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Turn It on Turn It on Turn It On

Tom T. Hall


Johnny got up one mornin' he went down to the company store
Got him a big box of bullets to fit into his 44
The storeman said son are you gonna work you know you owe me too much to stop
John said I got a little working to do but I ain't goin' by your clock.

People said John was a slacker cause he wouldn't fight in their war
A man wasn't much if he wouldn't fight back in nineteen forty and four
The doctor said John was just too sick to go
But the people said that he was a coward
And one of the men makin' fun of him was a feller named a Milton Howard.

Milton was down at the Cold Spring a drinkin' from a Mason jar
He said John you better get yourself to work you gonna fool around
Till you get fired
John blew the dust from his old 44 put two holes in Milton's head
When Johnny walked off to get some more shootin' done
That old Cold Spring was a runnin' with red.

Next guy he met was a Steagall boy and the boy had a hammer in his hand
John said son you should've built yourself a box
'Cause you're aheaded for the Promised Land
Steagall fell down to his knees to pray and he cried Lord Johnny
Please don't shoot
Before he got half way to sayin' amen well, old John shot him
Out of his boots.

--- Instrumental ---

Word went out thru the County that old John had lost his head
The people were running and screaming there were seven of 'em
Layin' there dead
Johnny hid out in a farmhouse he had satisfaction in his eyes
He said I know they're coming to get me boys but they ain't a gonna
Take me alive.

People gathered round that old farmhouse was the relatives
Of all them dead
Now John said if the sheriff comes thru that door I'm gonna fill him
Plum full of lead
The sheriff kicked down that old farmhouse door but old John's gun
Would not shoot
Johnny just smiled at the sheriff and said the Lord must think a lot of you.

They took old John to the jailhouse he entered in a guilty plea
The judge said death in the electric chair cause it's murder in the first degree
John's last meal was a lot of fried chicken cold beans and a baby squash
He ate every bite that they brought him then he smiled and said
I thank you all a lot.

--- Instrumental ---

They put old John in the electric chair they shaved his ankles and his head
The preacher said son you got something to say in a minute you're
A gonna be dead
John said I ain't no coward and the people know that I won't run
Then Johnny smiled up at the warden and said, turn it on, turn it on
Turn it on...

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