Drinking of the Wine
DESCRIPTION: "Drinking (of the) wine, wine, wine, Ought to been there for a thousand years, drinking wine." In its full form, apparently a spiritual on the Eucharist. A prison version ends with "If my (brother/sister/etc.) comes for me, Tell her I've gone to Galilee"
EARLIEST DATE: 1909 (Odum)
KEYWORDS: drink nonballad religious wine Jesus worksong
FOUND IN: US(SE)
REFERENCES (5 citations):
Brown/Belden/Hudson-FrankCBrownCollectionNCFolklore3 48, "Drinking Wine" (1 fragment)
Jones-MinstrelOfTheAppalachians-Bascom-Lamar-Lunsford, p. 220, "Drinking of the Wine" (1 text, 1 tune)
Parrish-SlaveSongsOfTheGeorgiaSeaIslands, pp. 250-251, "Drinkin' Of the Wine" (1 text)
Jackson-WakeUpDeadMan, pp. 246-248, "Drinkin' That Wine" (1 text, 1 tune)
ADDITIONAL: Howard W. Odum, Religious Folk-Songs of the Southern Negroes, (reprint from American Journal of Religious Psychology and Education, July 1909, Vol.3 pp. 265-365 "Digitized by Internet Archive")), p. 91, "(If my mother ask you for me, tell her I gone to Gallerleed") (1 text)
Menhaden Fishermen, "Drinking of the Wine" (on USMenhaden01)
Walter Kegler and Crew of the Barnegat, "Drinking of the Wine" (on VaWork)
Bascom Lamar Lunsford, "Drinking of the Wine" (on BLLunsford01) (Rounder LP 0065, 1957)
Northern Neck Chantey Singers, "Drinking of the Wine" (on USMenhaden02)
NOTES [148 words]: The editors of Brown, having only the chorus (and that without the reference to "holy wine" found in Lunsford's version) classified this as a drinking song. Lunsford's version makes it a spiritual of sorts. But it's the same chorus, from the same area; same song in my book.
The final verses in Jackson's prison version, about the singer going to Galilee, are probably aa allusion tp Matthew 28:7, "He [Jesus] has been raised from the dead, and indeed is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him." - RBW
Parrish-SlaveSongsOfTheGeorgiaSeaIslands writes, because of the swinging rhythm this was "a favorite with the chain gang for cutting weeds along the highway."
Odum has "Christ was there four thousand years ago," and has "four thousand" where Parrish has "ten thousand."
Menhaden01 shares the "on my way to Galilee" verse with the same group's "My Way Seems So Hard." - BS
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