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Owlkat Tune Add: How can a Poor Man Stand Such Times (2) Tune Add: How can a Poor Man Stand Such Times 20 Feb 08


Meow Y'all,
A piece of paper bubbled to the top of the paper pile, and on it was, along with the lyrics to "How can a poor man stand such times and live", (Blind Alfred Reed (c) 1930)was a question about the melody from Joe Offer. I've always used Ry Cooder's version on one of his way early recordings. Ry Cooder(?) I don't know if this question was ever answered, but just in case all the Cooder Keeners didn't pick it up, here are the lyrics and the chords. The ones I use, that is...
       G                         D             G
      There once was a time when everything was cheap
               G             C      G       D
      But now prices nearly puts a man to sleep
               G               G7
      When we pay our grocery bill
                C                   A7 or Am
      We just a-feel like makin' our will.
               G                   D                   G / C
      Tell me how can a poor man stand such times and live?
               G                   D                   G
      Tell me how can a poor man stand such times and live?

      I remember when drygoods were cheap as dirt
      We could take two bits and buy a dandy shirt
      Now we pay three bucks or more,
      Maybe get a shirt that another man wore.
      Tell me how can a poor man stand such times and live?

      Well, I used to trade with a man by the name of Gray
      Flour was fifty cents, for a 24-pound bag
      Now it's a dollar and a half beside
      Just like a-skinnin' off a flea for the hide.
      Tell me how can a poor man stand such times and live?

      Oh, the schools we have today ain't worth a cent
      But they see to it that every child is sent
      If we don't send every day we have a heavy fine to pay.
      Tell me how can a poor man stand such times and live?

      Prohibition's good if 'tis conducted right
      There's no sense in shooting a man til he shows flight
      Officers kill without a cause,
      Then complain about funny laws.
      Tell me how can a poor man stand such times and live?

      Most all preachers preach for gold and not for souls
      That's what keeps a poor man always in a hole
      We can hardly get our breath,
      Taxed and schooled and preached to death.
      Tell me how can a poor man stand such times and live?

      Oh, it's time for every man to be awake
      We pay fifty cents a pound when we ask for steak
      When we get our package home
      A little wad of paper with gristle and bone.
      Tell me how can a poor man stand such times and live?

      Well, the doctor comes around with a face all bright
      And he says in a little while you'll be all right
      All he gives is a humbug pill,
      A dose of dope and a great big bill.
      Tell me how can a poor man stand such times and live?


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