"James River Blues" as written by and Christopher Fuqua Willie Watson....
I just heard the awful news
I could steer around the rocks
But they're bustin' down the docks

James River blues
That train came on through
And the world's gotten slow
So wheres a boat man to go

I think I'll float on down
To Richmond town
They don't need us anymore
Hauling freight from shore to shore
That big iron hauls much more
Than we ever could before

I've see good men going wrong
I've seen bad ones get it right
As that river rolls along
I'll be steppin' out tonight

On the cool flow
Floatin' down down below
The bridge till the water's edge
From the ridge to the ledge
From the hills to the sea
I'll become a memory
James River blues
James River blues
James River blues

Lyrics submitted by melancholyjen

"James River Blues" as written by Ketch Secor Critter Fuqua

Lyrics © Downtown Music Publishing, BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT US, LLC

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James River Blues song meanings
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  • 0
    General CommentIndustrialization taking people's jobs.
    Unemployment is an issue in contemporary America. Old Crow uses pre-WW 2 type songs to refer to today.
    The boat man losing his job due to the technical advancements is like Americans losing jobs to sweatshop labor or by lower wages/inflation.

    Dude and friends lost job to railroad. He becomes a memory.

    Theme: Labor
    adoyle3on November 17, 2008   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationTaken literally, it's a song about the evolution of transportation on the James River, from boats and batteaus to rail road.
    UMWFlyerson August 02, 2012   Link

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