Grateful Dead — Friend Of The Devil
Album: American Beauty
Avg rating:
7.6

Your rating:
Total ratings: 995
Ratings histogram:
Released: 1970
Length: 3:20
Plays (last 30 days): 1
I lit out from Reno, I was trailed by twenty hounds
Didn't get to sleep that night 'til the morning came around

Set out runnin' but I take my time
A friend of the devil is a friend of mine
If I get home before daylight
I just might get some sleep tonight

Ran into the devil, babe, he loaned me twenty bills
I spent the night in Utah in a cave up in the hills

Set out runnin' but I take my time
A friend of the devil is a friend of mine
If I get home before daylight
I just might get some sleep tonight

I ran down to the levee, but the devil caught me there
He took my twenty dollar bill and vanished in the air

Set out runnin' but I take my time
A friend of the devil is a friend of mine
If I get home before daylight
I just might get some sleep tonight

Got two reasons why I cry away each lonely night
The first one's named Sweet Anne Marie and she's my heart's delight
The second one is prison, babe, the sheriff's on my trail
And if he catches up with me, I'll spend my life in jail

Got a wife in Chino, babe, and one in Cherokee
The first one says she's got my child, but it don't look like me

Set out runnin' but I take my time
A friend of the devil is a friend of mine
If I get home before daylight
I just might get some sleep tonight
Comments (179)add comment
 pinem wrote:
Vastly over-rated group as are all of their songs. IMO 

 
I don't like the Grateful Dead, but I HATE the term "over-rated"!
 fredriley wrote:
Bill: "Music now from the Grateful Dead". Thanks for the warning, Bill, and many thanks for providing an escape route. TFF PSD :)

 
LOL!      I am definitely not a deadhead but this song is a classic.  
 Kaisersosay wrote:


 
12 ,,, now 12,,,,,,,,,,
(where did I put that tiny doobie, in the night stand or was it the sock drawer... ?   : )  
Phil Lesh on bass Ladies & Gentlemen, make him feel welcome

{#Clap}{#Clap}{#Clap}{#Clap}
Got two reasons why I cry away each lonely night
The first one's named Sweet Anne Marie and she's my heart's delight
The second one is prison, babe, the sheriff's on my trail
And if he catches up with me, I'll spend my life in jail
Typasbed/JOTA.....
HA! {#Rolleyes}  {#Moon} {#Naughty} I just love all of the music critics on this site.  You're all so, ah, learned!  I was never a Dead fan, and didn't own any of their music.  However they created the genre fifty years on which you now can trash.  So Phish?  Or any other jam band in the world? Yeah, it's because of these guys.  OK, back to your Pandora or Ipod or Imax, or Tampax - U2 and Taylor Swift are singing a duet {#Cheesygrin}
 Easy master the sound.
If there was an absolute standard against which we could judge music, then "over-rated" would have meaning.  But there isn't, and it doesn't.
Must be an American thing of a certain generation.  They are dreadfully ordinary. 
 pinem wrote:
Vastly over-rated group as are all of their songs. IMO 

 
Q:  What did the Deadhead say the day after he ran out of pot?

A:  "Man, this band sucks!"

I like that joke  but it is almost sacrilege to state it in the context of anything played from this truly great album.

 
In 1970 I was 24, recently out of the USCG, and working as a lab rat at Intl Paper’s Sterling Forest research center where Bill and his wife introduced me to a substance now known for its medicinal properties today. The Grateful Dead’s American Beauty was on the turntable as a bottle of Boone’s Farm was passed around along with the fatty. Now 45 years later, this brings back memories of a wonderful time in my life and the lives of my friends. Cherish your friends, for they will not be around forever.
Ya know, for a jam band they wrote a few really good songs!
 pinem wrote:
Vastly over-rated group as are all of their songs. IMO 

 
The best on the road bar band with a lead vocalist that sounds like a honky tonk hick I've ever heard ,,,,, I agree, they are WAY over rated. I suppose you had to be have been there live with some sort of drug induced high going on for a couple of hours so it's palpable, {#Wink}
Fantastic lyrics...telling a story. Great instrument playing. Plenty of hooks.

I guess some folks don't like these basic elements in a song. Maybe they were brought up listening to the "thud and drone" formula of the 1990s. Too bad folks.     
mine goes to ELEVEN ,,,,ELEVEN..
Time to go to the loo!
Bill: "Music now from the Grateful Dead". Thanks for the warning, Bill, and many thanks for providing an escape route. TFF PSD :)
{#Guitarist} {#Jump} {#Dancingbanana}
 k-man wrote:


Actually, I think the only overrated song of theirs is What's Become of the Baby.

 
When has What's Become of the Baby ever been rated? Maybe you were listening to it under conditions similar to those of the musicians when they recorded it, in which case there may have been some commentary no one else heard? The sense of time slowing down to a trickle suffuses that "song". I guess it is easy to see why it got a bit less air play than Friend of the Devil, at least where I lived when it was released.
 pinem wrote:
Vastly over-rated group as are all of their songs. IMO 

 

Actually, I think the only overrated song of theirs is What's Become of the Baby.
Vastly over-rated group as are all of their songs. IMO 
Radio Paradise just makes me want to curse today...

Holy shit, fucking awesome!

Lots of 6's and 7's from the listeners today, but RP is always a 10 in my book. Just say'in... 
Actually like some other songs from this album more than this one.  And, this album and Workingman's Dead are my 2 faves of theirs.

As for the earlier comment about Dan and the Dead, I disagree that their musical influences were pretty much the same because the Dan were obviously heavily influenced by Jazz and the Dead had very little if any Jazz influence that I can tell.
Not a huge deadhead, but I love this song.
Was one of my favorites in high scholl and decades later, still is
Perfection.  Why hate?

11.
I disliked their music for many decades. As I have grown older I find the simple composition and understated singing to be a great match with lyrics that paint a fascinating story.

I thank Bill and Rebekah for this gradually increasing appreciation of many forms of music as well as my increasing enjoyment. This is the kind of thing that keeps me coming back to RP year after year and having a recurring monthly support payment.
Nothing harmful here...but it sure seems like this mediocrity needs a bath. Kinda like the instrumental parts. They should have left it that way...an instrumental.

harsh comments, folks.  ok, great, so you hate it.  keep your hate, hold on to it, it's probably your best friend.

no hint of irony here, given this particular song.
 


demon....that´s what happened to devils friends.....playing THIS dead-song.......
 westslope wrote:

Hey, a lot of us 'stoners' never were great Dead fans either.  Though I do like this song.

In any event, I prefer to listen to my favourite music stone-cold sober and sharp-minded.

 
Much prefer Lyle Lovett's version of this. I also have no love for the Dead and their whiney, noodly guitar and drab vocals. 
 jkhandy wrote:
never did 'Get' the Dead.  Guess it's cause' I'm not a stoner.  {#Ask}
 

Hey, a lot of us 'stoners' never were great Dead fans either.  Though I do like this song.

In any event, I prefer to listen to my favourite music stone-cold sober and sharp-minded.


This one goes with ANYTHING!
American Reality
 walk wrote:


no, they just wrote it like that.
 
{#High-five} as it's only a GDead song...
 zenhead wrote:
too bad no one in this band could sing on key.

 
Sorry, but they're not referred to as "this band."   It's the Grateful Dead.  And for some reason this has always been my favorite Dead album.  It was probably the place and time in my life.
{#Sunny}
{#Devil_pimp}You know it!

"their lyrics are annoyingly abstruse."

hail to the abtruse and the obsurd!!

"Crippled but free
I was blind all the time I was learning to see..."




 zenhead wrote:
too bad no one in this band could sing on key.

 

no, they just wrote it like that.
too bad no one in this band could sing on key.

 vicariance wrote:

I've enjoyed just about every psychedelic available to the normal fellow and I hate the grateful dead.  Their melodies meander mindlessly, their vocals are rustic, impure and grating, and their lyrics are annoyingly abstruse.

Though, unlike my most hated steely dan, I understand why someone might like them. It's chaotic but patterned.  Emotional but never too intense.  It's like the opposite of uptight and military.  That's probably why people like them, their music represents peace meshed with liveliness.
 



Well, you've certainly given the Dead more critical consideration then most Deadheads I've ever met. Not sure why you would hate both Steely Dan and the Dead based on your observations. If you hate The Dead's mindlessly meandering melodies wouldn't you appreciate the Dan's clearly defined musical structures, their homages to rock's roots, or their cynical and sarcastic take on 60's generational tropes and fads?

Personally, both bands appear to have much in common. Both comment extensively on the characters of the era, both draw on many of the same musical influences, and both experimented with different genres.

Perhaps you've placed the Dead and The Dan at separate ends of the bookshelf. If so, haven't you left your self with a limited library to chose from?
I've always liked the Dead, no apologies. 

Last night I had my 70 year old work "mentor" over for dinner and she casually mentioned how she was good friends with Danny Rivkin in Berkeley who became their first manager.  "Oh yeah, I was at their house lots of times...".  She's so cool.

Back to work and deadlines, thanks for the tunes.

 lemmoth wrote:
jkhandy wrote: never did 'Get' the Dead.  Guess it's cause' I'm not a stoner.  {#Ask}

 sirdroseph wrote:


Nah, I assure you that is not the case, I never got the Dead either and if you knew me, you would know that blows that theory out of the water.{#Cowboy} This is a great song though.{#Clap}
  
 
Enjoying the sweet air may not be sufficient to becoming a fan of the Dead.....but it certainly could enhance the experience
 
I've enjoyed just about every psychedelic available to the normal fellow and I hate the grateful dead.  Their melodies meander mindlessly, their vocals are rustic, impure and grating, and their lyrics are annoyingly abstruse.

Though, unlike my most hated steely dan, I understand why someone might like them. It's chaotic but patterned.  Emotional but never too intense.  It's like the opposite of uptight and military.  That's probably why people like them, their music represents peace meshed with liveliness.
hooray for hippies!
 lexica wrote:
Call me a heathen, but I have to say I prefer Lyle Lovett's cover version to the original. {#Rolleyes}

 
I can't say I prefer it, but they're pretty much tied, IMHO. I'm glad someone else appreciates the "Dedicated" album as much as I do! {#Wave}
just happened again.  oh god that was awful.

 
Hannio wrote:
Everytime I hear this on RP I have the subconscious expectation that the next song will be Sugar Magnolia.  Then comes the disappointment when it's something like the Squirrel Nut Zippers stupid "Hell" song.
 


I prefer the Garcia / Grisman version from their acoustic duo album
happy hump day {#Cowboy}