The night was clear, and the moon was yellow..
And the leaves came tumblin' down...
I was standin' on the corner,
When I heard my bull dog bark.
He was barkin' at the two men
Who were gamblin' in the dark.
It was Stagger Lee and Billy,
Two men who gambled late.
Stagger lee threw a seven,
Billy swore that he threw eight.
Stagger Lee, said Billy,
I can't let you go with that.
You have won all my money,
And my brand-new Stetson hat.
Stagger Lee went home,
And he got his forty-four.
He said, I'm goin' to the barroom
Just to pay that debt I owe.
(Go, Stagger Lee.)
Stagger Lee went to the barroom,
And he stood across the barroom door.
He said, Nobody move, and he pulled his .44.
Stagger Lee, cried Billy,
Oh, please don't take my life!
I've got three little children,
And a very sickly wife.
Stagger Lee shot Billy.
Oh, he shot that poor boy so bad..
That the bullet went through Billy
And broke the bartender's glass.
(Look out now.)
Go, Stagger Lee..go, Stagger Lee..go, Stagger Lee..
Go, Stagger Lee..go, go...Fade.