Sister's Not Coming Home Unless I Learn These Chords
December 17, 2008 2:38 PM   Subscribe

Chord question: would you say that these chords are the correct ones for "Sister's Coming Home/Down at the Corner Beer Joint" from the Blue Kentucky Girl Album?

Trying to play along and not sure if they're right. Bonus points if you happen to know the chords for the Willie Nelson version, which is much slower and easier to play along with! thanks.
posted by pipti to Media & Arts (4 answers total)
I don't have that Emmylou Harris album, but from the two recordings I found on YouTube those chords look pretty accurate to me. There's one change I'd make, which I'll add below.

But first (and I apologize if I'm misunderestimating your musical prowess) it seems that those two versions on YouTube are in slightly different keys, due to the speed of the record or whatever else, so it might just be that you need to tune your guitar up or down a smidge to match the recording you're playing along with, to make the chords sound right.

The change I'd make is on the quick walkup (on line 5 of the lyric page you linked, and subsequent repetitions). Instead of playing the D F G A they recommend, I'd play (D)Mamma gonna (A)let her (Bb)sleep (B)the (C)whole (C#)day (D)long. An easy way would be to play D, A, then x-1-3-3-x-x to approximate a Bb chord and move that fingering up the fretboard one fret at a time.

The chords during the first solo section are pretty much D G A D G A D, and then a B chord to transition to the E section. The second solo section is pretty much E B E B, and then C#minor B A (and a quick G if you feel like it) to transition back to the D section.

My new $30 beater guitar arrived yesterday. This is a fun song for giving it a little workout.
posted by Balonious Assault at 7:33 PM on December 17, 2008

...and I found the Willie Nelson version on Rhapsody. The chords are the same, but Willie stays in the key of D for the whole song, so whenever the page you linked to says to play an E, play a D instead, and where it says to play a B, play an A instead.
posted by Balonious Assault at 7:44 PM on December 17, 2008

...and, um, I guess I assumed you're playing along on guitar. If you're playing piano, it probably wouldn't be a real good idea to follow my advice and retune it a smidge to match the recording.
posted by Balonious Assault at 8:04 PM on December 17, 2008

Oh, shoot, I just retuned my piano before I saw your third post.

heh, yes, I'm playing guitar. Thanks for these comments, I'll bash around on my guitar this morning and see if I can make something sound right.
posted by pipti at 6:44 AM on December 18, 2008

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