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Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in

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JOHNNY BOOKER
JOHNNY BUCCA


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GUEST,Richie 04 May 11 - 02:17 PM
MartinRyan 04 May 11 - 02:22 PM
GUEST,Richie 04 May 11 - 03:12 PM
MartinRyan 04 May 11 - 03:20 PM
GUEST,Richie 05 May 11 - 01:54 AM
Snuffy 05 May 11 - 09:37 AM
GUEST,Doc John 05 May 11 - 02:29 PM
GUEST,Richie 05 May 11 - 10:23 PM
GUEST 07 Aug 12 - 08:57 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 08 Aug 12 - 12:00 AM
Jack Campin 08 Aug 12 - 04:04 AM
GUEST,hg 10 Aug 12 - 01:08 AM
Steve Gardham 10 Aug 12 - 03:23 PM
Steve Gardham 10 Aug 12 - 03:37 PM
GUEST,Nathan Greb 11 Jan 17 - 02:20 PM
Joe_F 11 Jan 17 - 02:58 PM
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Subject: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: GUEST,Richie
Date: 04 May 11 - 02:17 PM

Hi,

Anyone have versions of "Dig a hole to put the Devil in"?

Know where it came from? When did the expression originate?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: MartinRyan
Date: 04 May 11 - 02:22 PM

Hasn't the HBO series "The Wire" got a bluesy sig tune based on that phrase/idea?

Regards


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: GUEST,Richie
Date: 04 May 11 - 03:12 PM

One version was copyrighted in 1945. Here are some lyrics to one version:

God made man And man made money.
God made the bee And the bee made honey.
God made Lucifer And he made sin.
Go dig a hole and put the Devil in.

Leadbelly also sang a version quite different


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: MartinRyan
Date: 04 May 11 - 03:20 PM

The one I was thinking of seems to be by Tom Waits - here's The Blind Boys of Alabama singing it.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: GUEST,Richie
Date: 05 May 11 - 01:54 AM

Hi,

I've been trying to straighten out my web-site since I threw a bunch of info on the songs but never proofed it or carefully researched it.

Here's what I have on "Gwine Dig a Hole":

http://bluegrassmessengers.com.temp.realssl.com/gwine-dig-a-hole-and-put-the-devil-in--leadbelly.aspx

As far as I can tell Leadbelly recorded three versions two titled "Fidler's Dram"- one accidentally titled Fiddler's Dream- haha

The lyrics are in my 1936 Lomax book but they are different slightly,

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: Snuffy
Date: 05 May 11 - 09:37 AM

Old Johnny Pucker/Booker/Bugger/Bucker/Bucca - Lots of versions and links to other threads here


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: GUEST,Doc John
Date: 05 May 11 - 02:29 PM

Richie, It may have been from Leadbelly's L of C recordings I heard it. The expression is supposed to refer to what slaves or convicts would like to do to their overseer (= the devil)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: GUEST,Richie
Date: 05 May 11 - 10:23 PM

Thanks,

Snuffy-It's interesting that the Johnny Booker lyrics are a source. Good job!

John Doc- you're right about the Leadbelly reference- it's in my Lomax Leadbelly book.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: GUEST
Date: 07 Aug 12 - 08:57 PM

gwine dig a hole to put the devil in is a song on an ablum "classic blues volume 1" by Shack of Peasants


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 08 Aug 12 - 12:00 AM

Parallel topic/verse

Circa 1975....west coast...USA...Hispanic community...Sunday School 10 y.o.

Satan is a sly old fox
If I could I 'd tie him in a box.
Tie him in a box, and throw away the key
For all the tricks he 's played on me.

I 'm glad that I 'm a Christian (3X)
And I 'm walking with the Lord

Sincerely,
Gargoyke


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: Jack Campin
Date: 08 Aug 12 - 04:04 AM

Is the origin perhaps the tale "Putting the Devil into Hell" as in Boccaccio? (which he probably didn't originate).


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: GUEST,hg
Date: 10 Aug 12 - 01:08 AM

hey gargoyke!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 10 Aug 12 - 03:23 PM

Here's a reference from Notes and Queries 1870, sent in by James Henry Dixon, he of the ballad books in the 1840s.

'Some years ago I sent to N&Q a much better version of the lines contributed by F.S. (there must have been a previous query I've not copied) I do not, however, remember their insertion, and probably they never came to hand. My copy, which I now append, was transcribed from the fly-sheet of a Bible that belonged to a pitman who resided near Hutton-Henry, Durham. He was a Methodist. I pitched upon the quatrain while leafing through the Bible. The lines I later found were well-known in the pit villages. I believe they belong to the North of England. (Dixon wasn't a very knowledgeable scholar.)

'God made bees, and bees made honey;
God made man, and man made money;
Pride made the Devil, and the Devil made sin;
So God made a coal-pit to put the Devil in.'

I have another copy, which I took from a chalking on an engine-house door near Houghton-le-Spring.'

It looks like I will have to try to get a copy of the note that prompted this reply. It mentioned Billy Purvis a North Country Music Hall artiste.

It might also be significant, if my memory serves me right, that the Elliots of Birtley in Co. Durham used to sing 'Old Johnny Booker'.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 10 Aug 12 - 03:37 PM

Here's a version from the Journal of American Folklore April-June 1913 which was recorded from 'East Tennessee negroes in 1905'.

'God made de bee, and de bee made honey;
God made man, an' de man made money;
God made Satan, an' Satan made sin;
God made a hole, an' rolled Satan in.'

An addition is given from Kentucky negroes, 1912.

'Satan got mad, an' said he wouldn't stay;
God tol' Satan that he couldn't get away.'


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: GUEST,Nathan Greb
Date: 11 Jan 17 - 02:20 PM

God made Man Man made money God made Bees Bees made honey God made Satan Satan made sin God made a hole to put Satan in Satan said he wouldn't stay God said he would cause he couldn't get away so God made a hill sliker than glass down come Satan sliding on his ass

By Nathan Greb


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Subject: RE: Origins: Dig a hole to put the devil in
From: Joe_F
Date: 11 Jan 17 - 02:58 PM

God made Satan, Satan made sin.
God made a hot place to put Satan in.
Satan didn't like it, and he said he wouldn't stay.
He's been acting like the devil ever since that day.
          -- The Darky Sunday School


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