The ToneWay® Project: helping people play music

Wreck of the Old 97

They gave him his orders at 4 Monroe, Virginia
Saying, 1 Steve, you're way behind 5 time
This is 1 not Thirty-Eight, but it's 4 old Ninety-Seven
You must 1 put her in 5 Spencer on 1 time

He looked 'round and said to his black greasy fireman
Just shovel in a little more coal
And when we cross that White Oak Mountain
You can watch old Ninety Seven roll

It's a mighty rough road from Lynchburg to Danville
And a line on a three mile grade
It was on this grade that he lost his air brakes
And you see what a jump he made

He was going down grade making ninety miles an hour
When his whistle began to scream
He was found in the wreck with his hand on the throttle
And was scalded to death with the steam

So now, fair ladies, you must take warning
From this time now on learn
Never speak harsh words to your true loving husband
He may leave you and never return

It’s on Strum Machine!

Play & sing along with Wreck of the Old 97 (or any song you type in) in any key, at any speed, with real instrument recordings. You have to see it to believe it.

Play this song on Strum Machine

Available in these books:

Big Print Songs
Over 200 songs.
Family Tradition
The reference manual, with lyrics to 330 songs.
Featuring large-print lyrics (20-point type) and chords, historical info, jamming hints, and more.

A song from the The ToneWay Mountain Music Collection, which offers lyrics and free Song Clips (recordings for learning the song by ear) for nearly 400 traditional songs, many of which are often heard in bluegrass and old-time jam circles. The ToneWay Project also offers songbooks, CDs, and a free online video series for learning to play music by ear.