Talk:Milk Cow Blues

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This song has been originally recorded by Sleepy John Estes in 1930[edit]

This article is written as if the recording by Sleepy John Estes (May 13, 1930) never existed. Nevertheless it exists and it is well known. It has been covered many times, see the [Wiki page about Sleepy John Estes]. The lyrics of these two songs are completely different, but the music is similar. Here we read: "It produced a cover of a blues chestnut, "Milk Cow Blues," but Estes version never got around to mentioning the cow!" So both versions are the same (unknown) origin, maybe a traditional song. In any case this article can not pass over in silence the Estes' version.--RocknRollArchivist (talk) 21:48, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

The Estes song is extremely different. The lyrics could hardly be more different. It's difficult to compare the tunes in that Arnold changes from verse to verse. The only similarity I can see is between the two parts that Estes uses throughout and the two-part tune of the Arnold verses
Says I woke up this morning : and I looked outdoors
Says I know my mamlish milkcow pretty mama : Lord by the way she lows
Lord if you see my milkcow buddy : I said please drive her home
Says I ain't had no milk and butter mama : Lord since my cow been gone
Takes a rocking chair to rock mama : a rubber ball to roll
Take a little teasing brown mama : just to pacify my soul
Lord I don't feel welcome : eee no place I go
Lord the little woman I love mama : have done drove me from her door
This compares with Estes
Well, she looked at me : she be-gan to smile
Says, 'I thought I would use you : for my man a while
That's if you just don't let my : husband catch you there
Now, if just-just don't let my : husband catch you there'
There's a similarity in the construction of the verses, if we disregard the fact that Arnold uses two couplets while Estes uses two repeated lines in the second part of his verse.
So it's not totally implausible that both Estes and Arnold drew on a pre-existing song. Unfortunately the link to RocknRoll's source is broken, so the suggestion can't go into the article unsupported. By the same token my own comments probably can't go in on the grounds that they are 'research'. I'll try to write something sensible that's not too open to challenge.DavidCrosbie (talk) 14:53, 30 October 2017 (UTC)
I've now found that a web page I'd encountered is actually a scholarly article. So I can defend the elevation of the Arnold original and the relegation of the Estes song — which isn't even the first song to be called Milk Cow Blues, as is noted below.DavidCrosbie (talk) 18:21, 1 November 2017 (UTC)

1926 recording by Freddie Spruell[edit]

Why not mention in this article that "Milk Cow Blues" was recorded in 1926 by Freddie Spruell, one of the very first self-accompanied blues singer-guitarists? (talk) 05:23, 26 November 2016 (UTC)

There are no similarities that I can hear. To my ears it's a different song entirely. The only thing the two songs share is the metaphor of missing a dairy cow and so not enjoying her milk and butter.DavidCrosbie (talk) 15:06, 30 October 2017 (UTC)

Song lyrics format[edit]

Please note that Template:Poemquote is used for song lyrics. It eliminates the need for line breaks, indentation, etc. Lyrics should be rendered in plain type, not italics. For example:

Wait a minute something's wrong here, the key won't unlock this door
Wait a minute something's wrong, Lord have mercy this key won't unlock this door
(Something's goin' on here)
I have a bad, bad feeling, that my baby don't live here no more ...

Well I might as well go back over yonder, way back among the hills
(Yeah that's what I'm gonna do)
Lord I might as well go back over yonder, way back yonder across the hills
'Cause if my baby don't love me no more, I know her sister will
(Yeah, how's that?)[citation]

Lyrics should also include a citation to a reliable source and follow standard punctuation (why all the colons?) —Ojorojo (talk) 14:25, 1 November 2017 (UTC)

The colons are a convention used by Jeff Taft, whose books and online concordance are a major source of early blues lyrics. They highlight structural information that is not made clear in "standard punctuation".
I have reviewed dozens of blues lyrics and none use colons in this manner, including the cited reference. WP articles should reflect standard usage and not what is apparently peculiar to one writer. —Ojorojo (talk) 13:58, 2 November 2017 (UTC)
It's hard to see what constitutes a "reliable source". The last time I quoted a lyric with a citation, it was removed as a breach of copyright, which is why I have cited isolated verses rather than the complete text. Previous contributions to this article cited The Blues Line by Eric Sackheim. This is an admirable book, but I'm sure the author wouldn't claim to be consistently "reliable". The best I can do is to cite the Boyd and Kelly paper for every quote.DavidCrosbie (talk) 18:14, 1 November 2017 (UTC)
Perhaps a review of Wikipedia:Identifying reliable sources would be beneficial as well as WP:LYRICS. It is OK to quote portions of lyrics to illustrate a point (from a RS), but when copyright status is not clear, lyrics for the entire song should not be included. Currently, all of the lyrics (and some other points) have inline citations to a single page of Boyd and Kelly article that only has a title and illustration. Wikipedia:Verifiability includes "The cited source must clearly support the material as presented in the article. Cite the source clearly and precisely (specifying page, section, or such divisions as may be appropriate)." (emphasis added) This also applies to the infobox entry ref marked {{page needed}} that was removed with the edit summary "Remove demand for page number in a work where dating information is central and obvious". —Ojorojo (talk) 13:58, 2 November 2017 (UTC)

Unjustified deletion[edit]

Not liking the way I formatted blues lyrics is no justification for deleting content. If anyone objects to the information I was presenting and the points I was making, this page is the appropriate forum to argue the case.DavidCrosbie (talk) 18:30, 1 November 2017 (UTC)

This is not a matter of personal preference. MOS:QUOTE recommends the use of {{quote}} (or {{poemquote}} for lyrics). It is difficult to understand why a simple and convenient way to consistently present lyrics cannot be used, instead of a hit-or-miss approach. Likewise, {{cite book}} is recommended for book references. However, a completed template, with the co-authors properly listed, was removed without any explanation. A review of the Wikipedia:BOLD, revert, discuss cycle may be helpful – you were bold, I reverted, and now we're discussing, although you reverted some changes before waiting for a discussion. However, if you have a problem with WP policies and guidelines, this is not the appropriate forum and should be discussed/resolved elsewhere. —Ojorojo (talk) 14:25, 2 November 2017 (UTC)