Tom T. Hall - Coot Marseilles Blues Lyrics




(This story was told to me by Jerry Clover at the 1971 discjockey convention
I told Jerry I's gonna write a song about it
My brother Hillman gonna play the cigarette paper and the comb play)

Coot Marseilles was an old black man from down Mississippi way
He worked out in the white man's yard and he loved to sing and play
Ol' Coot worked hard God rest his soul he never was much to roam
His entire band was an old guitar a cigarette paper and a comb

Now ol' Coot had one song that he would sing when his long days were put in
There ain't nobody knows that song now cause I reckon that it died with him
His songs were made up 'o dry bones from pain and sweat and tears
And Lordy Lordy Lordy Lordy was sometimes all you'd hear
Now on Saturdays ol' Coot didn't work much 'cepten he built a fire in the stove
And when he get through he'd mosey on down and sit by the gravel road
He'd hum that song as he walked along with the faraway look in his eyes
And he sat there by the road all day watched them fine Ford cars go by
Now on Saturday night the white folks danced and ol' Coot he'd pick and sing
He had an old RC bottle neck that he'd slide up and down them strings
Now Coot didn't care much for lyrics he just made 'em up as he went along
And Lord I wish they had tape back then cause I'd sure love to hear them songs
Well his clothes were old and his hair was gray and hard work had bent his back
His songs were never recognized by statuettes or flags
His songs were all about the working man and Coot never owned a tie
The only thing he ever really had to do was die

Now ol' Coot's gone and maybe I'm wrong to bring it all back again
But I know his friends down in Mississippi sure thought a lot of him
So rock on Coot and enjoy your rest your long day's work is done
And if they got Fords up in Heaven sir I sure hope you're driving one

Lordy Lordy Lordy Lordy Lord





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Tom T. Hall Coot Marseilles Blues Comments
  1. bluzizalright

    One of featured photographs (in color, with a guitar, hat) is of John Jackson - wonderful musician and a truly good man.

  2. Horsehide

    Holy Moly

  3. ingenuitas

    Along about 0:55 - that's JOHN JACKSON!

  4. Outlaw IV

    OMG ITS HERE!!!I SOOO TRIED TO PLAY THE COMB FEREVER LOL,,,bUGGER TIKKLED MY LIPS TO NO END AND i CANNOT DO IT....^5 cOOT mARSEILLES

  5. Simon Campling

    Tom T you make an ageing Englishman happy listening to your story telling , thank you

  6. Christopher Dibble

    man that dobro really makes the song.that comb &paper would'nt be anything without it.

  7. Perry Lee

    Aww! I miss ol Jerry Clower! Ol coot and ol jerry Rest In Peace! We had Rat killings in my days! If I'm lieing I'm dieing! Swamp rats in Washington are huge! Time to sharpen up a big stick!

    you me

    any music from ol coot ?

  8. Shawn Beck

    Old Coot, Easy,Cramus and HEB! Those people will live in my Heart forever! Man, Tom T. HALL. The story teller! Shawn.

  9. marvin wilburn

    Tom T. My boyhood hero! I’m 60 and still my favorite!

    Outlaw IV

    i'M A MONTH SHORT A 60 AND HES MADE MY LIFE FANTASTIC WITH HIS MUSIC...

  10. walter kersting

    T said he liked his songs to resemble a fine piece of woodwork in the way the words went together with the music...

  11. Sticks-of-TNT

    “My brother Hillman gonna’ play the cigarette paper and comb.”

    Keeping it in the family! Tom T Hall is the best!

    Sticks-of-TNT

  12. ozus flyer

    Where would country music in the 60s through the 80s been without TTH?

  13. Lowell Morse

    I want mah mmeewheets

  14. mark rush

    my lord such a fine song...i love mr hall

  15. Gerard Larkin Haverstock

    Thank you for the many years you have given me your best.

  16. Steve Davenport

    One fine piece music

  17. Whiskey Money

    Zig zag and a comb Lordy Lordy Lordy

  18. LLOYD Richards

    Just an all time great 'MAN'. 50 years ive been listening to Tom never ceases to amaze me..

  19. Neil Kinney

    This is a great song!

  20. NoBs

    Can't believe I missed this years ago.......... its on my " must play " list. Tom T. is a living legend.

  21. Raymond Dobos

    Hope he keeps up...above water...likes a kazoo

  22. Tom Swinburn

    Listen to this and you almost feel you knew ol Coot. It's amazing Tom T. can write like that about a man HE didn't know, just through Jerry Clower's stories. You can almost see ol Coot sweatin up a storm while mowing, trimming and shaping shrubs. And you can dang near hear his gravelly voice as he made up lyrics on the spot. Tom T. is one of the very best. Can't hear his voice without hearing Watermelon Wine and a hundred other stories he told.

    Jass Sullivan

    Yes, I really agree with you. He is very talented.

  23. Stephen Martinez

    TOM T. HALL THANK YOU FOR ALL THE GREAT STORYS. YOU & YOUR MUSIC WILL AWAYS BE IN MY HEART & SOUL DETROIT STEVE

  24. cesar santana

    so good

  25. James Mack

    so much talent - amazing.  thank you, Tom

  26. cmmorty99

    I cant stand these stupid zoosk commercials! They are so annoying.

  27. brucekimber

    I miss Jerry Clower and his old friend Nicki.

  28. jack bobrick

    place my bones when i go, pointed towards mr. marseilles, if you please, play me back home, coot, sing me your song,, one more time, as only you could. rip. you old music man

  29. Joey58b

    Tom T sang some of the best songs ever sung ! Thanks for posting

  30. Outlaw IV

    Y'all got no idea how many times I tikkled My Upper lip tryin to do the cigarette paper and comb Routine lol... Love this song thanx fer postin BJ Greatest Singer song writer ever ...

  31. jack bobrick

    coot your back water music, flows like the mighty amazon thur my heart and mind. play on where ever youre gigging now.....rip

  32. Dallas Nyberg

    A great song from a great songwriter...none better

  33. John William

    wish my name was coot

    Wendell Stafford

    Hey John Coot William

  34. shteamroller

    another Classic from Tom T,.. and God rest old Coot..