Run Mountain

Lyrics: Traditional/J.E.Mainer
Music: Traditional/J.E.Mainer

Played by Jerry Garcia with the Sleepy Hollow Hog Stompers and the Hart Valley Drifters in the early 1960s. These are the lyrics from the Hart Valley Drifter's version:

I went up on the mountain
To get me a load of pine
I put it on the wagon
I rode down behind

Chorus
Run mountain, check a little hill (note 1)
Run mountain, check a little hill
Run mountain, check a little hill
There you'll get your fill

When I'm in the fields hard at work
I sit down to play
Thinking of my own true love
She's many miles away

[chorus]

Once I had a little girl
Got her from the south
Only thing that's wrong with her
She had too big a mouth

[chorus]

Took my girl to the blacksmith's shop
To have her mouth made small
Turned around a time or two
She swallowed that shop and all

[chorus]

When I'm in the fields hard at work
I sit down to play
Thinking of my own true love
She's many miles away

[chorus]

Many miles from my home
Roosters crow for day
Me upstairs with another man's wife
Better be getting away

[chorus]

Way up on the mountain
Give my horn a blow
Thought I heard my true love say
It's coming from my beau

[chorus]
Notes
(1) there is some debate whether it's "check a little hill" or "chuck a little hill"

Thanks to Matt Schofield for the lyrics from the Sleepy Hollow Hog Stompers version, with the verses in a different order and one additional verse:
Chorus
Run mountain, chuck a little hill
Run mountain, chuck a little hill
Run mountain, chuck a little hill
There you'll get your fill

Many miles from my home
Roosters crow for day
Me upstairs with another man's wife
Better be getting away

[chorus]

Way up on the mountain
Give my horn a blow
Thought I heard my true love say
It's coming from my beau

[chorus]

When I'm in the fields hard at work
I sit down to play
Thinking of my own true love
She's many miles away

[chorus]

Wished I had a needle and thread
Fine as I could sew
Sew my pretty girl to my side
Down the road I'd go

[chorus]

Once I had a little girl
Got her from the south
Only thing that's wrong with her
She had too big a mouth

[chorus]

Took my girl to the blacksmith's shop
To have her mouth made small
Turned around a time or two
She swallowed that shop and all

[chorus]
Jerry Garcia Recordings
     Date Album Recorded By
     fall 1962 Folk Time Hart Valley Drifters

The song is normally listed as "traditional" but the Hart Valley Drifters album credits it to J.E.Mainer. It was first recorded by J.E.Mainer's Mountaineers in 1949 with lyrics:
I went up on the mountain
To get me a load of pine
I put it on the wagon
I broke down behind

Chorus
Run mountain, check a little hill
Run mountain, check a little hill
Run mountain, check a little hill
There you'll get your fill

When I was real hard at work
I sit down to play
Thinking of my own true love
She's many miles away

[chorus]

Me six miles from my home
And the chickens crowing for day
Me upstairs with another man's wife
Better be getting away

[chorus]

I went up on the mountain
Give my horn a blow
I thought I heard my true love say
That's coming from my beau

[chorus]

If I had a needle and thread
Fine as I could sew
I'd sew my true love to my side
And down the road I'd go

[chorus]

Futher Information
For more information on recordings see Matt Schofield's Grateful Dead Family Discography

 


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