When The Levee Breaks - Origin

Origin

The original "When the Levee Breaks" was recorded by the blues musical duo Kansas Joe McCoy and Memphis Minnie. In the first half of 1927, the Great Mississippi Flood ravaged the state of Mississippi and surrounding areas. It destroyed many homes and devastated the agricultural economy of the Mississippi Basin. Many people were forced to flee to the cities of the Midwest in search of work, contributing to the "Great Migration" of African Americans in the first half of the 20th century. During the flood and the years after it subsided, it became the subject of numerous Delta blues songs, including "When the Levee Breaks", hence the lyrics, "I works on the levee, mama both night and day, I works so hard, to keep the water away" and "I's a mean old levee, cause me to weep and moan, gonna leave my baby, and my happy home". The song focused mainly on when more than 13,000 residents in and near Greenville, Mississippi evacuated to a nearby, unaffected levee for its shelter at high ground. The tumult that would have been caused if this and other levees had broken was the song's underlying theme.

Read more about this topic:  When The Levee Breaks

Famous quotes containing the word origin:

    High treason, when it is resistance to tyranny here below, has its origin in, and is first committed by, the power that makes and forever re-creates man.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)

    The essence of morality is a questioning about morality; and the decisive move of human life is to use ceaselessly all light to look for the origin of the opposition between good and evil.
    Georges Bataille (1897–1962)

    All good poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings: it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquillity.
    William Wordsworth (1770–1850)