Blues Legacy

For this assignment, I decided to analyze Bessie Smith’s “I Ain’t Got Nobody.” In this song, Bessie Smith sings about being alone and feeling heartbroken. She sings that “There’s a saying going ’round and I begin to think it’s true. It’s awful hard to love some man, when he don’t care for you”. She sounds incredibly powerful while singing this song and above all, her emotion and powerful voice is what drew me to choose this song rather than the others.

A song I tried to compare “I Ain’t Got Nobody” to is “True Blue” by Dirty Beaches. At first listen you might think I only chose this song for it’s old sounding type vibe but the lyrics are very similar to Bessie’s theme in “I Ain’t got Nobody”. In the Dirty Beaches song, the lead singer sings “Now that you’re gone in my heart so wild and blue and if I had the chance, I’d never let you go.” These lyrics are somewhat alike to “I’ll sing good songs, all the time, If you’ll come and be my sweet baby mine ‘Cause I ain’t got nobody, and nobody cares for me”. Both songs sing of heartbreak and about possibly a breakup that doesn’t seem mutual. I don’t know if I’d consider this a feminist song, rather I chose it just for being similar to the blues and Bessie Smith. 

Another song I thought about was “Under the Moon” by Peace. Peace sings “If you call it lonely to be so alone nobody calling and nobody home, then I’m lonely…What can I do to make you feel it like I do and be happy living under the moon.” I connect this to Bessie’s song because they both talk about loneliness quite a bit. Both singers, Bessie, a woman, and the lead singer of Peace, a man, are singing about feeling similarly heartbroken and it shows that gender doesn’t really make a difference when it comes to feelings. They’re equal, I guess, and that’s feminist right? 


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