Cry Baby – Janis Joplin

Janis Lyn Joplin was an American singer, songwriter, and music arranger, from Port Arthur, Texas. She rose to prominence in the late 1960s as the lead singer of Big Brother and the Holding Company, and later as a solo artist. In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked Joplin #46 on its list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. She died in Los Angeles, California of a drug overdose at the age of 27.

There is so much this woman accomplished in her short life, and I could spend hours writing about it.  Her music was probably one of the most influential things in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Don McLean is widely believed to allude to Janis Joplin in his song “American Pie” with the lines “I met a girl who sang the blues / And I asked her for some happy news, / But she just smiled and turned away”. McLean has not denied nor confirmed the belief.

Cry Baby

Cry Baby” is a song originally recorded by Garnet Mimms and the Enchanters, in 1963, and later famously covered by rock singer Janis Joplin. Berns wrote song together with Jerry Ragovoy.

In September and October 1970, Janis Joplin recorded it for her album Pearl, posthumously released. The song was in blues-rock style and the B-side of the track was hit Mercedes Benz. Joplin’s recording is also the most popular version of it.


Cry-y-y … ha ha ha ha … baby, cry baby, cry baby,
Welcome back home.

I know she told you,
I know she told you that she loved you
Much more than I do,
But I know she left you,
And you swear that you just don’t know why,
Well, you know that I’ll always be round
If you ever want me
Come on and cry, cry baby, cry baby, cry baby, yeah,
Oh, like you always seem to do.

Don’t you know,
Honey, nobody ever gonna love you
The way I try to do.
Who’ll be willing to take your pain
And all your heartache, too ?
Honey, I swear I’ll always, I’ll always be around
If you ever want me
Come on and cry, cry baby, cry baby yeah, cry baby, yeah,
Oh daddy, welcome back home, yeah.

I know when you’re sharp and round, babe,
Seems like the grass always looks greener,
When you’re looking over there in somebody else’s back-yard
So I know what you’re tryin’ to tell me
When you say, mama, mama, mama, mama, mama,
I’ve gotta go out shopping for my life
I’ve gotta find my, my own true third eye,
Hare Krishna identity out there on the road there.

And although it may be comfortable here
Sleeping in all your nice bed with all those satin sheets
And all that nice fur, eatin’ all that chicken
Gettin’ stoned, havin’ a good time I have to go and rough it
I have to go to Africa
Or I have to go to Omaha, or some place like that,
I have to find myself, you know what I mean ?
So there’s this stud, man, walkin’ around the fuckin’ highways of America with a pack on his back
Lookin’ for his identity, right ?

Well, I want to say baby don’t you know you left your mama here all alone ?
You left your good lovin’ mama right at home
And that should be identity enough for any man, ha ha ha!
So I said baby, I know that you’re gonna come home to me some day
And I’ll be able to tell when you walk in my front door
I do, I just do believe that I can be lookin’ in your eyes
So Lord, you finally realize
So you can put your head on my shoulder, babe,
‘Cause I know you got some more tears to share,
Come on, let it go,
So come on, come on, come on, come on, come on,
Honey, cry, cry baby, cry baby, cry,

Honey when you got some more tears to shed
Honey I won’t let a man stand in your way, babe,
You have to snap all your fear from the door house away dear
You just gotta let it go, baby, come on,
Honey cry, oh, cry to me baby.

  • Audio from the 1971 album,  Pearl:


About DJ Allyn

DJ Allyn is a burned out radio guy who went on to become a burned out sound engineer for a few Seattle area grunge bands in the 1980s and 1990s. Left the madness of worldwide tours with bands, cleaned up my act and went into the relative sanity of sound engineering for television series. Currently working as the Director of Sound for a television series being filmed in North Vancouver, British Columbia. I am always on the lookout for interesting videos, old music, and fun.

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