"Keep on Truckin'"

Fred Shapiro fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Sun Mar 30 15:28:33 UTC 2003

The OED, in one of its weaker entries, has a 1972 first use for the phrase
"keep on trucking."  R. Crumb used it, of course, in Zap #1 (1968).  I am
trying to see how far back it goes in blues music.

The earliest confirmed usage I have found is in the lyrics of Blind Boy
Fuller's 1937 song "Truckin' My Blues Away #2."  Is anyone able to tell me
whether "keep on truckin'" appears in Fuller's original "Truckin' My Blues
Away" (1936), or in any earlier song?  There is said to have been a song
called "Keep on Truckin'," but I don't know the date.

I am aware that Barry Popik posted a 1935 song called "Truckin'" that
includes the words "keep truck, truck, truckin' along!"

Fred Shapiro

Fred R. Shapiro                             Editor
Associate Librarian for Collections and     YALE DICTIONARY OF QUOTATIONS
  Access and Lecturer in Legal Research     Yale University Press,
Yale Law School                             forthcoming
e-mail: fred.shapiro at yale.edu               http://quotationdictionary.com

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