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Got My Mojo Working


Muddy Waters

Songfacts®:  You can leave comments about the song at the bottom of the page.

This was written by a little-known Blues musician named Preston Foster, and was first released by the Gospel singer Ann Cole in 1956. Muddy Waters toured with Cole and picked up the song from her, adding some lyrics to his version. Waters popularized the song and it became a Blues standard.
A "Mojo" is a kind of magic charm, and the term shows up in a lot of Blues songs. In this song, the singer is heartbroken because his trusty Mojo doesn't work on the girl he loves.
Some of the artists who recorded this include Chuck Berry, Canned Heat, Buddy Guy, B.B. King, Manfred Mann, Carl Perkins and Jimmy Rogers. The Paul Butterfield Blues Band recorded it on their first album in 1966 as "I Got My Mojo Working." Elvin Bishop, who was a guitarist in the band and later had the solo hit "Fooled Around And Fell In Love," said: "If you were in Chicago in 1960, as I was, every blues band in Chicago played that tune. And here it is in the 2000s, and half the blues bands you go and see now play 'Got My Mojo Working.' If you've ever seen he first Paul Butterfield album, the album cover, the picture was taken in front of a store that sold that kind of stuff. It's magic charms and lucky oil, and different things, different kinds of powder you can sprinkle around the bed. It's voodoo magic stuff." (Check out our interview with Elvin Bishop.)
Muddy Waters
More Muddy Waters songs
More songs about unrequited love

Comments (2):

aka McKinley Morganfield.
- Willie, Scottsdale, AZ
Muddy Waters caught Ann Cole on tour in 1956 and was so impressed with her version of the Preston Foster song that he reworked the lyrics and attempted to copyright it as his own. The original publishers, Dare Records, were none too pleased but the matter was settled out of court resulting in the ambiguous situation of two separately copyrighted versions, although in recent years, Chess has credited the song to Foster. Ann Cole began her career with the family spiritual group, The Colemanaires, who made a number of recordings for Ann's uncle's own label, the Coleman Recording Company. In 1954, she cut four singles for Timely Records, before Baton took up her contract releasing Are You Satisfied as the first single.
Rhythm and Blues Magazine, July 1957, 'It seems that the fabulous young belter of the blues, Miss Ann Cole, has finally dug into a good luck treasure chest and has come up with the winning sound that has her on the hit kick... if "Mo-Jo" means the power of producing hit records, then it sure is working for lovely little Ann... hip yourself to the happenings.'
Nick Duckett
- Nick, london, United Kingdom
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