“Cocaine (The Furniture Man)”

Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1927 (recording, Luke Jordan)
Keywords: drugs hardtimes floatingverses
Found in: US(Ap, SE)

Description

"I've got a gal in the white folks' yard...she brings me meal, she brings me lard." Refrain: "Here comes Sal with her nose all sore/Doctor said she can't smell no more...." The furniture man looks for the singer's wife, repossesses all of his belongings

Long description

Confused, floating verses; "I've got a gal in the white folks' yard...she brings me meal, she brings me lard." Occasional refrain: "Here comes Sal with her nose all sore/Doctor said she couldn't smell no more...I'm simply wild about my good cocaine." The furniture man comes to singer's house looking for his wife, repossesses all of his belongings

Notes

This song clearly exists in both Anglo- and African-American traditions; just as clearly, Justice's performance was derived from Jordan's. The narrative is extremely confused, but (barely) sufficient to class it as a ballad. - PJS

Cross references

Recordings