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a case of the blues

A state of sadness or melancholy, especially one that is brief or temporary. I don't know what's got me so down. I guess I just woke up with a case of the blues. Look, depression isn't just a case of the blues or being stuck in a funk. It's a serious condition that requires treatment. I always get the blues on Sundays. I guess it must be because the weekend is almost over.
See also: blues, case, of

baby blues

1. A usually brief period of sadness, anxiety, and mood swings experienced by a large percentage of women after giving birth. When I had the baby blues after having my first child, I would find myself crying without knowing why.
2. Blue eyes, especially those that are light blue. I just had to ask for Sean's number after I got a glimpse of his baby blues—I'd never seen such striking eyes before!
See also: baby, blues


1. adjective Sad or depressed. I'm sorry, I'm just feeling a bit blue after getting back my exam results. Most people love the holidays, but they always make me blue.
2. adjective Obscene, vulgar, or risqué; dirty. My grandmother is the sweetest old lady you'll ever meet, but she sure loves telling blue jokes! I remember the video store down the street had a section of blue movies for adults that they would keep behind a black curtain.
3. adjective Of meat, especially steak, completely uncooked in the center; extra rare. A: "And how would you like your filet mignon, sir?" B: "Blue, please."
4. adjective Of or referring to a political party whose representative color is blue. Analysts are predicting a blue wave in the congressional elections this year. It looks as though the seats of Westminster will be mostly blue after the Tories' dominance in the recent general election.
5. noun, slang A police officer. Primarily heard in US. I never thought Jack would be a blue when he grew up, after all the trouble he used to get into as a kid.
6. noun, slang A 10 mg tablet of diazepam (more commonly known as Valium), which is blue in color. Usually used plurally. Primarily heard in US. I had to take a blue to calm me down before the big presentation. Apparently, he died of an overdose of blues.

blues and twos

An emergency vehicle, such as an ambulance or police car, that has blue flashing lights and a siren that sounds two notes. Primarily heard in UK. Pull the car over and let the blues and twos pass.
See also: and, blues, two

cry the blues

1. Literally, to sing blues music or in that style. There was this old man crying the blues at the bar last night; it was a really moving bit of music.
2. By extension, to complain, whine, or express grief, especially as a means of gaining sympathy from others. Many people will cry the blues over trivial inconveniences, while millions of others silently suffer real hardships every day.
See also: blues, cry

get the blues

To develop a feeling of general sadness or melancholy. I think a lot of people get the blues when the excitement of the holidays is over. I always get the blues on Sundays. I guess it must be because the weekend is almost over.
See also: blues, get

have a case of the blues

To experience a mild or temporary state of sadness or melancholy. I don't know what's got me so down. I've just had a case of the blues since I woke up. Look, depression doesn't just mean you have a case of the blues from time to time. It's a serious, long-term condition that requires professional treatment.
See also: blues, case, have, of

have the blues

To feel generally sad or melancholy. I don't know what it is, but I find I always have the blues on Sundays.
See also: blues, have

sing the blues

1. Literally, to sing blues music or in that style. There was this old man singing the blues at the bar last night—it was a really moving bit of music.
2. By extension, to complain, whine, or express grief, especially as a means of gaining sympathy from others. Many people will sing the blues over trivial inconveniences, while millions of others silently suffer real hardships every day.
See also: blues, sing

Sunday blues

An acute feeling of depression or anxiety experienced on Sunday evening, typically owing to one's having to return to work or school the next day. I always get the Sunday blues around this time. I like school just fine, but knowing that the freedom of the weekend is almost over always bums me out. I'm not surprised you get such intense Sunday blues at the end of the weekend—your job has been so stressful lately.
See also: blues, Sunday

winter blues

A period of depression, melancholy, or unhappiness experienced during the dark, cold months of winter. A: "Are you OK? You've seemed really down lately." B: "Yeah, I just can't seem to shake these winter blues." I always get the winter blues really bad, so I usually spend the season in my parents' house in Florida.
See also: blues, winter
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.


1. sadness; a mood of depression. (*Typically: get ~; have ~.) You'll have to excuse Bill. He's getting the blues thinking about Jane. I get the blues every time I hear that song.
2. a traditional style of popular music characterized by lyrics expressing hardship, lost love, etc. Buddy had been singing the blues ever since the Depression.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

have the blues

Also, feel blue. Feel depressed or sad, as in After seeing the old house in such bad shape, I had the blues for weeks, or Patricia tends to feel blue around the holidays. The noun blues, meaning "low spirits," was first recorded in 1741 and may come from blue devil, a 17th-century term for a baleful demon, or from the adjective blue meaning "sad," a usage first recorded in Chaucer's Complaint of Mars (c. 1385). The idiom may have been reinforced by the notion that anxiety produces a livid skin color. Also see blue funk.
See also: blues, have
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

blues and twos

the siren and blue flashing lights of an emergency-service vehicle. British informal
The twos refers to the vehicles' two-tone siren.
2003 Bolton Evening News They will go out with local officers and really learn the craft of being a beat bobby rather than just going out in blues and twos.
See also: and, blues, two
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017


1. mod. depressed; melancholy. That music always makes me blue.
2. mod. obscene; vulgar; dirty. Those blue jokes don’t go over very well around here.
3. n. the sky; the heavens. The idea came to me right out of the blue.
4. mod. alcohol intoxicated. You might say I’m blue. Others might note that I am stoned.
5. n. an amphetamine tablet or capsule, especially a blue one. (Drugs.) How are blues different from reds and yellows?
6. n. a police officer; the police. The blues will be here in a minute.
7. n. a 10-mg tablet of Valium. (Drugs.) In treatment they kept giving me blues to calm me down. Now I can’t live without them.
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
In a place where a bluesman could make good money playing for white fans, the Marvell contingent had a strong economic incentive not to stray from their wonted genre.
The bluesman traveled and performed alone or with a single companion.
The recipient of a National Poetry Series Award, Jess' debut rift chronicles the real-life drama of the now legendary bluesman with stunning, soul-wrenching persona poems and deft attention to detail.
Al The Bluesman (Originals Cafe, The Quadrant, Hoylake) Saturday September 18, 3pm, free admission.
There are two different portraits of Big Joe Williams, one as a limber, trainhopping, hell-raising young Mississippi bluesman in the 1930s, as remembered by fellow bluesman David "Honeyboy" Edwards (pp.
Wald describes how white scholars and blues buffs who constructed the legend of short-lived but influential Delta bluesman Robert Johnson got both his art and his influences all wrong.
Pro turned bluesman Chuck Dinkins is now headlining at the House of Blues in Orlando.
A minstrel might pack his trunk and ride in Pullman luxury, whereas a country bluesman might hoist his guitar case and hop aboard a freight car; the lives and livelihoods of both depended on knowing where the getaway was, and how to sing it into being.
The arrangements are sparer, with a single guitar line edging toward styles that Jakob likens to the Delta bluesman Mississippi John Hurt.
Young Louisiana bluesman Kenny Neal sings and plays (guitars and harmonica) like a real veteran, and he and his band really deliver the goods with their blend of blues, R&B, and soul.
Beginning in a simple verbal/visual pun, these spots--people slogging through mud and rain while the late Chicago bluesman thunders on like a South Side Jeremiah--are weirdly unstable.
CHICAGO -- Chicago bluesman Eddy Clearwater, lauded for his guitar playing and flamboyant showmanship, has died of heart failure.
Venerable bluesman Walter Trout LONDON-BORN singer Michael Kiwanuka is certainly on a very hot streak just now and that is borne out by tickets sales on his current UK tour ,which is almost entirely sold-out.
ALBUM REVIEWS BY ANDREW GREENHAIGH JEFF BECK, LOUD HAILER Earlier this year, Eric Clapton's 23rd solo album, I Still Do, emerged: a gently effective exercise in treading water by an ageing bluesman in his 70s.