Casey Jones

Composer: Traditional

Grateful Dead

info Road Trips: Vol 3, Number 3: Fillmore East, 5/15/70, 2010

Jerry Garcia

info Almost Acoustic, Jerry Garcia Acoustic Band, 1988
info Shady Grove, Jerry Garcia and David Grisman, 1996
info Acoustic Disc 100% Handmade Music, Vol. 3, Various Artists, 1997
info Pure Jerry: Lunt-Fontanne, NYC, 10/31/87, Jerry Garcia Acoustic Band/Jerry Garcia Band, 2004
info On Broadway: Act One: Oct 28, 1987, JGAB/JGB, 2015
info Shady Grove: Deluxe Edition, Garcia/Grisman, 2020


no info George Reneau, 1924
no info Furry Lewis, 1928?
no info Haywire Mac, 1950
no info Anthology of American Folk Music; Vol. 1, Ballads, Furry Lewis, 1952
no info A Dead Beat Guitar and the Mississippi Blues, K. C. Douglas, 1952
info Square Dance Tonight, Tommy Jackson, 1958
no info Furry Lewis: Furry Lewis, 1960
no info Rural Blues: A Study of the Vocal and Instrumental Resources, Various Artists (Furry Lewis), 1960
no info Songs Of The Railroad, Merrill Jay Singers, 1961
no info America's Best Loved Folk Songs, Milt Okun, 1961
info Maltby Swings Folksongs, Richard Maltby, 1961
info Folk Songs and Blues, Mississippi John Hurt, 1963
no info Earl Robinson Sings, Earl Robinson, 1963
no info Music From The Ozarks, Various Artists (John D Mounce and Lee Mounce), 1964
info Traditional Music At Newport, 1964, Part 1, Various Artists (Joe Patterson), 1965
info Songs With A Railroad Ring, Various Artists (New Christy Minstrels), 1965
no info 23 Bluegrass Favorites, Raymond Fairchild and The Frosty Mountain Boys, 1967
no info America's Best Loved Folk Songs, Milt Okun, 196?
no info Between the Sound and the Sea: Music of the North Carolina Outer Banks, Various Artists (Jule Garrish), 1977
no info Rackensack. Volume 1, Various Artists (Percy Copeland), 1972
no info Haywire Mac, Harry "Haywire Mac" McClintock, 1972
no info Charlie Monroe on the Noonday Jamboree - 1944, Charlie Monroe and the Kentucky Pardners, 1974
no info Mississipi John Hurt, A Legacy, Mississipi John Hurt, 1975
no info Drive Dull Care Away. Vol 1, Joe Hickerson, 1976
no info Folk Songs of America, Frances Abbot, 1978
info When I'm Gone, Elizabeth Cotten, 1979
no info Everybody Sing, Vol 2, Ed McCurdy, 197?
no info Great Hudson River Revival, Taj Mahal, 1980
no info Ballads and Railroad Songs, Vernon Dalhart, 1980
info Jazz Tribune No. 51: Memphis Blues (1928 - 1930), Various Artists (Cannon's Jug Stompers), 1984
no info J'Ai Vu Le Loup, Le Renard et La Belette: Balfa Brothers, 1988
no info Complete Works 1927-1929, Furry Lewis, 1990
no info West Virginia Hills, Reya Fincham, 1992
no info American Industrial Ballads, Pete Seeger, 1992
info Blues Masters, Vol. 12, Memphis Blues, Various Artists (Furry Lewis), 1993
no info 100% Handmade Music, Vol. 3, Various Artists (Garcia / Grisman), 1997
info Mystery Train: Classic Railroad Songs, Vol. 2, Various Artists (Johnny Cash), 1997
no info Railroadin' Classics - 16 Great Instrumentals, Various Artists, 19??
no info The First Recorded Railway Songs, Vernon Dalhart, 19??
no info Songs Of The Railroad Recorded 1924-1934, Various Artists (Gil Tanner And His Skillet Lickers), 19??
no info American Roots: A History of American Folk Music, Various Artists (Pete Seeger), 2000
info Smokey Mountain Pickin': 24 Great Bluegrass Instrumentals, Various Artists (Raymond Fairchild), 2003
info Grass Roots: The Best of New Grass Revival, New Grass Revival, 2005
info Classic African American Ballads from Smithsonian Folkways, Various Artists (K.C. Douglas), 2006
info Classic Railroad Songs from Smithsonian Folkways, Various Artists (Furrie Lewis), 2006
info Classic Railroad Songs from Smithsonian Folkways, Various Artists (John D Mounce), 2006
info People Take Warning! Murder Ballads & Disaster Songs 1913-1938, Various Artists (Furry Lewis), 2007
info Territory, Tony Trischka, 2008
info The Roots of the Grateful Dead, Various Artists (Furry Lewis), 2008


This traditional song occurs in various forms and with various names - most recordings are titled simply Casey Jones. However as the Grateful Dead have their own Casey Jones song the title The Ballad Of Casey Jones is nearly always used on Dead related lists and tapes to describe this traditional song.

Furry Lewis recording as Kassie Jones Part 1 and Part 2.

The story is based on a real train wreck that occurred in April 1890 in which the driver John Luther Jones died.

There have been many adaptations and parodies of Casey Jones. Notable examples include Joe Hill's Casey Jones The Union Scab which starts;

The workers on the S. P. Line to strike sent out a call
But Casey Jones the engineer, he wouldn't strike at all
His boiler it was leaking and his drivers on the bum
And his engine and his bearings, they were all out of plumb
Casey Jones kept his junk pile running
Casey Jones was working double time
Casey Jones got a wooden medal
For being good and faithful on the S. P. Line
And Casey Jones The Miner;

Come all you muckers and gather here
If you want to hear the story of a miner dear
Casey Jones was the miner's name
On a Burleigh machine he won his fame

Casey Jones was a ten day miner
Casey Jones was a ten day man
Casey Jones took a chance to many
And now he's mining in the promised land