"Why I Sing The Blues" as written by Robert J. Ritchie, James D. Harris, David Allen Clark and Riley B. King....
Everybody wants to know
Why I sing the blues
Yes, I say everybody wanna know
Why I sing the blues
Well, I've been around a long time
I really have paid my dues

When I first got the blues
They brought me over on a ship
Men were standing over me
And a lot more with the whip
And everybody wanna know
Why I sing the blues
Well, I've been around a long time
Mm, I've really paid my dues

I've laid in a ghetto flat
Cold and numb
I heard the rats tell the bedbugs
To give the roaches some
Everybody wanna know
Why I'm singing the blues
Yes, I've been around a long time
People, I've paid my dues

I stood in line
Down at the County Hall
I heard a man say, "We're gonna build
Some new apartments for y'all"
And everybody wanna know
Yes, they wanna know
Why I'm singing the blues
Yes, I've been around a long, long time
Yes, I've really, really paid my dues

Now I'm gonna play Lucille

My kid's gonna grow up
Gonna grow up to be a fool
'Cause they ain't got no more room
No more room for him in school
And everybody wanna know
Everybody wanna know
Why I'm singing the blues
I say I've been around a long time
Yes, I've really paid some dues

Yeah, you know the company told me
Guess you're born to lose
Everybody around me, people
It seems like everybody got the blues
But I had 'em a long time
I've really, really paid my dues
You know I ain't ashamed of it, people
I just love to sing my blues

I walk through the cities, people
On my bare feet
I had a fill of catfish and chitterlings
Up and down Beal Street
You know I'm singing the blues
Yes, I really
I just have to sing my blues
I've been around a long time
People, I've really, really paid my dues

Now Father time is catching up with me
Gone is my youth
I look in the mirror everyday
And let it tell me the truth
I'm singing the blues
Mm, I just have to sing the blues
I've been around a long time
Yes, yes, I've really paid some dues

Yeah, they told me everything
Would be better out in the country
Everything was fine
I caught me a bus uptown, baby
And every people, all the people
Got the same trouble as mine
I got the blues, huh huh
I say I've been around a long time
I've really paid some dues

One more time, fellows!

Blind man on the corner
Begging for a dime
The rollers come and caught him
And throw him in the jail for a crime
I got the blues
Mm, I'm singing my blues
I've been around a long time
Mm, I've really paid some dues

Can we do just one more?

Oh I thought I'd go down to the welfare
To get myself some grits and stuff
But a lady stand up and she said
"You haven't been around long enough"
That's why I got the blues
Mm, the blues
I say, I've been around a long time
I've really, really paid my dues

Fellows, tell them one more time

That's all right, fellows (yeah!)


Lyrics submitted by nagromnai

"Why I Sing the Blues" as written by Dave Clark B.b. King

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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Why I Sing The Blues song meanings
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4 Comments

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  • 0
    General CommentSelf explanatory -
    but the verse about the illogical/mean-spirited regulations of welfare (not only the food-voucher system) is likely to ring a bell with a LOT of people in the UK nowadays.
    Likewise the verse about (self-)destructive vagrancy laws which the "ruling clarses" use to shirk their responsibilities as humans - and which can vary a great deal from town to town.
    Naturally I have grave issues with the "school" verse (see previous comments on this site)
    imrazoron August 18, 2015   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSome people criticize the school verse but I think it harkens back to segregation. As does a lot of the song and I like how the song is from the perspective of one man and his 'blues' but actually represents the plight of black people throughout the centuries. "When I first got the blues, they brought me over on a ship. Men were standing over me, and a lot more with a whip." - this seems to me to be a clear reference to slavery and the 'ghetto' verse references poverty. I think sometimes people just forget to put the words he's singing into context and stop tying to link them to modern times so much (some bits are relevant still, others less so).
    1158196155on February 08, 2016   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSome people criticize the school verse but I think it harkens back to segregation. As does a lot of the song and I like how the song is from the perspective of one man and his 'blues' but actually represents the plight of black people throughout the centuries. "When I first got the blues, they brought me over on a ship. Men were standing over me, and a lot more with a whip." - this seems to me to be a clear reference to slavery and the 'ghetto' verse references poverty. I think sometimes people just forget to put the words he's singing into context and stop tying to link them to modern times so much (some bits are relevant still, others less so).
    1158196155on February 08, 2016   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSome people criticize the school verse but I think it harkens back to segregation. As does a lot of the song and I like how the song is from the perspective of one man and his 'blues' but actually represents the plight of black people throughout the centuries. "When I first got the blues, they brought me over on a ship. Men were standing over me, and a lot more with a whip." - this seems to me to be a clear reference to slavery and the 'ghetto' verse references poverty. I think sometimes people just forget to put the words he's singing into context and stop tying to link them to modern times so much (some bits are relevant still, others less so).
    1158196155on February 08, 2016   Link

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