Guitar Tabs, Chords and Lyrics
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The Poor Ditching Boy   Richard Thompson

 
 
 
 
 Here's a song by Richard Thompson, "The Poor Ditching Boy," off 
 _Starring as Henry the Human Fly_. fortunately, this album has been 
 rereleased by Rykodisk. It's definitely worth the money.
 
 It's in open-g: dgdgbd (drop 6, 5, 1 one whole step--notice that this makes
 your guitar have the same shape as an a major open chord)
 
 You should embellish these chords as much as you feel confident to do and/or 
 is tasteful. Richard certainly does. The nature of the alternate means that 
 the open strings will never be dissonant with each other or notes in the g
 major scale, so if in doubt they will be ok. I'm not entirely sure what he 
 does in this song as he has a violin player as well as his guitar. It 
 works nicely with two guitarists, though. Best way to get a feel for this 
 is to listen really carefully to the song. I don't think Richard plays the 
 bits exactly the same way each time through.
 Tab (notes given relative to open g tuning): 
 
 g variant 1 x05035
 g variant 2 x00000
 a minor 7 x02012
 a minor 7 sus 4 variant 1 x02010
 b minor 7 minor 6 x04232
 d 7 sus 4 x04010 
 a minor 7 sus 2 variant 2 x20010
 
 The astute reader will note quickly that the a minor 7 
 doesn't have an a in it! Perhaps I should have called it a c major. :) 
 
 Lyrics and chord outline (verses are all the same as the first one):
 
 g 1 
 Has there ever been a winter so cold and so sad,
 g1 (or g2) a min 7
 A river too weary to flood?
 g 1
 The storm and the wind cut through to my skin, 
 g 1 (or g 2) a min 7
 But she cut through to my blood.
 
 I wasn't lookin' for trouble to tangle my line,
 But trouble came lookin' for me.
 I knew I was on unsteady ground, 
 I was sinkin' too fast to run free.
 
 [chorus]:
 amin7 amin7/2 bmin7 g2 
 With her schemin', idle ways,
 amin7 amin7/2 g2 
 She left me poor enough.
 g2
 The stormin' wind cut through to my skin,
 amin7 d76 g1
 But she cut through to my blood. 
 
 I would not be askin', I would not be seen,
 Beggin' from mountain or hill,
 But I'm ready and blind with my hands tied behind,
 I've neither a mind nor a will.
 
 [chorus]
 
 It's bitter the need of the poor ditching boy,
 He'll always believe what they say,
 They tell him it's hard to be honest and true,
 Does he mind if he doesn't get payed?
 
 [chorus]
 [repeat last line of chorus]
 
 
 -- 
 Jay Verkuilen jayv@uxh.cso.uiuc.edu
 In the warped world of Mattel talking doll conversations: 
 Talking Barbie(TM)--"Math is tough!"


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