Song Lyric Sunday/Song of the Day: Howlin’ Wolf, “Evil (Is Going On)”

So today, Jim has given us "cruel, evil, horrible, monster, wicked" as our prompts, and of course my mind heads to the West Side and the song stylings of Chester Arthur Burnett, better known to one and all as Howlin’ Wolf. "Evil (Is Going On)" was written by the Poet Laureate of the Blues, Willie Dixon, and recorded by Wolf in 1954. Besides Howlin’ Wolf on vocal and harmonica, that recording featured Wolf’s longtime sideman, Hubert Sumlin, and Jody Williams on guitars, Otis Spann on piano, Willie Dixon himself on double bass, and Earl Phillips on drums.

The lyrics, from MetroLyrics:

If you’re a long way from home
Can’t sleep at night
Grab your telephone
Somethin’ just ain’t right

That’s evil, evil is goin’ on wrong
I am warnin’ you brother
You better watch your happy home

Well, long way from home and
Can’t sleep at all
You know another mule
Is kickin’ in your stall

That’s evil, evil is goin’ on wrong
I am warnin’ you brother
You better watch your happy home

You better catch him
‘Cause somethin’ wrong
In your home

Well, if you call her on the telephone
And she answers awful slow
Grab the first train smokin’
If you have to hobo

That’s evil, evil is goin’ on wrong
I am warnin’ you brother
You better watch your happy home

If you make it to your house
Knock on the front door
Run ’round to the back
You’ll catch him just before he go

That’s evil, evil is goin’ on
I am warnin’ you brother
You better watch your happy home

And that’s Song Lyric Sunday and Song of the Day for August 30, 2020.

22 thoughts on “Song Lyric Sunday/Song of the Day: Howlin’ Wolf, “Evil (Is Going On)”

  1. I wrestled with this song and Evil Ways. Love me some Howlin Wolf-thanks for the insight on the musicians on this track. Did not know Willie Dixon recorded with the Wolf. Good stuff.

    Like

    1. I think Willie recorded with almost everyone in the ’50’s. Last week he was playing with Sonny Boy Williamson II. He quit playing when bass players started moving to electric bass and focused on writing songs. I’ve lost count of how many he wrote, exactly…

      Liked by 1 person

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