Cripple Creek


h1 April 1st, 2008

So many towns boast a Cripple Creek, it’s hard to know which one this song is referring to. The famous banjo picker Bascom Lamar Lunsford mentioned in his 1927 book “30 and 1 Folksongs From the Southern Mountains” that he knew of a Cripple Creek within five minutes walking distance of his office in the Flat Iron Building in downtown Asheville, North Carolina.

Of course everyone claims their own town to be the real Cripple Creek – including the former Gold Rush town, Cripple Creek, Colorado, but the music sounds more like it came from Kentucky or North Carolina. I just sang the choruses. Instead of singing the verses, I played them as the great old Southern instrumental this is. I’ve included the verses below if you want to sing them.

There’s a nice Youtube video of Earl Scruggs and his friends doing the song as an instrumental. Click here.

Lyrics:
Cripple Creek
(Kentucky, traditional)

[G] Hey, I got a gal,
At the head of the creek,
An’ I’m goin’ up t’ see her,
‘Bout three [D] times a [G] week.

Kisses on the mouth,
Jus’ as sweet as any wine,
Wrap myself aroun’ her,
Like a sweet potato vine.

chorus:
Goin’ up Cripple Creek,
Goin’ on a run,
Goin’ up Cripple Creek,
T’ have some fun.

Goin’ up Cripple Creek,
Goin’ in a whirl,
Goin’ up Cripple Creek,
T’ see my girl.

I got a gal,
An’ she loves me,
She’s as sweet
As she can be.

She’s got eyes,
Of baby blue,
An’ her love,
Fer me is true.

chorus:

Now the girls up Cripple Creek,
‘Bout half grown,
Jump on a boy,
Like a dog on a bone.

Roll my britches,
Up to my knees,
An’ wade ol’ Cripple Creek,
When I please.

chorus:

Cripple Creek’s wide,
An’ Cripple Creek’s deep,
Gonna wade ol’ Cripple Creek,
‘Fore I sleep.

Hills are steep,
An’ the road is muddy,
An’ I’m so drunk,
I can’t stan’ steady.

chorus:
Cripple Creek’s wide,
An’ Cripple Creek’s deep,
Gonna wade ol’ Cripple Creek,
‘Fore I sleep.

Roll my britches,
To my knees,
‘An wade ol’ Cripple Creek,
When I please.

chorus:

Drive in a buggy,
That’s for me,
Watch the wheels roll,
Merrily.

Through the mud.
An’ over the stones,
Buckin’ horses,
Break good bones.

chorus:

I went down,
To Cripple Creek,
To see what them gals,
Had to eat.

Got so drunk,
I fell against the wall,
Ol’ corn likker,
Was the cause of it all.

chorus

I went down,
To Cripple Creek,
To see what them gals,
Had to eat.
What they cooked,
I couldn’t eat at all,
Harder than,
A brick in the wall.

chorus:

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