"T.b. Sheets" as written by and John Lee Hooker....
Now listen, Julie baby,
It ain't natural for you to cry in the midnight.
It ain't natural for you to cry way into midnight through,
Until the wee small hours long 'fore the break of dawn,
Oh Lord, huh uh ha. Ha.

Now Julie, an' there ain't nothin' on my mind
More further 'way than what you're lookin' for.
I see the way you jumped at me, Lord, from behind the door
And looked into my eyes.
Your a little star struck innuendos
Inadequacies an' foreign bodies,
And the sunlight shining through the crack in the window pane
Numbs my brain,
And the sunlight shining through the crack in the window pane
Numbs my brain, oh Lord.

Ha, so open up the window and let me breathe.
I said open up the window, shh shh shh shh shh and let me breathe.
I'm looking down to the street below, Lord, I cried for you,
Ha ha, I cried, I cried for you, ha ha. Oh, Lord.

The cool room, Lord is a fool's room.
The cool room, Lord is a fool's room.
And I can almost smell your T.B. sheets
And I can almost smell your T.B. sheets
On your sick bed.

I gotta go, I gotta go
And you said, "Please stay, I want to, I want to,
I want a drink of water, I want a drink of water,
Go in the kitchen get me a drink of water."
I said, "I gotta go, I gotta go, baby."
I said, "I'll end, I'll send somebody around here later.
You know we got John comin' around here later
With a bottle of wine for you, baby - but I gotta go."

The cool room, Lord is a fool's room,
The cool room, Lord, Lord is a fool's room, a fool's room.
And I can almost smell your T.B. sheets,
I can almost smell your T.B. sheets, T.B.

I gotta go, I gotta go.
I'll send around, send around one that grumbles later on, babe.
We'll see what I can pick up for you, you know.
Yeah, I got a few things gotta do.
Don't worry about it, don't worry about it, don't worry.
Huh uh, go, go, go, I've gotta go, gotta go, gotta go, gotta go,
Gotta go, gotta go, huh uh, all right, all right, huh huh huh.

I turned on the radio,
If you want to hear a few tunes, I'll turn on the radio for you.
There you go, there you go, there you go, baby, there you go, huh.

You'll be all right, too, huh huh, ha ha, yeah.
I know it ain't funny, it ain't runny at all, baby,
Always laying in the cool room, man, laying in the cool room,
In the cool room, in the cool room.


Lyrics submitted by archmastermind

"TB Sheets" as written by John Lee Hooker

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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T.b. Sheets song meanings
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12 Comments

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  • +2
    General Comment"TB Sheets": simply one of the spookiest songs ever written. Man wracked by guilt as he watches his girlfriend die, but still he wants to palm off the responsibility for her onto the radio, or "John" who is supposedly bringing a bottle of wine (as if a young woman slowly suffocating to death from TB would want to drink wine!), or anyone and anything so he can escape the deadly "cool room, fool's room," where the poor emaciated girl is gasping her last breaths. They don't make songs like this anymore, damnit.
    mbrachmanon June 09, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentYou know, I actually find this song really comforting. Ostensibly it's raw, aching and desperate, and the subject matter truly tragic. But when all that's out it's obvious that he at least gets some balm from his music. Not everyone has that kind of outlet, but it's comforting to 'observe' that in another person.
    lagaanon April 15, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentFor me, personally, it's about revenge. Almost smell the T.B. sheets on the sick bed, running out when someone needs water. I love it. But to be honest, I haven't fully picked it apart, I don't really care to, it's a great song. And it was KEY in "Bringing out the Dead"
    LoganNYCon May 09, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree with you...it really set the tone for "Bringing out the dead". It's a song I can take a midnight drive to.
    bschmidt40on April 22, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentLoganNYC...bschmidt40...got some news to break to you...

    This song is a true story about Van's former wife who died of tuburculosis. During the fade-out, you hear him saying 'no, man, that's not funny at all...' . He proceeded to violently freak on one or more of the musicians who played on this thing. That part didn't get on tape.
    elephant_rangeon February 27, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentreally great song, alltough it's about that wife it's a relaxing song
    harmon April 16, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentyou do not hear van morrison get down into the blues in nearly any recording like you hear in t.b. sheets. this song just has body that alot of his songs are missing. by far my favorite van morrison song.

    it is crazy how the blues just get all of that stuff out. they are powerful enough to let a man air out his memory of his dying wife. what a feeling this song evokes.
    stoiaboyon February 05, 2007   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionDefinitely one of Van's best songs... Absolutely heartbreaking lyrics set to a fantastic melody.
    lalunacrecienteon March 15, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI might be totally wrong here, but I think that parallelisms can be drawn between these lyrics and The Yellow Wallpaper by Gilman. Here she is confined to this room, and he kind of taunts and berates her saying, "a fool's room." Strangely enough in both works, the cracks are negative,"And the sunlight shining through the crack in the window pane/ Numbs my brain." One would believe that the sunlight brought in would be a good thing, but it only serves as a reminder that there is an outside world. This of course is the reason being contained in such a room is a bad thing. In the two cases, it is the female who is confined to the room. Why does he get to leave? She is sick, which is of course the same premise of the Yellow Wallpaper.I am not saying that this is what Van Morrison meant, it could simply be about his wife. I just immediately thought of The Yellow Wallpaper when I heard this.
    lexiejosmileson November 29, 2009   Link
  • 0
    Lyric CorrectionThis was not written by John Lee Hooker, but by Van Morrison.
    Burnhard83on May 12, 2012   Link

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