John on the Train in San Antonio

by Jack Hotel

  • Streaming + Download

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    Purchasable with gift card

      $1 USD  or more



Ridin' on the train when we stop in San Antone
A dude walks down the aisle and he sees that I'm alone
And he stops next to my seat and asks me, "Can I join you, friend?"
If I had just said "no" then that is where this song would end

But he sat himself right down and told me that his name was John
I did not say my name but somehow knew that he'd go on
He said he'd finished doing time and was gonna see his girl
And when he's done with her he's gonna see this guy named Earl

Who had offered him a job a month or so ago
The job was probably gone but Earl owed him, did I know
Where he could get a prepaid card so he could make a couple calls?
His boys would want to know that he had climbed over the wall

And then he laughed and said "just kidding," he had paid all of his dues
He had served his time in full, and then he pointed at his shoes
And asked me would I mind too much if he aired out his toes?
I had to answer "no" and try not to breathe through my nose

His favorite food was pancakes and his favorite color green
His favorite cleaning product was not Tide but Mr. Clean
He used to play the guitar in a rockabilly band
But he had sold the instrument and later trashed his hand

He looked at the appendage, which he rolled into a fist
He said if anyone could play it was definitely his kid
"He could play a house on fire, I have never seen the like
"That boy had the blues before he could even ride a bike"

Then he opened up his backpack, and he opened up a beer
He said it was his birthday, then he pulled out something clear
And he poured into cups and said, "I propose a toast"
Then he forgot what he was saying

To another year gone by and another year ahead
Make a past and future sandwich out of past and future bread
We drank and started laughing, and it turned into a fit
Then John got real quiet and he told me what he did

I will leave out all the details, but say it involved a gun
And when the deed was over, John no longer had a son
He opened up a knife, and while he spoke he carved his name
Into the seatback and he asked if I had lived life on the blade


released June 8, 2020
Günter Voelker - guitar, vocal
Kim Taruc - upright bass
Myles Jasnowski - electric guitar
Jack Rodenburg - organ
Justin Jones - drums


all rights reserved



Jack Hotel Lincoln, Nebraska

Jack Hotel contains multitudes. A listen to their sophomore release, Voices from the Moon, reveals a range that encompasses Ry Cooder and Leo Kottke, Gillian Welch and Townes Van Zandt, Mississippi John Hurt and Etta Baker--but this band is no mere product of its influences. Since their start in 2012, Jack Hotel has proven itself one of the best, and most original, folk acts in the midwest. ... more

contact / help

Contact Jack Hotel

Streaming and
Download help

Redeem code

Report this track or account

Jack Hotel recommends:

If you like Jack Hotel, you may also like: