How to Feed a Lawyer (and Other Irreverent Observations from the Legal Underground)

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Wasn't Milk Cow Blues a Robert Johnson song originally?


According to the "Big Book of Blues," which I just happen to have sitting around in my office, Kokomo Arnold recorded first and influenced Robert Johnson. Arnold's song "Kokomo Blues," for example, was reworked by Johnson as "Sweet Home Chicago." The book mentions "Milk Cow Blues" and mentions the Presley version, but doesn't mention Robert Johnson.

I did a little further research and realized the Robert Johnson song is titled "Milkcow's Calf Blues." One website says that Johnson's song was influenced by Kokomo Arnold's song. I compared the lyrics, and they are vastly different. I haven't compared the actual songs, though--I have the Johnson song, but not the Kokomo Arnold song.


I have the Johnsons song also, as well as a few variants of it here and there.

Of course, it's always difficult to tell the real origin of any of the older blues songs. Some you can be certain of their origin, but others get attributed to somebody, but were probably in general circulation and simply recorded by somebody for Lomax, or the like.

Very interesting.

Have any Elmore James? I've always thought he was really a missed master.


Milk cow blues is one of my favourite blues; i have never found the original lyrics by Kokomo arnold. i asked a lot of my english friends to translate the text in english but they failed;
There is many differences with the lyrics of elvis.

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