That Lil' Fice

from by Whelan

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A normally street-wise New Yorker, I can usually smell a hustle coming before it turns the corner. But on the occasion of my first visit to New Orleans I was so lost in a state of hypnotized enchantment that I got rolled for $20 and even worse my formerly fine motorcycle boots have never recovered. I vowed that the experience would produce a song to compensate for loss of both my twenty and my boots, hence “That Lil' Fice,” which is also where Ike Dupree makes his first appearance on the scene.


That lil’ Fice c. 2013 Sidney S. Whelan

That lil’ fice was jumpin’ around
Snappin’ and yappin’. Makin’ a dreadful sound
Short while later up rolled Ike
Grumblin’ n rumblin’ on his Harley bike

Said “you don’t do sumpin’ ‘bout that lil’ dog
I’m a roll him over with this here hog.
And when I’m done with that lil’ fool,
I’ll turn right around and start on you.”

Sunday night in the 7th Ward
By Marigny down on St. Claude
Not too many tourists come ‘round this way
But there’s somethin’ to see most every day.

Henry the Hustler leanin’ on the fence
Perked right up, offered thirteen cents
Said “Ike I heard you just got out the pen
And that you was up there doin’ 5 to 10.”

“You know the scpa got armed officahs
Run over that fice, you’ll be the one with the collah.
And as for my man, now don’t you do him like that,
His lil’ mutt ain’t no bigger’n a cat.”

Sunday night in the 7th Ward
By Marigny down on St. Claude
Not too many tourists come ‘round this way
But there’s somethin’ to see most every day.

Ike thought ‘bout what Henry had to say,
Revved his bike and rolled on away.
I let out a big sigh of relief
And Hank he says “now let me be brief;

Cross my palm with a lil’ sumpin’ sumpin’
Sumpin green on the hand that’s helpin’
You ain’t bein hustled; you ain’t bein scammed
You ain’t bein robbed, it’s just that I’m de man!”

I cut my eye, good an’ long
Peeled off a twenty, said: “Go on – get gone!”
Oh ‘round here, we don’t give the Devil no rest.
But bless me I love this unholy mess.
Bless me I love this unholy mess.


from The Story of Ike Dupree, track released December 22, 2014
Vocals: Sid Whelan, Capathia Jenkins, Robbi Hall Kumalo, Darryl Tookes
Trombone: Fred Wesley
Trumpet: Eleazar Shafer
Saxophone: Phillip Whack
Drums: Richard Huntley
Percussion: Mark Manczuck
Bass: Marco Panascia
Organ: Jerry Z
Guitars: Sid Whelan



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Whelan New York, New York

Sid Whelan is a veteran guitarist who for many years backed singers in world music acts. Recently he returned for songwriting inspiration to his love of American music pre-1960: the blues and country, folk, bluegrass, Tin Pan Alley, Broadway and jazz. He has begun a songwriting project with those influences in mind, tackling often difficult themes of contemporary American life for his lyrics. ... more

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