Thursday, May 22, 2008

Her Handy Man: Alberta Hunter's 86th Birthday

"A good example of a double-entendre song is 'Handy Man,' which Alberta Hunter recorded. Several people recorded it, Ethel Waters included, but Alberta Hunter's rendition is wonderful. It really is just one double-entendre after another, and some of them are very clever. And as she sang it, even in later years, she kept adding new lines to it. It's the kind of song that doesn't stay the same. Nobody really knows who started that song."
(Andy Razaf / Eubie Blake)
Ethel Waters - 1928
Victoria Spivey & The Clarence Williams Blue Five - 1928
Helen Humes - 1973
Carmen McRae - 1987
- 1989
Also recorded by: Elsie Carlisle.

Whoever said a good man is hard to find
Positively, absolutely sure was blind
I've found the best man there ever was
Here's just some of the things that my man does

Why he shakes my ashes, greases my griddle
Chimes my butter and he strokes my fiddle
My man is such a handy man (oh yes he is)

He threads my needle, creams my wheat
Heats my heater and he chops my meat
My man is such a handy man

Now I don't care if you believe it or not
He's so good to have around
And when my furnace gets too hot
He's right there and turns my damper down

Why for everything he's got a scheme
You oughta see that new stuff he uses on my machine
That man is such a handy man (he's God's gift girls)

Why he flaps my flapjacks, cleans off my table
Feeds my horses out in my stable
That man is such a handy man, mmm yeah

Sometimes he's up long before the dawn
Busy trimmin' the rough edges off my front lawn
Yeah that man is such a handy man

Why you know he never has a single word to say
No, not while he's working hard
And I wished that you could see the way
He handles my front yard

Yeah you know my ice don't get a chance to melt away
Cause he sees that I get that fresh piece every day
My man, my man is such a handy man
And I ain't kiddin'

(read more...)

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