This song was originally “Deep Ellum Blues,” but the lyrics were too rough so I rewrote them. In the rewrite I kept a couple of my favorite couplets, and nodded to a couple of others, but the theme is generalized (the original warns against red light districts, mine warns against city life). Thematically I think mine is richer in old-time flavor, but your mileage may vary. Chris gets a very plunky, Charlie Poole-like sound from his banjo.
(This was a public domain song, but I am giving serious thought to rewriting every last copyrighted song in our repertoire, so that I can give them away freely without worrying about royalty issues. The rewritten songs won’t be as good, but they will preserve much of the flavor of the original. I’ll probably put the results in the public domain or under some not very restrictive Creative Commons license.)