Dave Dudley – The Pool Shark

The song was Dave Dudley's twenty-first release on the country chart and his only number one. The single stayed at the top of the country charts for one week and spent a total of fourteen weeks on the chart.

Dave Dudley - The Pool Shark
Cover LP Dave Dudley Mercury 1970
Dave Dudley – The Pool Shark, is a song written by Tom T. Hall and recorded by American country music artist Dave Dudley. It was released in February 1970 as the lead single from the album of the same name, The Pool Shark. The song was Dave Dudley’s twenty-first release on the country chart and his only number one. The single stayed at the top of the country charts for one week and spent a total of fourteen weeks on the chart.
The song tells the story of a young traveling man and hard-luck gambler who stops at a roadside bar. After watching one of the regulars, a middle-aged man, play pool for a while, the two strike up a conversation and agree to play a game. Eventually, the two play a long best-of series of the games, with the regular revealing himself to be a pro at the game who, under the guise of a friendly challenge, frequently hustles unwary opponents out of money.

Dave Dudley – The Pool Shark
From the album The Pool Shark
B-side «Bigger They Come The Harder They Fall»
Released February 21, 1970
Genre Country
Length 2:59
Label Mercury
Songwriter(s) Tom T. Hall
Producer(s) Jerry Kennedy


Dave Dudley – The Pool Shark Lyrics

He said pardon me for bein’ so bold but you got a cigarette that’s already rolled
I gave him one he lit it in his own good time
The smoke in that poolroom hung like a fog
When he talked it sounded like a growling dog
He said would you care for a dollar on the five or nine
Now this man was ugly and his eyes were mean
His clothes were dirty but his hands were clean
He held that stick like a mother holds the hand of the child
Well I’ve been known to hustle a few when the waitress said was he playing you
And I said yeah bring me brandy water by
Little Red Parker was way in the back taking quarters and hadling racks
And I told him Red come up here glue ‘em up tight
That brandy had me feeling warm I tipped that waitress and I checked her form
And I said honey you like a winner and she just smiled
I played like a man with a broken wrist I won two and he won six
And I had him set up so I said let’s play for five
But this time the crowd had gathered round to see this fish and just watch him drown
I told that waitress more brandy water by
Then he went out and got a custom cue he said it’s no offence to you
But I don’t play off the wall with nobody but friends
He had a gold initials in a leather grip pearly and silver inlaid tip
He smiled at me and he said hell-a-way we play for ten
Well I never seen a man that walk who made those balls and table talk
They’re speaking English he sure didn’t need my help
He broke the ball and kept that string for a hundred and eighty seven bucks and a ring
Till I gave up and said friend you’re gonna have to play by yourself
Well he racked it up and walked outside and I strolled out just to watch him ride
And there was a blonde in their Caddy built like the rest of that car
The boys in the poolroom they had ‘em a laugh and I hung it up and just let it pass
And had nothin’ but my elbows to put on the bar
And the waitress smiled said water by I took the chairity and thanked her polite
And sittin’ there sippin’ and suddenly I had me a thought
Unlucky gambler and lucky in love guess you know what I was thinking of
When I said waitress honey what time do you get off


Dave Dudley - The Pool Shark
Single Dave Dudley Mercury 1970




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