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Johnny Cash
 You're here » Music Lyrics Index » C » Johnny Cash » Ride This Train » Going to Memphis Lyrics

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Johnny Cash
Album: Ride This Train
Track: Going to Memphis

Going to Memphis Lyrics

Ride this train to Pionridge Mississippi see that levee there
It's built to hold back the waters of Ol' Man River when he gets on a rampage
And he gets on a rampage believe me
One of these days he's gonna come right over that levee
And we're gonna have to head for the hills again
And you know how that levee was built Mister
Not with machines it is built with elbow grease
They got the men off the farms out of the houses
Even out of the honky tonks on Saturday night
I don't hardly know how it happened to me it happens fast
I just remember I was in the Green Lantern in Natchez one Saturday night
And somebody pulled a knife and somebody threw the bottle
And the next thing I knew I had a chain on my leg and a shovel in my hand
It seemed like the whole world come down on me
They whipped us like miles and when they did feed us
There was always a fight or a killin' over who's gonna get the biggest piece of meet
Whereas the boss man did't care about the killin'
That is less you killed a good worker then you get killed
If you complain about anything he just liable to give you a chance to get away
You know what I mean
They take the chains off your legs and beg you to run so they can shoot you

GOING TO MEMPHIS

(John A. Lomax - Holly Dew)
© '60 Ludlow Music, BMI

Bring a drink of water Leroy bring a drink of water (no)
If I could get to mercy man he's give me some I know
I got a gal in Vickburg Bertha is her name
Wish I's tied to Bertha instead of this ball and chain
I'm goin' to Memphis (that's right Lord) yeah (uh huh)
But dues took all my money wouldn't let me see the cards
I owen the boss about a hundred years for sleepin' in his backyard
I'm goin' to Memphis (yeah Memphis) yeah I'm goin' to Memphis (now)

Like a bitter weed I'm a bad seed but when that levee's thru and I am too
Let the honky tonk roll on come mornin' I'll be gone
I'm goin' to Memphis yeah Memphis

I never been to Chicago but it must be a mighty fine place (that's right)
I couldn't get past Tennessee with Mississippi all over my face (uh huh)
I'm goin' to Memphis (that's right Lord Memphis)
Well the freezin' ground at night is my own foldin' bed
Polk salad is my bread and meat and it will be till I'm dead
Well I brought me a little water in a Mr Prince Albert can
But the bossman caught me drinkin' it and I believe he broke my hand (hm hm)
They all call me crazy for sassin' Mr Scott
My brother was killed for a deed I did but I disremember what (yeah)
Well another boy is down the shovel burned him out
Let me stand on his body to see what the shoutin's about
I'm goin' to Memphis yeah I'm goin' to Memphis hmm

Like a bitter weed I'm a bad seed...

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