Worried Man Blues


(American folk song)

It takes a worried man to sing a worried song, (repeat twice)
I’m worried now but I won’t be worried long.

2. I went across the river, and I lay down to sleep.
When I woke up, had shackles on my feet.

3. Twenty-nine links of chain around my leg
And on each link, an initial of my name.

4. I asked the judge “Tell me, what’s gonna be my fine?”
“Twenty-one years on the Rocky Mountain Line.”

5. Twenty-one years to pay my awful crime
Twenty-one years, but I got ninety-nine.

6. The train arrived, sixteen coaches long
The girl I love was on that train and gone.

7. I looked down the track as far as I could see
Little bitty hand was waving after me.

8. If anyone should ask you who composed this song
Tell him it was I, and I sing it all day long.

See also

  • Subject: blues
  • Harmony: I IV V chords
  • Meter: 4
  • Rhythm: 
  • Scale: hexatonic
  • Tones: drmslt
  • Source: Songs for Pickin’ and Singin’, James F. Leisy, Fawcett Publications, Inc, 1962


  • Song with chords (PDF)
  • MIDI file
  • Listen to the song

Share this post

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top