"Casper The Friendly Ghost" as written by and Daniel Johnston....
He was smiling through his own personal hell
Dropped his last dime in a wishing well
But he was hoping to close and then he fell
Now he's Casper the Friendly Ghost

He was always polite to the people who'd tell him
That he was nothing but a lazy bum, but
Goodbye to them he had to go
Now he's Casper the Friendly Ghost

Nobody treated him nice while he was alive
You can't buy no respect like the librarian said, but
Everybody respects the dead, they
Love a friendly ghost

And now they say we'll never forget what he learned
As we were mean to him but he never burned
Just singing, "love lives forever!"
Thank you, Casper the Friendly Ghost
Thank you, Casper the Friendly Ghost


Lyrics submitted by daffy

"Casper the Friendly Ghost" as written by Daniel Johnston

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Casper The Friendly Ghost song meanings
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11 Comments

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  • +3
    General CommentIf you haven't already, check out the 'The Devil and Daniel Johnston" documentary, it does a really great job of detailing Daniel's struggles, and give insight into what his songs mean. Casper is a continuing theme through his music and art. He was definitely obsessed with the image, most likely because he identified with being an outsider. Casper was the 'friendly' ghost who no one understood and was shunned by those in his circle for not being scary enough, and shunned by those in the real world because he was a ghost. For a time (especially when the song was orignally written) Daniel was ostrisized by his family and friends for being an outsider, and had not yet been accepted by the music community. While me may have written this as an ode to his favorite cartoon, the similarities between the two should not be overlooked....
    everybodylovesericon May 01, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI heard this song first from the movie KIDS and it's great. I think this song means that while this kid was alive, no one respected him much, but now that he is gone, people are starting to recgonize how he wasn't such a bad kid after all, just perhaps fell into the wrong crowd.
    suchaheroon January 01, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti think this song is probably simply about Casper the Ghost. Daniel Johnston has an obsession with casper the ghost.
    fsharpflatmajoron April 11, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti think this song is probably simply about Casper the Ghost. Daniel Johnston has an obsession with casper the ghost.
    fsharpflatmajoron April 11, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is about himself, just like many of his other songs, such as the Hate Song, one of my favorites....oh and The Monster Iside of Me.
    KaylaJaeon February 22, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMAJOR STEEZ
    D.J'S STILL REPPIN FROM THE REEEEEEEEL UNDAGRAND
    vulgaron May 30, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWhen was this song made? great song though
    whiterabbitXon June 20, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commenthaven't you ever had a death fantasy? where you fantasize about your death, how things will be, how people will react when you die?

    everybody respects the dead
    despairporton August 02, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentYou can't buy no respect like the librarian said

    who does he refer to here?
    mcfarlanerdon February 26, 2009   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationHe is referring to his own song "Grievances", in which there is the line: And the librarian said, you can't buy no respect.


    On the surface this song is obviously about someone only being respected after they die, but I think underneath it is even more bitter. It sounds to me like Daniel Johnston is saying no one will like him until he is famous, and even though that bothers him, he will be respectful to where he came from.

    Then again, this is just my interpretation, I have watched no documentaries.
    Patrykon October 10, 2009   Link

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