Little Jesse was a gambler, night and day
He used crooked cards and dice.
Sinful guy, good hearted but had no soul
Heart was hard and cold like ice
Jesse was a wild reckless gambler
Won a gang of change
Altho' a many gambler's heart he led in pain
Began to spend a-loose his money
Began to be blue, sad and all alone
His heart had even turned to stone.
What broke Jesse's heart while he was blue and all alone
Sweet Lorena packed up and gone
Police walked up and shot my friend Jesse down
Boys i got to die today
He had a gang of crapshooters and gamblers at his bedside
Here are the words he had to say:
Guess I ought to know
Exactly how I wants to go
(How you wanna go, Jesse?)
Eight crapshooters to be my pallbearers
Let 'em be veiled down in black
I want nine men going to the graveyard, bubba
And eight men comin back
I want a gang of gamblers gathered 'round my coffin-side
Crooked card printed on my hearse
Don't say the crapshooters'll never grieve over me
My life been a doggone curse
Send poker players to the graveyard
Dig my grave with the ace of spades
I want twelve polices in my funeral march
High sheriff playin' blackjack, lead the parade
I want the judge and solic'ter who jailed me 14 times
Put a pair of dice in my shoes (then what?)
Let a deck of cards be my tombstone
I got the dyin' crapshooter's blues
Sixteen real good crapshooters
Sixteen bootleggers to sing a song
Sixteen racket men gamblin'
Couple tend bar while i'm rollin' along
He wanted 22 womens outta the Hampton Hotel
26 off-a South Bell
29 women outta North Atlanta
Know little Jesse didn't pass out so swell
His head was achin', heart was thumpin'
Little Jesse went to hell bouncin' and jumpin'
Folks, don't be standin' around ole Jesse cryin'
He wants everybody to do the charleston whilst he dyin'
One foot up, a toenail dragging
Throw my buddy Jesse in the hoodoo wagon
Come here mama with that can of booze
The dyin crapshooter's - leavin' the world
The dyin' crapshooter's - goin' down slow
With the dyin' crapshooter's blues.