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We are in for a treat – Dirty Girl Reviews has its first male contributor! Help me welcome the sexy Christian Fennell
Shave ‘Em Dry
A Review by Christian Fennell
Ok, ladies, first of all—put away the razor. That’s not what we’re talking about here. Well, we are – just no razor required.
Now, tell me this; who hasn’t heard their parents or grandparents comment about ‘kids today and their damn filthy music’? Right. The next time it happens, look them in the eye and say, “Gandma, tell me a little bit about Lucille Bogan.” And if that name doesn’t ring a bell, try Lucille Jackson. Yes, she had to change her name at one point, but those were different times, weren’t they? Or were they?
Lucille Bogan recorded “Shave ‘Em Dry” in New York City in 1935. That’s right – 1935. And why would I want to review a song that was recorded seventy-eight years ago? Because any woman that had the ‘cock’ (more on that later) to record this song, at that time, deserves our unending respect. Yet, it is a song, and she’s a singer, and so first and foremost she must be graded on the quality of her voice, her music. And here, we are on solid ground, the woman could sing – and I mean sing, she had pipes; Depression-era I need to get laid blues pipes that were unnerving in their honesty and yet and the same time, powerful. In fact, she’s often referred to as one of the ‘big three of the blues’, along with Ma Rainey and Bessie Smith.
Lucille Bogan was born Lucille Anderson, April 1, 1897 in Mississippi and raised in Birmingham, Alabama where she married Nazareth Lee Bogan. In the early ‘20’s she left her husband and moved to New York where she began to sing and record vaudeville songs such as, “Lonesome Daddy Blues” and “Pawnshop Blues.” She began to tour and settled in Chicago where she performed regularly in clubs. In 1927 she recorded her first hit single, “Sweet Petunia.” In 1933 she moved back to New York City and changed her name to Lucille Jackson. Why? No one knows for sure, but it is most likely that she was reinventing herself, personally and musically. Certainly, the more than one hundred songs she recorded with blues pianist Walter Roland between 1933 and 1935 bears this out. Listen to “Seaboard Blues”, “Troubled Mind” or “Superstitious Blues”. But she wasn’t just a ‘voice’, a singer, one of her greatest talents was as a songwriter and many of her songs are copyrighted and were so original that other blues artists were unable to create ‘matchers’ of her work, which was common at the time, and they were forced to credit her when they performed them. And then, there were her ‘other’ songs; songs she recorded in afterhours adult only clubs. Songs like: “Stew Meat Blues”, “Coffee Grindin’ Blues”, “My Georgia Grind”, “Honeycomb Man”, “B.D. Woman’s Blues”, and of course, “Shave ‘Em Dry”, the last song she ever recorded.
And so what exactly are we talking about here? Well, half way through the first verse she tells us this about herself: “I got somethin’ between my legs’ll make a dead man come.” Oh? Ok, well… Later, meaning the second verse, she’d like us to know this: “Say I fucked all night, and all the night before baby, And I feel just like I wanna fuck some more, Oh great God daddy” Yup, oh great God daddy – 1935. But wait, it gets better: “Now if fuckin’ was the thing, that would take me to heaven,” (Wait. What? – fucking to get to heaven? Try and put that in a song today.) “I’d be fuckin’ in the studio, till the clock strike eleven, Oh daddy, daddy shave ‘em dry.” Yes, daddy, shave ‘em dry indeed and where could she possibly go from there? Well: “My back is made of whalebone, and my cock” (told you I’d get back to this) “is made of brass, And my fuckin’ is made for workin’ men’s two dollars, Great God, round to kiss my ass.”
In the first part of the 1900’s, say up to around 1940, anywhere south of the Mason-Dixon line, an African-American expression for a woman’s vagina was – ‘cock’. Anywhere north of that, nope, that’s a man’s bit. Except in Missouri, where they say it could swing both ways. In the south at the time, a penis was simply referred to as a – ‘cock-opener’. It is believed that the origins behind this usage was derived from the word, cockles. Which means, of course, the woman sang about her own vagina, and how it was made of brass. Interesting.
Ok, so she could sing, and she sang a few ‘dirty’ songs? Is that enough to warrant a review; our remembrance of her. Yes, and here’s why: she was a black woman living in New York City in the early 1930’s who was writing, performing and recording her own music and singing in a very open and direct manner about her sexuality. And so when we applaud the many female artists of today for doing this very same thing, remember this – they are all standing on the shoulders of one woman: Lucilla Bogan.
And now it’s time to listen. Look around and make sure the kids aren’t within listening distance (okay, maybe invite grandma), crank it up to 10, and get ready to celebrate the freedom of your own sexuality, thanks in large part to this one great woman and her song – ‘Save ‘Em Dry’.
Christian Fennell is currently working on two books: a collection of short stories – On My Way to Sunday, and a novel – Urram Hill. When not writing fiction, he works as a freelance technical writer and editor.
If you liked this review, ‘like’ him on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/fennell.writer?ref=hl
by Orson Scott Card
The Earth is at War with The Buggers.
The only hope for humankind: Children, exceptional, gifted children. We meet many in this story.
However, I will concentrate on 3. The Wiggins Children. In order by age Peter, Valentine, and Andrew (Ender).
All were tested, the older two failed. Peter -phycho Valentine- To soft.
The story opens as little 6 years old Ender’s monitor is removed. He is the only hope for mankind.
They are looking for a Commander for their Armies to destroy the Buggers and this little boy is it.
This is fiction and many people insist children would not act, think, and speak as these do.
I think if the world were as the one in the story, Children would.
The first part of the story is set at “battle School” think future Basic Training in 0 gravity with child soldiers.
Little Ender passes every test, excels all every task, but is isolated. He surpasses every expectation.
Now we go to Command School, and he does even better. He saves the world.
What about the other Wiggins children? Well, while their baby brother saves the world, Peter and Valentine take it over.
They do it all before the age of 16. Fantastic read, I hear a lot that the Author is very controversial in his political views.
My point of view is, I’m not listening to his views, I’m reading a work of fiction.
Jenna Sands is a proud pet parent to a neurotic Chihuahua, Gizmo, who is in a constant battle to get between her and her laptop. A native Floridian she believes the weather can never be too hot or too humid.