“Mr. Bojangles” is the title of a song originally written and recorded by A
merican country music artist Jerry Jeff Walker for his 1968 album of the same title. 

Since then, it has been recorded by many other artists, including American country music band The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, whose version (recorded for the 1970 album Uncle Charlie & His Dog Teddy) was issued as a single and rose to number nine on the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart in 1971. Live versions of the song appeared on Walker’s 1977 Album, A Man Must Carry On and his 1980 album The Best of Jerry Jeff Walker.

In 1987 Sammy Davis Jr. danced to “Mr. Bojangles” under a faithful spotlight at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. It was wintertime on the strip, and Davis was recovering from major hip reconstruction surgery. He was 61 years old. He was in pain. But when Davis went on stage, the hurt went somewhere else, to a place where the songs are forever sweet and the steps are always soft.

Mr Bojangles

I knew a man, Bojangles and he danced for you
In worn out shoes
Silver hair, a ragged shirt and baggy pants
The old soft shoe
He jumped so high
He jumped so high
Then he’d lightly touch down

I met him in a cell in New Orleans, I was
Down and out
He looked to me to be the eyes of age
As he spoke right out
He talked of life
He talked of life

He laughed, clicked his heels and stepped
He said his name, Bojangles and he danced a lick
Across the cell
He grabbed his pants, a better stance
Oh, he jumped so high
Then he clicked his heels
He let go a laugh
He let go a laugh
Pushed back his clothes all around

Mr. Bojangles
Mr. Bojangles
Mr. Bojangles

He danced for those in minstral shows and county fairs
Throughout the south
He spoke with tears of fifteen years how his dog and him
Traveled about
The dog up and died
He up and died

After twenty years he still grieves
He said I dance now at every chance in honky tonks
For drinks and tips
But most the time I spend behind these county bars
He said I drinks a bit
He shook his head
And as he shook his head
I heard someone ask him please

Mr. Bojangles
Mr. Bojangles
Mr. Bojangles