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Saturday, February 3, 2018

Versions Of Three Military Cadences About "Jody":: "Ain’t No Sense In Goin Home", "Jody Boy", & "Jody's Got Your Cadillac"

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post showcases versions of these three military cadences about "Jody":

Background information and comments about the character "Jody" in military cadences are also included in this post along with my transcriptions of the lyrics to these versions of these cadences and a few selected comments from one of these sound files' discussion threads.

The content of this post is presented for folkloric, cultural, and aesthetic purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

This post is part of pancocojams' ongoing series on African American songs and military cadences that include the male name "Jody". Click the "jodies" tag that is found below for other posts in this series.

Thanks to the composers of these military cadences and thanks to the members of the United States armed services who are featured in these videos. Thanks to all those who served/serve honorably in the United States armed services and thanks to the publishers of these song files on YouTube.
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If you have any information about when these versions or any other versions of these military cadences were first chanted please share that information in the comment section below. Thanks!

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BACKGROUND INFORMATION AND COMMENTS ABOUT THE CHARACTER "JODY" IN MILITARY CADENCES
Here's a May 14, 2012 comment that was posted by David Whiteis on my [no longer active] cocojams cultural website's page about military cadences:
"Greetings --

I came across your website by accident -- it's wonderful, and when I have a LOT of time, I'll be exploring it much more deeply!

One or two thoughts on "Jody"/"Joe the Grinder" -- "Jody," of course, has come up in a lot of blues and soul-blues songs since Johnnie Taylor's hit (there's even a "Ms. Jody" performing on the Southern circuit these days). Johnnie Taylor himself confirmed that he got the idea for his song from the military cadence, "Ain't no use in going home / Jody's got your girl and gone." He also said he recorded it knowing that Afrcan-American soldiers during the Vietnam era would be familiar with it, and would immediately identify with it. I've heard it suggested that "Jody," in this case, may actually have been a kind of shortand for "Job Deferment" -- Jody, in other words, was that lucky guy who didn't get drafted because his job was considered essential to national defense or the economy . . . or simply because he had a "bossman" who could pull strings and keep him out of the army. The reference to "Joe the Grinder" might have been implied, but it might not have been the literal translation of the name.

No doubt the "Jody" cadence was used primarily by African-American drill sergeants for Black soldiers in the days of the segregated miitary. But If author Richard Yates is to be believed, the "Jody" cadence was known to some white soldiers as well. Yates' short story "Jody Rolled the Bones," set in the '50s during the Korean War era, is about a redneck drill sergeant who led his [white] troops in boot camp with various versions of that same "Jody" cadence.

Probably the best-known blues song after Johnnie Taylor's to invoke "Jody" is the late Marvin Sease's "I'm Mr. Jody"m from 2006. But I also know of at least one song by a white singer where "Joe the Grinder" comes up-- it's Merle Haggard's "The Old Man From the Mountain" -- he admonishes his woman to "get rid of Joe the Grinder, you'd better be there alone / The old man from the mountain's comin' home" . . .

Again, I really like the website . . ."

David Whiteis

Chicago
May 14, 2012
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Pancocojams Editor's note:
David Whiteis is the author of Chicago Blues: Portraits and Stories and Southern Soul-Blues, both published by University of Illinois Press. (Southern Soul-Blues, by the way, has a full-length chapter profile of the singer Ms. Jody.)

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Here's my response to David Whiteis' email (written in May 2012 and added to that cocojams website) :
"Greetings, David!

... I appreciate learning about Richard Yates's short story "Jody Rolled the Bones" that included a reference to White soldiers chanting Jody cadences.

I've read on other websites such as the Mudcat Folk & Blues forum that "Jodies" were known to some White soldiers as well as Black soldiers. One commenter on this particular Mudcat thread http://mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=2915#467279 whose name happened to be Jody
gave an example of a "Jody got your girl and gone" cadence and wrote that it was "the only one I remember that had my name in it was from basic training at Lackland AFB, San Antonio, Tex in the winter of 1947-48"...

I was a very active blogger on that forum & I know that blogger is White as are the other bloggers who are members of that forum who shared their rememberances of Jodies.

Then again that blogger didn't say that he chanted that cadence. He said that he remembered that cadence and he also shared another example of a cadence that he remembered hearing Black soldiers chant. But ther bloggers on that discussion thread and on other Mudcat discussion threads also shared examples of various Jodies that they either heard or chanted. It would be interesting to know if Jodies are still being chanted in todays integrated armed services.

Thanks also David for the information about Jody in Merle Haggard's "The Old Man From the Mountain".

With regard to the idea that Jody might have stood for "Job Deferment", the earliest examples of stories that feature that character, the name "Joe The Grinder" was given as "Joe De Grinder", with "de" being a way of pronouncing and spelling "the". However, I agree that over time there may have been a characterization of Jody as "that lucky guy who didn't get drafted because his job was considered essential to national defense or the economy . . . or simply because he had a "bossman" who could pull strings and keep him out of the army." Therefore the meaning "Job Deferment" could have been grafted onto the name "Jody".

Thanks again David, for your comments and your compliment about my cocojams website."
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I also added this comment exchange to this 2013 pancocojams post about "Jodies" http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2012/03/jodys-got-your-girl-and-gone-why.html Jody's Got Your Girl And Gone - Why Military Cadences Are Known As Jodies

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SHOWCASE SOUND FILES
(given in no particular order)

Example #1: Jody - Military Running Cadence [Ain’t No Sense In Goin Home]



Armed Fitness USA, Published on Oct 18, 2013
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Selected comments from this sound file's discussion thread:
Corey Kid, 2013
"Badass just like all cadences"

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Eto Hige Gamer Culture, 2013
4 years ago
but there marching

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REPLY
Hunter Hediger, 2015
"all they have to do is speed it down some for a marching cadence, which is what they did. tons of jodies and cadences can do that"

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edmund mcmahon, 2016
"Need more JODIE CALLS!, ! Guess all those women who make Ranger's schoolwill have to be one of the Guy's. Salute Tammy Duckworth"
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From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tammy_Duckworth
"Ladda Tammy Duckworth (born March 12, 1968) is an American politician and retired U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel, serving as the junior United States Senator for Illinois since 2017

[...]

Duckworth was the first Asian American woman elected to Congress in Illinois, the first disabled woman to be elected to Congress, and the first member of Congress born in Thailand. Her father, an American, and her Thai mother were working and living there at the time. Duckworth is the second Asian-American woman serving in the U.S. Senate after Mazie Hirono and next to Kamala Harris."...
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Tammy Duckworth may not be related to Willie Duckworth who is credited with composing the military cadence "Sound Off" (also known as "The Duckworth chant". Click https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_cadence#The_Duckworth_Chant_(or_Sound_Off!) the Duckworth chant.

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LYRICS (for this version of that cadence)

[The troops repeat every line after the leader chants it, except for the "Sound Off" portion.]

Ain’t no sense in goin home
Jody’s got your girl and gone
Ain’t no sense in feelin blue
Jody’s got your sista too

Sound off
(1, 2)
Sound off
(3, 4)
Break it on down
(1, 2, 3,4
1, 2
3, 4!)

Hey-eh Sergeant Hardy
If everybody party like you party*
???
Make us clean it up again

Sound off [leader]
(1, 2) [troops]
Sound off [leader]
(3, 4) [troops]
Break it on down [leader]
(1, 2, 3, 4 [troops]
1, 2
3, 4!)

I don’t know but it’s been said
Navy wings are made of lead
I don’t know but I’ve been told
Airforce wings are made of gold

Sound off
(1, 2)
Sound off
(3, 4)
Break it on down
(1, 2, 3, 4
1, 2
3, 4!)
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*I'm not sure if this transcription is correct, and I can't understand the next line. Additions and corrections are welcome.

The line "I don't know but I've been told/Airforce wings are made of gold" is an adaptation of these lyrics from an African American Spiritual: "I don't know but I've been told/streets of Heaven are paved with gold."

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Example #2: Jody Boy



U.S. Army Airborne - Topic, Published on Sep 12, 2015

Provided to YouTube by The Orchard Enterprises

Jody Boy · The U.S. Army Airborne
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Selected comments from this sound file's discussion thread:

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LYRICS: (for this version of that cadence)

[The troops repeat each line after the leader chants it.]

Oh-oh Jodie Boy,
Rough, Tough Jodie Boy.

Jodie Boy’s a real cool cat,
Wears a camo* hat

Oh-oh Jodie boy,
Rough, Tough Jodie boy.

If ole Jodie’s 5′ 4,
I’ll be grabbin a 2-by-4.
Oh-oh Jodie Boy
Rough, Tough Jodie Boy.

If ole Jodie’s 6′ 4,
I’ll be packing my .44

If ole Jody’s 7’4
I won’t be messin with him at all

Your left, your left
Your left , righta left
Your military left
Your left, your right
now pick up the step
Your left your right your le--eh -eft
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* "Camo" probably means "camouflage". However, I'm not sure if this transcription is correct. Corrections are welcome.

A Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Lillian Taylor camp song entitled "All You Knuckleheads" uses an adapted form of the last verse of this military cadence. The version of those lines in that call & response camp song that I learned around 1996 from my daughter is:
Your left, your left
Your left, right, left
Your left, your right
Go pick up the sticks
Your left your right, your left.
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The Baltimore Club song "Hey You Knuckle Heads" was performed by Big Ria in 1996. That song begins with call and response but then the "leader" and others recite the names of multiple Baltimore (Maryland) streets.

It's possible that the Pittsburgh camp song was an adaptation of that Baltimore Club song.

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2018/02/baltimore-club-song-hey-you.html for the pancocojams post entitled "Baltimore Club Song - "Hey You Knuckleheads" And Pittsburgh Camp Song "All You Knuckleheads""
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Here are lyrics for another version of "Jody Boy" can be found at http://musc291projectfewelld.web.unc.edu/2015/11/27/19/
Here's a quote from that page:
"For further context, within the military, individuals consider any guy whom purposely flirts with the significant other of a Marine/Sailor?soldier who is deployed, a Jodie. This is the name given to any guy whom fits the role. The female version of this type of person is referred to as “Felicia”.
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Note: I’ve never heard that "Felicia" is the female version of “Jody” is “Felicia”. If this is true, I wonder if it predates the “Bye Felicia” meme that has its source in the 1995 African American comedy/drama movie Friday.

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Example #3: Jody's Got Your Cadillac



The U.S. Marine Corps – Topic, Published on Sep 4, 2015

Provided to YouTube by The Orchard Enterprises

Jody's Got Your Cadillac · The U.S. Marine Corps Force Reconnaissance

Workout to the Running Cadences U.S. Recon Marines

℗ 1998 Documentary Recordings

Released on: 2002-02-05

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LYRICS: (for this version of that cadence)

[The troops repeat every line after the leader chants it

Lo right lay o
lefty right lay o

Ain’t no sense in lookin down
Ain’t no six pack on the ground
Ain’t no sense in lookin back
Jody’s got your Cadillac.

lo right lay o
lefty right lay o
Lo right lo right layo
Rolly rolly rolly shake my booty

Lo right lay o
lefty right lay o
Lo right lo right layo
Rolly rolly rolly shake my booty
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I think that "lo right lay o" means "left right left".

"Cadillac" is a brand of American cars. "Cadillacs" used to be considered expensive cars, and therefore were status symbols.

A form of the line "Rolly rolly rolly shake my booty" from this military cadence is found as the hook of the 1988 Hip Hop song "Rollin With Kid N Play".
https://genius.com/Kid-n-play-rollin-with-kid-n-play-lyrics

[Hook]
"Ho-la, ho-la, hey
Ho-la, ho-la, hey
Rolling rolling roll
With Kid 'n Play now
Rolling rolling roll
With Kid 'n Play now

Ho-la, ho-la, hey
Ho-la, ho-la, hey
Rolling rolling roll
With Kid 'n Play now
Rolling rolling roll"
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I'm not sure whether the "rolly rolly rolly shake my booty" line in the military cadence is the source of the Kid N Play lyrics or vice versa.

The historically Black Greek letter fraternity Omega Psi Phi, Inc. uses the line "Rollin rollin rollin with Que Psi Phi" in one of their chants. I've no doubt that that line came from the Kid N Play song.

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