The Band: “Up on Cripple Creek”

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Guitarist Robbie Robertson is the only member to get a composer credit on this, even though the others claimed they helped write it. This means Robertson continues to earn royalties from it while the others get nothing.

The Band recorded this in Sammy Davis Jr.’s Hollywood house. The Band rented it to record their second album

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(Source songfacts.com)

When I get off of this mountain

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You know where I want to go

Straight down the Mississippi river

To the Gulf of Mexico

To Lake Charles Louisiana

Little Bessie, girl that I once knew

She told me just to come on by

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If there’s anything that she could do

Up on Cripple Creek, she sends me

If I spring a leak, she mends me

I don’t have to speak, as she defends me

A drunkard’s dream if I ever did see one

Good luck had just stung me

To the race track I did go

She bet on one horse to win

And I bet on another to show

The odds were in my favor

I had ’em five to one

When that nag to win came around the track

Sure enough we had won

Up on Cripple Creek, as she sends me

If I spring a leak, as she mends me

I don’t have to speak, as she defends me

A drunkard’s dream if I ever did see one

I took up all of my winnings

And I gave my little Bessie half

And she tore it up and threw it in my face

Just for a laugh

Now there’s one thing in the whole wide world

I sure love to see

That’s when that little love of mine

Dips her doughnut in my tea

Up on Cripple Creek, as she sends me

If I spring a leak, as she mends me

I don’t have to speak, as she defends me

A drunkard’s dream if I ever did see one

Now me and my mate were back at the shack

We had Spike Jones on the box

She said, “I can’t take the way he sings

But I love to hear him talk”

Now that just gave my heart a throb

To the bottom of my feet

And I swore as I took another pull

My Bessie can’t be beat

Up on Cripple Creek, as she sends me

If I spring a leak, as she mends me

I don’t have to speak, as she defends me

A drunkard’s dream if I ever did see one

As there’s a flood out in California

And up North it’s freezing cold

And this living on the road

Is getting pretty old

So I guess, I’ll call up my big mama

Tell her I’ll be rolling in

But you know, deep down

I’m kind of tempted

To go and see my Bessie again

Up on Cripple Creek, she sends me

If I spring a leak, she mends me

I don’t have to speak, she defends me

A drunkard’s dream if I ever did see one”

 

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