Ol' Slew-Foot

Lyrics: Hausey, Manney
Music: Hausey, Manney

Performed a few times by the Grateful Dead in 1969, with Bob Weir singing vocals (and Jerry Garcia playing pedal steel guitar on at least some performances).

High on the mountain, tell me what do you see?
Bear tracks, bear tracks, looking back at me
You'd better get your rifle before it's too late
The bear's got a little pig and its headed through the gate

Chorus
He's big around the middle, he's broad across the rump
Running ninety miles an hour, taking thirty feet a jump
Never been caught, Lord, he's never been treed
Some folks say he looks a lot like me

I saved up my money and I bought me some bees
They started making honey way up in the trees
I chopped down the tree but my honey's all gone
Ol' Slew Foot's done and made himself at home

[chorus]

Winter's coming on and it's forty below
River's frozen over now so where can he go
We chase him up the gully, run him in the well
Shoot him in the bottom just to listen to him yell

[chorus]
Some folks say he looks a lot like me
The song circulates in many lyric collections as "Bear Tracks" with completely mis-heard lyrics (actual lyrics in italics):
High on the mountain tell me what do you see
(High on the mountain, tell me what do you see?)
Bland shacks and railroad tracks looking back at me
(Bear tracks, bear tracks, looking back at me)
Better take Chicago Forest to the plain
(You'd better get your rifle before it's too late)
There's a Colorado River running through the green
(The bear's got a little pig and its headed through the gate)

Chorus
You been hanging around this world far too long
(He's big around the middle, he's broad across the rump)
Lord, at night for countless hours certainly are gone
(Running ninety miles an hour, taking thirty feet a jump)
Never been an outlaw, never been this free
(Never been caught, Lord, he's never been treed)
Except for tales of Colorado spring
(Some folks say he looks a lot like me)

Take up my money, thought I'd be free
(I saved up my money and I bought me some bees)
Saw that man a commin' thought they were that free
(They started making honey way up in the trees)
Chopped down that tree and my worries were all gone
(I chopped down the tree but my honey's all gone)
All of a sudden bullets were ringing through that home
(Ol' Slew Foot's done and made himself at home)

Chorus
You been hanging around this world for far too long
(He's big around the middle, he's broad across the rump)
Hanging around the mountain home, back in half an hour
(Running ninety miles an hour, taking thirty feet a jump)
Way back in the swamp, boys way back in the trees
(Never been caught, Lord, he's never been treed)
Colorado payroll in the Colorado spring
(Some folks say he looks a lot like me)

You hear them coming, the voices of love
(Winter's coming on and it's forty below)
You must come courting through this world or go
(River's frozen over now so where can he go)
Texas in the dell, running in the well
(We chase him up the gully, run him in the well)
You know all you can do is raise hell
(Shoot him in the bottom just to listen to him yell)

Chorus
Stick around this world for far too long
(He's big around the middle, he's broad across the rump)
Back in half an hour with the...
(Running ninety miles an hour, taking thirty feet a jump)
Way back in the swamps, way back in the trees
(Never been caught, Lord, he's never been treed)
Never been this free in the Colorado spring
(Some folks say he looks a lot like me)
As sun come up as alive as I can be
(Some folks say he looks a lot like me)