Grateful Dead

New Minglewood Blues

Lyrics By: Noah Lewis
Music By: Noah Lewis

I was born in a desert, raised in a lion's den
I was born in a desert, raised in a lion's den
And my number one occupation is stealing women from their men

Well I'm a wanted man in Texas, busted jail and I'm gone for good
Well I'm a wanted man in Texas, busted jail and I'm gone for good
Well the sheriff couldn't catch me
But his little girl sure wished she would

Yes and the doctor call me crazy, some says I am some says I ain't (note a)
Yes and the doctor call me crazy, some says I am some says I ain't
The preacher man call me a sinner, but his little girl call me a saint

Well a couple of shots of whiskey, women round here start lookin' good
Well a couple of shots of whiskey, women round here start lookin' good (note b)
Couple more shots of whiskey, I'm goin' back to Minglewood

It's T for Texas, yes and it's T for Timbuctoo (note c)
It's T for Texas, yes and it's T for Timbuctoo
Yes and it's T for [San Francisco - or wherever!]
Where the little girls know what to do

A song written in the 1920's and played by the Dead right from 1966 through to 1995. Bob Weir has also played it with most of his solo bands.

This is the version the Dead sang most of their career, though not all verses were sung each time. It was recorded as "All New Minglewood Blues" on "Shakedown Street".

The version on the Dead's first LP (called "New New Minglewood Blues") was rather different:

I was born in a desert, raised in a lion's den
I was born in a desert, raised in a lion's den
And my number one occupation is stealing women from their men

If you're ever in Memphis, better stop by Minglewood
If you're ever in Memphis, better stop by Minglewood
Well take a walk down town, the women sure look good

If you can't believe me, don't make it hard to believe in you
If you can't believe me, don't make it hard to believe in you
'Cause we all need each other, well you know it's true

Notes
(a) Bobby sometimes sang "... sometimes, I am sometimes I ain't" (thanks to Dan Franzen for pointing this out)
(b) Bobby varied this line too - "Couple of shots of whiskey, those [Dayton/Long Island/etc] girls start looking good."
(c) OK: there are lots of different ways to spell "Timbuctoo." "Timbuktu" is a common modern spelling. "Tomboctou" is the French spelling. Other spellings include "Tumbutu" (the Koyra Chiini language version). (Thanks (?!) to Dan Franzen for stimulating this footnote).

New Minglewood Blues