"Chain Gang" as written by and Howard....
(Chain gang chain gang)
I was just a kid a roamin' around travelin' through a little ol' town
When a chief walked up and said come with me you're broke and son that's vagrancy
Just a carefully led who loved to roam and how I wish that I had stayed at home
For the way that I pleaded I would rather hang it's no life of living on a chain gang
I dig that ditch I chop that corn I curse the day that I was born
I believe it's better for a man to hang than to work like a dog on a chain gang

(Chain gang chain gang)
Well the guard stands there with a great big gun I bet he'd love to see me run
And I guess I probably will some day I'd rather be dead than to live this way
He looks well fed and six foot tall and he's the meanest of us all
For he cracks that whip and he swings that cane I reckon the sun must've touched his brain
I dig that ditch

(Chain gang chain gang)
I gat a gal back home who's true and kind and she's been a waitin' a long long time
I rolled and told her forget my name for I'll never lose this chain gang chain
The heaven to deliver me from this hole where a man can lose his mind and soul
The place gets weak and the back gets broke ain't no cause to laugh and joke
I dig that ditch
Work like a dog on a chain gang work like a dog on a chain gang


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"Chain Gang" as written by

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Chain Gang song meanings
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