Friday, April 01, 2016

On the first of April, nineteen fifty-four. A Federal man sent word he'd better make his run no more.

The Ballad of Thunder Road:



by Robert Mitchum

Lyrics (which include a Memphis reference):
Let me tell the story, I can tell it all
About the mountain boy who ran illegal alcohol
His daddy made the whiskey, son he drove the load
When his engine roared, they called the highway Thunder Road

Sometimes into Asheville, sometimes Memphis town
The revenuers chased him, but they couldn't run him down
Each time they thought they had him, his engine would explode
He'd go by like they were standin' still on Thunder Road

And there was thunder, thunder over Thunder Road
Thunder was his engine and white lightnin' was his load
And there was moonshine, moonshine, to quench the devil's thirst
The law they swore they'd get him, but the devil got him first

On the first of April, nineteen fifty-four
A Federal man sent word he'd better make his run no more
He said 200 agents were coverin' the state
Which ever road he tried to take, they get him sure as fate

"Son," his daddy told him, "Make this run your last
The tank is filled with hundred proof, you’re all tuned up and gassed
Now don’t take any chances if you can't get through
I’d rather have you back again than all that mountain dew."

And there was thunder, thunder over Thunder Road
Thunder was his engine and white lightning was his load
And there was moonshine, moonshine, to quench the devil's thirst
The law they swore they'd get him, but the devil got him first

Roarin' out of Harlan, revvin' up his mill
He shot the gap at Cumberland and screamed by Maynardville
With G-men on his taillight, roadblocks up ahead
The mountain boy took roads that even angels feared to thread

Blazin' right through Knoxville out on Kingston Pike
Then right outside of Bearden, where they made the fatal strike
He left the road at ninety that's all there is to say
The devil got the moonshine and the Mountain boy that day

And there was thunder, thunder over Thunder Road
Thunder was his engine and white lightnin' was his load
And there was moonshine, moonshine, to quench the devil's thirst
The Law, they never got him, 'cause the devil got him first
Law, they never got him, 'cause the devil got him first

2 comments:

  1. What a fantastic song to begin this month. Right up your alley (or road), too.

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    Replies
    1. movies, Memphis, and Mitchum! ;)

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