What is the meaning behind the song go to sleep you little baby (didn't leave nobody but the baby)?

because im confused about a few verses

"you and me and the devil makes three

don't need no other lovin' babe"

"come lay bones on the alabaster stones

and be my everlovin baby"

in the move o brother where art tho?

the song is sung by siren like people, but those verses confuse me, can someone explain it to me please?

7 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    I have read some of what others say this song means. As you know, it was in the movie Oh Brother Where Art Thou. It was sung by the Sirens (women by the water).

    1.some say it is a song about temptation and how the women are trying to get the men to do things with them.

    2. Some say it is a song sung by an older woman who is telling the baby that his mother has gone away (with her red shoes on-meaning to be a Harlot or Prostitute) and daddy has died. The older person is planning on poisoning the baby by putting something in its bottle (honey in the rock and the sugar don't stop-gonna bring a bottle to the baby). Also "come lay your bones on the alabaster stones" could mean the grave for the baby. Also, "you and me and the Devil makes three" this person knows that they are doing something horrible and that is why they believe that the Devil is with them during this time.

    3. Most say that it is a slave-style song about a mammy/grandmother person caring for the child since the mother has left to have another child and the father is presumably dead. But this person is trying to care for it and give it bottles and nurture the baby.

    Source(s): Music lover and interested in the haunting meanings of songs.
  • Anonymous
    6 years ago

    MEANING:

    Your momma s gone away and your daddy s gonna stay

    Didn t leave nobody but the baby

    [Baby’s Mother probably killed her husband and leaves the baby behind]

    Everybody s gone in the cotton and the corn

    Didn t leave nobody but the baby

    [The baby was left on the field to die of hunger]

    Honey in the rock and the sugar don t stop

    Gonna bring a bottle to the baby

    [Some folks believe is poison, but there are Bible verses “Deuteronomy 32:13 and Psalm 81:13-16”

    And an old Christian Hymn “Honey in the Rock by Frederick A. Graves, 1895” that mention the same words as “being with Christ”, “Better Place like Paradise”, "been fed".

    She s long gone with her red shoes on

    Gonna need another loving babe

    [Red shoes could mean either she’s a Prostitute or Blood

    Gonna need another loving babe, means that the babe is either dead or dying]

    You and me and the devil makes three

    Don t need no other lovin babe

    [The baby “innocent victim”, Christ “The Honey-The Savior” and the Devil “The reason the baby is dead”]

    Come lay bones on the alabaster stones

    And be my everlovin baby

    [Is like Christ is getting or calling for his soul and only Christ can said "be my everlovin babe"]

    Mathew 19:14 Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these."

    I believe that the Lord is singing to the baby in his final moment, telling the story of what happened to him and at the same time He is comforting him because he is weeping and dying probably of hunger, and that s why He said He is gonna get a bottle.

    It’s a Sad Story, and a terrible lullaby song.

  • Anonymous
    6 years ago

    This Site Might Help You.

    RE:

    What is the meaning behind the song go to sleep you little baby (didn't leave nobody but the baby)?

    because im confused about a few verses

    "you and me and the devil makes three

    don't need no other lovin' babe"

    "come lay bones on the alabaster stones

    and be my everlovin baby"

    in the move o brother where art tho?

    the song is sung by siren like people, but those...

    Source(s): meaning song sleep baby didn 39 leave baby: https://tr.im/TVGV2
  • Zinia
    Lv 4
    5 years ago

    I think it's because of the melody cause the lyrics aren't much i don't sing it to my kids but i think the words mean something in the old English language completely different to the English most of us use now a days but i do agree it's so violent

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  • 4 years ago

    I think this song has been read into far too deeply. When this song was first written it was at the turn of the last century most likely in the Southern States of America like Alabama, Mississippi or New orleans where cotton and corn fields make the White Upper classes wealthy and the poor (Mostly coloured slaves) or white peasants went out into the fields to work. I have hear tales of the workers singing all day long, they would sing to sick, they would sing to the fallen, they would sing in celebration and they would sing to hide their burdens and make the time pass.

    I think because this song is so old and simple in nature that it has been over analised to try and find a meaning to it because it confuses us now as educated people. Dont forget that back then most of the poor who worked teh fields were illiterate and simple so they would not have used complex language or cryptic verse to create a song. The "You are my sunshine song" is a perfect example of this, it was popular because it has simple words and was easy for the simple masses to learn and follow.

    back then even the majority of church hymns and gospel songs were very simple lyrics and melodys and were extremely repetitive.

    I believe this song needs to be looked at at face value from the point of view of simplicity and it might then make more sense to everyone.

    If you look at each verse individually as I have interpreted it below maybe you will agree with how I view this song?

    Verse one:

    Your momma s gone away and your daddy s gonna stay

    Didn t leave nobody but the baby

    (Most likely the mother has either died from child birth and/or has had a bastard child and has run away leaving the child behind and the father as taken responsibility for the baby, Child birth related death was very common in that era and often left fathers with children that were cared for by older members of the community)

    Verse two:

    Everybody s gone in the cotton and the corn

    Didn t leave nobody but the baby

    (Most likely the father has gone out to work in the fields and has left the baby with an older carer, more than likely a coloured nurse or older community member too old to work the fields and whom relies on the other slaves or peasants of the community to survive, which is how it worked back then. Younger more able bodies worked the fields and the women and older people worked in the wash houses or as cooks or carers. Everything in the poor towns was shared and everyone pitched in and joined together to help each other in times of need)

    Verse three:

    Honey in the rock and the sugar don t stop

    Gonna bring a bottle to the baby

    (Old tradition used to give honey and brandy to babys that were unsettled or upset, often they gave sugar to try to relive colic, if you ask any grandmother what her grandmother used to give an upset baby, their answer will probably be honey, brandy or some form of sugar. I dont think this verse is referring to poison, i think its referring to the old ways they would try and sooth a crying baby and as the mother isn't there is would have to be given by bottle)

    Verse four:

    She s long gone with her red shoes on

    Gonna need another loving babe

    (I think this is referring to the shoes as literal as being that the mother is a harlot and has run away leaving the child behind, or that she has red shoes from the mass of blood that would have come from post par tum bleeding and/or blood loos from complications. The reference to her being long gone is to reaffirm that she is not coming back and to me most likely means she has died from child birth and the baby need to find another person to love)

    verse five:

    You and me and the devil makes three

    Don t need no other lovin babe

    (Back then a child born as a bastard out of wedlock made the child that of being born by the devils hand and any illegitimate baby was outcast as being evil or the devils child. I think who ever is singing to the baby is just pointing out the baby is safe with them but is pointing out that the baby is accompained by the devil. This is true for the religious beliefs of that particular era)

    Verse six:

    Come lay your bones on the alabaster stones

    And be my everlovin baby

    (Alabastor stone was widely used in many jugs, viles, tablets, statues, vessels, bowls, religious and ceremonial relics and alters for many churches and religious buildings. Church alters were commonly made of alabastor and the churches didnt always hold funerals, they also used the alters for baptisms and christenings. Teh alters were blessed and the naked child was laid on the alter to perform the baptism and many of the bowls and ceremonial baths that held the Holy water were made from Albastor. I believe this verse is refering to the child being baptised or christened and then as a result becoming legitimate and "God ever loving baby". After being baptised the child would need no one but God and would be accepted by the church and therefore also the community)

    I think this lullaby is beautiful and its about loss and love and community and teaches the baby who they are and that they have been accepted by god and by the father and the community that the dyeing mother left behind.

    I think because it so overtly simple in nature, which most of the beautiful songs were from that age in history and we not being from that era, that we have overlooked its simplicity because it confuses us and we seek to find a hidden meaning that simply is not there. We are always looking for the hidden sinister or evil in everything thta surrounds us these days and I hope my version of this songs meaning gives those who are looking for its meaning a simple explanation based on the history and facts of the era and that they begin to appreciate its beauty and let them enjoy the harmony of such a beautiful and very old traditional lullaby.

    Jodie

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    For the best answers, search on this site https://shorturl.im/avfAd

    you're right........maybe that explains alot about how we turned out.....

  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    thats questionable there are basically multiple answers to this question...

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