Driftin' Blues

Charles Brown

About Driftin' Blues

"Driftin' Blues" or "Drifting Blues" is a blues standard, recorded by Johnny Moore's Three Blazers in 1945. The song is a slow blues and features Charles Brown's smooth, soulful vocals and piano. It was one of the biggest blues hits of the 1940s and "helped define the burgeoning postwar West Coast blues style". "Driftin' Blues" has been interpreted and recorded by numerous artists in various styles. The Blues Foundation Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame have acknowledged the influence and lasting popularity of the song.  


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Well I'm drifting and drifting,
Like a ship out on the sea
Well I'm drifting and drifting,
Like a ship out on the sea
Well I ain't got nobody
In this world to care for me

If my baby would only take me back again
If my baby would only take me back again
Well you know I ain't good for nothin' baby

Well I haven't got no friends

I give you all of my money,
Tell me what more can I do
I give you all my money,
Tell me what more can I do
Well you just a good little girl
But you just won't be true

Bye-bye baby, baby bye-bye bye-bye, 
It's gonna be too late baby
I'll be so far away

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Charles Brown

Charles Brown (September 13, 1922 – January 21, 1999), born in Texas City, Texas was an American blues singer and pianist whose soft-toned, slow-paced blues-club style influenced the development of blues performance during the 1940s and 1950s. He had several hit recordings, including "Driftin' Blues" and "Merry Christmas Baby". more »

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Written by: Charles Mose Brown, Edward E Williams, Johnny Dudley Moore

Lyrics © FLAT TOWN MUSIC CO., A DIV. OF SWALLOW PUBLICATIONS, INC., BMG Rights Management, Universal Music Publishing Group, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind

10 facts about this song

Historical Origin
"Driftin' Blues" is an iconic song by Charles Brown and Johnny Moore. It was first recorded by Johnny Moore's Three Blazers, a popular blues ensemble in the mid-1940s, with Brown on piano and vocals.
Genre Foundation
Released in 1946, "Driftin' Blues" played a pivotal role in establishing the subgenre of smooth, post-WWII blues that would come to be known as West Coast blues.
Recording Label
The original version of "Driftin' Blues" was recorded under Philo Records label, which eventually transformed into Aladdin Records.
Chart Performance
"Driftin' Blues" was a major hit and reached the number two spot on Billboard's R&B chart.
Cover Versions
Many artists have covered "Driftin' Blues". These include Bobby Bland, Ray Charles, Eric Clapton, and even the Rolling Stones.
Song Theme
The song deals with the themes of longing, sorrow and a drift in human life, a characteristic of traditional blues.
Polished Arrangement
"Driftin' Blues" was known for its polished, urbane style of blues and had a significant influence on the development of rhythm and blues and rock and roll.
Song structure
"Driftin' Blues" pushed the boundaries of traditional blues by featuring an impactful guitar and piano interplay which later became a key feature of West Coast Blues.
Charles Brown Influence
Brown's smooth vocal delivery and piano playing on "Driftin' Blues" had a large influence on future blues musicians and his smooth vocal style was also a precursor to the vocal style common in early rock and roll.
Cultural Impact
"Driftin' Blues" has become a standard of the blues genre and has been inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame, recognizing its major impact on the world of blues music.

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    "Driftin' Blues Lyrics." Lyrics.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 1 Mar. 2024. <https://www.lyrics.com/lyric/7022798/Charles+Brown/Driftin%27+Blues>.

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