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This fascinating compendium explains the most unusual, obscure, and curious words and expressions from vintage blues music. Utilizing both documentary evidence and invaluable interviews with a number of now-deceased musicians from the 1920s and '30s, blues scholar Stephen Calt unravels the nuances of more than twelve hundred idioms and proper or place names found on oft-overlooked \u0022race records\u0022 recorded between 1923 and 1949. From \u0022aggravatin' papa\u0022 to \u0022yas-yas-yas\u0022 and everything in between, this truly unique, racy, and compelling resource decodes a neglected speech for general readers and researchers alike, offering invaluable information about black language and American slang.
Stephen Calt is the author or coauthor of the blues biographies I'd Rather Be The Devil: Skip James and the Blues and King Of The Delta Blues: The Life and Music of Charlie Patton.
Author's Note; Introduction; A Note on Language; Select Annotated Bibliography of Dictionary Sources; General Bibliography; Informants Cited in Text; Abbreviations and Symbols Used in Text; Dictionary Entries A-Z; Index