Creedence Clearwater Revival – Green River

One of my favorite songs by Creedence Clearwater Revival. The song peaked at #2 in the Billboard 100, #19 in the UK, and #5 in Canada. If you want proof that life isn’t fair… Green River was kept from #1 because of the novelty bubblegum song “Sugar, Sugar” by The Archies.

The song is an example of a perfect rock song. Great lick, lyrics, and wonderful guitar fills by John Fogerty.

The song was on the album Green River which peaked at #1 in the Billboard Album Chart.

John Fogerty: “Green River is really about this place where I used to go as a kid on Putah Creek, near Winters, California. I went there with my family every year until I was ten. Lot of happy memories there. I learned how to swim there. There was a rope hanging from the tree. Certainly dragonflies, bullfrogs. There was a little cabin we would stay in owned by a descendant of Buffalo Bill Cody. That’s the reference in the song to Cody Jr. [“Up at Cody’s camp I spent my days…”

The actual specific reference, Green River, I got from a soda pop-syrup label. You used to be able to go into a soda fountain, and they had these bottles of flavored syrup. My flavor was called Green River. It was green, lime-flavored, and they would empty some out over some ice and pour some of that soda water on it, and you had yourself a Green River.”

Image result for green river fizzy drink 50s


From Songfacts

John Fogerty has said that Green River is his favorite Creedence Clearwater Revival album, in part because it sounds like the ’50s albums by the likes of Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash that came out of Sun Records in Memphis.

Asked about his songwriting by Mojo magazine, John Fogerty replied: “More common is me fooling around on the guitar coming up with a riff or a lick or even just a tone which sparks some kind of creativity. Your mind gets a vibe, like the lick for ‘Green River’ – that’s what it sounded like, a green river, haha. And that was a title I had carried around since I was about eight years old.”

Green River

Well, take me back down where cool water flow, yeh
Let me remember things I love
Stoppin’ at the log where catfish bite,
Walkin’ along the river road at night,
Barefoot girls dancin’ in the moonlight

I can hear the bull frog callin’ me
Wonder if my rope’s still hangin’ to the tree
Love to kick my feet way down the shallow water,
Shoe fly, dragon fly, get back t your mother
Pick up a flat rock, skip it across Green River

Up at Cody’s camp I spent my days, oh,
With flat car riders and cross-tie walkers
Old Cody, Junior took me over,
Said, you’re gonna find the world is smouldrin’
An’ if you get lost come on home to Green River
Well, come home

Author: Badfinger (Max)

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

29 thoughts on “Creedence Clearwater Revival – Green River”

    1. More than any other. They made more out of their too short of window than anyone else I believe.
      Hans…kept from number 1 because of Sugar, Sugar… I just…nevermind.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Being a small label with the major labels having lobbyists… I’ve thought that. I would like to do some searching about that. I know coincidences happen…but that many times? I’m not a conspiracy kind of guy but it looks wrong on the surface.


      2. I think it has been pretty much proven that Gerry Rafferty’s Baker Street- got screwed over by I think an Andy Gibb single- he should have been #1 but the numbers were cooked in Gibbs favor. If it happened once….

        Liked by 1 person

  1. We used to have one of those soda fountains in my neighborhood in Chicago. First time I had a cherry Coke, a chocolate phosphate, or a Green River was there. Green River is a Chicago brand, but they sell it all over.

    “Green River” was one of the few albums I owned only on cassette. I didn’t have a cassette deck or player, but I had the tape. Don’t ask me why.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. After looking at that last night… I want one. What does it compare to John?

      They had great singles but theyweren’t just a singles band… their albums were good also


  2. another very good single from them as almost all of theirs were! Funny how it was inspired close to their SF home… you’d bet money it was written about somewhere in the bayous of Louisiana or Mississippi, wouldn’t you?

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Great song from a great band. Aways amazed me how prolific they were in just a short time – a career full of great song in a couple short years.

    And what’s with the videos- the human “props” on the first one just don’t make sense and the second looks like a go go girl aerobics class. 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Prolific is the word! They competed with the big boys and were great. I wonder if they didn’t fight with each other if they could have kept it up.

      Oh you must have checked it at first. The go-go girls. It was late last night when I posted it and I posted the wrong video. I tried to change it this morning…Paul you came up with the best phrase of the day! “go go girl aerobics class.”


    1. LOL…I agree. That is strange. Late last night I put that link in…this morning I took a look at it and I deleted it and replaced it.
      Well…apparently I didn’t do the job or I was half asleep. It was only going to be the other one….Well it’s a conversation starter!


    1. lol…Heck it’s not the sound for most of America…only the extreme southern states…I first got the Chronicles album…greatest hits.


      1. I had the Centerfield album. The first thing I did was learn “Old Man Down The Road” and our band played it. That simple lick is fun.


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