Saturday, June 9, 2007
You Done Put Your Banana In It Now
Armenter Chatmon (later known as Bo Carter) and his brothers (Sam and Lonnie) learned to play music from their father and mother. Henderson and Eliza Chatmon both played music before marriage. Henderson was an ex-slave fiddler and Eliza could sing and play guitar.
The three brothers eventually began playing in public and even recorded a few 78s under the band name Mississippi Sheiks. Since Bo drank less than his other two brothers, he was placed in charge of finances and the management of the group. As time dragged on, he began performing solo and recorded a lot of material.
Unfortunately, music historians have pegged him into the "risque music" category due to the double entendre of his song titles and the content of a great deal of his lyrics. Song titles such as Banana In Your Fruit Basket, Pin In Your Cushion, Your Biscuits Are Big Enough For Me, and My Pencil Won't Write No More all helped to reinforce this attitude towards his music. As detailed in the album liner notes provided by Yazoo Records, his chord progression and continual change in tuning throughout the entirety of his musical catalog should create enough interest for any musician- young or old- to take a closer look at the body of his work.
Blues archivist and researcher, Paul Oliver, stumbled into Carter one day in Memphis in 1960 (less than five years before Carter's death). A transcription of the interview that ensued can be found in Oliver's tome Conversation With The Blues.
Here's the LP.