By D. A. Buckna

Last week’s Saturday Night Live musical guest was originally scheduled to be country singer Morgan Wallen, before he got disinvited, after photographs surfaced on social media showing him ignoring social distancing and partying without a mask. 

On Friday (October 9/20) SNL creator Lorne Michaels announced that Jack White — whose best-known band, The White Stripes, releases a greatest-hits album in December — would perform in Wallen’s place.

White’s first performance was a blistering three-song medley, with new meaning in the age of quarantine. It opened with “Don’t Hurt Yourself,” a Beyoncé collaboration from her 2016 album, “Lemonade.” Backed by drummer Daru Jones and bassist Dominic John Davis, White then worked in “Ball and Biscuit,” the 2003 staple of former band The White Stripes. He then pulled lyrics from “Jesus Is Coming Soon,” a 1920s blues gospel standard — made famous by formative Texas artist Blind Willie Johnson — that recounted the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic

Don’t Hurt Yourself/Ball and Biscuit/Jesus Is Coming Soon – Jack White


When you hurt me, you hurt yourself
When you lie to me, lyin’ to yourself
When you hurt me, you hurt yourself
When you love me, you love yourself
Love God herself

It’s quite possible I’m your third man, girl
It’s a fact I’m the seventh son (yeah)
Yes I meant, girl
But it’s a fact I’m the seventh son (yeah)
And so you’re gonna find out about me
Yeah, find out soon when the day is done

The nobles said to the people, ‘You better close your public schools’
And until death passes ya by, you better close all your churches too’
I done told ya, they done told ya, God is comin’ soon
I done told ya, they done told ya, the Lord is comin’ soon
All the people that have to get out
We’ll get clean together
And I’ll find me a soap box where I can shout it
To you

A great disease was mighty, people were sick everywhere
A great disease was mighty, people were sick everywhere
Yeah, it was an epidemic, and it travelled through the air

Let’s have a ball and a biscuit, sugar
And take our sweet little time about it
Let’s have a ball
And take our sweet little time about it
Tell everybody in the place to just get out
And we’ll get clean together
And I’ll find me a soap box where I can shout it
Gonna shout like this


White’s intermittent bass player of many years (Davis) wore a T-shirt bearing the word “PRINE” in honor of singer-songwriter John Prine, who would have celebrated his 74th birthday last Saturday, had he not passed away from COVID-19 this spring.

When British journalist Krishnan Guru-Murthy (Channel 4 News) interviewed White (“Ways to Change the World”, May 22, 2019) White called President Trump an “idiot.”

“I actually made a rule to stop watching the news because I just can’t take it anymore. It was almost like waking up every morning, you knew if you tuned on CNN that the word Trump will be on the screen, and it’ll be ‘What has he done now?’ while you’re having your morning coffee. And spending the rest of the day ‘Did you see what he did now? Did you hear what he did now?’”

More info:

Jack White

Jack White: Facebook

Jack White: Wikipedia

Third Man Records

Lyrics: Ball and Biscuit

Lyrics: Jesus Is Coming Soon

Blind Willie Johnson “Jesus Is Coming Soon” (1928)

Blind Willie Johnson – Jesus Is Coming Soon (Remastered)

Blind Willie Johnson

Jack White: Lazaretto (Live) – SNL

Jack White Nods to Eddie Van Halen, Slays ‘SNL’ Performance That Trades Wallen for Wailing (Oct. 10, 2020)

Jack White “Mother Nature’s Son” | PBS

“Icky Thump & Trump Mention” Jack White@Governors Ball New York 6/1/18

Jack White on immigration, hating mobile phones and his musical influences (2019)

The nobles said to the people, ‘You better close your public schools’

And until death passes ya by, you better close all your churches too’

Trump used the news of his son Barron’s coronavirus infection to call on schools to reopen (Oct. 15, 2020)

Note: Classes at Barron Trump’s school — St. Andrew’s Episcopal School in Washington D.C. — have been entirely virtual this year.

FactChecking Trump’s Town Hall (Oct. 16, 2020): “The president falsely claimed Michigan was in the midst of a lockdown. The vast majority of the state’s businesses are open, as are churches and many schools.”


#JackWhite #TheWhiteStripes #BallAndBiscuit #SNLJackWhite #JackWhiteSNL #BlindWillieJohnson #JesusIsComingSoon #TrumpVirus #TrumpVirusOrg

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