Black Throated Wind

Lyrics: John Barlow
Music: Bob Weir

Bringing me down, I'm running aground
Blind in the light of the interstate cars
Passing me by, the buses and semis
Plunging like stones from a slingshot on Mars

But I'm here by the road, bound to the load
That I picked up in ten thousand cafes and bars
Alone with the rush of the drivers who won't pick me up
The highway, the moon, the clouds, and the stars

The black throated wind keeps on pouring in
With its words of a life where nothing is new
Ah, Mother American Night, I'm lost from the light
Oh I'm drowning in you

I left Saint Louis, City of Blues
In the midst of a storm I'd rather forget
I tried to pretend it came to an end
'Cause you weren't the woman I once thought I'd met

But I can't deny, that times have gone by
Where I never had doubts or thoughts of regrets
And I was a man when all this began
Who wouldn't think twice about being there yet

The black throated wind whispering sin,
And it speaks of a life that passes like dew
It forced me to see
That you've done better by me
Better by me than I've done by you

Now what's to found, racing around
You carry your pain wherever you go
Full of the blues, and trying to lose
You ain't going to learn what you don't want to know

So I give you my eyes, and all of their lies
Please help them to learn as well as to see
And capture a glance, whoa and make it a dance
Of looking at you looking at me

The black throated wind keeps on pouring in
With its words of a life that could almost be true
Ah, Mother American Night, here comes the light
I'm turning around that's what I'm going to do
Going back home that's what I'm gonna do
Some alternative words were tested out in 1990 but did not last:
Verse 2
Well, it's me and the road, yeah, we're unlocking the code
That will lead us to some as yet unforseen bar
Alone with the rush of the drivers who won't pick me up
The highway, the moon, the clouds and the stars

But I'm here by the road, yeah, unravelling the code
That will lead us to some as yet unforseen bar

Verse 3
The black-throated wind keeps on pouring in
Like a siren it promises everything new
Ah, Mother American Night, invisible light
Ohhh, I'm flying in you

The black-throated wind keeps on pouring in
With its words of a life where everything's new

Verse 4
I left St Louis, the City of Blues
On a screaming blue bender I'd rather forget
With no scars that show, the keys to the road
A couple of tens and some stale cigarettes

Verse 5
But I can't deny that times have gone by
Nothing is left but thoughts of regret
When I was a man, with so much in hand
That a bird in the bush would be singing there yet

But I can't deny that times have gone by
When being with her was as good as it gets

Verse 6
The black-throated wind, whispering sin
And speaking of life that passes like dew
It's led me to see if you want to be free
Have your way with each day as its granted to you

Verse 7
What's to be found, racing around
You carry your blues to the edge of the sky
Think a coyote could care about birds in the air?
Think a raven thinks coyotes should learn how to fly?

We drew lines all around us when I was down
So now mine turns out to go right to the sky

Verse 8
So I give you my eyes, they were just a disguise
Anyway where I'm going it's too dark to see
Yes, and toss me to Chance and watch me dance
Choreography certain as bats on the breeze

So I leave you my eyes ...

Verse 9
The black-throated wind keeps on pouring in
With it's words of a lie I think just might be true
Oh, Mother American Night, here comes the light
I'm going right on ahead, that's what I'm gonna do

The black-throated wind keeps on pouring in
The prophet that promises everything new
Ah, Mother American Night, come wrong or come right
I will always go onward in you
Grateful Dead Recordings
     Date Album
     28 Mar 1972 Dick's Picks Vol 30
      7 Apr 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
      8 Apr 1972 Steppin' Out with the Grateful Dead: England '72 (note 1)
     11 Apr 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     14 Apr 1972 Europe '72: Vol. 2 (note 1)
     16 Apr 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     17 Apr 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     24 Apr 1972 Rockin' The Rhein (note 1)
     26 Apr 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     29 Apr 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
      3 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
      7 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     10 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     11 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     13 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     16 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     18 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     23 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     24 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     25 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     26 May 1972 Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings
     21 Jul 1972 Download Series Vol 10
     27 Aug 1972 Sunshine Daydream (CD only)
     17 Sep 1972 Dick's Picks Vol 23
     21 Sep 1972 Dick's Picks Vol 36
     27 Sep 1972 Dick's Picks Vol 11
      9 Nov 1973 Winterland 1973 - The Complete Recordings
     11 Nov 1973 Winterland 1973 - The Complete Recordings
     21 Nov 1973 Road Trips Volume 4, Number 3
     30 Nov 1973 Dick's Picks Vol 14
     23 Mar 1974 Dick's Picks Vol 24
     14 May 1974 Dave's Picks Volume 9
     10 Sep 1974 Dick's Picks Vol 7
     19 Oct 1974 Steal Your Face
     16 Mar 1990 Spring 1990
     26 Mar 1990 Spring 1990
     14 Jun 1991 View From The Vault II (video/DVD & CD soundtrack)
Notes
(1) also on the box set Europe '72 - The Complete Recordings

Recordings from dead.net Tapers Section
 
Bob Weir Recordings
     Date Album Recorded By
     studio 1972 Ace Bob Weir
     1 Dec 2012 A Buckdancer's Choice Bob Weir (solo)

"The Dead" Concert Recordings

Ratdoglive CDs and downloads

Bob Weir Solo Acoustic Live!

Weir-Robinson-Greene Trio Live!


Futher Information
For an online discussion of the lyrics to this song see the deadsongs.vue conference on The Well.
For more information on recordings see Matt Schofield's Grateful Dead Family Discography
For information on references in the lyrics see David Dodd's Annotated Grateful Dead Lyrics
For online chords and TAB see www.rukind.com
For sheet music, see:
          Grateful Dead Anthology Volume 2 (piano arrangement)

 


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