#3. Stuff Smith Smokes More Weed Than Snoop ("If You'se a Viper" - 1936)
More than a few rappers have based their careers on professing their affection for certain smokable substances, a proud tradition that dates back to jazz and blues from as early as the 1920s. Apparently one of the worst side effects of pot is a smoker's inability to stop writing songs about it.
This guy liked to do drugs? No way.
A Few Choice Quotes
Talk about a reefer of five feet long;
Not too fat and not too strong.
Come on now, five feet? That's just impractical.
This, but weed.
Now when your throat get dry;
And you know you're high;
Everything is dandy;
Truck on down to your candy store;
Get you kicks off peppermint candy.
Peppermint candy? Munchies in the pre-Doritos era sucked.
#2. Roy Brown Gets Murderous and Gay ("Butcher Pete" - 1950)
So, there were plenty of old blues songs that were either horrifically violent, or sexually explicit, but Roy Brown wasn't a man to be satisfied with just one or the other. His song "Butcher Pete" is about a guy who goes around the countryside "chopping up all the women's meat" with his "long sharp knife." Get it? This is a rare example where hiding the sexual content behind double entendres and innuendo somehow made the song a thousand times more offensive.
Geez, this song is getting a bit offensive. Better add some graphic stabbings.
A Few Choice Quotes
Ever since Peter flew into town;
He's been havin' a ball;
Just cuttin' and choppin' for miles around;
Single women, married women, old maids and all.
It's nice to know Butcher Pete doesn't discriminate. Old maids need chopping too.
Raise your hand if you love to murder!
The police put Pete in jail;
Yes, he finally met his faith;
But when they came to pay his bail;
They found him choppin' up his cellmate.
#1. Blind Willie McTell Might Have Been a Serial Killer ("A to Z Blues" - 1956)
From Ray Charles to Stevie Wonder, the list of beloved blind performers is a long one, but as Blind Willie McTell proves, not all blind musicians are quite so cuddly.
The blindness was the only thing that limited his carnage.
At first, the "A to Z Blues" seems to be a standard "my woman done me wrong" blues song, but then Blind Willie goes and gets creative. The result is a song that sounds like something that might have been created had Sesame Street ever been visited by Charlie Manson.
A Few Choice Quotes
I'm gonna cut your head four different ways;
That's long, short, deep and wide.
Cutting heads is a lost art. Most kids today would probably know two different ways max.
When I get a rhythm of this rusty black handle razor;
you're gonna be booked out for an ambulance ride;
Cause I'm gonna cut A, B, C, D on top of your head;
That's gonna be treating you nice like mama you ain't gonna be dead.
Keeping someone alive as you slowly carve the alphabet into them is one of the more liberal definitions of "nice" we've heard. Wait, why are you backing away? We still have 22 more letters to go!
I'm gonna cut E, F, G right across your face;
H, I, J, K, that's where runnin' bound to take place;
Cut L, M, N cross both your arms;
You'll sell an' peddle gal your whole life long;
Cut N, O, P, Q that's gonna be trouble too;
Cause I'm gonna grab you mama and turn you every way but loose;
Cut R, S, T to hear you cry;
That'll be the last time tears a run from over your eyes;
Cut U, V, W on the bottom of your feet;
That'll be the last time you walk up an' down 25th street;
Marking cross your bosom with X, Y, Z;
When I get through with this alphabet;
You'll quit your messing with me.
Blind Willie's dedication to educating as he horrifies is nothing short of inspirational really.
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