blues

First performance: 21/05/1997


Coverinfo

Bruce uses the song only once as a snippet:
 
1997-05-21 - TEATRO VERDI, FLORENCE, ITALY

Bruce sings a line of "Mule Skinner Blues" as an introduction to "Working On The Highway". He uses the second recorded version by Bill Monroe, saying:
 
"Good morning captain good morning son"
 
 
 

Songinfo

"Mule Skinner Blues" (a.k.a. "Blue Yodel #8", "Muleskinner Blues", and "Muleskinner's Blues") is a classic country song written by Jimmie Rodgers and George Vaughan. The song was first recorded by Rodgers in 1930 and has been recorded by many artists since then, acquiring the de facto title "Mule Skinner Blues" after Rodgers named it "Blue Yodel #8" (one of his Blue Yodels). "George Vaughn", a pseudonym for George Vaughn Horton, is sometimes listed as co-author. Horton wrote the lyrics for "New Mule Skinner Blues", Bill Monroe's second recorded version of the song. The song tells the tale of a down-on-his-luck mule skinner, approaching "the Captain", looking for work ("Good Morning, Captain / Good Morning to you, son. / Do you need another muleskinner on your new mud line?"). He boasts of his skills: "I can pop my 'nitials on a mule's behind" and hopes for "a dollar and a half a day". He directs the water boy to "bring some water round". The term "Mule Skinner", slang for muleteer, is a driver of mules, and has nothing to do with removing the animal's hide. he first verse the song is similar to Tom Dickson's 1928 recording "Labor Blues" in which the exchange is clearly between a white boss and an African-American worker who is quitting the job, not applying for it. 
 

Bruce on the artist

Lyrics

Good morning captain good morning son
Do you need another mule skinner
Out on your new road line
Well I like to work
I'm rolling all the time
Lord I like to work boy
I'm rolling all the time
I can pop my initials
Right on a mule's behind
Well it's hey little water boy bring your water 'round
Lord it's hey little water boy bring your water 'round
And if you don't like your job just set that water bucket down
I work out on the new road from a dollar and a dime a day
Lord I work out on the new road I make a dollar and a dime a day
I've got three women on Saturday night
Waiting to draw my pay
Well I'm going to town honey what can I bring you back
Well I'm going to town baby what can I bring you back
Just bring a pint of good rye
And a John B.Stetson hat
Lord it's raining here and it's storming on the deep blue sea
Lord it's raining here and it's storming on the deep blue sea
Can't no blonde headed woman make a monkey out for me
If your house catches fire and there ain't no water 'round
If your house catches fire and there ain't no water 'round
Just throw your good gal out the window let your house just burn on down
Well I'm leaving here and I ain't gonna take no clothes
I'm leaving here and I ain't gonna take no clothes
There may be good times in this old town but it's better on down the road