THIRSTY BOOTS

Posted on Posted in Breedloves's Folk Songs

THIRSTY BOOTS

“Thirsty Boots” is a Civil Rights era folksong by American singer-songwriter Eric Andersen that first appeared on his 1966 album ‘Bout Changes ‘n’ Things. According to the album’s liner notes, the song “was written to a civil rights worker-friend. Having never gone down to Mississippi myself, I wrote the song about coming back.”
The song, one of Andersen’s best known, has been covered by artists such as Judy Collins, John Denver, Anne Murray, and The Kingston Trio. In various stage appearances, Collins has claimed that Andersen wrote the song’s last verse on a matchbook cover while in her bathroom.[citation needed]. Eric Andersen tells this story himself in the documentary “Greenwich Village: Music That Defined a Generation.” Bob Dylan also recorded this song for his album Self Portrait, but it did not make the final cut. However, it was released as a 7″ vinyl single in April 2013 from Bob Dylan The Bootleg Series Vol. 10.
Andersen has stated in interviews that Phil Ochs encouraged him to finish the song, and later recordings of “Boots” were dedicated to the late folksinger.

You’ve long been on the open road and sleeping in the rain,
from dirty words and muddy cells, your clothes are soiled and stained.
But the dirty words and muddy cells will soon be judged insane.
So only stop and rest yourself, and you’ll be off again.
Oh, take off your thirsty boots and stay for awhile.
Your feet are hot and weary from the dusty miles.
And maybe I can make you laugh and maybe I can try.
Just looking for the evening and the morning in your eyes.
Then tell me of the ones you saw as far as you could see,
across the plains from field to town, marching to be free.
And of the rusted prison gates that tumble by debris,
like laughing children, one by one, they look like you and me.
Oh, take off your thirsty boots and stay for awhile.
Your feet are hot and weary from the dusty miles.
And maybe I can make you laugh and maybe I can try.
Just looking for the evening and the morning in your eyes.
I know you are no stranger, now, to crooked rainbow trails,
from dancing cliffheads to shattered sills to slander shackled jails.
Where the voices drift up from below, his walls are being scaled.
Yes all of this, and more my friend, your song shall not be failed.
Oh, take off your thirsty boots and stay for awhile.
Your feet are hot and weary from the dusty miles.
And maybe I can make you laugh and maybe I can try.
Just looking for the evening and the morning in your eyes.
Take off your thirsty boots and stay for awhile.
Your feet are hot and weary from the dusty miles.
And maybe I can make you laugh and maybe I can try.
Just looking for the evening and the morning in your eyes.