The Devil’s beatin’ his wife

Have y’all ever heard that saying? I’ve met only a handful of people who have ever heard it; let alone know where it comes from or why it’s said when it rains with a sunny sky above. I think it’s a southern saying. Actually it may be a regional saying confined to East Texas and Louisiana. I don’t know.

Anyway, the song below was written by a friend of mine and i had it playing in my car when the rain just started coming down during this bright sunny afternoon. Seemed kind of appropriate for some reason. enjoy.

We’ve been down
this road
and back around again
There’s a washed out bridge
around the bend
seems like we’ll never get
to where we want to go
i don’t know what to do
the only thing i know


it’s a worn out welcome
and a bridge too far
it’s like a three day trip
in a compact car
i don’t think we’ll ever know
what the reasons are
it’s a worn out welcome
and a bridge too far

Wanna go to heaven
You gotta go through hell
Tossin all my pennies
down a wishin well
Can’t ever seem to find
What we’re lookin for
all i hear now

is a slammin door

it’s a worn out welcome
and a bridge too far
it’s like a three day trip
in a compact car
i don’t think we’ll ever know
what the reasons are
it’s a worn out welcome
and a bridge too far

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8 responses to “The Devil’s beatin’ his wife

  1. Hello! I heard that saying when I was growing up in northeastern Oklahoma. My understanding is that it’s a Southern, perhaps esp. African-American, figure of speech.

    I live in Philly now, and I was just telling one of my coworkers last week that the devil was beatin’ his wife. She thought I was nuts. (I am.)

  2. And Georgia. I grew up on the phrase.

  3. Being a California girl, I’ve never heard that expression before. In Californiese, it would be “Oh my god! Like the sky is totally blue, but it’s like raining. I mean, like what the f*ck?”

    Also really like that little video. Great concept, great song.

  4. I heard that phrase in South Carolina growing up… but here in Fla. they call it a “sun shower.” Heaps of originality here in the Sunshine State…

  5. This is so great! I should have posted something about this a long time ago. I swear I ask people about this all the time. I must sound like a freak bringing the subject up.

    Jay… thanks for stopping by and verifying that northeastern Oklahoma says it. And I’ll keep in mind that you’re nuts as I stop by your blog. : )

    Rev Scott… thanks for stopping by. I’ve come by your place now and then.

    Linden… so now I know the saying stretches past Georgia and into South Carolina. Weird that you haven’t heard it in Florida, it being so close to S.C.

    LB!… i was driving and taking a sip of my coke when I read your comment on my blackberry! Almost snorted Dr Pepper all over my dash!
    and by the way…. pssstt… [deist whispers] “come ‘ere…. closer…

    That’s me singing.” : )

  6. Grew up with the saying – born in Maryland, parents from Illinois & Maryland. Not just a southernism.

  7. Wow! That’s you? I’m very impressed. I could be completely off the mark, but I’m thinkin’ it’s kinda Townes Van Zantish – which is a very good thing to me. 🙂

  8. Wow LB, I can’t believe you said that because after I recorded the song I sent it to my friend who actually wrote the words (and who is a pretty big Townes fan) and told him i thought it sounded as if i had channeled Townes. He agreed.

    Very cool and much appreciated compliment.

    By the way… the song popped up about 20 seconds after I turned on my little video recorder to tape the rain. I thought I’d let record all the way the end of the song. I’m glad i did.

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