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The Band — Up On Cripple Creek
Album: The Band
Avg rating:
7.6

Your rating:
Total ratings: 688









Released: 1969
Length: 4:25
Plays (last 30 days): 0
When I get off of this mountain, 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, if there's anything she could do

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

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 she had won

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

I took up all of my winnings, and I gave my little Bessie half
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 would like to see
That's when that little love of mine, dips her doughnut in my tea

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

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 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

Now 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
Comments (138)add comment
 Curley24 wrote:
Yet another pile o'crap song from a crappy band. Overplayed, overhyped and no good at all. Yet all the rock music critics at the newspapers (when papers still had music critics) said we had to love them. Why?
 
Probably because of one very important word (remember it!):   "SOUL"
"The Band" was awesome, and is another reason we listen to RP.

Watch "the Last waltz" and see what you do not understand about these classics.  They were the band that backed up everyone else for that decade, and hence the name, The Band. "....I don't need to speak, she defends me..."
 
Have to break the run of 3 (!!!) negative comments on this gem! GREAT STUFF!
Yet another pile o'crap song from a crappy band. Overplayed, overhyped and no good at all. Yet all the rock music critics at the newspapers (when papers still had music critics) said we had to love them. Why?
 cayenne wrote:
which was the style at the time
 
The person who took the photo commented on it here :-)  Apparently not too far off the mark.
Why ´The´ Band? All I hear is a band. And not a very good one.
Surely sounds mighty fine here looking up at these rocks under this blazing sun and smiled upon by cerulean heavens...and reminds me of earlier times with some of the same old mates while listening to this enigmatically talented yet off-kilter Band...
the longer this plays the stupider I feel. blech. 2.
 lerxst wrote:
I never understood what the fuss was about with this group. I guess you had to be there. Should be a decent 7, but I'm giving it a 5 because it's so overplayed and the lyrics are goofy.
 
Well said! {#Yes}
I never understood what the fuss was about with this group. I guess you had to be there. Should be a decent 7, but I'm giving it a 5 because it's so overplayed and the lyrics are goofy.
 sirdroseph wrote:
A great song if I ever did see ooooonnnnnneeeee!{#Bananapiano}
 
Man, where did you buy that stuff?!


 Poacher wrote:
Shouldn't it be 'Physically Challenged Creek' nowadays?
 
....since even Handicapped Creek would be prone to be offending.

Oh yea, we be dancin!{#Dancingbanana}

Watched 2 Hillbillies play 7 songs close to this yesterday, or perhaps between this and jugband (since one was playing suitcase percussion) and both had fanciful beads. Good stuff.



Shouldn't it be 'Physically Challenged Creek' nowadays?
 rdo wrote:
7 is as high as I can go for this
 
1 is as low as I can go for this.

Pity that.

Robbie R. has made some good music in far post-Band time. The Band never lit my fire all that much — I had a CD of their hits and sold it in a used shop — but they were a very memorable act of their time, cultish, very linked to the era with Big Pink and a lot of radio play, and of course immortalized in The Last Waltz. Did you know Garth Hudson did some of the music for the movie The Right Stuff? (like the evocative synthesizer for Yeager's flight?) I wonder if Levon had anything to do with that?  
 pinto wrote:

Didn't like it then, REALLY like it now.

 

Loved it then—love it now.
 scrubbrush wrote:
i always felt that Little Feat took this song and turned it into their 'style'...
 
Ooh, I don't think I've heard that version.  That would be great.  Though this is great tooooooo.

1969 - Another gem released that year 
 jjbix wrote:


didn't like it then, don't like it now. 
 
Didn't like it then, REALLY like it now.

"An he had been a dog that should have howled thus, they would have hanged him."


i always felt that Little Feat took this song and turned it into their 'style'...
Still a ten! {#Music}
A great song if I ever did see ooooonnnnnneeeee!{#Bananapiano}
RP, you are knocking me out this morning!  Love it.
 On_The_Beach wrote:
Kinda eerie how Richard Manuel appears to be "outside looking in" in this photo, not really a part of the band (also the only one wearing light-coloured clothing). Sad story; R.I.P. Richard.

 
If I remember rightly, from an interview I heard a few years back, this foto was taken at a moment's notice. When the cameraman arrived it was pouring with rain, and Richard was in bed with a 40 degree fever (they took him to the hospital later, i think) . They all trouped down the dirt / mud track getting soaked, the man took the foto, and they all trouped back to the cabin. That's why they all look so bedraggled, and why he looks so out of it. It's because he was. Wonderful result, though. Serendipity.

Kinda eerie how Richard Manuel appears to be "outside looking in" in this photo, not really a part of the band (also the only one wearing light-coloured clothing). Sad story; R.I.P. Richard.

This song has always annoyed me...The Last Waltz be damned! {#Evil}
7 is as high as I can go for this
 Bosami wrote:
Reminds me of The Last Waltz - one of the single greatest rock n roll movies ever made.
 
I'll go one step further and say The Last Waltz is the best rock'n roll movie ever made.


I really miss these guys. So much talent. See ya all in the next life...
Reminds me of The Last Waltz - one of the single greatest rock n roll movies ever made.
 Krow_Pie wrote:
Awesome track, awesome Band.
 
{#High-five} Yep! They spend many years honing their skills as the backing band behind Ronnie Hawkins, at that time they were called The Hawks. They played constantly, and the more you play the better you get - Read Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell - One of his contentions is that the ability to practice a skill for 10,000 hours is a key indicator of success - so for example all the live gigs and touring the Beatles did before they made records was of tremendous benefit to them - the same applies to The Band.

 Papernapkin wrote:
Too hillbilly for me.
 

didn't like it then, don't like it now. 
Too hillbilly for me.
I'm gonna make love to you wo-man, gonna lay ya down by the fi-yah, caress you womanly bah-day...  
  

 dmax wrote:


Instead, it's Garth Hudson. The best musician in the bunch, most likely. Genius.
You want to click that link and watch that video...
 
Correct. Robbie once said that Garth was the best musician that any of the other guys in the group had ever heard.
Any those others were/are world-class muscians. They actually paid Garth a fee for music lessons at the beginning.
But that was becuase Garth was mortified to tell his family that he was in a struggling band, so he instead told them that he was their music teacher.


Click to view at NetFlix!

Rick Danko = certified loon
 TexasAggies wrote:

That guy second from the right just looks downright confused...
 

Instead, it's Garth Hudson. The best musician in the bunch, most likely. Genius.\
You want to click that link and watch that video...
 LuvsMusic wrote:
If you stare at the covert art, they appear to blink their eyes...Weird.  I swear I'm not altered.
 
{#Stupid} For those of us who came of age in the 60's and 70's, those are called flashbacks.


Ahh, the perfect anecdote for a Friday afternoon.  Next step:  Let eyes glaze over until 5.
If you stare at the covert art, they appear to blink their eyes...Weird.  I swear I'm not altered.
Levon Helm's accent for the win.
 TexasAggies wrote:

That guy second from the right just looks downright confused...
 

This is your brain on drugs . . .
 trekhead wrote:
{#Arrowu} Anyone know if Robbie is on that cover? Which one?
 

Far right.
{#Arrowu} Anyone know if Robbie is on that cover? Which one?
etwilson wrote:
They look pretty pissed off in that picture. Like they're about to smack the photographer.
That guy second from the right just looks downright confused...
Anything from the "Last Waltz"?
Aww, Now I want to listen to Dr Hook!
Just missed it! Darn. :grumpy:
etwilson wrote:
They look pretty pissed off in that picture. Like they're about to smack the photographer.
which was the style at the time
Great photo..would you answer the door to these guys..at night if they asked to use your bathroom?
NeilBlanchard wrote:
Hello, This song in particular shows Levon Helm's drums as the polar opposite of Keith Moon, who is another one of my favorites. Each one is wonderful, and each one fits their context. Mmmmm. I've had the honor of meeting Levon a while back -- he is a really great guy. I do hope that he has been able to quit smoking... Neil
I think he did--as part of his cancer treatment. I'll be headin' down to Levon's farm for a Midnight Ramble session soon. Highly recommended.
this song especially annoys me right now....not sure why. Middle of a cold snap in the north country?
This song just doesn't do it for me. It really never has, but now it's worse as every dive bar packed with unemployed mulleteers in this area plays it as a theme song.
Hello, This song in particular shows Levon Helm's drums as the polar opposite of Keith Moon, who is another one of my favorites. Each one is wonderful, and each one fits their context. Mmmmm. I've had the honor of meeting Levon a while back -- he is a really great guy. I do hope that he has been able to quit smoking... Neil
:doh: Honestly, never got it.
diazo wrote:
When the hippies started yodeling, it was the beginning of the end for the whole movement.
Except, The Band were not hippies by any stretch of the imagination...
When the hippies started yodeling, it was the beginning of the end for the whole movement.
Play some Robbie!
Awesome track, awesome Band.
Uh, no, its not the song that's embarrassing here :rolleyes: jnhashmi wrote:
This song is embarrassing.
redeyespy wrote:
Uh huh. Only one of the finest concert films ever. Scorsese, The Band, and a host of other artists. Yep, great movie.
It IS a great movie, and I'm not even a big "Band" fan!
I read an amusing interview with Levon Helm not long ago (sadly, his health has not been good recently) in which he points out that in many of the scenes of "The Last Waltz" Robbie Robertson's guitar is not plugged in, and he's no where close to a mic. Sure enough, the next time the movie made it onto the dish I watched to confirm. Yep, Robbie is mugging like an old vaudeville ham.
papaman wrote:
11:05 am - The Band - Up On Cripple Creek 11:02 am - Paul & Linda McCartney - Heart Of The Country 10:59 am - Toots & The Maytals - Take Me Home, Country Roads I have this sense that we've got a 'country' theme going on here - I don't know how I know just trust me!
1:31 pm - The Band - Up On Cripple Creek 1:28 pm - Toots & The Maytals - Take Me Home, Country Roads 1:25 pm - Bedouin Soundclash - When The Night Feels My Song I really enjoyed the merge from Toots to Levon on this one!
I wish I could yodel.
i just find it boring
This song is embarrassing.
blades wrote:
:redface: these guys were good? good enough to make a movie?
Uh huh. Only one of the finest concert films ever. Scorsese, The Band, and a host of other artists. Yep, great movie.
It just don't get much better than thiS!!! :bananapiano:
ekeyte wrote:
Oh, I think this song is much better. "The Weight" is overplayed now!
Surprisingly,this song gets an incredible amount of play on my local rock station. Happily (and unusually), this one deserves it!
Down to Lake Charles and Little Bessy Lou .. oh yes .... She may have been a drunkard's dream but I love her anyway. And The Band too! They get a 10 without even a Hesitation Waltz...
algrif wrote:
Even the album cover is one of my all-time favorites.
They look pretty pissed off in that picture. Like they're about to smack the photographer.
rKokon wrote:
One of the shameful blots on an otherwise mostly exemplary musical and social era . . .
Your kidding, right? The Band and this song may not be your cup of tea (and good for you), but was 1969 really an "exemplary musical and social era"? Didn't 1968 kill the '60s?
I saw "The Last Waltz" last week on VH1 with included commentary from Robbie Robertson and Martin Scorsese. What an awesome snapshot of history!
Levon is still playing: check out the ''midnight ramble'' sessions at his Catskills homestead on his website. I'm going soon.
11:05 am - The Band - Up On Cripple Creek 11:02 am - Paul & Linda McCartney - Heart Of The Country 10:59 am - Toots & The Maytals - Take Me Home, Country Roads I have this sense that we've got a 'country' theme going on here - I don't know how I know just trust me!
93vx800 wrote:
Yup, a great tune from an album and a group that sounded different from everything else coming out at the time. Too bad it's not as good as "The Weight" though!
Oh, I think this song is much better. "The Weight" is overplayed now!
Yup, a great tune from an album and a group that sounded different from everything else coming out at the time. Too bad it's not as good as "The Weight" though!
fretman thanks, you nailed it Let me get this straight- songs are REQUIRED to be about things that are uplifting, have positive social values, and be sung in properly trained "good" singing voices. Go listen to something else, then, becuase I don't think you'll find it here. Or on a classical opera station, either, because they sing of murders, cheating, lying, duplicity, tragedies and stealing, just as much as do country "singers", hip-hop artists, jazz singers, and about any other genre I can think of. I guess Irish music would be out of the question, too, come to think of it. If you'd rather just want to say something like "You know, this tune sucks, as do the performers", that would be cool. Suggesting that it doesn't belong here due to abysmal singing, inappropriate content or some other artistic (hence subjective) quality is absurd. By that same logic, I guess "Strange Fruit" wouldn't be appreciated, or "Skokian", or anything by the Pogues, or 90% of everything (PhysicsGenius' "crap") that is played here, or anywhere, for that matter. And being as that era could have been defined by "Hey Joe", a song about murdering some guy's old lady, or "Rainy Day Women #12 & 35" which glorified getting stoned, or "Gimme Shelter", or "Ohio", or "Big Yellow Taxi"- see what I'm getting at? All those songs are about something that is inherently NOT GOOD, or sung by someone who can't carry a tune in a bucket. Come up with something more honest to trash The Band with. You don't like Garth's hair, or Robbie can't play guitar, or Levon is draft-dodging commie or something, but not "its not politically correct".
rKokon wrote:
What redeeming social value exists in this song? It glorifies habitual drunkenness, denigrates women by sobriguet and function, and promotes codependency more than any other song I have ever heard. The "singing" is abysmal, sounds like little mastodonsstuck in a tarpit. I couldn't even begin to like any other songs by a group guilty of this one. One of the shameful blots on an otherwise mostly exemplary musical and social era . . .
Let me get this straight- songs are REQUIRED to be about things that are uplifting, have positive social values, and be sung in properly trained "good" singing voices. Go listen to something else, then, becuase I don't think you'll find it here. Or on a classical opera station, either, because they sing of murders, cheating, lying, duplicity, tragedies and stealing, just as much as do country "singers", hip-hop artists, jazz singers, and about any other genre I can think of. I guess Irish music would be out of the question, too, come to think of it. If you'd rather just want to say something like "You know, this tune sucks, as do the performers", that would be cool. Suggesting that it doesn't belong here due to abysmal singing, inappropriate content or some other artistic (hence subjective) quality is absurd. By that same logic, I guess "Strange Fruit" wouldn't be appreciated, or "Skokian", or anything by the Pogues, or 90% of everything (PhysicsGenius' "crap") that is played here, or anywhere, for that matter. And being as that era could have been defined by "Hey Joe", a song about murdering some guy's old lady, or "Rainy Day Women #12 & 35" which glorified getting stoned, or "Gimme Shelter", or "Ohio", or "Big Yellow Taxi"- see what I'm getting at? All those songs are about something that is inherently NOT GOOD, or sung by someone who can't carry a tune in a bucket. Come up with something more honest to trash The Band with. You don't like Garth's hair, or Robbie can't play guitar, or Levon is draft-dodging commie or something, but not "its not politically correct".
The_Enemy wrote:
I think I read somewhere that the US Army court marshaled someone for playing this song to prisoners. I like other Band songs but that one is just so awful. Fortunately there was nothing sharp in my office or else I would have harmed myself during that song.
What redeeming social value exists in this song? It glorifies habitual drunkenness, denigrates women by sobriguet and function, and promotes codependency more than any other song I have ever heard. The "singing" is abysmal, sounds like little mastodonsstuck in a tarpit. I couldn't even begin to like any other songs by a group guilty of this one. One of the shameful blots on an otherwise mostly exemplary musical and social era . . .
The_Enemy wrote:
I think I read somewhere that the US Army court marshaled someone for playing this song to prisoners.
OK, I know you totally made that up, but on a related note the Gitmo detainees get to hear Metallica all day and night. Listen to the end of this interview with James Hetfield on Fresh Air.
OldFrenchie wrote:
God that "whacka whacka" guitar... the keyboard... it's torture!! :beat:
I think I read somewhere that the US Army court marshaled someone for playing this song to prisoners. I like other Band songs but that one is just so awful. Fortunately there was nothing sharp in my office or else I would have harmed myself during that song.
dmax wrote:
No. These guys starred in the best rock and roll movie of all time. The movie was put together by Martin Scorsese, one of the greatest filmmakers of our time. And it starred (among others) Dylan, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, and a few other legends. It shares Best Rock Movie title with Kids Are Alright. This is a must see, must have.
I would add Stop Making Sense and The Grateful Dead Movie (the first one) and No Nukes.
blades wrote:
:redface: these guys were good? good enough to make a movie?
No. These guys starred in the best rock and roll movie of all time. The movie was put together by Martin Scorsese, one of the greatest filmmakers of our time. And it starred (among others) Dylan, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, and a few other legends. It shares Best Rock Movie title with Kids Are Alright. This is a must see, must have.
give it to me, on a sunday morning! lovin' it!
:redface: these guys were good? good enough to make a movie?
As your Attorney I advise you to turn your volume to the highest level now!
jennywho wrote:
I guess I'm in the minority here. My reaction to this song is generally, "ugh." :rolleyes:
You are not alone Jenny.... this song.... ick.... and why does it seem like the song is like twenty minutes long? God that "whacka whacka" guitar... the keyboard... it's torture!! :beat:
mojoman wrote:
Um, Spike Jones was a storyteller/comedian. Little music involved.
I'm not a Spike Jones expert, but I assure you, he most certainly WAS a musician. One google search would tell you that, if you would bother to look.
I guess I'm in the minority here. My reaction to this song is generally, "ugh." :rolleyes:
radiojunkie wrote:
The Band's "The Band" album, on which this originally appeared, is quite possibly the best album ever made. There isn't a bad cut on it. It flows like a river from beginning to end. And it sounds just as good today as it did when it first came out over 30 years ago. Incredible. :music: :music: :music: :music:
No doubt. None at all.
dmax wrote:
Garth is a genius, unquestionably. Listen to Sea To The North and you can her him unrolling all these musical ideas... Beautiful. Unbelieveably, he's had to declare bankruptcy four times. Can you imagine? Toured with Dylan as he went electric, played on some of the greatest tunes of our lives, and...bankruptcy. He reminds me of Jonathan Winters: crazy, brilliant geezer. Maybe not long for this world, so I'm grabbing as many of his records as I can and singing his praises.
Robbie said that Garth was the best musician the rest of The Band had ever heard.
EXCELLENT diverse set; good to hear a break in what seemed to be a steady almost predictable rotation. AH, some Kirsty Mac...gotta boogie myself on down the hall and into the neck-deep lobster-pot bath...
LPCity wrote:
As much as I love this song..... The version off of "The Last Waltz" is way more powerful IMHO.
I agree, and the "carnival" on TLW is fantastic too!
pleeeeeease more Band!
As much as I love this song..... The version off of "The Last Waltz" is way more powerful IMHO.
I seriously doubt I could ever get tired of this great tune!
a drunkard's dream if I ever did see one... :cheers:
This song kicks :ass: !
Even the album cover is one of my all-time favourites.
jules44 wrote:
Hate it..................!
Do you also hate Andy Griffith?? Santa Claus??
Hate it..................!
radiojunkie wrote:
The Band's "The Band" album, on which this originally appeared, is quite possibly the best album ever made. There isn't a bad cut on it. It flows like a river from beginning to end. And it sounds just as good today as it did when it first came out over 30 years ago. Incredible. :music: :music: :music: :music:
Agree :yes: agree :yes: agree :yes:
Garth is a genius, unquestionably. Listen to Sea To The North and you can her him unrolling all these musical ideas... Beautiful. Unbelieveably, he's had to declare bankruptcy four times. Can you imagine? Toured with Dylan as he went electric, played on some of the greatest tunes of our lives, and...bankruptcy. He reminds me of Jonathan Winters: crazy, brilliant geezer. Maybe not long for this world, so I'm grabbing as many of his records as I can and singing his praises.
Garth Hudson took a wah-wah box from Robbie's guitar rig and hooked it up to his electric piano for the funky keyboard sound in the song.
Little Feat's Dixie Chicken to this. Doesn't get much better.
Levon Helm is from Marvell, AR (where my mom's family lives) and I have to say it is the asshole of the state....
Don't know what to call this, but it grooves.
Ya just can't help but smile and sing along! :D
The Band's "The Band" album, on which this originally appeared, is quite possibly the best album ever made. There isn't a bad cut on it. It flows like a river from beginning to end. And it sounds just as good today as it did when it first came out over 30 years ago. Incredible. :music: :music: :music: :music:
This was the song that got me hooked on the Band years ago. Still makes me smile to this day.
Freebish wrote:
Is the news of Garth's death exaggerated? The only dead Band members I've heard of are Richard Manuel and Rick Danko.
A rather prominent DJ here, in the eightties and nineties, got the chance to interview a Band member. At one point he asked the immortal painful and stupid question, 'who's exactly this Richard Manuel you dedicate the album to?' He even pronounced the name incorect.
mojoman wrote:
Um, Spike Jones was a storyteller/comedian. Little music involved.
Um, the Spike Jones I know of was a WWII-era bandleader who had LOTS of "music involved." I don't know about your Spike Jones, but I am betting it was the "In der Fuhrer's Face" -Spike Jones and his City Slickers, to whom the Band was referring. Don't take my, um, word for it. Go to (click here), put in "Spike Jones" and learn the facts. Then let's talk.
I've owned four copies of this album over the years: eight track, LP, and two CDs. And now I listen to it on my ipod. Good music never gets old!
Gregorama wrote:
We had Spike Jones on the box. Too bad Spike is probably to eclectic to play on RP. Good to hear the Band again.
Um, Spike Jones was a storyteller/comedian. Little music involved.
First album I ever owned.
Great tune by one of the most talented bands ever. Super drumming on this one.