Song of the Day #3,984: ‘Johnny B. Goode’ – Chuck Berry

Today’s random selection is one of the most famous and beloved rock songs of all time. Chuck Berry’s brother Marvin first heard the track played by a young man named Marty McFly during the ‘Under the Sea’ dance at a Hill Valley, California, high school, and the rest is history.

‘Johnny B. Goode’ is a loosely autobiographical tale of Berry’s rise, though by all accounts he could read and write just fine. Berry says the original lyrics used “colored boy” instead of “country boy” but he knew it wouldn’t get any radio play in that form.

This song was included on a collection of music from around the world that was sent into space on the Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 crafts in the late 70s. I’d love to see the look on an alien’s face when it first hears that opening riff.

[Verse 1]
Deep down in Louisiana close to New Orleans
Way back up in the woods among the evergreens
There stood a log cabin made of earth and wood
Where lived a country boy named Johnny B. Goode
Who never ever learned to read or write so well
But he could play a guitar just like a ringing a bell

[Chorus]
Go, go
Go Johnny go, go
Go Johnny go, go
Go Johnny go, go
Go Johnny go, go
Johnny B. Goode

[Verse 2]
He used to carry his guitar in a gunny sack
Go sit beneath the tree by the railroad track
Oh, the engineers would see him sitting in the shade
Strumming with the rhythm that the drivers made
People passing by they would stop and say
Oh my, but that little country boy could play

[Chorus]
Go, go
Go Johnny go, go
Go Johnny go, go
Go Johnny go, go
Go Johnny go, go
Johnny B. Goode

[Verse 3]
His mother told him “Someday you will be a man
And you will be the leader of a big old band
Many people coming from miles around
To hear you play your music when the sun go down
Maybe someday your name will be in lights
Saying ‘Johnny B. Goode Tonight'”

[Chorus]
Go, go
Go Johnny go
Go go go, Johnny go
Oh go go, Johnny go
Oh go go, Johnny go
Go, Johnny B. Goode

One thought on “Song of the Day #3,984: ‘Johnny B. Goode’ – Chuck Berry

  1. Dana Gallup says:

    I wonder if the Random ITunes Fairy was aware of Daniel graduating from high school today, as I can’t help but think he might be sending a message to him:

    His mother told him “Someday you will be a man
    And you will be the leader of a big old band
    Many people coming from miles around
    To hear you play your music when the sun go down
    Maybe someday your name will be in lights
    Saying “Daniel B. Goode Tonight.”

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