‘Black Mountain Blues’ at Roseland Gardens

The dance floor at Roseland Gardens in the old Brookside community of Black Mountain is one of the few places where Black residents and visitors can relax over a beer.

I’m going to Black Mountain, me and my razor and my gun… I’m here for trouble, I’ve got Black Mountain Blues.

“Black Mountain Blues” by JC Johnson

Many in western North Carolina are familiar with the song “Black Mountain Blues,” originally recorded in New York City in 1930 by Bessie Smith and later covered by Janis Joplin and Nick Drake, which Smith said rose I’m guessing it was written after playing a gig at Rand Gardens. A small juke joint in the African-American community of Brookside, just outside of downtown Black Mountain.

Although actually performed by Smith, the song was written by New York City composer JC Johnson. Did Johnson write this song after visiting Black’s Mountain?

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