68 “Le Vieux Soulard et sa Femme” by Cleoma Breaux & Joseph Falcon

7

December 19, 2012 by gadaya

clemoa-joseph-falcon-2-116Recorded in New York on August 27, 1928, “Le vieux soulard et sa femme” is another side by the great cajun accordion player Joseph Falcon and his talented wife Cleoma Breaux on guitar. Their “Acadian One-Step”  appeared on the “social” set of the Anthology and is reviewed on a previous post (with 26 tracks by the duo included).

“Le Vieux Soulard et sa femme” is a cajun-french version of an old folk song usually known under the title “My good old man”. It’s an humorous dialog between a wife and his husband. The wife asks her husband a few questions and get some rude answers… Here are a set of lyrics in english:

My Good Old Man

Where are you going, my good old man?
Where are you going, my honey, lovey dove?
Where are you going, my good old man?
Best old man in the world

     spoken:  Well, I'm going hunting.

What do you want for breakfast, my good old man?  (as above)

     Eggs

How many do you want, my good old man

     A bushel

A bushel will kill you, my good old man

     I don't care

Where do you want to be buried, my good old man

     Over there in the chimney corner

The ashes will fall on you, my good old man

     I don't care

What'll you do then, my good old man?

     I will haunt you

A haunt can't haunt a haunt, my good old man

Many versions omit the ghost reference at the end and the lyrics vary from performer to performer. Sometimes the husband answers are very short, just one word, which add some comic to the dialogue. In the cajun version, the husband is a drunkard who went to the “café”.

Here are the wrench-cajun lyrics and its translation:

You-c-que t’es parti?
Dis mon bon vieux mari,
Et you que t’es parti
Toi qui vieux fair ma mort?lg-joe-falcon-and-cleoma-breaux-falcon-1404
Et you que t’es parti
Dis mon bon vieux mari
Qu’il est l’meilleur buveur du pays?

J’suis parti au cafe!

Quoi t’es parti faire?
Dis mon bon vieux mari,
Et quoi t’es parti faire
Toi qui vieux fair ma mort?
Et quoi t’es parti faire
Dis mon bon vieux mari
Qu’il est l’meilleur buveur du pays?

J’suis parti m’saouler!

Quand tu t’en reviens?
Dis mon bon vieux mari,
Et quand tu t’en reviens
Toi qui vieux fair ma mort?
Et quand tu t’en reviens
Dis mon bon vieux mari
Qu’il est l’meilleur buveur du pays?

Oh d’main ou aut’jour!

Quoi to veux j’fais cuire?
Dis mon bon vieux mari,
Et quoi to veux j’fais cuire
Toi qui vieux fair ma mort?
Et quoi to veux j’fais cuire
Dis mon bon vieux mari
Qu’il est l’meilleur buveur du pays?

Cuis moi cinq douzaines d’oeufs,
puis un gallon d’couscous!

Ca, ca va te tuer.
Dis mon bon vieux mari,
Ca, ca va te tuer
Toi qui vieux fair ma mort.
Ca, ca va te tuer
Dis mon bon vieux mari
Qu’il est l’meilleur buveur du pays.

Oh, c’est pas qu’j’veux mourir quand meme.

Et you qu’tu veux qu’j’enterre?
Dis mon bon vieux mari,
Et you qu’tu veux qu’j’enterre
Toi qui vieux fair ma mort?
Et you qu’tu veux qu’j’enterre
Dis mon bon vieux mari
Qu’il est l’meilleur buveur du pays?

Enterr’ mois dains l’coin d’la ch’minee;
tu l’eteins un peu avant, autrement, elle va
et’chaude!

Where are you going?
My good husband.
Where are you going,
You, who’ll be the death of me?
Where are you going, my good old man,
The biggest drunk in the countryside?

I’m going to the cafe!

What are you going to do there?
My good husband.
What are you going to do there,
You, who’ll be the death of me?
What are you going to do there, my good old man,
The biggest drunk in the countryside?

I’m gonna get drunk!

When will you come back?
My good husband.
When will you come back,
You, who’ll be the death of me?
When will you come back, my good old man,
The biggest drunk in the countryside?

Oh, tomorrow or another day!

What do you want me to cook for you?
My good husband.
What do you want me to cook for you,
You, who’ll be the death of me?
What do you want me to cook for you, my good old man,
The biggest drunk in the countryside?

Cook me five dozen eggs and a gallon
of couscous!

What, that’ll kill you!
My good husband.
What, that’ll kill you,
You, who’ll be the death of me!
What, that’ll kill you, my good old man,
The biggest drunk in the countryside!

Well, maybe I want to die anyway!

Then where do you want me to bury you?
My good husband.
Then where do you want me to bury you,
You, who’ll be the death of me? 
Then where do you want me to bury you, my good old man,
The biggest drunk in the countryside?

Bury me in the chimney corner, but put it out
a little before or it’ll be hot!

This song is a good follower to “Single Girl, married Girl” and the two Stoneman family duets and the uplifting Cajun rythm makes it one of the more joyful track on the Anthology.

I selected 18 versions of “My Good Old Man”, some from commercial recordings (mostly from the folk revival but also some contemporary ones), some from field recordings like The Max Hunter Folk song collection and many cajun versions (usually under the title “Mon bon vieux mari”) are included as well. Enjoy!

The Drunkard and his Wife Variations

  • My Good Old Man Peggy, Penny & Barbara Seeger The Three Sisters
  • My Lovin’ Old Husband Texas Gladden  Ballad Legacy (1941-1946)
  • 3061166My Good Old Man Elizabeth Butters Sings Folk Blues for Appalachian Dulcimer and Guitar
  • My Good Ole Man Mrs Laura McDonald and Reba Glaze Max Hunter Folk song collection
  • My Good Old Man Hedy West Pretty Saro & Other Appalachian Ballads
  • Mon bon vieux mari Richard Fontenot Cajun Country Guitar
  • My Kind Ole Husband Charley W. Igenthron Max Hunter Folk song collection
  • Mon bon vieux mari D.L. Menard, Dewey Balfa & Marc Savoy Under a Green Oak Tree
  • My Dear Old Husband Odis Bird Max Hunter Folk song collection
  • Mon Bon Vieux Mari Jambalaya Cajun Band Instrumental Collection
  • _46199028_-3Where Have You Been, My Good Old Man? Mike Seeger & Peggy Seeger Fly Down Little Bird
  • My Good Old Man Joan Baez In Concert, Vol. 1
  • Mon Bon Vieux Mari Renaissance Cadienne Mon Pere Aussi Ma Mere
  • My Kind Old Husband Mrs Pearl Brewer Max Hunter Folk song collection
  • Mon Bon Vieux Mari  Hackberry Ramblers Jolie Blonde
  • My Good Old Man Jean Ritchie Courtin’ And Other Folk Songs Of So. Appalachians
  • My Good Old Man Burl Ives Burl Ives Sings For Fun
  • Mon Bon Vieux Mari Anna Laura Edminson Allons Boire un Coup

(on the pictures above: Elizabeth Butters, Mike and Peggy Seeger)

Click on Harry’s picture to go to the zip file

butterfly1965

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7 thoughts on “68 “Le Vieux Soulard et sa Femme” by Cleoma Breaux & Joseph Falcon

  1. david says:

    File owner’s public traffic exhausted. (da3c7b74)

  2. TommyHarmer says:

    Hello Gadaya, thanks for the latest posting ……… unfortunately Rap[idshare seem to be saying that it’s not working …….

  3. inthealley says:

    Thanks Gadaya, link now seems to be working OK. Have a good Christmas and an even better New Year!!

  4. Nick says:

    I don’t suppose you could fix this one again? This one’s a favourite with my two-year-old niece!

  5. Chris says:

    Thank you again for these great posts. I got behind bit but am now all caught up except for this post (#68). I read the previous comments and can certainly be patient if it is indeed a daily volume limit that is the cause. I got a different message, though. Here is what I get:
    “Download not available; The download for this file has not been enabled. Only the user who uploaded it, can enable the download option”
    Thanks again!

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