Inquiries into the early years of SJI

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

"Let Her Go, God Bless Her" mp3 - the Louvin Brothers

This is a bit of fun. The Louvin Brothers once recorded a song called "Let Her Go, God Bless Her." It's from a 1956 album titled Tragic Songs of Life, and completely different from the song posted above. From some of the recent posts here, one gets the impression that the "Let Her Go" chorus from "St. James Infirmary" served as the structural cornerstone for a number of songs.

Well, that SJI chorus is here in full, and you will also recognize, unchanged, a verse from Leadbelly's "Good Night, Irene."

This is an infectious little ditty. To hear this song click on: "Let Her Go, God Bless Her" MP3.


Slimbolala said...

I love the Louvin Bros. but never knew that had a version.

Robert W. Harwood said...

I think I found that particular recording on CD 3 of this post:

Of course, I have since found and ordered the album, "Tragic Songs of Life."

Root Hog Or Die said...

Check out the Kentuckians Leonard Rutherford and John D. Foster's "Let Her Go I'll Meet Her," from 1929. Seems like the only one of its kind to bear that peculiar twist on the standard refrain.

"Let her go, go, I'll meet her / Let her go, go, I'll meet [or "need"?] her / Let her go, go, god bless her soul / She's mine wherever she may be."

It also includes the verse that we're familiar with from "Goodnight Irene," but begins with the "In the Pines" theme, and ends with a twist on that of "I Have A Ship On the Ocean."

Also predating Alabama's Louvins were J.E. Mainer and his Mountaineers, of Virginia, who did a version of "Let Her Go God Bless Her," from 1935, that also bore the "Sometimes I live in the country..." verse, but otherwise employed all different - although equally common - floating verses.

Anyhow, I'd be interested to know if you come across other instances of "I'll meet her" in your researches. Thanks for the good work!

roothogordie said...

Apologies. In my other comment I scurrilously reported J.E. Mainer and his Mt'neers as being from Virginia. They were from North Carolina.

Robert W. Harwood said...

Root Hog or Die - thanks for your comments - and your encouragement. I have not (yet) heard those versions but will search them out (although I have had no luck this morning finding them).

Certainly, I shall post any further discoveries on this blog.

1verycoolguy said...

I love this song by The Louvin Brothers. In my opinion it's awful hard to beat them. They were the greatest duet of all times.