Parallel Anthology Track 62

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Icon Unknown Status.jpg Track 62: Dock Boggs - Sugar Baby   Brunswick 118-B; Recorded in New York, 9.3.1927

No image of record label available. Neither Anthology booklet assigns authorship, nor does

The Roud Folksong Index classifies this song as a version of Roud 5731, but a Roud number search returns no versions which pre-date Boggs' recording.

According to the Old Weird America blog:

“Sugar Babe” belongs to a family of “rounder” songs, cultivated especially by young men, carefree and assertive in spirit, often risqué and in the Appalachian South associated in the early part of the last century with the five-string banjo. Afro-american influences show up frequently in the “rounder” songs and it is possible that “Sugar Babe” itslef has afro-american connections. [...] Sugar Baby or Red Rocking Chair is a widespread folk song, found in the repertoire of a lot banjo players in the South, and still very popular today with old-time and folk musicians.

There are thus some grounds for treating this composition as public domain, but the grounds for doing so are not particularly strong.

Parallel anthology main index page

Alternative Versions

Sugar Baby by Paul Clayton    album released in 1956 (according to Spotify
According to liner notes, "Clayton collected this version from Finlay Adams of Big Laurel Virginia". No arrangement credit claimed.