News and Observations from Wapella, Illinois: Home of the Wildcats.

Facebook Activity for Wapella

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

RIP Jerry Reed

Jerry Reed, the guitarist, singer and songwriter who played a mischievous, good old boy sidekick to Burt Reynolds in "Smokey and the Bandit" and other movies, died Sept. 1 at his home in the Nashville suburb of Brentwood. He had emphysema.

Mr. Reed's trademark Georgia baritone drawl and relaxed manner in film and television roles brought his ingratiating presence to a wide audience, notably as trucker Cledus "Snowman" Snow in "Smokey and the Bandit" (1977) and its two sequels, as well as Mama's Family, Scooby Doo and the sadistic football coach in Waterboy.

Reed was contacted and agreed to perform at Wapella's 150th celebration, only to be sidelined due to the massive hit performance by Wapella's own Jimmy Holland and his variety show. Many have speculated that the two could have performed together, if not for some stringent DeWitt County public performance laws, enacted to prevent a repeat of the Farmer City go-go dancing incidents of 1968.

Here's Jerry in a semi-autobiographical song Alabama Wildman and a video of two classics, Wabash Cannonball and his signature, "Guitar Man"

Well my daddy was a hard shelled Alabama preacher
My mama was a dedicated Sunday School teacher
My brother went a college and got a PhD
Daddy said the only dud in the family was me

He said boy you ain't never gonna amount to a thing
All you do is sit around with that silly looking guitar and sing
You hang around them juke joints most of your time
Making music like some wild man done lost his mind
Going sock it to me well what's that s'posed to mean
Boy you're just a wild man

Well that one day daddy told me boy I've had enough
Now you can pack up that guitar and you can just pack up your stuff
So I left home and organized myself a band
Called myself the Alabama Wild Man

Well I worked in every joint from east to the west
Never making no money nearly starved to death
A living on coffee and cold sardines
Sody crackers and pork and beans

But I finally went to Music City USA
Said I'm the Alabama Wild Man I'm here to stay
Took my guitar and showed 'em what I's talking about
So we made a little record and we put it out
With me going sock it to me honey uh huh hook it boy
Play that guitar git it git it

Well now I'm driving Cadillacs a city block long
And the Alabama Wild Man can do no wrong
Cause I'm selling them records I'm working them shows
And people love me everywhere I go

But a funny thing happened bout a week or so back
I worked a show in my hometown and the place was packed
I guess who was sittin' out on a front row seat
Was my daddy grinnin' up at me and pattin' his feet
Yellin' sock it to your daddy wild man
Hook it on hook it play that guitar show 'em son
Ha ha ha yeah that's my boy alright taught him everything he knows
Bought him his guitar sock it to me son hook it


Anonymous said...

He was one of the all time greats!

Unknown said...

I'm kind of interested in those 'go-go incidents of 1968'. Can't find anything in the local papers.

Unknown said...

Am kind of interested in learning more about the Farmer city 'go-go dancing incidents.' Can't find anything in local papers.

JBP said...

That's got to be Salty Crackers, not "Sody Crackers" as transcribed.


Anonymous said...

I like some potted meat and french fried pataters to along with my sody crackers.

Alabama Wild Man

Anonymous said...

I think sody is a southern term.

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...

I believe that is what my buddy Karl would call a soda cracker. He can put his potted meat on these comestibles.

Don't you reckon so?


Blog Archive