Careless Love (Blues) (William C. Handy & Spencer Williams & Martha E. Koenig? Bessie Smith? Traditional?)

W.C. Handy copyrighted "Careless Love" in 1926. Together with Spencer Williams (lyrics) and Martha E. Koenig he is registrated for copyright [GEMA].

In Early Blues Songbook Bessie Smith is mentioned for copyright.

In W.C. Handy's Blues: An Anthology Abbe Nile's noted the song as very old...

Sources:

Wikipedia

Sheet Music:

Early Blues Songbook: a collection of early blues in words and music / Paul Oliver. London u.a., 1982

Recordings:

? - Preston Fulp -

1921-31 - Ruth Johnson

1924-28 - Eva Parker

1924-31 - Emry Arthur

1925 - Bessie Smith - May 26, 1925 - New York City - 140626-1,-2 Columbia 14083-D - Bessie Smith (v), Louis Armstrong (c), Charlie Green (tb), Fred Longshaw (p)

1927-29 - Tom Darby/Jimmie Tarlton

1927-38 - Ernest V. Stoneman & His Dixie Mountaineers

1928 - Lulu Jackson - June 21, 1928 - Indianapolis IN - Vocalion 1193

1928 - Lonnie Johnson - Nov. 16, 1928 - New York City - 401337-B OKeh 8635 - Lonnie Johnson (v,g)

1929 - Slim Barton & Eddie Mapp - cMay 1929 - New York City: Long Island City - QRS R7088 - Slim Barton, Eddie Mapp, James Moore

1931 - Ed "Fats" Hudson, State Street Ramblers - March 17, 1931 - Richmond IN - 17622- Champion 16464 - Ed "Fats" Hudson, State Street Ramblers (Alfred Bell, Roy Palmer, Darnell Howard, Jommy Blythe, Jasper Taylor)

1931-44 - The Delmore Brothers

1934-38 - Lee Wiley, Victor Young & His Orchestra

1935 - Lead Belly - Feb. 13, 1935 - Wilton CT - 52-A Library of Congress - (Lead Belly v,g)

1935/36 - John French, Rochelle French, Gabriel Brown

1935-40 - Josh White

1936-41 - Lena Horne

1937 - Blind Boy Fuller

1937 - Georgia White - Nov. 9, 1937 - Chicago IL - Decca 7419 - Georgia White (v), Edgar Saucier (as), Richard M. Jones (p), Lonnie Johnson (g), unknown (d)

1938 - W.C. Handy - May 9, 1938 - Washington DC - Library of Congress

1940 - Sidney Bechet

1940 - Big Joe Turner - Nov. 25, 1940 - New York City - Big Joe Turner (v), Willie "The Lion" Smith (p)

1943/1944? - Pete Seeger, Tom Glazer, Bess Lomax Hawes, Baldwin Hawes - Disc 607, on: America's Favorite Songs

1944 - Bunk Johnson

1944 - Lead Belly - Jan.3, 1944 - New York City - LEA-1 unissued - Lead Belly (v,g), Muriel Reger (p)

1944 - Josh White

1944/45 - Kid Ory's Creole Jazz Band

1945 - Albert Ammons & His Rhythm Kings - Sept. 28, 1945 - Chicago IL - Mercury 2008 - Sippie Wallace, Albert Ammons (p) & His Rhythm Kings (Artie Sharks (ts,cl), Lonnie Johnson (g), John Lindsay (b), Tom Taylor (d))

1945/46 - Johnny Alston & His Orchestra

1945-59 - Brownie McGhee - Folkways

1945-63 - Newton Brothers

1946 - Bertha "Chippie" Hill - Feb.5, 1946 - Chicago IL - C-2 Circle 1003, Riverside 1059, on: Chippie Hill Sings The Blues - Bertha "Chippie" Hill (v) Lee Collins (tr), John Lindsay (b), Lovie Austin (p), Baby Dodds (d)

1946 - Jack Guthrie

1946 - Sonny Terry - cJune 1946 - New York City - Verve Folkways 9010, on: Sonny Terry: Harmonica Blues: Get Together (released 1965) - Lead Belly (v,g), Sonny Terry (h), Brownie McGhee (v,g), George "Pops" Foster

1947 - Bertha "Chippie" Hill - July 5, 1947 - New York City - Queen-Disc Q-048, on: Ida Cox And Bertha Chippie Hill - Bertha "Chippie" Hill (v), Wild Bill Davison (cn), Jimmy Achey (tb), Albert Nicholas (cl), Ralph Sutton (p), Danny Barker (g), Pops Foster (b), Johnny Blowers (d)

1947 - Sam Hinton

1947/48 - Joe Turner

1947-50 - The Ravens

(1948) - Lead Belly - Oct. 15, 1948 - New York City - Folkways 242, on: Lead Belly's Last Sessions 2 (released 1962) - Lead Belly (v,g)

1948 - Lonnie Johnson - Aug. 13, 1948 - Cincinnati, OH - K-5560-1 King 520, on: Lonesome Road (released 1956) - Lonnie Johnson (v,g)

1949-52 - Golden Gate Quartet

1950 - Sidney Bechet

1950 - Fats Domino - Sept. 1950 - New Orleans LA - Imperial 5145 - Fats Domino (v,p), Dave Bartholomew (tp), Joe Harris (as), Herb Hardesty, Clarence Hall (ts), Red Tyler (bs), Ernest McLean (g), Frank Fields (b), Earl Palmer (d)

50s - The Pilgrims

1950-54 - Lizzie Miles

1950-72 - Anita Carter

1951 - Emile Barnes, The Louisiana Joymakers, DeDe and Billy Pierce - Aug 30, 1951

1951 - Kid Thomas - Sept. 3, 1951

1952 - Big Bill Broonzy - London UK - Avid 736, on: Great Bluesmen in Britain (released 2002) - Big Bill Broonzy (v,g)

1952 - Big Bill Broonzy - Dec. 3, 1952 - Hove UK - Jasmine 3011, on: On Tour in Britain, 1952: Live' in England & Scotland (released 2002) - Big Bill Broonzy (v,g)

1952 - George Lewis' Ragtime Band of New Orleans - Oxford

1952 - Christie Brothers Stompers

1952-57 - City Ramblers Skiffle Group

1954 - Jean Ritchie - on: Field Trip

1954-56 - Claire Austin

1955 - Eddy Arnold - on: Wanderin'

1955 - Big Bill Broonzy - Dec. 11, 1955 - Brussels, Belgium - Black & Blue 33012, on: Big Bill Broonzy - Big Bill Broonzy (v,g)

1955 - Firehouse Five Plus Two - on: The Firehouse Five Plus Two Plays for Lovers

mid-50s - Carl Sandburg

1955-60 - Wilbur DeParis

1956-58 - Shirley Bassey

1956 - Big Bill Broonzy - Feb. 10, 1956 - Paris, France - Columbia 1162 - Big Bill Broonzy (v,g), Kansas Fields (d)

1956 - Big Bill Broonzy - May 5/6, 1956 - Copenhagen DK - Storyville 143, on: An Evening With Big Bill Broonzy Vol. 2 - Big Bill Broonzy (v,g)

1957 - The Castle Jazz Band (Don Kinch, George Bruns, Bob Gilbert, Freddie Crews, Bob Short, Homer Welch)

1957 - Wilbur DeParis - Atlantic, on: New Orleans Blues

1957 - Jimmy Rushing - Columbia, on: The Jazz Odyssey of James Rushing, Esq

1957 - Slim Whitman

1958 - Nat King Cole - Jan 29/31, 1958 - Capitol, on: St. Louis Blues

1958 - Eartha Kitt - on: St. Louis Blues

1958 - Pete Seeger - Folkways 2321, on: American Favorite Ballads, Volume Two

1958 - Dinah Washington - on: Bessie Smith Songbook

1958-64 - Chris Barber Jazzband, Archie Semple

1959 - Dick Curless - on: Singing Just for Fun

1959 - Snooks Eaglin - May 1958 - Smithsonian Folkways, on: New Orleans Street Singer

1959 - Big Joe Turner - June 18, 1959 - New York City - Atlantic

1959 - T. Texas Tyler - on: T. Texas Tyler

1959 - Otis Webster - 1952-59 - on: Angola Prisoners' Blues

1959-61 - Dave Van Ronk

1959-62 - Frankie Lane

1959-69 - Tony Ellis

1960 - Lonnie Johnson - April 5, 1960 - Englewood Cliffs NJ - 2136 Bluesville unissued, Original Blues Classics (OBC) 570, on: Blues, Ballads, and Jumpin' Jazz, Vol. 2 (released 1993) - Lonnie Johnson (v,g), Elmer Snowden (g), Wendel Marshall (b)

1960 - Pete Seeger - July 11/12, 1959 - Newport RI - Vanguard 2053 / 9062, on: Folk Festival at Newport Volume 1

1960-62 - Champion Jack Dupree

60s/70s - Victoria Spivey - New York City (Kossuth Hall) - Spivey 1030, on: Victoria Spivey And Her Blues Vol. 2 (released 80s) - Victoria Spivey (v,p,org,u), Bob Melenky (fl), Bill Dicey (g), Tony Soll (b), Tom Pasle (g), Eddie Barefiled (cl), Pat Wilson (d)

1961 - Brook Benton

1961 - Pete Fountain - on: Mr. New Orleans

1961 - Connie Francis - on: Sings Folk Favorites

1961 - Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee - Dec 29, 1961

1961 - The Hi-Lo's with Billy May - on: The Hi-Lo's Happen to Folk Songs

1961 - Mans Lipscomb - July 10-13, 1961

1961 - Billie and De De Pierce - Jan. 27, 1961

(1961) - Blind Connie Williams - May 5, 1961 - Philadelphia PA - Testament 2225, on: Philadelphia Street Singer (released 1974)

1961-65 - The Stanley Brothers

1962 - Ace Cannon - on: Tuff Sax

1962 - Ray Charles - on: Modern Sounds in Modern Country And Western Music

1962 - Bill Jackson - Jan. 1/3, 1962 - on: Long Steel Rail

1962 - Michael Landon

1962-64 - Bert Jansch - Glasgow

1963 - Lonnie Johnson - American Folk Blues Festival

(1963) - Victoria Spivey - Aug. 31, 1963 - New York City (Kossuth Hall) - Spivey 1030, on: Victoria Spivey And Her Blues Vol. 2 (released 80s) - Victoria Spivey (v,u), Kazoo Papa (k), Tom Pasle (g)

1963 - Victoria Spivey - Sept. 28, 1963 - Baden-Baden GER - 156 Spivey unissued - Victoria Spivey (v,u), Günter (Gunter) Boas (p)

1963-68 - Dock Boggs - Smithsonian Folkways

1964 - Rosemary Clooney - Reprise, on: Thanks for Nothing

1964 - Pete Seeger - Capitol 2172, on: Folk Songs by Pete Seeger

(1964) - Pete Seeger - Flyright 68/69, on: Pete Seeger In Prague 1964 (released 2001)

(1964) - Victoria Spivey- Aug. 7, 1964 - Meriden CT- GHB 17, on: Victoria Spivey & the Easy Riders Jazz Band (released 1990) - Victoria Spivey (v), The Easy Riders Jazz Band (Fred Vigoito (t), Big Bill Bissonnette (tb), Noel Kalet (cl), Bill Sinclair (p), Dick Griffith (bj), Dick McCarthy (sb), Art Pulver (d))

1965 - Lonnie Johnson - New York City (home of his close friend Bernie Strassberg) - Blue Magnet BM-1001, on: Lonnie Johnson, The Unsung Blues Legend. The Living Room Session (released 2000) - Lonnie Johnson (v,g)

1965 - Helen Merrill - March-Aug. 1964 - on: The Artistry of Helen Merrill

1965 - Pete Seeger Xtra 1005, on: Sing With Seeger

1966 - Barbara Dane & Lightning Hopkins - Arhoolie, on: Sometimes I Believe She Loves Me

1966 - Jean Kittrell

1966 - Big Joe Williams - May 14, 1965 - New York City - Transatlantic XTRA 1033, on: Big Joe Williams - Big Joe Williams (v,g,k), Bill Einhorn (h), Tom Pyle (b)

(1967) - Lonnie Johnson - 1967 - New York City - Folkways 3577, 3578, on: The Complete Folkway Recordings (released 1982) - Lonnie Johnson (v,g)

1968 - Skip James - March 22-24, 1967 - New York City - Vanguard VSD 79273, on: Devil Got My Woman - Skip James (v,p)

1969 - Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan - Feb. 18, 1969 - Nashville TN - Columbia unissued

1969 - Lightnin' Hopkins

1971/72 - Furry Lewis - on: Alabama State Troupers: Live for a Moment

1972 - Blue Rose - on: Blue Rose

1972 - Jerry Reed - on: Jerry Reed

1973 - Big Maybelle - Muse, on: The Last of Big Maybelle

mid-70s - Big Walter Horton

1976 - Plas Johnson - May 7/8, 1976 - on: Positively

1977 - Sleepy John Estes, Hammie Nixon, Yuka Dan - Dec. 16/24, 1976 - Tokyo, Kyoto JP - Trio 3A-2025, on: Blues Is A-Live - Sleepy John Estes, Hammie Nixon, Yuka Dan

1978 - Mud - RCA, on: Rock On

1980 - Bill Dicey, Victoria Spivey - June 4, 1972 - Byram CT - Spivey 1028, on: Bill Dicey: Caught In The Act (released 1980) - Bill Dicey (v,h), Victoria Spivey (v), Bob Malenky, Tony Soll (g)

1980 - Horace Parlan, Archie Shepp - on: Trouble in Mind

1980/81 - Original Salty Dogs

1981 - Dr. John - on: Dr. John Plays Mac Rebennack: The Legendary Sessions, Vol. 1

1981/82 - J.W. Warren

1983 - Mick Clarke - on: Looking for Trouble

1983-94 - Chris Bailey

1984 - Johnny Parker - 100 Club

1987 - Cephas & Wiggins - Flying Fish, on: Guitar Man

1987/88 - John Dee Holeman, Fris Holloway

1990 - Rhonda & Sparky Rucker - Flying Fish, on: Treasures & Tears

(1991) - Guitar Gabriel & the Brothers in the Kitchen - on: Toot Blues

1992 - Dr. John - on: Goin' Back to New Orleans

1993 - Joan Baez - Vanguard, on: Rare, Live & Classic

1994 - John Dee & Fris - 1988 - Mapleshade, on: Country Girl

1994 - Lesley Schatz - Bear Family, on: Brave Wolf

1997 - Electric Bluebirds - Diamond, on: Back On the Train

1997 - Ronnie Lane, Slim Chance - on: You Never Can Tell

1998 - Ute Lemper - Polygram, on: All That Jazz: The Best of Ute Lemper

1999 - Algia Mae Hinton - Cello, on: Honey Babe

1999 - Joe Thomson - Rounder, on: Family Traditions

1999 - Bob Willoughby - Wildchild!, on: Blues, Booze and Oldtime Soul

2000 - Paul Geremia - Genes, on: Hard Life Rockin' Chair

2002 - Patty Carpenter/Melissa Shetler - Epiphany, on: Under My Hat

2003 - Homesick James and Snooky Pryor - on: The Big Bear Sessions

2003 - Lauren Sheehan - Lauren Sheehan, on: Some Old Lonesome Day

2004 - Tim Eriksen - Appleseed, on: Every Sound Below

2004 - Sue Foley - Ruf, on: Change

2004 - Wynton Marsalis - Blue Note, on: Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson (soundtrack)

2004 - Madeleine Peyroux - Rounder, on: Careless Love

2004 - Rick Stone - Jazzand, on: Samba de Novembro

2005 - Gaye Adegbalola/Roddy Barnes - Hot Toddy, on: Neo Classic Blues

2005 - Erwin Helfer Trio - The Sirens, on: Careless Love

2005 - NajPonk Trio - 1999 - Cube Bohemia, on: Ballads, Blues and More

2006 - Penny Lang - Borealis, on: Stone + Sand + Sea + Sky

2007 - Grand Marquis - on: One More Day

2007 - The Pines - Red House, on: Sparrows in the Bell

2007 - Purple Cat - on: Beat It Out

2007 - Peggy Seeger - Appleseed, on: Three Score and Ten

2008 - Eden Brent - Yellow Dog Records, on: Mississippi Number One

2008 - Cephas & Wiggins - Smithsonian Folkways, on: Richmond Blues - John Cephas and Phil Wiggins

2008 - Miss Lauren Marie - Texas Jamboree, on: I'm No Good Without You

2008 - Tin Pan - on: Alice McNulty

2009 - Koerner & Glover - 2006 - CC Entertainment, on: Live @ the 400 Bar

2013 - Hugh Laurie - Jan. 1913 - Los Angeles CA - Warner, on: Didn't It Rain - Hugh Laurie, Jay Bellerose, Kevin Breit, Vincent Henry, Greg Leisz, Robby Marshall, David Pitch, Patrick Warren, Larry Goldings, Elizabeth Lea, Gaby Moreno, Jean McClain

TOP

If I were a little bird,
I would fly from tree to tree,
I'l build my nest way up the air,
Where the bad boys couln't bother me.

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
You've broke the heart of many a poor girl,
But you'll never break this heart of mine.

When I wore my apron low,
When I wore my apron low,
When I wore my apron low,
He always passed by my door.

Now I wear my apron high,
Now I wear my apron high,
Now I wear my apron high,
And he never, never passes by.

Version Bessie Smith:
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
You've fly to my head like wine.
You've wrecked the life of many a poor girl
And you nearly spoiled this life of mine.

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
In your clutches of desire.
You've made me break a many true vow
Then you set my very soul on fire.

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
All my happiness bereft.
Cause you've filled my heart with weary old blues
Now I'm walkin' talkin' to myself.

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Trusted you, now it's too late.
You've made me throw my old friend down
That's why I sing this song of hate.

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Night and day I weep and moan.
You brought the wrong man into this life of mine
For my sins till judgement I'll atone.

Version Fats Domino:
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Can't you see what careless love done to me?
It made me wrong and leave my happy home,
It was love, oh love, oh careless love.

It tied me to your apron string,
It tied me to your apron string,
You said that you love me and it didn't mean a thing,
It was love, oh, love, oh careless love.

Version Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee:
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Love, oh love, mh, careless love,
Don’t you see what careless love has done.

Calls me weep and calls me mourn
Calls me weep calls me to mourn
Careless love calls me to weep, careless love makes me mourn
And calls me to lose my happy home.

Don't never drive a stranger from your door,
Never drive a stranger from your door,
Don't never drive a stranger from your door,
Well, it may be your best friend you don’t know.

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Love, oh love, mh, careless love
Don’t you see what careless love has done.

Once I wore my apron low
Once I wore my apron low
Oh it's once I wore my apron low,
You'd follow me through rain and snow.

Now I wear my apron high
Now I wear my apron high
Oh it's now I wear my apron high,
You'll see my door and pass it by. 

I cried last night and the night before,  
I cried last night and the night before,
Oh I cried last night and the night before,
Going to cry tonight and cry no more.

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Oh it's love, oh love, oh careless love
You see what careless love has done.