John Gorka Home videos
6th homemade video (May 10, 2020)
My Creole Belle

On May 10, 2020 John wrote:
"Homemade Video # 6 - A Mississippi John Hurt song that you may know well, here played on the fretless tack head banjo. (I feel better than I look.) I hope you like it. Happy Motherís Day!"

Mississippi John Hurt


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....... John Gorka - My Creole Belle




"My Creole Belle" written by Mississippi John Hurt in 1963
Also recorded by Jim Kweskin (1966), Arlo Guthrie (1969), Jesse Colin Young (1972),
Taj Mahal & The Hula Blues (2001), John Oates with The Good Road Band (2017)

My Creole Belle, I love her well
My darlin' baby, my Creole Belle
My Creole Belle, I Love her well
My darlin' baby, my Creole Belle
When stars shine, I'll call her mine
My darlin' baby, my Creole Belle.


. Mississippi John Hurt - My Creole Belle

John Smith Hurt, better known as Mississippi John Hurt (July 3, 1892 - November 2, 1966) was an American country blues singer and guitarist.

Mississippi John Hurt was raised in Avalon. He tought himself playing guitar at the age of nine. While he was working as a sharecropper, he played at local dances and parties. He did his first recording in 1928 for Okeh Records but was not successful. So he worked on as a sharecropper and played on at the local parties. Two of Mississippi John Hurt's songs were included in the album The Anthology of American Folk Music and an Australian found a copy of Avalon Blues. So the interest in finding John Hurt himself increased. In 1963 Tom Hoskins found him in Avalon and found out that his musical skill was still intact. He brought him to Washington, D. C. He started playing at greater festivals like the 1964 Newport Folk Festival. In his later years he often played in colleges, concert halls, coffee houses and also on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. He also recorded three albums for Vanguard Records and recorded most of his songs for the Library of Congress. Hurt influenced different music genres like blues, country, bluegrass, folk and contemporary rock and roll. Mississippi John Hurt died 1966 from a heart attack in Grenada, Mississippi.




The tune came from a longer piece copyrighted in 1900 and published in 1901 as Creole Belles, a ragtime march/2-step by J Bodewalt Lampe, a tune also known as Rubber Dolly Rag.The US Library of Congress National Jukebox has a splendid 1912 recording of the Creole Belles march played by Sousaís Band. As well as a 1902 recording of a banjo rendition. It turns out that there were indeed lyrics written to Creole Belles by George Sidney, and that these were also published in sheet music form in 1901.For the final part of the jigsaw, look at page 3 of Wehman Brosí Song and Joke Book no. 3. It shows that the John Hurt version was based on the chorus of that 1900 original. But no wonder he did not use the verses, if indeed he ever knew them!

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