Thursday, June 26, 2014


Jesse James recorded four songs for Decca in Chicago in 1936; only two of these were originally issued, “Southern Casey Jones” being the most well known today. In 1948 one of the unissued sides, “Sweet Patuni,” was put out on a bootleg 78 label, Post, as “Ramrod” by Hooker Joe with a song by Walter Davis on the flip. “Sweet Patuni” may have been a little too naughty for a major label to issue in the thirties though it seems pretty tame by today’s standards. Pretty fun listening, though, as Mr James stops just as he’s about to sing what he’s not supposed to and replaces it with something else that fits the rhyme. Other songs with “edge of the cliff” lyric changes have been recorded through the years, a couple of good postwar records being Fluffy Hunter’s “The Walkin’ Blues” and Mercy Dee’s “Red Light.”

Jesse James • Sweet Patuni • 1936

Label photo: American Music

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