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Grateful Dead — Truckin'
Album: American Beauty
Avg rating:
7.3

Your rating:
Total ratings: 917









Released: 1970
Length: 4:57
Plays (last 30 days): 0
Truckin', got my chips cashed in. Keep truckin', like the do-dah man
Together, more or less in line, just keep truckin' on.

Arrows of neon and flashing marquees out on Main Street.
Chicago, New York, Detroit and it's all on the same street.
Your typical city involved in a typical daydream
Hang it up and see what tomorrow brings.

Dallas, got a soft machine; Houston, too close to New Orleans;
New York's got the ways and means; but just won't let you be, oh no.

Most of the cats that you meet on the street speak of true love,
But most of the time they're sittin' and cryin' at home.
One of these days they know they got to get goin'
Get out of the door and down on the street all alone.

Truckin', like the do-dah man once told me, you got to play your hand.
Sometimes the cards ain't worth a dime, if you don't lay'em down.

Sometimes the light's all shinin' on me;
Other times I can barely see.
Lately it occurs to me, what a long, strange trip it's been.

What in the world ever became of sweet Jane?
She lost her sparkle, you know she isn't the same.
Livin' on reds, vitamin C, and cocaine,
All a friend can say is, ain't it a shame.

Truckin', up to Buffalo. Been thinkin': you got to mellow slow.
Takes time to pick a place to go, and just keep truckin' on.

Sittin' and starin' out of the hotel window.
Got a tip they're gonna kick the door in again
I'd like to get some sleep before I travel,
But if you got a warrant, I guess you're gonna come in.

Busted, down on Bourbon Street.
Set up, like a bowlin' pin.
Knocked down, it gets to wearin' thin.
They just won't let you be, oh no.

You're sick of hangin' around and you'd like to travel;
Get tired of travelin' and you want to settle down.
I guess they can't revoke your soul for tryin',
Get out of the door and light out and look all around.

Sometimes the light's all shinin' on me;
Other times I can barely see.
Lately it occurs to me What a long, strange trip it's been.

Truckin', I'm a goin' home.
Whoa whoa baby, back where I belong,
Back home, sit down and patch my bones,
And get back truckin' on.
Hey now get back truckin' home.
Comments (76)add comment
One of the best songs ever!!!  10++++++

"Sometimes the light's all shinin' on me;
Other times I can barely see.
Lately it occurs to me, what a long, strange trip it's been."

No truer words have ever been spoken....
Caint git nos bitter den dat! 10/10 til Sunday morning’s coming down
 kingart wrote:
FM classic rock treated this ditty like it was almost the only f'ing tune the GD ever wrote or played. It's a fine song, but not after approx. 4,976 listens.  I still recoil from the long strange trip of this song over 50 years.  
 
And yet it still brings a smile to my face!  
 shawshank wrote:

 
Let's not forget to credit the great R. Crumb!
 cely wrote:
Deadheads probably would disagree, but this is not only their most popular song but also their best.  Super impressive.  I wish they'd done more thick and original songs like this and chilled out about the noodling a little bit.
 

I am guessing that you haven't fully enjoyed the GD discography, give it a try; you will be surprised with what you will find.

For those of us who got to enjoy the dead shows live....Sorry you missed it! It was indescribable.
Ella Fitzgerald when I get low followed by G.D. Trucking Your on Bill !
FM classic rock treated this ditty like it was almost the only f'ing tune the GD ever wrote or played. It's a fine song, but not after approx. 4,976 listens.  I still recoil from the long strange trip of this song over 30 years.  
My kid used to have a story book where visual elements from previous pages would show up on later pages and you'd have to look carefully for them. It's like that with the way Bill orders the songs on RP - lots of fun but you have to listen carefully!
Not much for on-the-road songs but this one makes me high!
Deadheads probably would disagree, but this is not only their most popular song but also their best.  Super impressive.  I wish they'd done more thick and original songs like this and chilled out about the noodling a little bit.
Waves hello to the Doo-Dah Man
back to back 9 rated songs by me....first an Ella Fitzgerald tune and now a Greatful Dead tune....you WON'T find that 1-2 combo ANYWHERE else!!  Long Live RP!!
 lizardking wrote:

YW...and I'm glad you got good out of the ACA!  I always used 'Obamacare' as a positive name and not the negative name that it seemed to gain.  I won't go into too much detail about it other than to say I helped code benefits for some of the more popular plans in my WA, your OR and AK.  And talk about the widest spectrum possible for adoption of healthcare reform and the exchanges.  OR was like "HELL YES" and WA was like "Sure, and we also...." and AK was like "HELL NO."  Although I still wonder what happened to the big sum of money that the state of OR "lost" while setting up their exchange?  PEACE to everyone (....wait....Webfoot....you must be a duck....ah....LOL) even the Ducks!

 
Oregon "won" $100 million in settlement against Oracle.
What a long strange trip this been, sucker!!! {#Bananajam}
Back in the '60's and '70's the Dead weren't really on my radar. I'm glad for the occasional cut on RP because it's like I'm meeting the Dead for the first time.

The range of RP's airplay is quite amazing! I grew up on classic rock 'n roll, and by the early '70's I had traveled and developed an interest in ethnic sounds, while I lived in Europe going to school. Nothing is left out of the eclectic mix we get on RP! -Kudos
What's wrong with breaking out the studio version of Truckin' every now and again. Actually, it's been a while since I've heard this original version, here or on FM radio. Certainly one of the seminal tunes of the 60's rock era (even though this hails from 1970).

  FWIW, I have a million Dead CDs, and about 50 reel-to-reel concert tapes. For me, one of the very best Grateful Dead performances is Truckin' (and its postlog) from the Europe '72 album. That there is some creative and bad-assed playin'.
 Webfoot wrote:

Thanks for the great post. Cynaera always had great, heart-felt and generally positive comments that can be a lesson for us all. I still don't prefer Grateful Dead music, but that's okay. Thanks for the ACA work btw! It has been a godsend for the families of the workers in my small business as well as several members of my own immediate family. 

 
YW...and I'm glad you got good out of the ACA!  I always used 'Obamacare' as a positive name and not the negative name that it seemed to gain.  I won't go into too much detail about it other than to say I helped code benefits for some of the more popular plans in my WA, your OR and AK.  And talk about the widest spectrum possible for adoption of healthcare reform and the exchanges.  OR was like "HELL YES" and WA was like "Sure, and we also...." and AK was like "HELL NO."  Although I still wonder what happened to the big sum of money that the state of OR "lost" while setting up their exchange?  PEACE to everyone (....wait....Webfoot....you must be a duck....ah....LOL) even the Ducks!
 h8rhater wrote:

Yeah!  Cuz the other 39 songs that they play here from 18 different GD albums, ranging from the orthodox (this one) to the extremely rare (Unbroken Chain), just plain don't count.

 

You make a good point, but it is still disappointing that RP wastes time on so many played-to-death songs.
 evansdad wrote:
Of all the Grateful Dead songs to play, couldn't RP be a little more creative?
 Hannio wrote:

That pretty much sums up my feeling, too.  It's disappointing, really.

 
Yeah!  Cuz the other 39 songs that they play here from 18 different GD albums, ranging from the orthodox (this one) to the extremely rare (Unbroken Chain), just plain don't count.
 lizardking wrote:

sums up my feelings about the GD in general, although I was an early bloomer in the sense of having to grow up fast because my parents had life destroying drug and alcohol addictions which spurred me along in making my own (often times bad) decisions throughout my teens and early 20s.  and being 40 now I know how meaningless a lot of what's happened in my time really is.  and especially in the last several months, I am no longer willing to participate in the Great Saturday Night Swindle anymore. 

Having been away (working on Obamacare no less) while you (Cynaera) captivated the RP audience with your well crafted song comments about life, and learning of your (too soon) Earthly departure, it gives me a renewed sense of "love it now and hate it never" and always being a student in life. here's to all of us either loving or learning and (as Lazarus says) enjoying this moment right now.  right on!  Long Live RP!  Oh...I'm rating this track an 9 because I like it a lot.



 
Thanks for the great post. Cynaera always had great, heart-felt and generally positive comments that can be a lesson for us all. I still don't prefer Grateful Dead music, but that's okay. Thanks for the ACA work btw! It has been a godsend for the families of the workers in my small business as well as several members of my own immediate family. 
 evansdad wrote:
Of all the Grateful Dead songs to play, couldn't RP be a little more creative?

 
There are at least another 40 Dead tunes that get played, in addition to about a dozen Jerry Garcia side-project tunes.
 Cynaera wrote:
I was a late bloomer - didn't appreciate bands like The Dead until I'd already been through a lot of life-lessons of my own.  Feels good to hear The Dead's music now, on the other side of the learning-curve.  I can sit and listen to songs like this, grin, and thank my lucky stars that I survived so I could appreciate Jerry Garcia and his partners-in-crime.  I have nothing bad to say about this band. {#Bounce}

 
sums up my feelings about the GD in general, although I was an early bloomer in the sense of having to grow up fast because my parents had life destroying drug and alcohol addictions which spurred me along in making my own (often times bad) decisions throughout my teens and early 20s.  and being 40 now I know how meaningless a lot of what's happened in my time really is.  and especially in the last several months, I am no longer willing to participate in the Great Saturday Night Swindle anymore. 

Having been away (working on Obamacare no less) while you (Cynaera) captivated the RP audience with your well crafted song comments about life, and learning of your (too soon) Earthly departure, it gives me a renewed sense of "love it now and hate it never" and always being a student in life. here's to all of us either loving or learning and (as Lazarus says) enjoying this moment right now.  right on!  Long Live RP!  Oh...I'm rating this track an 9 because I like it a lot.


A great song. 
But since I've heard it 6,571.6 times on FM play-it-to-death radio, if I never ever hear it again, I would not miss it. 


I remember seeing them on Saturday Night Live in 1977, I think; they played this and when I was watching Jerry play, I finally got the Dead. Loved them ever since.

Edit: I looked it up. It was 1978. They didn't play Truckin'. Oh well—I still remember it, however hazy! No doubt I was seriously, ahem, mentally augmented at the time.
Bill's just keepin' it real... love it.
Ah, the Dreadful Grate. I'd be happy to never hear them again.  
{#Beat}{#Doh}{#No}{#Drunk}{#Stop}{#Wall}{#Frustrated}{#Naughty}{#Fire}
 wonderunit wrote:
What in God's name did I see in this song when I was in my 20's?

 
Something that your old and tired self seems to have lost.
A great, classic song -- utterly annihilated and rendered toothless by a bazillion loops on FM. One of those tunes I wouldn't miss if I never heard it again. 
 catnip wrote:
I haven't heard this for at least ten years. Now, in the kitchen, stirring mamaliga (polenta, for those of you not of the Romanian leaning) I found I could still remember every word, from a car tape I made and listened to non-stop (only because it was the only tape I didn't mid if the car stereo chewed up).

But still a solid 10. 

 
During my last high school cross-country practice (running for a FAT mediocrity of a teacher and coach) a bunch of us started singing this song spontaneously. It just fit the moment and all the crap we had to go through in that fishbowl of a school. So yes, still and forever a 10. 

Catnip, save me some of that mamaliga! {#Hungry} 
Time to go poo!
Voted 1 and I'm grateful they're (censored) (as a band).
 evansdad wrote:
Of all the Grateful Dead songs to play, couldn't RP be a little more creative?
 
That pretty much sums up my feeling, too.  It's disappointing, really.
What in God's name did I see in this song when I was in my 20's?
 evansdad wrote:
Of all the Grateful Dead songs to play, couldn't RP be a little more creative?
 
Got no problem hearing this song, but yeah, throw in an 'Unbroken Chain,' Lost Sailor,' or the whole 'Terripin Station' suite to really throw a different colored light on this band.
Definitely not a fan of the Dead, but this song is great.
Keep on.
Not a Deadhead either, but how can this be anything less than 10?

Wish I could have been a deadhead though. Nothing spells freedom like travelling from concert to concert in a VW van. 
American Beauty is a phenomenal album. Even folks who aren't fans of their live work should be able to appreciate it simply because it's tight and focused. Great musicianship all around.
I was a late bloomer - didn't appreciate bands like The Dead until I'd already been through a lot of life-lessons of my own.  Feels good to hear The Dead's music now, on the other side of the learning-curve.  I can sit and listen to songs like this, grin, and thank my lucky stars that I survived so I could appreciate Jerry Garcia and his partners-in-crime.  I have nothing bad to say about this band. {#Bounce}
Iconic Album.
Now this brings back some memories!!!! Love it.......{#Bananajam}
 MiracleDrug wrote:
the most aptly named band EVAH...

Not a fan, I take it? I've grown to appreciate this band more over the years. And the lyrics to this song are pretty funny. 


the most aptly named band EVAH...
Not a Deadhead by any stretch, but the chorus in this song is fabulouso!
I haven't heard this for at least ten years. Now, in the kitchen, stirring mamaliga (polenta, for those of you not of the Romanian leaning) I found I could still remember every word, from a car tape I made and listened to non-stop (only because it was the only tape I didn't mid if the car stereo chewed up).

But still a solid 10. 
 SuzG wrote:
Not every song is for everyone.

I'd take my bathroom breaks when Bobby would bust out Lil Red Rooster. 

s'all  {#Good-vibes}

 

This was my bathroom song...this and Not Fade Away!
I'm sure it can be frustrating and annoying to people that don't like the Dead. I listened to metal and Zep during my high school years. When I was in college, a friend of mine played American Beauty on a sunny day. It was like a light switch was thrown. The music seeped into me. I quickly became a huge fan. I still listen to a lot of metal, Zep and Dead (mostly on sunny days). It seems to me that either the switch is thrown or it is not. Is it that simple?
One of the early Dead tracks that I really like.

I'm more an Airplane fan.  I didn't know many that were both.

Sorta like the old question, Are you a Beatle or a Rolling Stone ?

Not every song is for everyone.

I'd take my bathroom breaks when Bobby would bust out Lil Red Rooster. 

s'all  {#Good-vibes}

 treatment_bound wrote:

That's OK...they still love you "jk"!



 
{#Lol}   Very funny.  Time for a bathroom break though. . .

 jkhandy wrote:
Fans of this band are hardcore party people who seem mesmerized by uninteresting, low talent, baked musicians.  But wait, the fans are usually baked too.  Whatever.  Even baked, I still don't like them{#Headache}
 
That's OK...they still love you "jk"!



I played this song in the Stanford Band.  Fun to truck around the football field playing it.
Fans of this band are hardcore party people who seem mesmerized by uninteresting, low talent, baked musicians.  But wait, the fans are usually baked too.  Whatever.  Even baked, I still don't like them.  {#Headache}
 shawshank wrote:
 
Keep On Truckin'!


 fredriley wrote:
The Dead comparable to Beethoven? I've told you a million times not to exaggerate.
 

{#Lol}
Of all the Grateful Dead songs to play, couldn't RP be a little more creative?
 toterola wrote:
I can't decide whether I like this album or "Workingman's Dead" the best. F*ck it, I love them both! This is real rock and roll! {#Daisy}
 
Those are my 2 dead cds and I've been quite happy with them.  Never have seen them live.


really, just don't understand the fascination with the dead.
really don't.

 RParadise wrote:
That's like saying there's no need to ever play Beethoven.
 
The Dead comparable to Beethoven? I've told you a million times not to exaggerate.


totally overplayed

Not a big Dead fan!{#No} 9!{#Clap}


I can't decide whether I like this album or "Workingman's Dead" the best. F*ck it, I love them both! This is real rock and roll! {#Daisy}
soo good.  {#Dance}
Much as I love hearing this wonderful song, I wish RP would play a mind-effing 25 minute live version from the early 70's.
 treehugger wrote:

Are you saying this is comparable to Beethoven? Oh, this Beethoven:

 
 
Now that's funny!

I once read an online forum where Hunter was discussing some of the songs he wrote.

One blasted poser wrote {paraphrased} "Your lyrics are so trite, you shouldn't use cliche's like 'What a Long Strange Trip It's Been' in your songs." Hunter kinda laughed. Then he skewered the poor fellow.

 RParadise wrote:
That's like saying there's no need to ever play Beethoven.
 
Are you saying this is comparable to Beethoven? Oh, this Beethoven:

 
Classic +++++++++{#Notworthy}

Dead Solid Perfect.... {#Cowboy}
RParadise wrote:


That's like saying there's no need to ever play Beethoven.

I love the Dead just not this song-over played.  Last time I saw the Dead play this, even they looked bored.


Classic
Al_Koholic wrote:
No need to ever play this. Thanks.

Damn, you didn't listen to me-this and Casey Jones should never be played anymore.

 Al_Koholic wrote:
No need to ever play this. Thanks.
 

That's like saying there's no need to ever play Beethoven.
No need to ever play this. Thanks.