Roy Clark And Johnny Cash - Rock Island Line

Roy Clark And Johnny Cash - Rock Island Line.

"Rock Island Line" is an American folk song. Ostensibly about the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad, it appeared as a spiritual as early as 1929. The first recorded performance of "Rock Island Line" was by inmates of the Arkansas Cummins State Farm prison in 1934.


Johnny Cash with his hot and blue guitar (1957) Cash adds two verses to the song, one on a train that goes down the track and the second on an engineer that indicates two drinks he wants to try before dying: "a I heat a cup of coffee and a glass of cold tea.



Rock Island Line Lyrics


Now this here's a story about the Rock Island Line

Well the Rock Island Line she runs down into New Orleans

There's a big tollgate down there and you know

If you got certain things on board when you go through the tollgate

Well you don't have to pay the man no toll

Well a train driver he pulled up to the tollgate

And a man hollered and asked him what all he had on board and said


I got livestock

I got livestock

I got cows

I got pigs

I got sheep

I got mules

I got all live stock


Well he said you're alright boy you don't have to pay no toll

You can just go right on through so he went on through the tollgate

And as he went through he started pickin' up a little bit of speed

Pickin' up a little bit of steam

He got on through he turned and looked back at the man he said


Well I fooled you

I fooled you

I got pigiron

I got pigiron

I got old pigiron



Down the Rock Island Line she's a mighty good road

Rock Island Line it's the road to ride

Rock Island Line it's a mighty good road

Well if you ride it you got to ride it like you find it

Get your ticket at the station for the Rock Island Line


Looked cloudy in the west and it looked like rain

Round the curve came a passenger train

North bound train on a southbound track

He's alright a leavin' but he won't be back




Oh I may be right and I may be wrong

But you're gonna miss me when I'm gone

Well the engineer said before he died

There were two more drinks that he'd like to try

The conductor said what could they be

A hot cup of coffee and a cold glass of tea

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