Cosmic Charley

Lyrics: Robert Hunter
Music: Jerry Garcia

Cosmic Charley, how do you do? (note 1)
Truckin' in style along the avenue
Dum dee dum dee doodley doo
Go on home, your mother's calling you

Kalico Kahlia, come tell me the news
Calamity's waiting for a way to get to her
Rosy red and electric blue
I bought you a paddle for your paper canoe

Say you'll come back when you can
Whenever your airplane happens to land
Maybe I'll be back here too
It all depends on what's with you

Hung up waiting for a windy day
Kite on ice since the first of February
Mama keeps saying that the wind might blow
But standing here, I say I just don't know

New ones coming as the old ones go
Everything's moving here, but much too slow now
A little bit quicker and we might have time
To say "How do you do?" before we're left behind

Calliope wail like a seaside zoo
The very last lately enquired about you
It's really very one or two
The first you wanted, the last I knew

I just wonder if you shouldn't feel
Less concern about the deep unreal
The very first word is "How do you do?"
The last "Go home, your mama's calling you"

Calling you
Calling you
Calling you
Calling you

Go on home your mama's calling you
Go on home your mama's calling you
Go on home your mama's calling you
(1) the spelling in the Hunter lyric book "Box Of Rain" is "Charley", though the song title often appears as "Charlie"

Grateful Dead Recordings
     Date Album
     studio 1969 Aoxomoxoa (note 2)
     17 Jan 1969 30 Days Of The Dead (2018)
     25 Jan 1969 Aoxomoxoa (note 4)
     11 Feb 1969 Fillmore East 2-11-69 (note 3)
     27 Feb 1969 Fillmore West 1969 -The Complete Recordings
      1 Mar 1969 Fillmore West 1969 - The Complete Recordings
      8 Jun 1969 30 Days Of The Dead (2012)
     11 Dec 1969 Dave's Picks Volume 10 (bonus disc)
      2 Jan 1970 Dave's Picks Volume 30
      3 Jan 1970 Dave's Picks 2019 Bonus Disc
      2 May 1970 Dick's Picks Vol 8
     15 May 1970 Road Trips Vol 3 No 3 (early show)
     14 Jun 1976 June 1976 Box Set
     19 Jun 1976 June 1976 Box Set
     16 Jul 1976 Dave's Picks Volume 18 (bonus disc)
     25 Sep 1976 Dick's Picks Vol 20
Phil Lesh and Friends Recordings
     18 May 2006 Live At The Warfield
Other Recordings
     Date Album Recorded By
     1999 Gathering On The Mountain, Live Part 1 Missing Man Formation
(2) also on the compilation What A Long Strange Trip It's Been. Also released as the Grateful Dead 7" single volume 4.
(3) not listed on the track list, but included at the end of "And We Bid You Goodnight", though the master tape runs out during the song
(4) bonus track on remastered album, first released as part of the box set The Golden Road (1965-1973)

Further 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
For sheet music, see:
          Grateful Dead Anthology Volume 1 (piano arrangement)
          Garcia/Hunter Songbook (vocal line and chords/TAB)


Home | Find words/phrases| Find Song lyrics| Dead originals| Dead covers|