Old Jesse

DESCRIPTION: "One cold and frosty mornin' Just as the sun did rise, The possum roared, the raccoon howled, 'Cause he'd begun to freeze... Old Jesse was a gentleman among the olden times." Remaining verses are floating stanzas about a Black's learning and life
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1925 (Scarborough)
KEYWORDS: religious Bible humorous animal
REFERENCES (1 citation):
Scarborough-NegroFS, pp. 71-72, "Old Jesse" (1 text, 1 tune)
ST ScaNF071 (Partial)
Roud #3439
cf. "On a Cold Frosty Morning" (lyrics)
cf. "Walkin' in the Parlor" (lyrics)
NOTES [132 words]: This is one of those impossible items. Roud lumps Scarborough's text with "On a Cold Frosty Morning," presumably on the basis of the first line. But the next two verses ("Nigger never went to free school Nor any odder college..." and "Nigger used to pick de banjo, He play so berry strong...") are typical of "Walkin' in the Parlor."
The chorus, about Old Jesse (the father of David) is unique.
What's more, I have a recording of George and Gerry Armstrong, with the first verse and the Old Jesse chorus, combined with "Bye and Bye."
I really don't know what to make of the result. Separate song, or just a conflation? When in doubt, we split. If I had to file it somewhere, I would probably go against Roud and file it with "Walkin' in the Parlor" rather than "On a Cold Frosty Morning." - RBW
File: ScaNF071

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