Jim Smoak & the L,A, Honeydrippers
2005-09-15
Ballard McDonald/ James Hanley-PD

Story

This is an Indiana song for sure. The Hoosier Hot Shots recorded it in 1934. One of my favorite versions is by Pete Fountain from New Orleans.

Lyrics

Back home again, in Indiana, and it seems that I can see; same old candlelight, still shinning bright, through the sycamores for me. The new mown hay, sends all it's fragrance, from the fields I used to roam; When the moon comes shinning down upon the Wabash, then I recognize my Indiana home.

Jim Smoak & the L.A. Honeydrippers
2005-09-15
Jim Smoak

Story

I was thinking about my boyhood home in South Carolina and how it was there among my family and friends that I received the gift of music. The lyrics contain the names of cousins, aunts and uncles.

This could be about any number of "Carolina Boys" that play or played music: Snuffy Jenkins; Curley Seckler; Earl Scruggs; Don Reno; Arthur Smith; Pappy Sherrel (to name only a few).

Lyrics

People are jumping, everybody's shoutin' for joy;  People are jumping,  everybody's shoutin' for joy; When they hear that music they know that's a Carolina boy.

There aint never been nothing like living in the low country; The aint never been nothing like living in the low country; Where alligators sing; there's moss on every tree.

Kenneth and Johnann dancing by the Edisto: Kenneth and Johnann dancing by the Edisto; With Benny on the banjo and Blanche on the old Dobro.

Here comes Lizzy, kickin' her heels up high; Here comes Lizzy, kickin' her heels up high: Well she twists all around then she shakes from side to side.

Clyde's calling the figures and telling 'em what to do; Clyde's calling the figures and telling 'em what to do; When they all take a break, then he calls for the old soft shoe.

Jim Smoak & the L.A. Honeydrippers
2005-09-15
PD

Story

I heard "Old Joe Clark" frail this song on the banjo with Bill Monroe on radio WSM.

Lyrics

Shady Grove, my little miss, Shady grove my darlin'; Shady Grove, my little miss, I'm goin' back to Harlan.

Every time I walk this road it's always dark and cloudy; Every time I see my girl I always tell her howdy.

Jim Smoak
2005-09-15
Jim Smoak

Story

This is a real story. Mary Ann, was relating to us, the band, how that she'd been arrested on her third DUI charge. The judge had ordered her to jail for thirty days, but if she found someone to give her a job, she would be allowed to work the job and then spend the nights in jail.

I jokingly said, "I'm pickin in the pokey, a song for Mary Ann." She and all that heard it laughed. We all did our respective jobs and then, went home. (She to jail, of course).

I saw her again a few days later and she said, "Have you finished my song yet?"  I said, "What song?" She answered, "Pickin In The Pokey!"  (I had thought no more about it).

I said, "No."  But about a week later I sang it for her.  She was pleased.

Lyrics

Well, it ain't no jokey I'm pickin' in the pokey, a song for Mary Ann.  It may sound hokey but I'm pickin' in the pokey while the deputy's are holding hands.  Mary got woozy while drinkin' that boozy and now she's in the can;  So it ain't no jokey I'm pickin in the pokey, a song for Mary Ann.

Jim Smoak
2005-09-15
Jim Smoak

Story

I had just heard the news of the passing of jim McReynolds of "Jim and Jesse, and the Virginia Boys." I remember hearing them on radio in Augusta, GA in 1950 or 1951. They were truly pioneers of BlueGrass and Country music.

Lyrics

Jim was a music man; He played in a traveling band.  He had many friends from far and near,  And that's why I declare;

There was nobody quite like Jim.  I'm so glad we got to know him;  A man from Virginia, tall and slim,  There was nobody quite like Jim.

Jim Smoak
2010-11-22
Albert E. Brumley

Story

This is a favorite old hymn of people the world over.

Lyrics

Some glad morning when this life is o'er, I'll--------------fly away.  To a home on God's celestial shore, I'll---------------------------fly away.

I'll-------------fly away oh glory, I'll-------------fly away.  When I die hallelujah by and by,  I'll---------------------------------------fly away.

Jim Smoak
2010-11-25
Joe Young/ Little Jack Little/ John Siras

Story

I often think of the farm and that old house where I grew up in South Carolina. My mother lived alone there after my father passed.  

Lyrics

It's only a shanty in old shanty town;  the roof is so slanty it touches the ground;

A tumbled down shack by an old railroad track; memories of childhood are calling me back.

I'd give up a palace if I were a king;  it's more than a palace, it's my everything;

There's a queen waiting there with a silvery crown;  in a shanty in old shanty town.

Jim Smoak
2005-09-15
Jim Smoak

Story

The first pasenger train I ever rode was Southern Railway's "Carolina Special" from Knoxville, TN to St. George, SC. The train, airplane or bus was my way to my Carolina home as I lived in Nashville, TN traveling and working with Bill Monroe and Little Jimmy Dickens of the Grand Ole Opry. I've ridden on many trains since; Atlantic Coast Line; Illinois Central; Texas and Pacific; Kansas City Southern; Algoma Central and Amtrak

No ticket agent ever, as I recall, pointed me toward the C&WC (Charleston & Western Carolina RR). It's closest station was at Yamassee, SC (20 miles from home) where as St Gearge was 10 miles from home.

Lyrics

On the Charleston Western Carolina railroad, I'm going back home in my dreams;  Nothing in the southland could be finer,  than riding on your ribbons of steel.

Well I wandered far away; I did not mean to stay;  I've been gone too long;  On the Charleston Western Carolina railroad,  I'm on my way back home.

Jim Smoak
2005-09-15
Philip P.Bliss--PD

Story

Matthew 5:14;  Mat. 5:16 "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."

Lyrics

Brightly beams,  our Father's mercy,  from His lighthouse evermore;  But to us,  He gives the keeping,  of the lights along the shore.

Let the lower lights be burning;  send a gleam across the waves;  Some poor fainting, struggling seaman,  you may rescue,  you may save.

Jim Smoak
2005-09-15
Jim Smoak

Story

I've always wanted to write a song about "it." It what?  No! Not "it what"; just "It."  Oh, you mean "just it".  No!  only "I" "t"!  "It."

Why don't you leave "It" alone.

Lyrics

Leave it alone, don't mess around, You're walking in the wrong part of town; It'll pick you up then throw you down;  Why don't you leave it alone!

Come on in,  winner take all,  Settin' you up for a great big fall.  Turn around, don't heed that call;  Why don't you leave it alone!

Ridin' high,  you can fly,  fair weather friends all say.  Empty pockets,  friends all gone,  nothing but a rainy day!

Feelin' good,  that's not bad,  but gettin' hooked it's oh so sad;  Turn around before you've been had;  Why don't you leave it alone!

Jim Smoak
2010-12-06
Buell Kazee

Story

These lyrics rang a bell with me. I knew very well a man who worked on the railroad tracks, swung a hammer and sung songs while he worked.

Lyrics

Steel goin' down, under my old hammer; forty four years I've sung 'em my song. Steel goin' down, under my old hammer; forty four years I've carried it along.

In the evening burns a light soft and low; in that little shanty where I long to go.  Steel goin' down, under my old hammer; I'm gettin' weary, I'm goin' home.  

Jim Smoak
2005-09-15
Jim Smoak

Story

The Ben in this song is the railroad worker in "Steel Goin' Down" and the verse is something that he actually said.

We recorded this with no over dubs; just like sitting around in a jam session.

Lyrics

Me and the old cook cookin' in the kitchen, me and the old cook cookin' in the kitchen; She cooked the rice and I cooked the chicken; me and the old cook cookin' in the kitchen---

Ben, you goin' to the meetin' tonight? No, I ain't goin' no meetin' tonight; The Lord done come and save my soul, and I'll be there when they call the roll---