The Black Eyed Peas shot the video for "Just Can't Get Enough" just a week before the 2011 earthquake in Japan. In the UK, the song reached a peak position of number 30 on the UK Singles Chart and remained in the Top 40 for eight weeks during the summer of 1961. Oh, sure, Mother Nature brings the hurt, as we’ve seen in other examples of the genre. Over time the version with the dialog between the farmer and the insect evolved. I don’t want to spend a bunch of virtual ink tracing it back further. He loved everything about it, and even sometimes signed his letters as ‘Boll Weevil.’ Malcolm Laws cataloged the song group as “I17” in his Native American Balladry. Thought to be native to Central Mexico, it migrated into the United States from Mexico in the late 19th century and had infested all U.S. cotton-growing areas by the 1920s, devastating the industry and the people working in the American South. Tom stopped performing Thompson Twins songs in 1987, in part because of their personal nature: "Hold Me Now" came after an argument with his bandmate/girlfriend Alannah Currie. See if you can tell in this Fact or Fiction.  On the R&B chart, where Benton had enjoyed even greater success, the song also reached number two. The chorus has backing from the Mike Stewart Singers. This program and the screwworm program of the 1950s are among the biggest and most successful insect control programs in history. The boll weevil contributed to the economic woes of Southern farmers during the 1920s, a situation exacerbated by the Great Depression in the 1930s. It remains the most destructive cotton pest in North America. The variety we see in the song group proves a fairly consistent cross-cultural exchange. Check your score in the Ramones version of Fact or Fiction. I'm an old boll weevil looking for a home The boll weevil, scientific name Anthonomus grandis, is a beetle that eats cotton buds. The first time I heard this recording it made me shake my head and cry “Good God!” I’m not exaggerating. Dylan composed the music to this song while Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter wrote the words. In combination with the Dust Bowl and the Depression, the boll weevil helped displace huge numbers of Americans throughout the 1920s and ’30s. A band so baffling, even their names were contrived. , Other avenues of control that have been explored include weevil-resistant strains of cotton, the parasitic wasp Catolaccus grandis, the fungus Beauveria bassiana, and the Chilo iridescent virus. 1930s, USDA – public domain. Murder Ballad Monday reflects on music and mortality. " A 2020 Journal of Economic History study found that the boll weevil spread between 1892 and 1922 had a beneficial impact on educational outcomes, as children were less likely to work on cultivating cotton. The song is just slightly older than recorded music anyway, so that doesn’t give us precision. According to Robert Waltz and David Engle in their related entry for The Traditional Ballad Index, by 1916 “Boll Weevil” appeared in print. Based on the success of this test, area-wide programs were begun in the 1980s to eradicate the insect from whole regions. The boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis) is a beetle that feeds on cotton buds and flowers. Oh, de boll weevil am a little black bug, Come from Mexico, dey say, Come all de way to Texas, Jus' a-lookin' foh a place to stay, Jus' a-lookin' foh a home, Jus' a-lookin' foh a home. Both are equally powerful, in quite different ways. The boll weevil is a promising subject for balladry, since he furnishes many romantic motifs. Thought to be native to Central Mexico, it migrated into the United States from Mexico in the late 19th century and had infested all U.S. cotton-growing areas by the 1920s, devastating the industry and the people working in the American South. To this day, a monument to this bug, erected in 1919, stands in the city of Enterprise, Alabama, as a reminder to not have your economy depend too heavily on one crop. Don’t have an account? 1- … Some of the lyrics are similar to "Boll Weevil," describing the first time and "the next time" the narrator saw the boll weevil and making reference to the weevil's family and home. "Unchained Melody" first appeared in a 1955 movie called Unchained. However, there’s no doubt in my mind that Jarrell was re-imagining rural black folk music he’d heard in his younger days. By the mid-1920s, it had entered all cotton-growing regions in the U.S., travelling 40 to 160 miles per year.  The boll weevil eradication program, although slow and costly, has paid off for cotton growers in reduced pesticide costs. DDT was initially extremely effective, but U.S. weevil populations developed resistance by the mid-1950s. I haven’t yet found an older recording of this version. "Mother of the Blues" Ma Rainey recorded a song called "Bo-Weavil Blues" in Chicago in December 1923, and Bessie Smith covered it in 1924, but the song had little in common with Lead Belly's "Boll Weevil" aside from the subject matter. Why? He credits the arrangement of the traditional “Boll Weevil” to his main collaborator on the project, the Grammy-winning fiddle and banjo player Dirk Powell. I won’t go on and on about it today, but the performance and the song group deserve just a bit more attention. Learn how and when to remove this template message, The Boll Weevil Song and 11 Other Great Hits, List of number-one adult contemporary singles of 1961 (U.S.), "Boll Weevil Here, Boll Weevil Everywhere: Field Recordings, Vol. "The Boll Weevil Song" is a blues standard whose history goes back at least a hundred years. During the late 20th century, it became a serious pest in South America as well. "Silvio" has Dylan contemplating his own past and future. The Righteous Brothers recorded it in 1965, and their version was resurrected in the 1990 movie Ghost. The lyrics deal with the boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis), a beetle, which feeds on cotton buds and flowers, that migrated into the U.S. from Mexico in the late 19th century and had infested all U.S. cotton-growing areas by the 1920s, causing severe devastation to the industry. The oviposition leaves wounds on the exterior of the flower bud. That emotional release is what matters most to singer and listener, of course. It ruined them both. The people that fled their ruined fields and homes carried their music with them, of course. The adult insect has a long snout, is grayish color, and is usually less than 6 mm long. The boll weevil lays its eggs inside buds and ripening bolls (fruits) of the cotton plants. Given the technology that appears in the Bibb/Jarrell version, it seems to be from this inter-war period. The pest devastated cotton production throughout the region, and it kept spreading.  The Amazon Rainforest was thought to present a barrier to its further spread, but it was detected in Brazil in 1983, and an estimated 90% of the cotton farms in Brazil are now infested. They also note that Carl Sandburg collected verses as early as 1897, though it’s not clear if they are part of the same song group. Boll Weevil song meanings Add your thoughts No Comments. The "Gunter Glieben Glauten Globen" intro in Def Leppard's "Rock Of Ages" is something their producer Mutt Lange came up with when he got tired of counting them "1, 2, 3, 4...". Benton and frequent collaborator Clyde Otis rewrote this version specifically for single release, citing it as a novelty song. Nirvana, Billy Joel and Bruce Springsteen are among those who wrote songs with cities that show up in this quiz. Their different little streams of similarly-themed and folk-processed lyrics mixed in a larger river, as it so often did America. East played on Diana Krall's 2015 album. He learned the studio trick from his older brother George Young, who was the rhythm guitarist for The Easybeats. Tom stopped performing Thompson Twins songs in 1987, in part because of their personal nature: "Hold Me Now" came after an argument with his bandmate/girlfriend Alannah Currie. Boll Weevil Eradication in the United States Through 1999. The boll weevil infestation has been credited with bringing about economic diversification in the Southern US, including the expansion of peanut cropping. A monthly update on our latest interviews, stories and added songs.  Methyl parathion, malathion, and pyrethroids were subsequently used, but environmental and resistance concerns arose as they had with DDT, and control strategies changed. Murder Ballads and Disaster Songs, 1913–1938", Fools Rush In (Where Angels Fear to Tread), A Rockin' Good Way (to Mess Around and Fall in Love), https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Boll_Weevil_(song)&oldid=960064189, Billboard Adult Contemporary number-one singles, Articles needing additional references from June 2019, All articles needing additional references, Pages using infobox song with unknown parameters, Cleanup tagged articles with a reason field from June 2019, Wikipedia pages needing cleanup from June 2019, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 31 May 2020, at 23:22. During the 1990s, the weevil spread to Paraguay and Argentina. This song was recorded in Richmond Indiana on June 14th 1929 under the name “The Masked Marvel. They emerge and enter cotton fields from early spring through midsummer, with peak emergence in late spring, and feed on immature cotton bolls. Brook Benton himself had over fifty hits on the charts to his credit; in fact, he averaged three Top-40 hits per year from 1959 to 1964. The following is a list of versions of the song by other artists. 16 (1934-1940)", "Various Artists | People Take Warning! 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