Baez, Joan - The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down Lyrics

Virgil Caine is my name
And I drove on the Danville train
'Til so much cavalry came
And tore up the tracks again
In the winter of sixty-five
We were hungry, just barely alive
I took the train to Richmond that fell
It's a time I remember
Oh, so well

The night they drove Old Dixie down
And all the bells were ringin'
The night they drove Old Dixie down
And all the people were singin'
They went
Laaaaaa, la-la-la-laaaaaa
La-la, la-la

Back with my wife in Tenessee
And one day she said to me
Virgil, quick come see
There goes the Robert E Lee
Now, I don't mind I'm choppin' wood
And I don't care if my money's no good
Just take what you need and leave the rest
But they should never have taken the very best

The night they drove Old Dixie down
And all the bells were ringin'
The night they drove Old Dixie down
And all the people were singin'
They went
Laaaaaa, la-la-la-laaaaaa
La-la, la-la

Like my father before me
I'm a working man
And like my brother before me
I took a rebel stand
Well, he was just 18, proud and brave
But a yankee laid him in his grave
I swear by the blood below my feet
You can't raise the Caine back up
When it's in defeat

The night they drove Old Dixie down
And all the bells were ringin'
The night they drove Old Dixie down
And all the people were singin'
They went
Laaaaaa, la-la-la-laaaaaa
La-la, la-la

Other Lyrics by Artist

Rand Lyrics

Baez, Joan The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down Comments
  1. Brandon Nelson

    hard to listen to when she gets the lyrics so wrong.

  2. Alwyn Buys

    Love this song

  3. Kevin Rochelle

    I'm sorry but this is terrible. While I love JB, and think she is a wonderful person, her version is so much weaker than the Band's version - there is none of the pain, none of the loss. And the lyrics are fucked up all over the place....terrible. Sorry.


    And no she's a trump hater....

  5. Dan Max

    Wow the people were very conservative back then. Too afraid to sing along, & way too afraid to voice their opinion !

  6. Frieds Sogga

    In this Moment, she didnt know, how good she was

  7. Nikolaus Baker

    Brilliant back then, even better now Joan Baez - They Drove Old Dixie Down. :-)

  8. m8s4lif

    Such a sad and yet beautiful song sung so beautifully. This song makes me want to smile and cry at the same time. An amazing singer.

  9. Zaoui Frederic

    qu:elle presence ;dance

  10. christinafuchshuber

    Virgil Caine is my name and I drove on the Danville train
    'Til so much cavalry came and tore up the tracks again
    In the winter of sixty-five, we were hungry, just barely alive
    I took the train to Richmond that fell
    It was a time I remember, oh, so well

    The night they drove old Dixie down
    And all the bells were ringin'
    The night they drove old Dixie down
    And all the people were singin'
    They went, "Na, na-na-na, na-na"
    "Na, na, na-na, na-na, na-na-na"

    Back with my wife in Tennessee and one day she said to me
    "Virgil, quick, come see, there goes Robert E. Lee"
    Now, I don't mind, I'm chopping wood
    And I don't care if the money's no good
    Just take what you need and leave the rest
    But they should never have taken the very best

    The night they drove old Dixie down
    And all the bells were ringin'
    The night they drove old Dixie down
    And all the people were singin'
    They went, "Na, na-na-na, na-na"
    "Na, na, na-na, na-na, na-na-na"

    Like my father before me, I'm a workin' man
    And like my brother before me, I took a rebel stand
    Well, he was just eighteen, proud and brave
    But a yankee laid him in his grave
    I swear by the blood below my feet
    You can't raise the Cain back up when it's in defeat

    The night they drove old Dixie down
    And all the bells were ringin'
    The night they drove old Dixie down
    And all the people were singin'
    They went, "Na, na-na-na, na-na"
    "Na, na, na-na, na-na, na-na-na"


    This was representing a hundred years before the Vietnam war but it was the same thing. An imperial power was determined to crush the democratic hopes and aspirations of a people. So It became included in the anti war era.

  11. Kevin Goetz

    yes it's sad Dixie didn't win & keep the right to own slaves eh?

  12. Kevin Goetz

    she fucked up the ;yrics "so much cavalary" vs "Stoneman's cavalry

  13. george painter


  14. Peter Smith

    This is proper singing, not like todays so called, whatever

  15. gonstotwriter

    The story goes that JB saw Apple honcho Steve Jobs on TV. She thought, 'He's fourteen years younger than I am but a handsome man. I would like to meet him.' They had mutual friends who set up a coffee meeting; afterwards, her friends said to JB, "So, how did it go with Steve?" She reportedly said, "What an asshole!" I'm not sure what kind of person she expected him to be.

  16. Robin Holmes

    She's crap now, and has Trump derangement syndrome.

  17. Daryl Steinhagen

    She Has A Great Voice & Play The Guitar Well!

  18. anotheraccount420

    I loved this song when I first heard it as a child, now I'm an adult and I understand the lyrics and the historical meaning I don't feel so bad for Old Dixie, still a good song though

    Terry MaC

    @anotheraccount420 Girl, that's hilarious! Thanks for the laughs.


    @Terry MaC You're welcome girl any time

    Terry MaC

    @anotheraccount420 Thanks, sweety. Now go f urself.


    @Terry MaC What happened darling? I thought you loved me?!?

    Terry MaC

    @anotheraccount420 Merely tolerant of your ignorance.

  19. George Vreeland Hill

    No computer enhancements or other fake bs. Just a talented singer with a guitar. This is when music was better.


    Still sounds good

  21. Gary Hieronymus

    Is this song politically Correct? I don't care I love it anyway.

  22. Boofer T. Washington

    Overkill on her vibrato. Every song she sings is like that. For that, she receives a thumbs down. That, and she ruined the song by not knowing the lyrics.

  23. Andrew Robinson

    Sheer talent

  24. ed mcneil

    The best of the best. Truly the voice of an angel.

  25. Trev Gibb

    I love Joan, but I think she would have been even bigger without the vibrato.

  26. o o

    Beautiful soothing voice

  27. Under the Surface

    I don't think anyone has a more beautiful touching voice

  28. Stan Marcus

    Wonderful song, wonderful singer. But . .  . Joan's a Quaker and a wonderful caring person. But I wonder—the song is about the Northern army during the Civl War invading the South (from November 15 until December 21, 1864, Union General William T. Sherman led some 60,000 soldiers on a 285-mile march from Atlanta to Savannah, Georgia. The purpose of Sherman's March to the Sea was to frighten Georgia's civilian population into abandoning the Confederate cause (add destroying everything is sight). I love The Band's songs and singing, so on certain songs I ignore the lyrics and listen to the music. But there are two aspects to a song—the music and its lyrics. The lyrics are secondary. But if the lyrics describe an event that's hurtful, still the song itself might be superb. What if the lyrics said, "Adolph Hitler's the name and I served with on the Wehrmacht train . . . " or, "The Night they drove old Hitler down . . . ."

  29. Michael Rowland

    Great song, great singer, it does not get much better than this.

  30. Anne Asgard

    This has been doctored.... It was "'til Stonewall's cavalry came" not "til so much cavalry came" against tore up the tracks again. Be truthful.

  31. Captain Koala

    Die Coverversion von dem Song ist deutlich besser als das Original

  32. car cassonne

    유명한 노래였구나,, 쓰리 빌보드에서 딕슨 쳐맞는 장면 보고 성지순례 왔습니다...

  33. Sarge Striker

    Regarding some of the derogatory comments; Some people are just uninformed and ignorant of the historical facts and context of the times. They don't teach American history anymore, just anti-American drivel !

    Sarge Striker

    .A great performance but actually the correct lyrics is "Stoneman's Cavalry" referencing General George Stoneman

  34. dumbo7429

    You can feel the loss the south endured

  35. Eliza Waters

    Fuck that studio audience

  36. Anoneeemus1

    And with such nice breastages in her beautiful psychedelic shirt ,young pretty face and beautiful long hair....yummy

  37. Janet Baden

    she did a beatiful version...i just love the band/s version better..she had a beautiful voice

  38. Gordon Harris

    This is a great song sung by a great voice. God bless our Southern hearts.

  39. Rick Boiardi World Builder

    Didn't realize Joan was so hot!!!

    The story in the song seems so real when hearing you can see the civil war.

  40. motorman1017


  41. robert gardner

    Great version of the song. She would have had a world renown singing career however, she chose to publicly alienate Americans with her political views.

  42. Valeria Fonseca

    Essa canta muito, todo meu respeito e admiração a Joan Baez

  43. TheRealCyticx


  44. MR. Zag zagata

    YouTube is my friend and I can't rase my hand to a friend.

  45. MR. Zag zagata

    Google why do you hate me, I love you even when you are mean to mr,Zag , God,s speed Google.

  46. Krrrimmi

    IMAGINE THIS: What if, young Joan Baez live in 2001. She will blow away the judges of American Idol Season1 if she ever have a special guest performance. \m/

    Torvil Åsulv Støle

    No, she would NOT! She would be too good, they would rather pick a nobody!


    @Torvil Åsulv Støle I said as a special guest performance. NOT a contestant. lol

    Torvil Åsulv Støle

    @Krrrimmi Hey, I missed that! I agree!!

  47. Krrrimmi

    The powerful soprano voice of Joan Baez. \m/

  48. Tahtahme Xero

    "Studio audience should be singing along, it's NaNaNa, it's not that hard" that put to me out, love when performers have commanding presence and expect active listeners!

  49. MR. Zag zagata

    Google loves me no more.

  50. sceptyk01

    Communist. Talented but communist.

  51. MR. Zag zagata

    YouTube a place of happiness sadness is not aloud here, This is a place they call the YouTube family.

  52. electrojones

    The vocals are too pretty for the subject matter, so thanks, I hate it.

  53. HML367

    Some great songs on this page

  54. HML367

    They treated Dixie DIRTY. Still do.

  55. rockyracune

    You could not sing such a lovely song nowadays with all the whiny black liberals and white snowflakes. Poor, poor hurt feelings. How dare you show the humanity of the South! LOL.

  56. jay soper

    Baez bites; such a twat!

  57. TheSergio944

    why didn't the stupid audience support her and sing along when she asked them to. What a bunch of lazies.

    MR. Zag zagata

    That's wheat I don't get they didn't help her, even after she told them not funny sad more like it.

  58. Stefan Stefan

    die spakken hatten schon vor vierzig jahren keinen Plan.. wie sollten sie es denn dann heute haben..

  59. Gregory Zagata

    They took my friend and he is never coming back I was wrong forgivness can't work this time I can't find the words for him lost without him.

  60. Gregory Zagata

    l got your back Joan on na na na.

  61. Matt A

    The studio audience never did participate as she requested....odd.

  62. Joule Rhea Volte

    I am .... I am tired.

  63. Joule Rhea Volte

    I am .... I am tired.

  64. Don A

    No Autotune or computers needed. REAL talent.

  65. steve smith

    This is fucking rock and roll 🤣

  66. mike mallery

    Firstly, Everyone knows she changes the lyrics up a little. However, i think Baez has the best version of a very old tune. Tom Petty Baez's and Bob Dylans illegitimate son??????

    Daniel Landry

    Are you fucking high? Levon Helm and the band have the best version hands down....

    mike mallery

    @Daniel Landry Is that not the beauty of music my friend? And yes, i am always high. Truth be told, the Dead and the Floyd are the greatest bands of all time.

  67. Appregator

    The Civil War had nothing to do with freeing slaves. It was all about politicians wanting control like they do today. Then after murdering their countrymen, they start virtue signaling about how they freed the slaves. Who is naive enough to believe the BS?

  68. Dougllas Greene

    Most people miss the meaning of this song. It's about misery, suffering and starvation. I am an old man but still remember my grandfather telling me about how southern civilians with no dog in the fight, still were persecuted by the merciless yankees. He had heard about it from his daddy. Of course I have no knowledge of what went on here on our little farm but I don't think anything very good or heroic happened here. Several folks have asked permission to dig for artifacts, but I have so far declined. Maybe I'm afraid of what they might dig up.


    I love you for your history Douglas and please believe that I wish to understand. My heart is with you.


    I wish to tell you honey that as long as I stand on this sacred soil, here, in New Orleans Louisiana, then so long as another hurricane is going to mess with MY beloved city then it will have to contend with me first and I do not scare easily.

  69. Jacklyn

    Stoneman's Cavalry may have referred to the Stone Age and prehistoric cavemen. It might have referred to men who formed themselves a 'secret society' that has endured for millennia and being attributed with the design on the back of our bucks. Also known as masons, meaning men who build things out of stones. Nicholas Taitz here figures that Joan here butchered this song due to the fact that Joan keeps away from being accused of being inflammatory when singing the lyric as; 'stoneman's cavalry' and chooses to sing; 'so much cavalry'. I think that Joan was being inclusive rather than inflammatory. She recognized the historical value of these lyrics and chose to share them with a generation that wasn't even there and can't be held responsible for whatever was the true underlying cause of the Civil War. It was a land grab. It was about money, like all wars ever are. She simply chose to not 'go there' because most people these days only believe what they are taught in school and in school they are told that the north was rising to a noble cause, the abolition of slavery. That is INDEED a noble cause, don't get me wrong. Sadly, the truth of the matter is that a war would never be funded for the purpose of showing mercy upon the oppressed. It never has in all of man's history and the Civil War was no exception. It was a land grab, simple as that.

    Jere Land

    According to Levon Helm who wrote the song it is pretty simple. As a Southerner he grew up hearing stories about the war between the states and the suffering during and after the war. He wrote the song as a tribute to all the forgotten Southerners who lost everything in the war


    @Jere Land I know that and the saddest thing is that the Southerners set this country free from the Brits, not once, but twice. The first time was being funded by the French and sending provisions and arms up the Mississippi river and the second time was at the Battle of New Orleans. History shows zero respect for the French and the Spanish and that is beyond unfair. It takes the wind out of the sails and when that happens, well, what will be will be.

  70. Jacklyn

    I can play forensics too. Sorry Joan but Levon did this better and sorry Joan but the Band's version is preferred by the boys. I applaud the Band and Levon. I would venture to guess that Joan would be cool with that too. So chill dudes.

  71. Beach Boys

    Sorry Joan, your version maybe the hit but I'll take the Band's version anyday!!


    The original version from the band portrays more emotion in the way the lyrics are kindof whined out instead of just sang

  72. Nicholas Taitz

    she butchered this - give me Levon any day.

    Eric Margolis OK you got it


    Her heart was in the right place though.

  73. Nicholas Taitz

    pity she didn't check the words... "so much cavalry" - it's "Stoneman's cavalry". "so much cavalry" is pretty pathetic.


    what did she do wrong? some idiot man told her to say "so much cavalry" and she obeyed him....pathetic is attempting to make every single solitary man that walks this planet satisfied while never have sex with one single solitary one of them, lest the reputation go from pathetic to whore. In my next life I plan to return as a male because they don't require much in the way of education. Give us a penis and a couple of balls and the ability to growl and snarl, or the muscle to actually clock some dick, and we are good to go. Girls have to dance around all of the subjects all of the time due to their weakness. I wish to return with a penis and balls and muscles because I am sick of dicking around now. In my next life I wish t return as Slim.


    Let me ask you this then. Do you even know what Stoneman's Cavalry refers to? Don't reply to say that it refers to the northerners. I mean, WHY would they have been referred to as Stoneman's Cavalry. Do you know, wise guy?


    Jacklyn who are you talking too lol


    @CTCRStudios Nicholas Taitz, but do YOU know why ;-)


    Jacklyn do I know why what lol I don’t really care why in all honesty. I was saying that’s what everyone who sings the song says.

  74. Savage Snayle

    discrimination is discrimination no matter the race..unless it is all races hating whites

  75. Phos Thriskei

    Young Joan and a guitar on the road to conquer the world. Yeah, sweet was that time, full of innocence and illusions. A generation that thought it could vanquish human egotism; little did they know.

  76. Robert Castle

    Staggeringly good.A masterpiece.

  77. MR. Zag zagata

    I got your back lady ,
    na na na na na na .

  78. Glenn Weeks

    She was so talented but the audience didnt appear to know what the song was about so they just remained silent when she asked them to sing... when I here this song it brings out some emotions...loved it in the 70's but took me a while to understand the true meaning of this song...

  79. deaves


  80. Luke Dunn


  81. Malcolm Coco

    Joan is awesome

  82. G&G Energy Arthur miller

    Played backup for her in 1968 at Gerdies Folk City. Good times, I was way to young to see these people for what they were. RIP Jan and Mike.

  83. trockfield77

    People tend to think this is a traditional song - in fact it was written by Robbie Robertson of The Band.

    Timo Auvinen

    Actually Robertson steal this song.

  84. Olias Of Sunhillow

    Artists anymore, miss the meaning of music and what it is all about! Great singer, songwriter and performer!

  85. kevin scott


  86. David Messer

    When is YouTube going to block Joan Baez? She's obviously a racist with a song like this!

  87. swampgy yeah

    Levon Helms blows this song out of the water with his soulful rendition...AND he actually knows the lyrics and understands the meaning as only a Southerner could

    Edmond Dantes

    Surprised YouTube hasn't banned it, doesn't fit the official narrative now popular by those whose superficial knowledge of history makes them ignorant....and dangerous.

  88. Viv Sharfman

    The night they drove old Dixie down and changed America for ever. Greatest confederate song. beautull

  89. dread

    sad song, UK citizen here, oh I wish the confederates had won, but we were totally outnumbered, now look at the mess we are in with the masses of immigrants

  90. Commercial Communication

    A real musician.

  91. Commercial Communication

    If she had come onto the scene in 2019, they would ruin her- they'd sex her up, make her sing crap, auto tune her, remove all heart and soul from her, and make soulless dead product. Where have all the artists gone?

  92. Dragan Vujanovic

    I'm forever inloved in you dear Joan.

  93. Ed Tolliver

    I bet she regrets ever singing a song extolling the Confederacy. Now 150 years later the racism and hate is stronger than ever.

    Edmond Dantes

    Have you even listened to the lyrics of the song, you pompous virtue signaling ass? It told of the effects on the average Southern family. Not everyone in the South owned slaves or fought because of it. But that's not the popular narrative today by those who blame their own poor life choices on something that ended over 150 years ago

  94. Nicholas Taitz

    it's stoneman's cavalry, Joan should get the words right.

  95. Simon Parkes

    Real talent from a wonderful era when life seemed to be a little less complicated.

  96. stobbinsboy

    Joan is a national treasure. She is a woman who knows damn well what opression is and she was instrumental in championing the rights of all people, A hippy, a visionary, a progressive and a humanitarian and she had the guts to show the other side of the coin. She may have not written it but she stood much more of a chance of being blackballed by the narrowminded of both conservatives and liberals. Listen to Farewell Angelina or Love is just a four letter word and you'll know she is one of the greats. She is a force of nature.

  97. aerodog2

    I don't think Baez sings this song anymore, because SJW's say that it 'Glorifies the Suffering of White Supremacist Racists' who lived in the South during the War Between the States.
    If she sings it, Democrats will HATE her without Mercy.

  98. Johnathan Rudd

    Here's one for y'all

  99. William Wallace

    What a singer, she is superb,,, does not need all the glitz ,,, she is the glitz !!!

  100. Stephen Powell

    ❤️❤️❤️Beautiful Tune💕💕💕