Blue Tail Fly

Blue horse fly

Blue Tail Fly

 Traditional.  Chorus after every verse.


When I was young I used to wait on Master and give him his plate
and pass the bottle when he got dry and brush away the blue tail fly.

Jimmy crack corn and I don’t care
Jimmy crack corn and I don’t care
Jimmy crack corn and I don’t care
Old Master’s gone away.

And when he’d ride in the afternoon I’d follow with a hickory broom,
the pony being very shy when bitten by the blue tail fly.

One day he rode around the farm, the flies so numerous they did swarm.
One chanced to bite him on the thigh; the devil take the blue tail fly!

The pony jump, he run, he pitch. He throw old Master in the ditch.
He died and the jury wondered why. The verdict was the blue tail fly.

They laid him ‘neat a ‘simmon tree. His epitaph is there to see:
“Beneath this stone I’m forced to lie, victim of the blue tail fly.”

Old Master’s gone and laid to rest. They say all things is for the best.
But I never shall forget till the day I die Old Master and the blue tail fly.

The hornet gets in eyes and nose, the skeeter bites you through your clothes.
The galley nipper flies up high, but worser yet, the blue tail fly.

Performance/Production Credits:

Tim Tompkins:  Voice, guitar.
Frances Tompkins:  Voice, violin.
Paris Lahman:  Voice, finger snaps, maracas.

This one-take recording with one stereo microphone was stoked by our 2011 New York trip and by the couple of decades in which this song served as part of the live soundtrack of our granddaughter Paris’s growing up around us. A stark contrast with Pipe Dreams!  [Tim]

Recorded and m
ixed at the GallopAway Music studio in San Juan Bautista, CA.
Mastered by Joe Weed at his Highland Studios in Santa Cruz County, CA.


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