East Bound and Down

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"East Bound and Down"
Single by Jerry Reed
from the album Smokey and the Bandit soundtrack
B-side "(I'm Just A) Redneck in a Rock and Roll Bar"[1]
Released August 1, 1977
Format 7" single
Genre Country
Length 2:47
Label RCA
Writer(s) Jerry Reed, Dick Feller
Producer(s) Jerry Reed
Jerry Reed singles chronology
"With His Pants in His Hand"
"East Bound and Down"
"You Know What"

"East Bound and Down" is a song written by Jerry Reed and Dick Feller, and recorded by Reed for the soundtrack for the film Smokey and the Bandit. The song features Reed on the lead vocal and vocalist Gordon Stoker of the Jordanaires on the harmony vocal. It was released in August 1977 as a single on RCA Records. The song spent sixteen weeks on the U.S. country music charts, reaching a peak of #2.[1] It also reached #3 on the Bubbling Under Hot 100. The song featured in episode "Stole Beer from a Golfer" of sitcom My Name Is Earl, where Smokey and the Bandit was mentioned. It was also featured in the 2010 ESPN NASCAR commercial, playing on the rivalry between Carl Edwards and Brad Keselowski.

Variations in lyrics[edit]

The song differs in its lyrics depending on the cut of recording. The most commonly known version is the track that was recorded for the single, in which the first line of the introductory and second choruses sings:

"East bound and down, loaded up and truckin'"

However, the same line in the version of the song played in the Smokey and the Bandit movie soundtrack sings:

"West bound and down, eighteen wheels a-rollin'"

The third and fourth choruses in the soundtrack version then switch to the "east bound and down" lyrics.

The soundtrack's lyrics better describe the run made by the protagonist characters in the film, in that they travel west from Atlanta, Georgia to Texarkana, Texas, and then make the return trip east to Atlanta.

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1982–1983) Peak
U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles 2
U.S. Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 3
Canadian RPM Country Tracks 2

Cover versions[edit]


  1. ^ a b Whitburn, Joel (2008). Hot Country Songs 1944 to 2008. Record Research, Inc. p. 343. ISBN 0-89820-177-2.