Man Of Constant Sorrow

Song composer(s)


Grateful Dead Recordings

Not recorded by the Dead

Dead Related Recordings

No Dead related recordings entered

Other Recordings

Emry Arthur (192?)
Ralph Stanley (1948)
Stanley Brothers Sing Everybody's Country Favorites : Stanley Brothers (1960)
The Music of Roscoe Holcomb & Wade Ward : Roscoe Holcomb & Wade Ward (1962)
Folk Music of Washington Square : Various Artists (Roger Lubin) (1962)
Old Time Country Music : Mike Seeger (1962)
Bob Dylan : Bob Dylan (1962)
Folk Country : Waylon Jennings (1964)
The Flat-Picker's Guitar Guide - An Advanced Instruction Record : Jerry Silverman (1966)
Obray Ramsey Sings Folk Songs From The Three Laurels : Obray Ramsey (196?)
Ballads & Hymns Of The Ozarks : Almeda Riddle (1972)
Country Bluegrass from Southwest Virginia : Glen Neaves and the Virginia Mountain Boys (1974)
Stanley Brothers On Air : Stanley Brothers (1976)
Parksburg Landing : Ed Haley (1976)
Very Early Joan Baez : Joan Baez (1983)
20 Bluegrass Originals : Stanley Brothers (1987)
Bound To Ride : Ralph Stanley (1991)
Bluegrass Breakdown : Various Artists (1992)
Full Circle : Tony Furtado (1994)
Tree On A Hill : Peter Rowan (1994)
Clinch Mountain Bluegrass - Newport Folk Festival 1959 & 1964 : The Stanley Brothers (1994)
The Early Starday-KingYears 1958-1961 : The Stanley Brothers (1994)
The Music Of Kentucky - Early American Rural Classics 1927-1937 : Various Artists (1995)
Complete Columbia Recordings : Stanley Brothers (1996)
Songs of the Stanley Brothers : Various Artists (1997)
Newport Folk Festival : Various Artists (New Lost City Ramblers) (19??)
The Folk Box : Various Artists (New Lost City Ramblers) (19??)
The Stanley Brothers and the Clinch Mountain Boys 1949-1952 : Stanley Brothers and the Clinch Mountain Boys (19??)

Performance History

Played by the Sleepy Hollow Hog Stompers in San Carlos on June 11th 1962.

Played by Garcia and Nelson at the College of San Mateo in San Mateo on November 10th 1962.

Not performed by the Grateful Dead. Occurs only on pre-Dead tapes featuring future members of the dead.


Sometimes occurs as I'm A Man Of Constant Sorrow.

Sung unaccompanied by Garcia. He introduces the song by saying that he has heard it performed this way by Roscoe Holcomb. Here are the lyrics as performed by Garcia;

I am a man of constant sorrow,
I have seen trouble all my days,
I bid farewell to old Kentucky,
The state where I was born and raised.

For six long years I've been troubled,
No pleasure here on earth I've found,
For on this world I'm bound to ramble,
I have no friends to help me now.

Maybe you can find some other lover,
For many years while I may lay,
Maybe then you'll find (?) (to love him?),
While I am sleeping in my grave.

Maybe your friends think I'm just a stranger,
My face you never will see no more,
But there is one promise that is given,
I'll meet you on God's golden shore.

The song was rewitten by Sarah Ogan Gunning in the 1930s as I Am A Girl Of Constant Sorrow. Recordings of this can be found on;

I Am A Girl Of Constant Sorrow
Traditional Music at Newport, 1964, Part 1 : Sarah Ogan Gunning (1965)
Girl of Constant Sorrow : Sarah Ogan Gunning (1965)
Female Frolic : Critics Group (1968)
Anthology of American Folk Songs : Barbara Dane (196?)
Rosalie's Songbag : Rosalie Sorrels (196?)
Tossi Sings Folk Songs and Ballads : Tossi Aaron (196?)
Dear Companion : Bonnie Dobson (196?)
Tell It To Me : Ebenezer (1975)