From an album called “Negro Prison Songs”, the acapella was apparently recorded in 1947 at the Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman. The inmates are singing the song while chopping wood. A very moving performance.
This song, “Rosie” is a about a woman who would sit right outside the prison boundaries who the men would never get to talk to or touch but would tempt them none the less.
This version features instrumental accompaniment by Charlie Sanburg and shows the influence this music had on creating the sound of American music.