Beetle Um Bum

Song composer(s)


Grateful Dead Recordings

Not recorded by the Dead

Dead Related Recordings

No Dead related recordings entered

Other Recordings

Beedle Um Bum
Last Session : Blind Willie McTell (1960)
Greatest Hits : Jim Kweskin & His Jug Band (1990)
Complete Recorded Works, Vol. 1 (1927-1932) : Big Bill Broonzy (1991)
Complete Recorded Works, Vol. 1 (1928-1930) : Georgia Tom (1992)
McKinney's Cotton Pickers (1928-1930) : McKinney's Cotton Pickers (1996)
Bawdy Blues : Memphis Slim / Lonnie Johnson / Tampa Red (19??)
Black Swan Presents the Paramount Piano Blues, Vol 3 : Various Artists (19??)

Performance History

Possibly played at Mother McCree's Uptown Jug Champions rehearsals in Palo Alto sometime in 1964 but no tape circulates.

Not performed by the Grateful Dead. Occurs only on pre-Dead tapes featuring future members of the dead.


As no recording of Mother McCree's Uptown Jug Champions playing this song exists any identification of the song must be guesswork only.

The recordings listed above are for a song with the name Beedle Um Bum, which is the closest name located to date.

In Screening The Blues Paul Oliver quotes blues singer GeorgiaTom Dorsey;

" 'Beedle-um-bum' was an expression used in dance joints and creepy slip-in places, smutty dives in the red light district. The gals would sing those kind of suggestive words while dancing around with their fellows."

This quote is followed in Oliver's book by lyrics from a song recorded by Dorsey and Tampa Red, including the following;

Oh my Beedle-um-bum, come and see me if you ain't had none
Make a dumb man speak, make a lame man run
Sure miss somethin' if you don't get none
Of my Beedle-um-bum, oh my Beedle-um-bum
It's the best Beedle-um-bum that's made in Tennessee.

Another reference to the phrase in a song is given in Crying For The Carolines by Bruce Bastin. He quotes lyrics from She's Totin' Something Good a recording made by Philip McCutcheon (as Cedar Creek Sheik) in Charlotte in 1936;

I got a girl in Kalamazoo, she don't wear no... yes she do!
She's totin' something good, (*2)
Beedle um bum, don't know what it was, but I know it was good.

Another possibility is a song recorded by Walter Hawkins in the late 1920's, originally called Deeble Bum Blues it was released as How Come Mama Blues.