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soggy bottom boys - i am a man of constant sorrow

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Date: Tue, 19 Feb 2002 18:59:24 +0000
From: Howard <howard@souzoukakia.netscapeonline.co.uk>
Subject: s/soggy_bottom_boys/i_am_a_man_of_constant_sorrow.tab

 
        I Am A Man of Constant Sorrow
        -------------------------------

                By The Soggy Bottom Boys, featuring Dan Tyminski

                Transcribed by Howard Wright
                howard@jmdl.com


This is a transcription of the song "I am a man of constant sorrow"
by The Soggy Bottom Boys, as featured in the Coen Brothers film
"O Brother Where Art Thou?". There are several versions of the song
in the film - this is a transcription of the "Radio Station" version,
which features some great, bluesy guitar playing (this is the first
time the song is heard in the film).


Tuning
-------

The guitar part is played in an alternative tuning - the notes
to tune the open strings are (low to high): DADGAD.

You also need to use a capo at the 3rd fret.

The only way to play this song and get it to sound right is to
use the DADGAD tuning - you can't play the part in standard tuning.
For those who havn't tried altered tunings before, this tuning is
a fairly easy one to use. Starting with a guitar tuned in standard
tuning, you need to:

* tune the bottom E down two semitones to D
* tune the B string down two semitones to A
* tune the top E down two semitones to D

When tuning the E strings down, compare with the 4th string (D) to
get the right note. When tuning the B string down, compare with the
5th string (A).

In "Joni Mitchell tunings notation" the DADGAD tuning is written
as D75525. This tunings notation is useful as it tells you where
you should fret a string in order to get the note to tune the next
open string to. More details at www.jmdl.com/guitar


Chord Shapes
-------------

NB all tablature and chord shapes are written relative to
the capo at the 3rd fret. In other words, a "1" means 1 fret
above the capo position. Chord names are written at the
sounding pitch (with DADGAD tuning and capo at the 3rd fret,
the song ends up in the key of F).

The song only uses three basic chords, but it's the variations
on these basic shapes, the fills between the chords and the
rhythm playing that makes the guitar part sound so good.

The main chord shapes are:

DADGAD    DADGAD    DADGAD
00020x    5500xx    x02222

  F5       Bb5      Csus2


The top couple of strings are not played very often, and much of
the guitar part uses just the bottom four or five strings.

A very simplified view of the basic changes for the verse and chorus
is given in the tablature below (chord names in brackets above the
tab).

Verse:


 (F5)           (Bb5) (Csus2)
D------------------------------------------------
A----------------------2-------------------------
G--2-------2------0----2--------2----------------
D--0-------0------0----2--------0----------------
A--0-------0------5----0--------0----------------
D--0--3/5--0---3--5-------3b4---0----------------

(repeat above line once)


Chorus:

 (Csus2) (F5)
D--------------------------
A---2----------------------
G---2-----2----------------
D---2-----0----------------
A---0-----0----------------
D---------0----------------


Below, I've transcribed the guitar part in detail, up to the end
of the first chorus. Try and see how the basic changes (above)
are mixed with quieter strums and short runs/fills to create the
complete guitar part.

I wouldn't try and learn the part note for note - work through the
tab to get the main ideas then try to follow the basic changes but
making up your own fills and ad libs.

Here's the full tab from the intro up to the end of the first chorus
(the ending is also written out):


INTRO
------

NB - a lot of the bends on the 3rd fret bottom string are
written as:

----3b4------

but they usually don't quite go up a full semitone, so bend
up most of the way but leave the note a bit flat.


  (F5)
D------------------------------------------------0------
A----------------------------------------0-------0------
G-------------------------0--------------2-------2------
D----------------3h4------0-0------------0----0---------
A--3h5---0-3-5-5------5-3-------------0--0--------------
D--0---0---0---0---0----------5-3b4---0-----0-----------


                 (Csus2)
D--------------------------------------------------
A--------------------------2---------2-------------
G------------------2----2------2----2--------------
D-----0------------2---------2---2-----------------
A------------------0-------------0-------0---------
D--0-----------------------------------------------

      In constant sorrow            all ...


  (F5)
D-----------------------------------------------
A-------0---------------------------------------
G--2----2-----------0---0-----------------------
D--0----------------0---0-----------------------
A--0--------0-3/5-----3---x---------------------
D--0------0---0---0---------5--3----------------

  days



VERSE
------

  (F5)
D-------------------------------------------------
A-------------------------------------------------
G--2--------------------------2---2-2-2-----------
D--0--0-0-0-0-0-0--0----0-------0-0-0-0--0--0-0---
A--0--------0--------------0----------------------
D--0--------0------3/5-----0-------------3--------

   I               am  a  m...


  (Bb5)                     (Csus2)
D-------------------------------------------------
A----------------------------2--2---------2-------
G-----------0----------------2-----2---2--2--2----
D--0--0-0-0-0--0--0-0-0-0----2-------2-2----------
A--5-----------5-------------0---------0----------
D--5-----------5----------------------------------

  sorrow           I've seen t...


  (F5)
D------------------------------------------------
A---------------------2--------------------------
G---------------------0--------------------------
D---------------------0--------------------------
A--0--0-0-0--3---5p3--5--------------------------
D--0---------0---0--------5--3b4-----------------

  days


  (F5)
D------0-0------------------------------------------
A------0-0------------------------------------------
G--2--------------------------2-2-2----2------------
D--0-------0-----0-0----0-----0-0-0----0--0--0------
A--0----------0------------0---------0--------------
D--0----------0----3/5-----0---------0----3---------

   I               bid f....


  (Bb5)                      (Csus2)
D------------------------------------------------------------
A---------------------------------2--2--2-----2----2---------
G-------0-0-0----0----------------2--2--2---2-2--2-----------
D--0--0-0-0-0-0--0---0--0--0--0---2-------2---2--2-----------
A--5-------------5----------------0-----------0--------------
D--5-------------5------------------------------------3b4r3--

 -tucky         the pl....


  (F5)
D-----------------------------------------------
A------------------0----------------------------
G-----2----2-------2-------------0--------------
D--0--0----0-------0-------0-----0--------------
A--0------------0--0----------------------------
D--0-----0-3p0--0-------------------------------

  bred,            the   place  where


CHORUS
-------

  (C5)
D----------------------------------------------
A----------------------------------------------
G--2---2-------2-----x-------------------------
D--2--------------2---------0-0----------------
A--0-----0-0-0----0----------------------------
D-----------------------3b4--------------------

   he                    born a...


 (F5)
D-----------------------------------------------
A-----------------------------------------------
G-----------------------------------------------
D------------------------0-----0----------------
A--0---0----0--3h5--5p3--0--3--0----------------
D--0-----0-----0----0----0--0--0---3p0----------

  bred


Guitar part continues similarly for all verses/choruses.


ENDING
-------

D-----------------------------------------------------
A-----------------------------------------------------
G---------------------------------------0-------------
D----------------3h4-------0------------0-------------
A--0--0--3h5-5-5-----5-0-3---3-3h5--0-3----0-------0--
D--0---------0-----------0---0-0--------------5-3--0--

      

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