Crosby & Nash - I Used To Be A King Lyrics

I used to be a king
And everything around me turned to gold
I thought I had everything
Now I'm left without a hand to hold

But it's alright, I'm okay, how are you
For what it's worth I must say I love you
And in my bed late at night, I miss you

Someone is gonna take my heart, no-one is gonna break my heart again

I used to be a king
And everything around me turned to rust
It's cos I built my life on sand
And I watched it crumble in the dust

Yeah but it's alright, I'm okay, I want to know how you are
For what it's worth I must say I loved you as you are
In my bed where are you

Someone is gonna take my heart, no-one is gonna break my heart again
Someone is gonna take my heart, no-one is gonna break my heart again

I used to be a king
But everything around me turned around
But I know all I have to do is sing
And I'll lift myself way off the ground

Yeah, but it's alright, I'm okay, how are you
For what it's worth I must say I love you
And in my bed late at night God how I miss you

Someone is gonna take my heart, no-one is gonna break my heart again

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Crosby & Nash I Used To Be A King Comments
  1. Sammy Scotch

    This is a good song on a good album, "songs for beginners"

  2. Brandon Ricketts

    What a fucking genius this guy is...great songwriter!!!!

  3. Tonya Johnson

    I love Graham Nash..

  4. Olimpio palhares ferreira

    Linda música...!!!

  5. Robert Schofield

    Vinal,wow me too ...

  6. Tarantulisimo

    Graham Nash — vocals; guitar
    Jerry Garcia — pedal steel guitar
    Neil Young — piano
    David Crosby — electric guitar
    Phil Lesh — bass
    Johnny Barbata — drums

    Berry Seinfeld

    a lotta nobodies!

    Sammy Scotch

    @Berry Seinfeld ha funny

  7. Mustafa Çeğindir

    R.I.P Sweeney

    Deniz Çetin

    med siviniy geri dönecek

  8. No Regret Coyote

    Its about Joni ending their relationship. It’s a play on words from Joni’s ‘I Had a King’ from her first album. This is a nice song but for me, it just shows how Joni Mitchell towers above every other musician...ever!

  9. robert logan

    bought this album in Colorado, I liked this song a lot!!! bob

  10. Yllawish

    The atmosphere where c,s,n & young us bring is never ever done by another band. For me, if I listen to their music, it brings me into a world I ve never been and where I want to be...Their voice belong to each other (maybe with exeption of Neil ) like the waves belong to the sea...

  11. tenere 88


  12. TSgitaar

    Neil Young on piano and Jerry Garcia on pedal steel... Oh, and Crosby on guitar as well. Incredible musicians on this track.

  13. Brett Sanders

    Going thru rough times this helps that pedal Steele part tugs at my heart thanks

  14. Scott Pintal

    They have touched me deeply forever

  15. Maria White

    I love the style I find the vocal range mesmerising. He has a gentle voice, yet he expresses
    convincingly.... How AreYou......

  16. Lisa Harmon

    I use to be a queen. Then I woke up haha!!!

  17. Shellet Carmack

    Still in 2018

    Deeb !!

    Shellet Carmack 2019 ! 😌

  18. Jenn Hill

    I find it sad that Crosby has alienated his best friend. Also, Nash & Young have divorced their spouses of many years & remarried.
    I don't know the circumstances; I'm not casting blame... But, their families (including themselves) suffer.

  19. Clyde Kimsey

    I've really enjoyed this song since it came out. I'm not much for lyrics but these have always touched me

  20. Bradley Hovious

    What a voice

  21. M. Groningen

    The way Jerry plays on this track is beyong magic. 'Songs For Beginner's' is a true classic that seems to be a bit forgotten these days. Hopefully many new generations discover this and fall in love with songs like 'I Used to be King'.

  22. Paul Logan

    Listen to Garcia's unmistakable goofy laugh at the 5-6 second mark!!!. What a song, what playing! Just beautiful.

  23. bearman000ify

    Garcia on steel guitar just blows me away!

  24. Tedd Armstrong

    I love this artist so much.
    And at the same time so envious of the romance he had with Joni Mitchell in those early years!!!

  25. MrVampiredog


  26. Patricia Jollie

    The best

  27. Doctor Brown

    peace toall the old heads that were around for the vynle. im only 28. but been lovin csn since i heard jerries sweet petal steal. i wish i hadent been getting into heroin atthr same time. ts is ard sometimes to listen, cause i get cravings. thsis song is so beutiful. i was in a verry sad place but doing a nice shot to this songmade it feel ok and even good to feel the hardship. along with a fat shot. anyways sorry for the ramble. and anone reading. please refrain from using hard drugs. i only ment to convey howmuch i feel when i listen to this.more han any other song. stay strong. love and power to ayone of us light beings that need it. love peace and harmony.

  28. Keith Tonna

    'songs for begginers' was a source of wisdom and inspiration as a teen in the early 70s.

  29. ted sheehan

    altoona pa.....1972

  30. Matthew Berryessa

    I love you !...........Two ..

  31. Richard Freeman

    Thanks for your music Graham.

    Jason Barbush

    someday well be making music together in the hereafter with Jerry and John and Kurt Cobain not to mention Johnny Cash. it will be beautiful. call me a little far out there. Christians are supposed to be crazy.

  32. Stuart Walker

    Do I hear Jerry and Phil from the Grateful Dead? What a song Graham, beautiful as You!

    William Christy

    Stuart Walker Indeed you do! Jerry killin the steel guitar! Good ears!

    Brett Sanders

    Yeah the pedal Steele steals the show on this one

  33. lw216316

    " what will it profit a man
    if he gains the whole world
    and loses his own soul ? " - Jesus Christ

    Doug Odyssey

    A lesson no generation ever learns. And we keep making excuses for it.

  34. ronjeremy65

    Love Hollies could not stand CSN, Can't deny their talent.

  35. rdon53

    good song , close to on par with southern cross

  36. TrueBlueSue49

    Graham Nash - I used to be King

  37. Matthew Berryessa

    Happy, Heart. Love, Cry.........

  38. Britt Lilja

    My fellow Aquarian. Beautiful singer and song writer and a great humanitarian. Love him so much <3. Thank you

  39. Barb Manning Carter

    Grew up listening to Songs for Beginners & lots of Neil Young, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young so many years ago. I still & always will love the lyrics & music. Songs for Beginners was an album I never forgot. Although I have new technology like CDs & iPod, it's the older music I always choose. I will never forget listening to it on my car's 8 track. This song definitely helped me during the good & the rough times in life! Graham is coming to a venue close by in January. How great it will be to see him solo!

    Berry Seinfeld

    How was the show?


    Songs for beginners is my favorite lp

  40. Google User

    My husband and I were lucky to visit the Rock Hall this past weekend in Cleve. The main reason was to see the Graham Nash exhibit - Touching the Flame. When we walked in this song was playing. Then Military Madness, Just a Song Before I Go - all the beautiful jangly songs (take the money and run)...providing a beautiful backdrop for the exhibit - which included collections from is personal collection - and some of his amazing photographs & sculpture. The whole Laurel Canyon portion was really amazing to me. I bought this album in 1979 - I was 19. This is one of my favorite records - still. That peddle steel guitar, combined with Graham's voice - is perfection in my book.

    Naima JAZOULI

    I bought my first album same year 1979// Today am 60 Yld

  41. PrincessEyesTalking

    The most beautiful pedal-steel I´ve ever heard - Jerry Garcia!!!
    But after all it´s a great song,great lyrics & thank god Scorcese didn´t slaughter it for one of his movies already (-;
    Colours are coming with chalices and chalices are coming with colours....

  42. nanaPhyllis Bennett

    Does anyone know the man in their mirror..? the words were 2& 2 make 4 tthey never make 5 and as long as we no it we all can survive...I'm trying to find it.thought it was by Graham But can't find please

    Gus classic rock channel

    +Phyllis Bennett
    Yes of course I know Phyllis In case you haven't received them, here you go (I hope you can get them it via this link : ) See you!, Gus ☼

    nanaPhyllis Bennett

    +longlostgus thank you so much .. i looked everywhere...I knew i remembered hearing it an was trying to find it for my son to learn on guitar.. thanks so much...I was a fan way back...and i kept looking but i couldn't find these words..this was back in the days of my youth when we were shouting for peace,, and the Vietnam war seemed to drag on and on.. i was about 17 yrs old and this stuck in my head..i'd sing it for my son..Military the younger one wants to sing and play it...he loves to sing and lay his acoustic for me...thanks so much!!

    Gus classic rock channel

    @Phyllis Bennett
    Hey Phyllis yes I remember those days too though I was couple of years young for the draft,  so now your son likes "our" music ha? that was good music and is a little bit strange but I haven't been able to find another music genre that can replace that music style. That's why and since I have a covers channel I'm constantly checking this sites out so it was real easy for me to send you one of the sites I check most of the time, anyway you're welcome take real good care of your kid and see you soon or when you need something else again just "call" ok? Later, your friend....
    Gus ☼

  43. Gus classic rock channel

    I'm a big Graham Nash fan for quite a long time, why? Just listen to this song and album! BTW The players here (just in case) are: Nash piano and acoustic Guitar, Crosby, Electric Guitar, Jerry Garcia, Pedal steel guitar, Bass, Phil Lesh, Drums, Johnny Barbata and some others that might have passed me by.
    PS: "Joe Yankee" (Neil Young) Plays piano on "Better Days" and "Man in the Mirror" according to the album credits which BTW sometimes are not that accurate FLOBW.
    Thanks for the upload and big t up
    Gus ☼

    Carrie Berry

    I came to hear Jerry play on this song. I just learned recently it was him on pedal steel.... and I have this album, in storage at the moment as is my turntable and I haven't heard it is years. Always been a big fan of all of them and their various combinations. They were a big part of my teenage and adult life. <3

    Gus classic rock channel

    @Carrie Berry
    "They were a big part of my teenage and adult life" So nicely said, T.up : ) BTW He (Jerry) is on pedal steel on some more of their songs among them "Teach Your Children" (of course) and in a few more on Crosby's "If I could only remember my Name" and there must be a few more songs that escape my mind at the moment but hey! Thx for the Feedback : )

    clarence wertz

    also don henleys guitar playes he toured with and played on end of the inscence,
    danny korkamonder.sorry about spelling


    Daniel Kortchmar. Also was Don Henley's songwriting and producing partner in the 1980s.

    R G

    I could tell there’s Jerry and Phil. Love this stuff. I just saw Graham. He was spot on

  44. Paul Miller

    Just saw him last night at the Arcada in Saint Charles, il.  Can't describe in words how great a show.  He is the best male vocalist I have ever heard, and that includes
    Jon Anderson, who is also still very good. Even sang one Hollies song, Bus Stop.
    His treatment somehow made it more poingnant than I remember.  All the great songs
    he recorded with CSN&Y were there. Also Songs from his solo album Songs for Beginners, including the great, I used to be a King.  He is truly one of the best musicians from the 70's,  He was accompanied by guitarist Shane Fontayne who
    is good enough to have a show of his own.   Great stories, music, Love you Graham!

    clarence wertz

    i grue up in batavia ,il .great people and place that it ,.nice to read your stuff here

  45. Cornelius Esperanza

    It's odd how the compact disc version of this album leaves out the very beginning where it sounds like the musicians are tuning up, we also hear some studio patter.  I completely identify with the lyrical content being an Autism Spectrum Disorder male of 43, 44 in October, that has consistently lost in the relationship arena.  I intend to transfer from vinyl to compact disc this never played copy of Graham Nash's Songs For Beginners solo album I bought off Ebay, it was sealed when I purchased it.

  46. Louis Byron

    Graham gave Jerry the "Alligator" (the '57 body/'63 neck Stratocaster that gave Garcia what I believe to be his greatest guitar tone...that slinky, sinuous, punchy timbre he used during the Europe '72 era) primarily for his work on this album.

    clarence wertz

    those were my favorit dead years ,they smoke,i saw them in 1974 ,wall of sound daze,i guess that was before the heroin days where jerry would scribble notes while passing out almost as he bored the shit out of me ,so i stayed playing the parking lot at the shows

  47. Guy Sharwood

    Happy Birthday, Graham (tomorrow)

  48. Lance Ashdown

    I love this song.

  49. snippee1

    <3 <3 <3

  50. Jere Hooper

    Graham Nash — vocals; guitar all tracks except "Better Days" and "Simple Man"; piano on "Better Days," "Simple Man," "Chicago" and "We Can Change the World"; organ on "Better Days," "There's Only One," "Chicago" and "We Can Change the World"; paper and comb on "Sleep Song"; tambourine on "Chicago" and "We Can Change the World"
    Rita Coolidge — piano on "Be Yourself" and "There's Only One"; electric piano on "Be Yourself"; backing vocals on "Military Madness," "Better Days," "Simple Man," "There's Only One," "Chicago" and "We Can Change the World"
    Jerry Garcia — pedal steel guitar on "I Used to Be a King" and "Man in the Mirror"; piano on "I Used to Be a King"
    Joe Yankee — piano on "Better Days" and "Man in the Mirror"
    Dorian Rudnytsky — cello on "Simple Man" and "Sleep Song"
    Dave Mason — electric guitar on "Military Madness"
    David Crosby — electric guitar on "I Used to Be a King"
    Joel Bernstein — piano on "Military Madness"
    Bobby Keys — saxophone on "There's Only One"
    David Lindley — fiddle on "Simple Man"
    Sermon Posthumas — bass clarinet on "Better Days"
    Chris Ethridge — bass on "Man in the Mirror," "There's Only One," "Chicago" and "We Can Change the World"
    Calvin "Fuzzy" Samuels — bass on "Military Madness," "Better Days," and "Be Yourself"
    Phil Lesh — bass on "I Used to Be a King"
    Johnny Barbata — drums on "Military Madness," "I Used to Be a King," "Be Yourself," "Man in the Mirror," "There's Only One," "Chicago" and "We Can Change the World"; tambourine on "Chicago"
    Dallas Taylor — drums on "Better Days"
    P.P. Arnold — backing vocals on "Military Madness"
    Venetta Fields, Sherlie Matthews, Clydie King, Dorothy Morrison — backing vocals on "There's Only One," "Chicago" and "We Can Change the World"

  51. Jere Hooper

    Nash brought in an impressive group of guests to assist in the recording, including David Crosby, Jerry Garcia, Phil Lesh, Dave Mason, David Lindley, Rita Coolidge, and Neil Young under his early 1970s pseudonym Joe Yankee. The making of this album directly followed his break-up with longtime girlfriend, Joni Mitchell. Many of the songs are about their time together. The album featured the traits that Nash had come to be known for: a good sense of pop song construction, expressions of emotional sincerity, and fervent political activism.


    Jere, thanks for sharing this...

  52. Jared Short

    Happy to say I possess this on vinyl

    patty slattery

    Me, too, and it's in great condition.


    me too -:)


    One more here...A favorite LP!

  53. Speed Racer

    one of the best tracks on the LP , takes Me back to 71', I would smoke a lil an  play ,this great mellow LP , I may buy it on CD , but I heard some the remastered disc they" fine tune" it too much and dont sound the same.

  54. platinumblondie

    what an outstanding song. thank you.

  55. Jeffrey Edwards

    Garcia is playing pedal steel NOT slide on this track, like he did on the New Riders' first album...


    And my, what a pedal steel player he was !

  56. donna mizanin


  57. williamfeuer

    Thanks! for posting the original mix. I just bought the CD and it's all the 2008 remix. Garcia is pushed to the back and the drums and bass are out in front. They cut out the talking at the beginning and they've even fiddled with the vocal line (adding some more "No, No"s from GN). It's discouraging for those of us who remember the original version from 40+ years ago.

  58. Stuart Walker

    I wore this album out because of this song, between Jerrys playing and Grahams Voice... you know what i mean?!!!

    Guy Sharwood

    Darn right I do, Stuart.

  59. Stuart Walker

    G-R-A-T-E-F-U-L as always

  60. tim traver

    derek trucks also

  61. Stuart Walker

    your Wrong, you must be american!

  62. Stuart Walker

    No, the Hollies

  63. Stuart Walker

    To the musicians who got some jerry on themselves, God you know your blessed! And i Love everyone of You.

  64. buzzbeen

    Love the Hollies and CSNY, but these lyrics suck.

  65. Michael Goncalves

    W-R-O-N-G!!! Graham Nash used to be in the HOLLIES!!! This is a good song made stellar by the 'God Like' Steel Pedal Guitar. And who is playing it, People? Jerry Garcia of the Greatful Dead---I shit you not!!! You have to understand the Sixties. There was no genrdra drifting as there is today. To us HIPPIES, Country Western Music was THE ENEMY!!! So when CSN came out with teach yer children, it was DOWN RIGHT SUBVERSIVE!!! Jerry Garcia is THE FINEST SLIDE musician America ever produced!!

    E. Antony Gray

    ok boomer

  66. micflic

    One of the best from a great singer songwriter.