Steppenwolf – Don’t Step On The Grass Sam

Hmmm, wonder what this song was about? When I was 18 I had a Steppenwolf complication tape that I would play driving around and this song will stick in your head. Love the riff and the build up.

John Kay the singer for Steppenwolf advocated for marijuana legalization during his band’s heyday in the late 1960s. The ‘Sam’ mentioned in the title refers to Uncle Sam. It was off of their second album…appropriately called “The Second” in 1968.

The song suddenly stops and then….after pounding on the door, a group of actors playing policemen storm in saying, “Alright you guys, you’re under arrest for possession of marijuana.”…then you hear flushing.

Don’t Step On The Grass, Sam

Starin’ at the boob tube, turnin’ on the big knob
Tryin’ to find some life in the waste land
Fin’ly found a program, gonna deal with Mary Jane
Ready for a trip into hate land
Obnoxious Joe comes on the screen
Along with his guest self-righteous Sam
And one more guy who doesn’t count
His hair and clothes are too far outWhile pushin’ back his glasses Sam is sayin’ casually
“I was elected by the masses”
And with that in mind he starts to unwind
A vicious attack on the finest of grasses

Well it’s evil, wicked, mean and nasty
(Don’t step on the grass, Sam)
And it will ruin our fair country
(Don’t be such an ass, Sam)
Well it will hook your Sue and Johnny
(You’re so full of bull, Sam)
All will pay that disagree with me
(Please give up you already lost the fight, alright)

Misinformation Sam and Joe
Are feeding to the nation
But the one who didn’t count counted them out
By exposing all their false quotations
Faced by a very awkward situation
This is all he’d say to save the day

Well it’s evil, wicked, mean and nasty
(Don’t step on the grass, Sam)
And it will ruin our fair country
(Don’t be such an ass, Sam)
It will hook your Sue and Johnny
(You’re so full of bull, Sam)
All will pay that disagree with me
(Please give up you already lost the fight alright)

You waste my coin Sam, all you can
To jail my fellow man
For smoking of the noble weed
You need much more than him
You’ve been telling lies so long
Some believe they’re true
So they close their eyes to things
You have no right to do
Just as soon as you are gone
Hope will start to climb
Please don’t stay around too long
You’re wasting precious time

Well it’s evil, wicked, mean and nasty
(Don’t step on the grass, Sam)
And it will ruin our fair country
(Don’t be such an ass, Sam)
It will hook your Sue and Johnny
(You’re so full of bull, Sam)
All will pay that disagree with me
(Please give up you already lost the fight alright)

Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

48 thoughts on “Steppenwolf – Don’t Step On The Grass Sam”

      1. It was 2012 for me and I was doing some IT related work at a tour bus place near Hendersonville and in he came…
        I can’t imagine the people you got to meet.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Great story… that had to be a little awkward. But… You my friend…are a cool guy. Forget the Joe Perry connection for a second…you having a full length coyote fur coat in 74…I’m not worthy. That is seventies greatness.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Buddy, I’d love to think I’m the coolest of guys, but my kids don’t think so. Sure as Hell my wife doesn’t think so, either. For the record, that wasn’t my coat. I just worked at the store. Merry Christmas to you and your family, my friend. May this be the first of many more.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. My name is Max Gower… I had a post on my family making guitars a while back that gave my name away.
        Rick when I go to Clarksville again near Fort Campbell I told my wife we are going to take some pictures…that will be fun. I’ll tell you when I go. My son’s hobby is his camera…I’ll put it to use.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. That’s got to be one of the coolest choruses ever. Have you ever heard their monster LP? I used to have it. It was the first concept album I ever heard. What ever happened to Steppenwolf? So your family used to make guitars? They don’t anymore?


    1. This was spam causality… Bad businessmen… My Aunt would have been very good at running it but in the 60s and 70s my Uncles and Dad must not have considered that which was dumb.


      1. Yes and it probably caused them the business…just totally stupid…she was great with numbers and money and would have been great.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Not bonkers at all. A friend of mine wants to and the name among musicians is out there. I built an electric body…I need to build a neck to finish…just putting in the time to do it.
        Those guitars are going for 3-5 thousand…which that is bonkers but of course mine would be new.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I think that idea you had about finding a different job than the one you have now, that takes up so many of your hours, may be a good first step to giving you the time you need?

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Yes that would…believe me…. my wife and son are behind me doing it because I’ve had calls this morning…it never stops.
        It would open more time.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Oh no calls that something is wrong with this or that…constantly… That is what I mean about all of my time.
        Yes he would and I have a friend that trained with a great guitar tech.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Oh yes… you name the holiday and I’m called about something… I shouldn’t complain…I’m happy I have something but yea…I’m looking hard in Jan.


      1. Oh ok… in 2013 I was close to moving to SC…. I think it was close to Charlotte NC… a place called Fort Mill SC. For a job.


      2. It was a very nice drive there…great scenery. Yes Charlotte was huge and it was very close to where we were going.


      3. Yes it was a great view everywhere. I could breathe there also… Middle Tennessee is one of the worst places anywhere for allergies…
        We were there for three days for my interview…very nice place.


      4. Wow. I didn’t know that. I’ve driven through Nashville many times, going back & forth between NC & Texas. Never stayed there. I think I told you that I lived in Knoxville for a short time…2001.

        Tennessee loves ‘Pikes’.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Yes I remember you saying that… Oh they do love Pikes lol.
        When did you do programming? In the 80s right?


      6. I started in 1983 in high school working with BASIC. From 1984 to 1985, I studied COBOL, RPG & Assembler in college. I never really applied any of that knowledge in the workforce. I got involved with my then-husband and changed curriculums. I tried to go back to programming but, got overwhelmed with wedding plans & my job with a pharmaceutical company. Fast forward 12 years and nearly a decade in law enforcement, I left my home state for TN, VA & TX with a new hubby in the Marine Corps. I had picked up on-the-job database skills & applied that to a TX job. My job partner got a promotion three years later and I was tossed, ass-first, into web programming. I did that for six years.

        When I returned to NC in early 2011, I went from a state with 6% unemployment to a state with 11% unemployment. I couldn’t find a job, much less one with legacy skills (state government work is usually 10 years behind the private sector). I never got back in. Even if I had self-taught in PHP or Perl or Java or C, I didn’t have a degree so, I was ignored.

        I went after some networking classes in 2013 but, I live with someone that wouldn’t let me study. He put his ex-wife through school but, the marriage didn’t last. Psychologically, he didn’t want me to get a degree and leave him.

        So, I apply my old skills to WP.

        There you have it…nutshell style…everything you wanted to know but, was afraid to ask. 😉😎

        Liked by 1 person

      7. You have done a variety of things that is for sure. I do WP to escape my job…write up something I like and let it out….I wish I would have made the choice to get into programming.

        I have too many legacy skills…the place I work still has 2003 server on 70 percent of the servers. The owner won’t spend.

        The high school I went to rollled in a Commodore 64 the year I graduated.

        I didn’t get into computers until 1995 and a friend got me a job on a helpdesk when I was 28 and I just caught on really fast…Tech>System Admin>Network> Helpdesk manager>IT Manager>Director…

        I went to college to be a graphic artist…got a job as a graphic artist…but the money wasn’t there….more money was in the tech field…any 16 year old with Photoshop and Illustrator can do most things.

        I enjoy Networking but never worked with Cisco which is almost a must now.

        You are the first person that I commented with that was in IT…that said something anyway.


  2. 2003 server? I’m assuming it’s a Microsoft… I’ve dabbled with that & Novell…many years ago.

    I never did a Commodore 64. Just Lionel Richie (music/IT humor…you should see my two cartoons on my blog…on a PC, not phone…sidebar).

    I’ve done helpdesk, as a position (contract) & on-the-fly in TX. Helped many a veteran navigate the site I was updating…at the time. It was straight-up, static HTML…nothing dynamic. Now, it is ‘flash-y’:

    You were lucky to zigzag into the right place, monetarily. I nearly went into graphics, myself. That was my second fave class my senior year in HS behind computer programming.

    Networking is cool. Miss the days of network technicians.

    IT geeks always find each other with conversational jargon. We can’t help it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes 2003 Microsoft Server…the software they stopped supporting in 2015. I keep warning them about security attacks but get nowhere.
      Helpdesk can be fun and interesting but I’ve never worked with the public…always in a company…Yes it is flash…

      I was very fortunate to end up where I am. There were other people who started at the same time just as talented or more who are still where they were. I just had more people skills than some of them.

      I loved graphics…also to clean up old photos and take tears or age spots out…with Photoshop and Illustrator you can rule the world in graphics.

      It is good to find other IT people that is for sure. No one else understands what we go through.


  3. IT & people skills is an effective combination. Many in the field, especially the ones that have savant-like abilities with Cisco, are closer to ‘Rain Man’. Just leave ’em alone & let ’em work. System engineers…same smell.

    Honey, hush. I have never used Photoshop or Illustrator but, I do use three other pieces of editing software and an Epson scanner. Oh, the pix I have cleaned & straightened. LOVE a cloning wand.

    You can burn out quick as a programmer. That is the main reason I can’t play video games. The time & effort needed to become a top level gamer is way too damn similar to hunting lines of code, looking for the bugs. Dear GOD, the infinite loops from ‘If/Then’ statements or one character out of place in Javascript or a missing semicolon in CSS. OY.

    I’ve actually programmed on punch cards. THAT is a funky machine.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes I’m sure other software has caught or surpassed Photoshop and Illustrator…. I only dabble with it now but those are what I was trained on.

      I did work with Visual Basic in the 90s some and enjoyed it but was mostly self taught… Yes searching for a missing whatever through lines of code would be tedious.

      Rain Man….ha that is a great comparison.


      1. I understand Photoshop is ‘da bomb’…many features. I just never used it due to cost. Something else was either cheaper or free.

        I use Photoscape, Photo Studio and Microsoft Editor…occasionally Microsoft Paint. I have used Photo Suite/Roxio before.

        Curiously, I never did Visual Basic. Heh. Go figure! 😎

        Liked by 1 person

      2. One perks working with a shop I was with…they wanted me to have it at home…so they acquired Adobe Suite at the time for me.
        Now I have Office and everything that goes with it because of volume license.

        I enjoyed Visual Basic…wrote small little programs and was taught by a programmer…just got caught it in my job and didn’t fool with it anymore.

        Liked by 1 person

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