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The Short Answer chords

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version 2

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There is no strumming pattern for this song yet. and get +5 IQ
 Billy Bragg - The Short Answer
From the album: Workers Playtime

Posted by Matt Quinn on ultimateGuitar.com - all corrections & improvements welcome

Capo on the second fret on the album version.

C   x32010
G/B x20010
Am  x02210
G   320003
Em  022000
F   113211
F/E 013211
Dm  xx0231

Bass runs in the verse:
Run 1: Leading into the first C chord of each of the first two lines, run up from the G 
on the bottom string.
Run 2: Leading into the first F chord of the third line, run up from the C on fifth string.

    Run 1     Run 2

In the long F bit (3rd and 4th line of the verse), you can play around with 
alternatively removing and replacing your finger on the 6th string - that is,
alternating between F and F/E chords. 
He certainly seems to do that live; can't really tell on the album version.

   C              G/B   Am         G        C  G         C
Be-tween Marx and marzi-pan in the dictiona-ry there was Mary
   C         G/B       Am          G     C   G        C
Be-tween the deep blue sea and the devil,    that was me
F         G            F
  If ever anyone could help me with my obsession with
                   G                C G/B Am G C G C
The young Susannah York it was Ma-a-ry

In my pink pyjamas, she asked me for something, I gave her the short answer
She read our stars out loud, and I knew then that we should have gone sailing
But we stayed home instead, fighting on the waterbed
Like the honeymoon couple on drugs - me and Mary

What happened in the past, remained a mystery of natural history
She should have been the last, but she was just the latest
If she wanted to be a farmer's wife, I would endure that muddy life
I would dig for victory

And the sound of happy couples
Coupling happily in the dark
      F             C
While you and I sat down to tea
  F            C
I remember you said to me
That no amount of poetry
Would mend this broken heart
But you can put the Hoover round
       F                 G
If you want to make a st-art

chord riff, basically: [F-F G C-C C] x 4 {listen to the record for the rhythm & variations}

(verses again)
All my friends from school introduce me to their spouses
While I'm left standing here with my hands down the front of my trousers
I just don't know what's to be done; I wonder sometimes how did Dad meet Mum?
And how did they conceive of me? Tell me Mary

The boys who came to the shop always made her laugh much more than I did
When I told her this must stop she didn't bat an eyelid
She said you know honey it's such a shame you'll never be any good at this game
You bruise too easily - so said Mary

Her two brothers took me out of circulation for the duration
So we went our separate ways but does she still love me? She still has my door key
Like a bully boy in a Benetton shop, you're never happy with what you've got
Till what you've got has gone - sorry Mary*

Lyrics sung over the same chord riff as above: [F-F G C-C C].
*Riff starts on second syllable of 'Mary' in last verse and is played a couple of times before outro lyrics start.

        F -  F   G   C-C C
For the tall girl
        F - F    G    C-C C
For the barefoot girl
        F      -      F           G             C    -   C      C
For the girl with the soap in her mouth and the stars in her hair
        F  -  F    G    C-C C
For the brown-eyed girl
[repeat chord riff to fade]

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2 comments total.
0 reply
matt_quinn 75 Jun 14, 2012 01:34 PM

Lyric correction: In the third verse, "If she wanted to be a farmer's wife, I would endure that muddy life" should be "If she wanted to be a farmer's wife, I wouldn't give her that muddy life". My apologies, I cut and pasted the lyrics from elsewhere and should have checked them through properly before I posted this.

0 reply
matt_quinn 75 Jul 07, 2012 02:49 PM

Oops, my mistake, please ignore my previous comment, turns out the lyrics are correct as printed ... I guess I've just been singing it wrong all these years :)

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