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Tangled up in Blue - Bob Dylan

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(@vic-lewis-vl)
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Joined: 20 years ago
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Bob Dylan - Tangled Up In Blue

This is a reasonably easy song to strum along to, there's only one change - from A to Bm - that the inexperienced guitarist may struggle a bit with, so I'll do it in two different keys.......

I'm not absolutely sure that this was the key Dylan used on the "Blood on the Tracks" album, but I have a live version of this that I taped from VH-1 Classic, and I watched his fingers very carefully......

So firstly, the tab for that particular version.......

INTRO......

D/Am7/D/Am7/D/Am7/G/G

(D)Early one mornin' the (Am7)sun was shinin',
(D)I was laying in (Am7)bed,
(D)Wondering if she'd (Am7)changed at all,
(G)If her hair was still red,
(D)Her folks they said our (Am7)lives together,
(D)Sure was gonna be (Am7)rough,
(D)They never did like mama's (Am7)homemade dress,
Papa's (G)bankbook wasn't big enough,
And (A)I was standing at the (Bm)side of the road,
(D)Rain fallin' on my (G)shoes,
(A)Heading out for the (Bm)East Coast,
Lord (D)knows I've paid some (G)dues, gettin' (A)through,(Asus4)(A)
(C)Tangled (G)up in (D)blue.

Each verse has exactly the same chord pattern....D and Am7 for the first three lines, then G for the fourth....repeat that sequence for the next four lines, then the G/A/Bm/D sequence twice, then the C/G/D for the last line.........

She was married when we first met,
Soon to be divorced,
I helped her out of a jam I guess,
But I used a little too much force,
We drove that car as far as we could,
Abandoned it out west,
Split up on a dark sad night,
Both agreein' it was best,
She turned around to look at me,
As I was walkin' away,
I heard her say over my shoulder,
We'll meet again someday on the avenue,
Tangled up in blue.

I had a job in the great north woods,
Workin' as a cook for a spell,
But I never did like it all that much,
And one day the axe just fell,
So I drifted down to New Orleans,
Where I happened to be employed,
Workin' for a while on a fishin' boat,
Right outside of Delacroix,
But all the while I was alone,
The past was close behind,
I've seen a lot of women,
But she never escaped my mind and I just grew,
Tangled up in blue.

She was workin' in a topless place,
And I stopped in for a beer,
I just kept lookin' at the side of her face,
In the spotlight so clear,
And later on as the crowd thinned out,
I's just about to do the same,
She was standing there in back of my chair,
Said to me "Don't I know your name?"
I muttered somethin' underneath my breath,
She studied the lines on my face,
I must admit I felt a little uneasy,
When she bent down down to tie the laces of my shoe,
Tangled up in blue.

She lit a burner on the stove,
And offered me a pipe,
"I thought you'd never say hello," she said,
"You look the silent type,"
Then she opened up a book of poems,
And handed it to me,
Written by an Italian poet,
From the thirteenth century,
And every one of them words rang true,
And glowed like burnin' coal,
Pourin' off of every page,
Like it was written in my soul from me to you,
Tangled up in blue

I lived with them on Montague Street,
In a basement down the stairs,
There was music in the cafes at night,
And revolution in the air,
Then he started into dealin' with slaves,
And something inside of him died,
She had to sell everything she owned,
And froze up inside,
And when finally the bottom fell out,
I became withdrawn,
The only thing I knew how to do,
Was to keep on keepin' on like a bird that flew,
Tangled up in blue.

So now I'm goin' back again,
I got to get to her somehow,
All the people we used to know,
They're an illusion to me now,
Some are mathematicians,
Some are carpenter's wives,
Don't know how it all got started,
I don't know what they're doin' with their lives,
But me, I'm still on the road,
Heading for another joint,
We always did feel the same,
We just saw it from a different point of view,
Tangled up in blue.

Okay - that's the version I know......this is a slightly simpler version, all I've done is transpose the chords to a different key.....

Intro.....G/Dm7/G/Dm7/G/Dm7/C/C

(G)Early one mornin' the (Dm7)sun was shinin',
(G)I was laying in (Dm7)bed,
(G)Wondering if she'd (Dm7)changed at all,
(C)If her hair was still red,
(G)Her folks they said our (Dm7)lives together,
(G)Sure was gonna be (Dm7)rough,
(G)They never did like mama's (Dm7)homemade dress,
(C)Papa's bankbook wasn't big enough,
And (D)I was standing at the (Em)side of the road,
(G)Rain fallin' on my (C)shoes,
(D)Heading out for the (Em)East Coast,
Lord (G)knows I've paid some (C)dues, gettin' (D)through,(Dsus4)(D)
(F)Tangled (C)up in (G)blue.

Again, every verse follows the same pattern....this version is as close as I can get it to using open chords (chords as near to the neck as possible)....only the F to worry about, right?
Practise....It WILL come eventually!!!

And if you want to get this in the same key as the first version, just throw that ol' capo on at the seventh fret......and play the above chords....

This actually sounds really great for two guitars if one guitarist plays the first version, and the second guitarist plays the second version with capo.......

The hardest part of this song is learning the lyrics and Dylan's unique phrasing......once you've got that, the chord changes will come naturally....the second hardest part is typing the lyrics out, took me ages..then fitting the chords in.....

This is in my top three Dylan favourites......the other two are "Sad-eyed Lady of the Lowlands" and "Hurricane" - "Shelter from the Storm" isn't far behind......no-one, absolutely no-one can tell a story like Dylan.....

Anyway, enjoy!!!

Oh by the way - the lyrics were taken from the book,

"Bob Dylan - Lyrics 1962-1985" ......published by HarperCollins, ISBN number 0-586-08647-1

:D :D :D

Vic.

"Sometimes the beauty of music can help us all find strength to deal with all the curves life can throw us." (D. Hodge.)


   
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(@mattguitar_1567859575)
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Posts: 879
 

Hi Vic

Nice one ! But a couple of comments. First the whole blood on the tracks album, according to most web notes I have seen, was recorded in the same tuning as the song i posted "shelter from the storm". Open C tuning.

Second, don't know if you're aware of this but David has already done a lesson on this song, think its in the Easy Songs for Beginners but it might be in Intermediates, i can't recall.

Fantastic song, fantastic album!!

Anyone who wants a strumming pattern could do a lot worse than read David's lesson. (with MP 3's!!)

All the best

Matt


   
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(@vic-lewis-vl)
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Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 10264
Topic starter  

Curses, you're quite right, this is in the Beginners song section - which I didn't realise, I rarely - if ever - go there........

Comparing the two versions though, there are differences......chief among these is the fact that David has a far better ear for music than me!

But the above is a pretty easy way to play this song....well, two easy ways! And no, I didn't know the album was all done in open tuning......but like I said, watching the video clip I have, it's pretty easy to ascertain that he's playing D and Amin7.......I think he uses a slightly different voicing for G as well, but that is more difficult to make out......looks like he's using his pinkie to play the B string at the 3rd fret........

Vic.

"Sometimes the beauty of music can help us all find strength to deal with all the curves life can throw us." (D. Hodge.)


   
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(@scratchmonkey)
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Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 603
 

....no-one, absolutely no-one can tell a story like Dylan.....

Here Here!! I've been a huge Dylan fan since the 70's. (eek.... that looks horrible in print!) Anyways, Vic,... I'm just curious, have you ever made sense of "Sad eyed lady of the lowlands?" And,... is there any chance you'll be posting the tab for "Shelter from the Storm?". Also a favorite of mine. And as a rank beginner, I "know" a grand total of 3 Dylan songs. More is better.

-- Scratch 8)

-- Scratch 8)


"...if heartaches were commercials, we'd all be on TV" -- John Prine
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(@vic-lewis-vl)
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Topic starter  

Scratch, Matt's already done a brilliant version of "Shelter from the Storm" - very recently...

http://forums.guitarnoise.com/viewtopic.php?t=9801

As regards "Sad-eyed lady", I haven't a clue what the hell he's on about, but it's a great song, and the chords don't sound too hard......I may just have a go at that later..........although it may take a week to type it all out!!!

:) :) :)

Vic.

"Sometimes the beauty of music can help us all find strength to deal with all the curves life can throw us." (D. Hodge.)


   
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(@mattguitar_1567859575)
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Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 879
 

guys

Keep your eyes peeled, will shortly be submitting a tab for "simple twist of fate"....in open tuning. Beautiful song, working on it over next couple of days, enjoy!

All the best

Matt


   
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(@dark_panda)
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Posts: 3
 

Here Here!! I've been a huge Dylan fan since the 70's. (eek.... that looks horrible in print!) Anyways, Vic,... I'm just curious, have you ever made sense of "Sad eyed lady of the lowlands?" And,... is there any chance you'll be posting the tab for "Shelter from the Storm?". Also a favorite of mine. And as a rank beginner, I "know" a grand total of 3 Dylan songs. More is better.

-- Scratch 8)
If you're interested in Dylan tunes, I highly recommend Eyolf Østrem's site at

http://www.dylanchords.com/

You can find pretty much every song Dylan has released on there (including 'Sad Eyed Lady'), and they're all pretty accurate.

J


   
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 NPR
(@npr)
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Posts: 6
 

Speaking of Dylan songs and the Hurricane does any one know how I should strum that song. I can never seem to get it to sound right and I know it should be easy. Any one?


   
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(@vic-lewis-vl)
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Joined: 20 years ago
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Topic starter  

I'm pretty useless at strum patterns, but "Hurricane" is not too bad.......the way I usually do it (for the verses) is u d u(pause) ......almost like a reggae/ska riff, but let it ring out instead of muting.......then when it comes to the bit where he sings "here comes the story of the hurricane", start with a downstroke, d u d u d u d (shorter pause).....the first part, those are quarter notes, the second part, eighth notes.......

Vic.

"Sometimes the beauty of music can help us all find strength to deal with all the curves life can throw us." (D. Hodge.)


   
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(@wes-inman)
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Posts: 5582
 

Thanks for the song Vic. My favorite Dylan song. 8)

Wes

If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis


   
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 NPR
(@npr)
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Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 6
 

I'm pretty useless at strum patterns, but "Hurricane" is not too bad.......the way I usually do it (for the verses) is u d u(pause) ......almost like a reggae/ska riff, but let it ring out instead of muting.......then when it comes to the bit where he sings "here comes the story of the hurricane", start with a downstroke, d u d u d u d (shorter pause).....the first part, those are quarter notes, the second part, eighth notes.......

Vic.

Cool man thanks I will get that a shot tonight when I get home.


   
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(@good)
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I don't quite know where to change here. From what I gather from the graphic you do two down strokes on D then an up on D and change to Dsus4sus2, and on the next bar you only do two down strokes on D and then change to dsus4sus2, I'm not sure though. Anyone care to clear this up for me?

We're like The Beatles, except there's four of us.


   
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(@bjourne)
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Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 37
 

Here is "my" version. I've spent the whole day looking at youtube lessons and recordings trying to figure out how I can play it. I've made some simplifications to put it in my range of playing, but I still think it sounds good. It is the first time I've made my own alterations instead of getting the full tab off the internet, so any feedback is greatly appreciated. :)

A = X02220 (advanced: XX7655)
Asus4 = X02230 (advanced: XX775)
G6 = 320000 (advanced: XX5430)
D = XX0232
E = 022100 (fret this with your pinky, it makes F#m considerably easier!)
F#m = 244222 (then you can slide up to this!)

VERSE 1
---------
[A]Early one mornin' the [Asus4]sun was shinin',
[A]I was laying in [Asus4]bed,
[A]Wondering if she'd [G6]changed at all,
[D*2]If her hair was still red,

[A]Her folks they said our [Asus4]lives together,
[A]Sure was gonna be [Asus4]]rough,
[A]They never did like mama's [G6]homemade dress,
[D*2]Papa's bankbook wasn't big enough,

VERSE 2
----------
[A]She was married when we [Asus4]first meet
[A]Soon to be divorced[Asus4]
[A]I helped her out of a [G6]jam I guess
[D]But I used a little too much force
[A]We drove that car as far as [Asus4]we could
[A]Abandoned it out [Asus4]West
[A]Split it up on a dark [G6]sad night
[D]Both agreeing it was best

CHORUS 1
------------
And [E]I was standing at the [F#m]side of the road,
[A]Rain fallin' on my [D]shoes,
[E]Heading out for the [F#m]East Coast,
Lord [A]knows I've paid some [D]dues, gettin' [E*]through,
[G(one]Tangled [D(one)]up in [A(one)]blue.

CHORUS 2
------------
[E]She turned around to [F#m]look at me
[A]As I was walking [D]away
[E]I heard her say over [F#m]my shoulder
[A]"We'll meet again [D]someday on [E*]the avenue"
[G(one)]Tangled [D(one)]up in [A(one)]blue

In between verses and choruses, strum A -> Asus4.

STRUMMING
---------------
You need to use 16th notes to play the song. One simple pattern to use is [A]D D [Asus4] UU DUDU. You use the same pattern both in verses and in choruses. E.g [E]D D [F#m] UU DUDU. [D*2] means to play two measures of D.

The only irregularity is on the end of the chorus. A nice way to finish of the chorus is to strum eight downstrums on E (one full measure) while trying to increase the volume. Then play one downstrum G, D and A while trying to match up with the vocals in "tangled up in blue."


Hope it's ok to resurrect some ancient threads. :)


   
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(@bytjyufdvfd)
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Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 5
 

I've spent the whole day looking at youtube lessons and recordings trying to figure out how I can play it. I've made some simplifications to put it in my range of playing,

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(@stronzono1)
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Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 1
 

Thanks Vic, been thinking about playing this song for a very long time. Just bought a 12 string Alverez, I'll give it a shot.


   
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