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Lyrics for Boy Named Sue by Johnny Cash

Boy Named Sue - Lyrics

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Well, my daddy left home when I was three
and he didnt leave much to ma and me
just this old guitar and an empty bottle of booze
now i dont blame him cause he ran and hid
but the meanest thing that he ever did
was before he left he went and named me Sue
Well he must a' thought that it was quite a joke
and it got a lot of laughs from a lots of folk
it seems I had to fight my whole life through
some gal would giggle and I'd get red
and some guy'd laugh and I'd bust his head
I tell ya life ain't easy for a boy named Sue

Well i grew up quick and I grew up mean
my fists got hard and my wits got keen
I'd roam from town to town to hide my shame
but I made me a vow to the moon and stars
that I'd search the honky-tonks and bars
and kill that man that give me that awful name
Well it was Gatlinburg in mid July
and I'd just hit town and my throat was dry
I thought I'd stop and have myself a brew
at an old saloon on a street of mud
there at a table dealin' stud
sat the dirty mangy dog that named me Sue

Well I knew that snake was my own sweet dad
from a worn out picture that my mother'd had
and I knew that scar on his check and his evil eye
he was big and bent and grey and old
and I looked at him and my blood ran cold
and I said 'My name is Sue how do you do
now you're gonna die!'

Yeah! that's what I told him
Well I hit him hard right between the eyes
and he went down but to my surprise
he come up with a knife and cut off a piece of my ear
but I busted a chair right across his teeth
and we crashed through the wall and into the street
kickin' and a'gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer

I tell ya I've fought tougher men
but I really can't remember when
he kicked like a mule and he bit like a crocodile
I heard him laugh and then I heard him cuss
and he went for his gun and I pulled mine first
he stood there lookin' at me and I saw him smile

And he said "Son this world is rough
and if a man's gonna make it he's got to be tough
and I know I wouldn't be there to help you along
so I give you that name and I said goodbye
I knew you'd have to get tough or die
and it's that name that helped to make you strong"

He said "Now you just fought one hell of a fight
and I know you hate me and you got the right
to kill me now, and I wouldn't blame you if you do
but you oughtta think me before I die
for the gravel in your guts and the spit in your eye
cause I'm the son of a bitch that named you Sue"

Yeah! well what could I do?
What COULD I do?
I got all choked up and I threw down my gun
and I called him my pa and he called me his son
and I come away with a different point of veiw
and I think about him now and then
every time I try, and every time I win
and if I ever have a son I think I am gonna name him
Bill or George any damn thing but Sue
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