James Taylor - Sweet Baby James

First performance: 24/04/1970


Coverinfo

Bruce used the song as little snippet: 
 

One show, with Steel Mill the sole act on the bill. This was a replacement concert for a cancellation of the musical "Hair". Bruce recites the opening line of James Taylor's song: "Sweet Baby James" during "Garden State Parkway Blues".
 
...There is a young cowboy, he lives on the range ...
  

Songinfo

"Sweet Baby James" is a song written and recorded by James Taylor that serves as the opening and title track from his 1970 breakthrough album Sweet Baby James. It was released as the first single from the album but did not chart. Nonetheless, it is one of his best-known and most popular tunes, considered a classic. Taylor considers it his best song. The song was written by Taylor for the son of his older brother Alex, who was also named James (and indeed was named after him). Deliberately a cross between a cowboy song and a lullaby, it was first thought up by Taylor as he was driving through Carolina to meet his infant nephew for the first time.
 
 
 

Bruce on the artist

Lyrics

There is a young cowboy, he lives on the range.
His horse and his cattle are his only companions.
He works in the saddle and he sleeps in the canyons, waiting for summer, his pastures to change.
And as the moon rises he sits by his fire, thinking about women and glasses of beer.
And closing his eyes as the doggies retire, he sings out a song which is soft but it's clear
As if maybe someone could hear...
Goodnight you moon light ladies, rock-a-bye sweet baby James.
Deep greens and blues are the colors I choose, won't you let me go down in my dreams?
And rock-a-bye sweet baby James.
Now the first of December was covered with snow
And so was the turnpike from Stockbridge to Boston.
Though the Berkshires seemed dreamlike on account of that frosting,
With ten miles behind me and ten thousand more to go.
There's a song that they sing when they take to the highway,
A song that they sing when they take to the sea,
A song that they sing of their home in the sky, maybe you can believe it if it helps you to sleep,
But singing works just fine for me.
So, goodnight you moon light ladies, rock-a-bye sweet baby James.
Deep greens and blues are the colors I choose, won't you let me go down in my dreams?
And rock-a-bye sweet baby James.