Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Five Examples of "Baby Please Don't Go"

Edited by Azizi Powell

This post showcases five examples of the song "Baby Please Don't Go". That Blues classic which was first composed & recorded in 1935 by Big Joe Williams.

The content of this post is presented for folkloric, entertainment, and educational purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

From From,_Please_Don't_Go
“Baby, Please Don't Go" is a classic blues song which has been called "one of the most played, arranged, and rearranged pieces in blues history".[1 First recorded by Delta blues musician Big Joe Williams in 1935, it is likely an adaptation of "Long John", an old folk theme which dates back to the time of slavery in the United States.[1] "Baby, Please Don't Go" is related to a group of early twentieth-century blues songs that include "I'm Alabama Bound", "Elder Green Blues", "Another Man Done Gone", "Don't Leave Me Here", and "Turn Your Lamp Down Low", which have been traced back to late nineteenth-century work songs.[2] It has become a blues and rock standard and has been recorded by a variety of artists...

Big Joe Williams' "Baby, Please Don't Go" is included in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame list of "500 Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll".[8] In 1992, it was inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame in the "Classics of Blues Recordings--Singles or Album Tracks" category.[9]"
Many versions of this song include the line "turn your lamp down low". Click for information about the meaning of that song and the related saying "turn your damper down".

These featured performances are presented in chronological order with the oldest example given first.

Example #1: Big Joe Williams Baby Please Don't Go [1935]

BloodOfTheAncestors, Uploaded on Mar 24, 2011
Click for a pancocojams post which showcases three versions of Big Joe Williams' performances of "Baby Please Don't Go".

Example #2: Lightnin Hopkins - Baby Please Dont Go [1947]

longtall75011, Uploaded on Apr 24, 2008

"Baby, Please Don't Go" is a blues song first recorded by Big Joe Williams in 1935. It is related to a group of early 20th century blues and work songs that include "Alabama Bound", "Another Man Done Gone", and "Don't Leave Me Here", and "Turn Your Lamp Down Low".

Here is the great version of that song by Sam "Lightnin' Hopkins

Example #3: Muddy Waters - Baby Please Don't Go [1953]

DAVO1984FI, Uploaded on Apr 5, 2010

Performed by Muddy Waters. Featuring Little Walter Jacobs on harp. Recorded in 1953

Example #4: Sonny Terry feat Brownie Mcghee - Baby please don't go

TheBluesfan12 Uploaded on May 1, 2010
for the lyrics to this version of "Baby Please Don't Go".

Example #5: James Brown performs "Please Please Please" to a live audience on the TAMI Show. [1964]

James Brown, Published on Mar 16, 2013

James Brown performs "Please Please Please" to a live audience on the TAMI Show.

"Please, Please, Please" was written by James Brown and Johnny Terry and released as a single on Federal Records in 1956, it charted #6 R&B. It was the group's debut recording and first chart hit, and became their signature song.

The TAMI Show is a 1964 concert that included performances by numerous popular rock and roll and R&B musicians from the United States and England. TAMI stood for both "Teenage Awards Music International" and "Teen Age Music International". The concert was held at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium on October 28 and 29, 1964. Free tickets were distributed to local high school students. The best footage from each of the two concert dates was edited into the film, which was released on December 29, 1964. The TAMI Show is particularly well known for James Brown's performance featuring his legendary dance moves and explosive energy.
A transcript of the lyrics to this song is included in the publisher's summary for this video.

Thanks to all the vocalists/musicians who are featured in this post. Thanks also to those who are quoted in this post and thanks to the publishers of these examples on YouTube.

Thank you for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.


  1. Thank you for this post! I love how you bring it all home!

  2. Thanks Caziah,

    I appreciate your comment.

    I'm enjoying being re-acquainted with some songs & being introduced to others.