"Johnny Was" as written by and Rita Anderson Marley....
Woman hold her head and cry
'Cause her son had been shot down in the street and died
From a stray bullet

Woman hold her head and cry
Accompanying her was a passerby, who
Saw the woman cry

Wondering, can she work it out?
Now she knows that the wages of sin is death
The gift of God is life

Oh, oh
Oh, oh
Johnny was a good man
Oh, yeah

Woman hold her head and cry
'Cause her son had been shot down in the street and died
Just because of the system

Woman hold her head and cry
Comforting her, I was passing by and I
I saw the woman cry

She cried, oh, oh
Oh, oh, Johnny was a good man
He never did a thing wrong, no

Take it down

Johnny went out on a Saturday night
He never hurt anybody, never started no bar room fight
Johnny never did nobody no wrong
He never hurt anybody never-ever-ever-ever, johnny was a good man
Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, yeah-yeah

Johnny was a good
Johnny was a good man, I tell ya
Johnny was a good man
Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny was a good man, yeah

Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny
Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny
Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny was a good man, hey

On a top-floor flat in the middle of the night
There's a man with rifle and Johnny in his sight
I said oh no-no-no-no-no-no
We can't let that kind of thing happen here no more
Oh, no

Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, yeah

A single shot rings out in a Belfast night and I said oh-oh
Oh-oh
Oh-oh
Oh-oh
Oh-oh
Oh-oh
Oh-oh
Oh-oh
Oh-oh

Johnny was a good man
Johnny was a good man
Johnny was a good man
Johnny was a good man, said

Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, hey, hey

Can a woman's tender care
Cease towards the child she bears, oh-oh?

Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, Johnny, hey, hey, yeah!

Too many Johnnies, too many Johnnies
Too many Johnnies, somebody care
I care!


Lyrics submitted by black_cow_of_death

"Johnny Was" as written by Bob Marley

Lyrics © Peermusic Publishing, CAYMAN MUSIC OBO BSI ENTERPRISES

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

Johnny Was song meanings
Add your thoughts

7 Comments

sort form View by:
  • 0
    General CommentNO POSTS! This is one of the most touching songs ever! It's about a friend getting SHOT! Because of the SYSTEM! Come on people, show the love!
    the_roadon May 06, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is a really good song In my opinion their best.
    funeral of heartson May 25, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI don't think this is their best song because it is actually Bob Marleys song. But it's the best Bob Marley cover I have ever heard. I absolutely love the break down in the middle.
    Vindoon December 16, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentGot to agree this is the best cover SLF have done, even better than marley's original, the version on the Hanx album is the best recording I have heard and to be there and see them doing it live is indescribable certainly makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end
    P.A.Fon January 15, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentBest guitar intro ever and knocks Marley's version into a cocked hat.
    bearhunteron March 23, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWhen they bust into the reggae jam halfway through this song just becomes ridiculously awesome
    Bsquared445on December 18, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt was written by Bob Marley's wife I think. Rita Marley.
    badgerboyon April 18, 2010   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
explain