Shoulda Had Been Me

Lyrics: Bruce Cockburn, Michael Nash, Bob Weir
Music: Bruce Cockburn, Michael Nash, Bob Weir

A Bob Weir song written as part of a planned musical about the life of Satchel Paige, the baseball player. This song dramatizes Paige's reaction to the news that Jackie Robinson had been tapped as the first black baseball player to play in the major leagues.

Bob Weir has played it a few times with Ratdog, and also with David Murray as an instrumental. Thanks to Ruth Allison for the lyrics from a Ratdog tape.

I was your diamond shining in the rough
You were my truest muse, first and only love
My inspiration, you made me rise above
I thought we had it all

Seasons changing now, the bird is on the wing
Guess it's autumn now, ain't no hidden spring
No dogwood blossoms, no robin sing
Leaves just turn and fall

Funny how blue skies can turn to grey
Funny how fortune can turn and walk the other way
Can't take back time, just don't work that way
Still there's just one thing I gotta say

Ain't no denyin', 'cause it's plain to see (note 1)
Shoulda had been me

Yesterday's a stranger, strolls on by so fast
Best forget the future if you're living in the past
Nothin' ain't worth nothin', all except what's gonna last
Rest is all just days gone by

Nightbirds calling as the shadows fade away
Guess it's gettin late now, ain't much left to say
No hide-and-seek twilight games left to play
I just can't figure why

I turned the tides for you, showed the breeze where to blow
Made the thunder roll, made the rivers flow
Spun dawn into daylight, with the sundown aglow
If that wasn't enough of a show

I'd shine the moon and when nighttime was done
Put out the stars, call back the sun
I'll be a man, I'll hold my tongue
But I know that, you know that, I was the one

Ain't no denyin', 'cause it's plain to see (note 2)
I'm all done cryin', yes it's just gonna be
Ain't no denying, just let it be
Shoulda had been me
Shoulda had been me
Shoulda had been me
Shoulda had been me
(1) Weir sometimes sang "Ain't no denyin', any fool can see"
(2) A variant of these lines was
Ain't no denyin', any fool can see
I'm all through tryin', just gonna let it be
Ain't no use cryin', it's just gonna be
Shoulda had been me
     Date Album Recorded By
     1996 Dark Star (The Music Of The Grateful Dead) David Murray (instrumental)

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


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