"Mr. Brown" as written by Glen Adams, Bob Marley and Trevor Brown....
(Who-oo-oo-oo is Mr Brown?)
Mr. Brown is a clown who rides through town in a coffin
(Where he be found?)
In the coffin where there is three crows on top and two is laughing
Oh, what a confusion
Ooh, yeah, yeah
What a botheration, ooh, now, now
Who is Mr. Brown? I wanna know now
He is nowhere to be found

From Mandeville to Sligoville, coffin running around
Upsetting, upsetting, upsetting the town
Asking for Mr. Brown
From Mandeville to Sligoville, coffin running around
Upsetting, upsetting, upsetting the town
Asking for Mr. Brown

I wanna know who ooh
(Is Mr. Brown)
Is Mr. Brown controlled by remote?
Oh, Calling duppy conqueror
I'm the ghost catcher
This is your chance, oh big, big Bill bull-bucka
Take your chance, prove yourself, oh, yeah

Down in parade
People running like a masquerade
The police make a raid
Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, think it fade

What a thing in town
Crows, chauffeur driven around
Skankiness if they had never known
The man they call "Mr. Brown"
I can tell you where he's from now

From Mandeville to Sligoville, coffin running around

Lyrics submitted by feelin da rithim

"Mr. Brown" as written by Glenn Adams Bob Marley

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

Mr. Brown song meanings
Add your thoughts


sort form View by:
  • +1
    General Commentthis song is fucking amazing!
    Debaser891on October 22, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commentyikes... OK, settle down, drug conspiricists...

    the song is about an event that happened in JA in the fall of 1970. there was a story about a 3-wheeled coffin with three "crows" (a vulture in JA is commonly called a John Crow, the 3 "crows" atop a 3 wheeled coffin is an old bit of Jamaican folklore) running about the countryside, scaring the crap out of people.

    some back story: at the time, the belief in the supernatural was very common among ordinary Jamaicans, especially those who came from the country. to this day, you can still find perfectly intelligent and reasonable people who insist that duppies, obeah, and spirits in general are all too real (allegedly, including a former PM)

    the story started somewhere by word of mouth in the country somewhere, and soon the story spread...hence, the "from Mandeville to Sligoville" lyric.

    by the time the story eventually reached Spanish Town and West Kingston, someone had "seen it", and the story became more embellished as time went on. at one point there were hundreds of people out looking for the coffin downtown around the Parade Square area, and even barging into the notorious Tivoli Gardens to have a look.

    the three crows were apparently dressed in suits and asking people for a "Mr. Brown", people were fainting, a Spanish Town cop "shot at it", a boy's foot allegedly got run over by the coffin, etc. etc.... and yet no one could give a credible first hand account.

    as one might imagine, this made for 1) great comedy, or 2) "rahhh-tid! serious bumbu-clot duppy business!", depending on your beliefs. it all made the Oct. 29, 1970 Gleaner, with a front page article describing the goings-on. there were other "Mr. Brown" songs put out at the time, since it was such a newsworthy "event".

    every great once in a while, it's still possible to read of "duppy sightings" that make the paper. there was one back in 2010 of a boy in St. Catherine who was being bothered constantly by a spirit. newspaper and TV reports it just like regular news....
    nunayaon August 04, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Commentexplosive song
    mikadoon July 29, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is about a duppy (Jamaican patois word for ghost,spirit) named mr brown. You can notice on the part where it says: O-o-oh, calling duppy conqueror,
    I'm the ghost-catcher!
    This is your chance, oh big, big Bill bull-bucka, (bull-bucka is another word for bad soul,spirit)
    Take your chance! Prove yourself! Oh, yeah!
    Kreamlingdudeon December 11, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentBob Marley is a lyrical genius and this song proves my point. Cant get enough of his talent. We need more musicians like this.
    rastaheart36on May 06, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMr Brown is a street name for Heroin hence the reference to coffins and "Crows chauffeur-driven around,
    Skankin' as if they had never known The man they call �Mr Brown�."

    receptioniston September 08, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHeroin would be my guess.
    joejefferyCTon February 20, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Comment"slide-a-ville" should be "Sligoville", a town in Jamaica.
    I also think it is about heroin.
    myshkerson May 15, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Commentat the time, The Wailers were recording a lot at Randy's Studio, located on North Parade and right at the epicenter of the mass search for the elusive coffin and the three well-dressed John Crows atop it..... and right around the corner from Randy's was Idler's Rest, a hang out for many musicians and singers.

    additionally, Marley had a small record store nearby on either Orange or King St., and lived just west of the old downtown at the southern end of Trench Town, right across from Spanish Town Rd. - he lived and worked in the very area where all of the "Mr. Brown" mania happened to occur.

    so it would have been a fantastical story to witness, and even better to write a song about since topical events were a favorite subject of Jamaican music.
    nunayaon August 04, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General CommentFirst line should be "Whooooo-ooooo-ooooo......is Mr. Brown?"
    mwanteroon March 16, 2013   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top