When I Paint My Masterpiece

Lyrics: Bob Dylan
Music: Bob Dylan

This became a first-set staple for the Grateful Dead after Bob Weir introduced it in 1987. He has also sung it with many of his solo bands - and Jerry Garcia sang it with some of his bands too.

Oh, the streets of Rome are filled with rubble
Ancient footprints are everywhere
Well you can almost think that you're seein' double
On a cold dark night on the Spanish Stairs
Got to hurry on back to my hotel room
Where I've got me a date with Botticelli's niece
She promised she'd be right there with me
When I paint my masterpiece

Oh, the hours I've spent inside the Coliseum
Dodging lions and wastin' time
Oh, those mighty kings of the jungle
I can hardly stand to see 'em
Well, it sure has been a long hard ride (note 1)
Train wheels runnin' through the back of my memory
When I ran on the hilltop following a pack of wild geese
Someday, life will be sweet like a rhapsody (note 2)
When I paint my masterpiece

Sailin' 'round the world in a dirty gondola (note 3)
Oh, to be back in the land of Coca-Cola

I left Rome and landed in Brussels
On a plane ride so bumpy that I almost cried
Clergymen in uniform and young girls pullin' muscles
Everyone was there to greet me when I stepped inside (note 4)
Newspapermen eating candy
Had to be held down by big police
Someday, everything is gonna be diff'rent
When I paint my masterpiece

Someday, everything is gonna be diff'rent
When I paint my masterpiece
When I paint my masterpiece

(1) the original Dylan version is "... long hard climb"
(2) the original Dylan line is "Someday, everything is gonna be smooth like a rhapsody"
(3) these lines are in the Dylan original, but Weir mostly omitted them (but thanks to Chris Cahill, David Stone and Chuck Monk for pointing out that he did sing them a few times in 1990, 1994 and 1995.)
(4) on the version on "Dozin' At The Knick", Weir simply repeats the line "It sure has been a long hard ride" here

Grateful Dead Recordings
     Date Album
     12 Jun 1987 Giants Stadium 1987, 1989, 1991 Boxed Set
     26 Jul 1987 View From The Vault IV (DVD & CD soundtrack)
     18 Sep 1987 30 Trips Around The Sun
      3 Oct 1987 View From The Vault III (DVD & CD soundtrack)
     31 Dec 1987 Ticket To New Year's (video/DVD only)
     31 Mar 1988 Road Trips Volume 4, Number 2
      4 Jul 1989 Truckin' Up To Buffalo (DVD & CD soundtrack)
     10 Jul 1989 Giants Stadium 1987, 1989, 1991 Boxed Set
     11 Oct 1989 Postcards Of The Hanging
     18 Mar 1990 Spring 1990 (The Other One)
     25 Mar 1990 Dozin' At The Knick (note a)
     29 Mar 1990 Wake Up To Find Out (note b)
      3 Apr 1990 Spring 1990 (The Other One)
     18 Jul 1990 Dave's Picks Volume 40
     27 Oct 1990 30 Trips Around The Sun
     17 Jun 1991 Giants Stadium 1987, 1989, 1991 Boxed Set (CD and DVD)
     27 May 1993 Road Trips Vol 2, No 4
Jerry Garcia Recordings
      2 Feb 1980 Jerry Garcia Plays Dylan Jerry Garcia Band
     29 Feb 1980 Way After Midnight Jerry Garcia Band
     27 Jan 1986 GarciaLive Volume 14 Jerry Garcia/John Kahn
     28 Feb 1986 Pure Jerry: Marin Veterans Memorial Auditorium Jerry Garcia/John Kahn
     25 Oct 1987 Pure Jerry: Lunt-Fontanne: Best Of The Rest Jerry Garcia Band
     31 Oct 1987 Pure Jerry: Lunt-Fontanne Jerry Garcia Band
Bob Weir Recordings
     Date Album Recorded By
      6 Sep 1989 Fall 1989: The Long Island Sound Bob Weir and Rob Wasserman
Other Recordings
     Date Album Recorded By
     1993 Dead Ringers Dead Ringers

(a) also in Spring 1990 (The Other One)
(b) also included as part of box set Spring 1990 (The Other One)

The original Dylan version first appeared on "Greatest Hits Vol 2"

Further Information
For more information on recordings see Matt Schofield's Grateful Dead Family Discography
For online chords and TAB see www.rukind.com
For sheet music, see:
          Jerry Garcia Songbook (vocal line and chords)


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