Bukka White Remembrance of Charley Patton
Always wanted to be like old Charley Patton.
Long ago when I was a kid, I hear him an' play those numbers about I'll hitch up my buggy and saddle up my black mare.
An' I used to pick cotton an' come around in Clarksdale after them cafes, eatin' cheese and cracker
None of the other boys they didn't have an idea what I was thinkin' I say, I wants to come to be a great man like Charley Patton but I didn't want to get killed.
He did, the way he got killed the way he had to go. I've always realised I knew I had to die but I didn't want one of those ol' sand-foot woman, womens to come up an' cut my throat or do somethin' to me that was unnecessary
And so goes on down an' got me old piece a-guitar and I always wanted to play about Hitch up my Buggy and Saddle up my black mare. I wanna find my baby in this great big world somewhere
I got chance before he was passed so he wasn't even thinkin' about passin' and I shaked his hand once, his brother in Clarksdale have a brother that work at The Compress. And I said, if I ever live to get half way grown, or grown, I would wanna be just like Charley Patton was.
An' after I heard about his death after I got a might near grown I would have liked at that time
to met the one that caused him to have that dead. Cause he was a great boy and ah used to play-a, a number by Old Blue Jumped the Rabbit and they Runnin' One Sold Mile when the rabbit fell dead he cried just like a child and you know I felt so good over that I quit eatin' rabbit cause them rabbits y'know do holler when the dogs catch up to 'em. He could bit in a new born baby an' they was screamin' and cry'nin' and ah, after I hear, Charley Patton went on an play that number I 'cide I just stop eat rabbit if had my dog catch 'em and I take away from 'em.
And so as I went on to say, you know Clarksdale is a little ol' small town that-a-way a lot of good boys been in there. But in travelling through them little small town like that, a good thing I found a good man can do is take it easy and take his time and don't fool with things that you don't have.
Ah that not worth while you don't have time even to fool around with just take life easy cos verything shine like gold and gold y'know they's lot of brass, y'know shine like gold.
And so Charley Patton used to sing that song about hitch up my buggy and saddle up my black mare and I hear, would just knock me off my feet. I was barefeeted, little barefeeted boy, too.
And I like it so well after I growed up, the first record I put out when I was comin' up about Downtown Woman Sickin' them Dogs to Me I was one that kind-a compare with it.
Ah I think I made a pretty good hit of that !
But now, I done forgot I don't play it so much. But at that time he was goin' so good, y'know ? and ah if he's got any friends or relatives his mother or father wherever might be to hear me sayin' that I just wanna let 'em know that old remember never do be forgotten things that then went on y'know
So I gratulates to it, to all his friends, his cousins, to everything I tried to be the second behind ol' big Charley Patton.
He really did, and to tell you the truth the first drank of whisky that I ever drunken Charley Patton give me little in a spoon he said «you're too young to drink too much whisky but I'm onna give you enough to know what it's about « , and I still think about that. I wish I'd aks him to give me the spoon.
And so while we're here I rather thinkin' of ol' time things like that we've got to take thing 'un of consideration y'know thing like that suppose to bring a man mind back.
If you're goin' too fast you're supposed to take a consideration an settle down and think about cause that's your best you can hardly get over.
I just wish the day I could shake Charley Patton's hand.
Bukka T White
Transcript from a recording of spoken word by Bukka White, no copyright infringement intended.
Charley Patton (died April 28, 1934), also known as Charlie Patton, was an American Delta blues musician. Considered by many to be the "Father of the Delta Blues", he created an enduring body of American music and inspired most Delta blues musicians. The musicologist Robert Palmer considered him one of the most important American musicians of the twentieth century.
Patton (who was well educated by the standards of his time) spelled his name Charlie, but many sources, including record labels and his gravestone, use the spelling Charley.