Creedence Clearwater Revival’s Own Night in ‘Lodi’
Doug Clifford recalled the night that significantly inspired Creedence Clearwater Revival track “Lodi,” which appeared as a the b-side to “Bad Moon Rising” in 1969. It tells the story of a musician, down on his luck, who finds himself stranded and penniless after playing in the California town.
Although frontman John Fogerty later said he’d never visited Lodi in real life, Clifford told Uncle Joe Benson on the Ultimate Classic Rock Nights radio show that the band had plenty of experiences in playing similar places.
“We played up and down the Sacramento-Cerrito Valley for four or five years, in pizza places and in bars where people asked us to turn it down because it was interfering with whatever else was going on,” he said. “The night that I really remember, we were in a little bar, and the most people they had in there at any one given time was nine people, all locals, all drunk, all obnoxious. They made us play the full four hours – made us, the entire time, ‘Turn it down, do this do that.’
“So we did it, honored our commitment, and went to get paid. And the bartender said, ‘I’m not paying you guys. You were too loud, you were this, you were that.’” When the band issued an angry demand to hand over the cash, Clifford recalled, “The nine guys stood up in the bar and said, ‘You better leave now.’ And we did.”
But that wasn’t the end: “And to add insult to injury, Stewie [Cook] backed up in haste, trying to leave, and backed up over one of our amps. Not a good deal. So a lot of inspiration for ‘Lodi’ came from that particular evening.”
Be sure to listen to Ultimate Classic Rock Nights on more than 50 stations across the U.S. from 7PM until midnight, Monday through Friday. You can see the list of radio stations where it airs here.
Listen to Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Lodi"