Bessie Smith


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Pickpocket Blues


by Bessie Smith
recording of
The Complete Recordings, Vol. 3 (Columbia/Legacy C2K-47474),
copyright notice

My best man, my best friend,
told me to stop peddlin'1 gin
They even told me to keep my hands
out people's pocket where their money was in

But I wouldn't listen or have any shame,
'long as someone else would take the blame
Now I can see it all come home to me
I'm sittin' in the jailhouse now
I mean, I'm in the jailhouse now

I done stop runnin' around with this one
and these good lookin' browns
Any time you see me, I was good time bound,
with this one, that one, most all in town
I'm in the jailhouse now,
I'm sittin' in the jailhouse now

Note 1: peddlin', to travel about with wares, in this case gin, for sale. In a wider sense: to sell, or offer for sale from place to place.

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