Dirty Red: Mother Fuyer (1947)

 |   |  <1 min read

Dirty Red: Mother Fuyer (1947)

Blues and jazz artists often used coded language to get their lyrics past record companies and radio programmers, so you would get a song like When I'm In My Tea (by Jo-Jo Adams, 1946) about marijuana or Dope Head Blues by Victoria Spivey about cocaine.

Coded sex was everywhere . . . although there is no mistaking the meaning of songs like Poon Tang (by the Treniers), Big Long Slidin' Thing (Dinah Washington) or Somebody Else was Suckin' My Dick Last Night (the Fred Wolff Combo).

Chicago's Nelson Wilborn also didn't feel the need to get oblique on this track from 1947 under the appropriate nom de disque Dirty Red. Described as "an amiable alcoholic" who was born in Mississippi but mostly sang in Chicago clubs, Wilborn went on to work briefly with Muddy Waters in the Sixties but just seemed to disappear after that. There seems to be no known photographs of the man.

No matter, among his legacy recordings is this little gem where he effectively mumbles the Oedipal expletive but his intention is increasingly clear. It comes from a collection of blues on the Aladdin label, The Aladdin Records Story.

One for those who thought gangsta rappers invented the word.

For more one-offs, oddities or songs with an interesting backstory see From the Vaults

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   From the Vaults articles index

Karen Dalton: God Bless the Child (1966)

Karen Dalton: God Bless the Child (1966)

The new wave of folk artists have belately come to Karen Dalton, who palled around in Greenwich Village in the early Sixties with the likes of the young Bob Dylan (who was hugely impressed with her... > Read more

The Pleasers: Move It (1964)

The Pleasers: Move It (1964)

Cliff Richard and the Shadows' Move It of 1958 was widely considered by many (the young John Lennon among them) to be the first and most authentic British rock'n'roll hit. But when placed... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

THE BIG OYSTER by MARK KURLANSKY

THE BIG OYSTER by MARK KURLANSKY

One of the conspicuous growth areas in non-fiction has been in the genre of what we might call single-issue histories where a writer takes a seemingly mundane or commonplace subject -- be it tulips... > Read more

GUEST WRITER ANDREW DAWSON looks back at punk as a new way forward

GUEST WRITER ANDREW DAWSON looks back at punk as a new way forward

“Texts are worldly,” the literary theorist Edward Said wrote in '83, “[they are] a part of the social world, human life, and of course the historical moments in which they are... > Read more