Well, It’s True

‘Next Time You See Me’ is a blues song written by Earl Forest and Bill Harvey, originally recorded in 1956 by Junior Parker (as “Little Junior Parker” as he was then known).  The song was Parker’s first record chart appearance after joining Duke Records and one of his most successful singles in both the R&B and pop charts.  Earl Forest was an American musician and a member of the Memphis-based R&B coalition called the Beale Streeters, which included Johnny Ace, Bobby Bland, Junior Parker, B.B. King, and Roscoe Gordon.  William G. Harvey was an American rhythm and blues saxophonist and bandleader.  Herman “Junior” Parker (March 27, 1932 – November 18, 1971) was an American Memphis blues singer and musician.  In 2001, he was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame.  Parker is also inducted into the Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame.  In 1957, the single ‘Next Time You See Me’ backed with ‘My Dolly Bee’ reached #5 on Billboard‘s R&B chart and went to #74 on the Hot 100.

I didn’t read Robbie Robertson’s autobiography, but apparently, he was told by Rice Miller Sonny Boy Williamson II that Little Walter and Junior Parker are his two of his illegitimate sons, and that is why he taught each of them how to play the harmonica.  Junior Parker perfected his harmonica playing and impressed crowds around his Memphis home with his smooth blues vocals, including talent-scout Ike Turner, who brought the artist to Modern Records to record his debut single in 1952.  Junior only traveled in the best blues circles from the outset and he played gigs with Howlin’ Wolf while still in his teens.  Parker was exceptionally versatile and he was ranked with B. B. King, Bobby “Blue” Bland, and Little Milton as top blues stars of the African American “chitlin circuit.”  He also had many white admirers, including Elvis Presley, who recorded Parker’s ‘Mystery Train’ for Sun Records.  Parker died of a brain tumor on November 18, 1971 in a Blue Island, Illinois hospital at age 39.

Despite his failing health, Pigpen put everything that he had into this Europe 72 tour, and back then he was still the Dead’s front man.  After this tour, Pigpen appeared on stage with the Grateful Dead at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles on June 17, 1972 for the last time.  He was found unresponsive on March 8, 1973.  The video below shows him wearing his cowboy hat singing and playing harmonica in this blues song.  Jerry Garcia plays his Alligator Fender Stratocaster which was a gift that he got from Graham Nash in 1970 and this became Garcia’s primary instrument between 1971 and 1973 and it provided the sound for the Grateful Dead triple live album, Europe ‘72.   ‘Next Time You See Me’ was performed by the Grateful Dead about 70 times when Pigpen was part of the group and it was released on a bunch of their bootleg albums and some live albums.

This song is about a guy who dumped his girl for cheating on him and now she has been replaced by another.  I imagine that she saw another guy who she felt would be better for her as the lyrics say, “all that shines is not gold”, and things did not work out for her in this relationship.  The Bible says that a man reaps what he sows, meaning that future consequences are inevitably because they were shaped by your actions.  This girl is hurting but the man doesn’t want to listen to her complaining, because she is solely responsible for everything that happened to her.  This woman lied and cheated so things will never be the same between them.

Next time you see me things won’t be the same,
Next time you see me things won’t be the same,
If it hurts you my darling, you only got yourself to blame.
Well, it’s true, true saying, all that shines is not gold.
Well, it’s true, true saying, all that shines is not gold.
Like the good book says, you gotta reap what you sow.
Well, you lied, cheated — woh-oh! for so long,
Well, you lied, cheated — woh-oh! for so long,
You were wrong to do it woman, and another queen is on your throne.
Next time you see me things won’t be the same,
Next time you see me things won’t be the same,
If it hurts you my darling, you only got yourself to blame.
Well, it’s true, true saying, all that shines is not gold.
Well, it’s true, true saying, all that shines is not gold.
Like the good book says, you gotta reap what you sow.

Written for Song Lyric Sunday where the theme is Devoted, Faithful, Honorable, Loyal, True suggested by Lady A.

16 thoughts on “Well, It’s True

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s