What would you say about a song that begins:Oh my Lord
Oh my Lordy
Well, well, well
I've gotta rock
You gotta rock
It sounds like a rather puerile attempt by a fledgling rock band, however, "Old Jeremiah" is actually a song popular with African Americans way back in the 1930s. The great folklorists, father and son John and Alan Lomax, recorded a version
at Jennings, Louisiana in June 1934.
This is perhaps the oldest reference to "rock" in a purely musical sense, and shows the debt later generations of rock musicians - overwhelmingly white - owe to their spiritual forefathers in the Deep South.
Alexander Baron - London, England