"Playing in the Band" as written by Robert Hunter and Bob Weir....
Some folks trust to reason
Others trust to might
I don't trust to nothing
But I know it come out right

Say it once again now
Oh, I hope you understand
When it's done and over
Lord, a man is just a man

Playing
Playing in the band
Daybreak
Daybreak on the land

Some folks look for answers
Others look for fights
Some folks up in treetops
Just look to see the sights

But I can tell your future
Well, just look what's in your hand
But I can't stop for nothing
I'm just playing in the band

Playing
Playing in the band
Daybreak
Daybreak on the land

Standing on a tower
World at my command
You just keep a turning
While I'm playing in the band

If a man among you
Got no sin upon his hand
Let him cast a stone at me
For playing in the band

Playing
Playing in the band
Daybreak
Daybreak on the land

Playing
Playing in the band
Daybreak
Daybreak on the land

Playing
Playing in the band
Daybreak
Daybreak on the land

Playing
Playing in the band
Daybreak
Daybreak on the land


Lyrics submitted by itsmyownmind

"Playing in the Band" as written by Robert C. Hunter Michael S. Hart

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

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Playing in the Band song meanings
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8 Comments

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  • 0
    General CommentHow has no one commented on this song?
    Quite possibly one of the best songs they jam out to
    Nugstothedomeon January 13, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI cant believe it either! this is an awesome song to chill to if your drinking and playing some cards.....a song everyone can enjoy!! jerry garcia was a GOD!
    chasemon January 01, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti think this song is an answer for the followers of the band. bobby is saying "i'm not a messiah, i don't have the answers, i'm just playing in the band." they can't be held responsible for what the dead heads do, you know? they're just playing music.

    he's obviously comparing himself to jesus, too. maybe as a misunderstood prophet?
    stevenminguson May 14, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthe recording on Weir's album "Ace" is worth a nomination for best Dead studio recording ever. Take a listen and agree with me...
    orphan_yachtson July 02, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentFirst released on 'Skulls & Roses' in 1971 and written by Robert Hunter and Bob Weir, who sang the song for the Dead. The song often appeared towards the end of a first live set, and, encouraged by Deadheads, the band very often used the song as an end to their famous jams that would encompass several songs.

    Bobby was trying to tell Deadheads that the dead weren't Gods, they just wanted to play their music and have people listen.

    *When performed by the Grateful Dead, the lyrics read "Some folks up in treetops, just look to see the sights..."

    When performed by Bob Weir on Ace, several changes are made, including singing the above line as it is seen in these lyrics: "Some folks up in treetops, just looking for their kites."

    He also sings "Daybreak while I'm playing in the band," in place of "Daybreak, daybreak on the land," and in some places sings "Playing, like a wave upon the sand."
    thomasrjon March 08, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAlso known as the "Main Ten," because of the irregular meter; Hunter and Weir wrote the tune in ten.
    thomasrjon March 09, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI always loved the verse "I can tell your future, just look what's in your hand." Your present actions determine your future. (I can't tell you how many times I heard that verse live with a joint in my hand. Eventually though I'd hear it and I'd have my partner in my arms....)
    sandpitlakeon July 31, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHands down my #1 favorite Dead song of all. Check out the 45+ minute monster jam version from 5/21/74 in Seattle - whoa! (My personal all-time favorite tripping tune...)

    I've always viewed "playing in the band" as a larger metaphor for life & living in general. "If a man among you got no sin upon his hand/Let him cast a stone at me for playing in the band..."

    We're *all* just "playing in the band", so be and let be.

    Peace, be well.
    BoomerPetwayon August 19, 2011   Link

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