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Stick McGhee


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Stick (or Sticks) McGhee (Granville Henry McGhee, March 23, 1917 – August 15, 1961) was an African-American jump blues guitarist, singer and songwriter, best known for his rhythm & blues song, “Drinkin’ Wine, Spo-Dee-O-Dee”.

He was born in Knoxville, Tennessee, United States, and Granville received his nickname during the early years, when he was pushing his older brother, Brownie McGhee, who was stricken with polio, in a wagon with a stick.

Granville began playing the guitar when he was thirteen years old. After his freshmen year, Granville dropped out of high school and worked with his father at Eastman Kodak. In 1940, Granville quit his job and moved to Portsmouth, Virginia, and then he relocated to New York. There he entered into the military service in 1942 and served in the Army during World War II. In 1946, Granville was discharged and settled in New York. In the military, Granville often played his guitar.

One of the songs, that McGhee was best known for, was “Drinkin’ Wine, Spo-Dee-O-Dee”. The original lyrics of the song were as follows:
Drinkin’ that mess is our delight, And when we get drunk, start fightin’ all night. Knockin’ out windows and learnin’ down doors, Drinkin’ half-gallons and callin’ for more. Drinkin’ wine motherfucker, drinkin’ wine! Goddam! Drinkin’ wine motherfucker, drinkin’ wine! Goddam! Drinkin’ wine motherfucker, drinkin’ wine! Goddam! Pass that bottle to me!


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