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John Brown ukulele

version 2
version 2

Whole song

  • More complete chords for ukulele, simplified a little and de-capo'd.
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About this tab version
More complete chords for ukulele, simplified a little and de-capo'd. Was this info helpful? Yes No
Strumming Is this strumming pattern correct? Yes No
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Listen
Uses a rather complex picked pattern. Shuffle-ish strum works though. Thumbing the base string for the 
accented strum sounds pretty good. That sounds better if you use a low g string instead of a high g. 
Original is played in drop d guitar tuning, capo on 5th fret. 

This is somewhat simplified/de-capo'd from the original.  

[Verse 1]
G5    F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5    F9 C/E    G5
John Brown went off to war to fight on a foreign shore.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
His mama sure was proud of him!
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5    F9 C/E   G5
He stood straight and tall in his uniform and all.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
His mama's face broke out all in a grin.


[Verse 2]
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5    F9 C/E   G5
"Oh son, you look so fine, I'm glad you're a son of mine,
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
You make me proud to know you hold a gun.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5    F9 C/E   G5
Do what the captain says, lots of medals you will get,
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
And we'll put them on the wall when you come home."

[Verse 3]
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5    F9 C/E   G5
As that old train pulled out, John's ma began to shout,
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
Tellin' ev'ryone in the neighborhood:
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5    F9 C/E   G5
"That's my son that's about to go, he's a soldier now, you know."
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
She made well sure her neighbors understood.

Gm D G5
Gm D G5

[Verse 4]
G5  F9 G5          F9 C/E G5       G5           F9 C/E   G5
She got a letter once in a while and her face broke into a smile
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
As she showed them to the people from next door.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5      F9 C/E   G5
And she bragged about her son with his uniform and gun,
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
And these things you called a good old-fashioned war.

[Bridge]
G     A             G5              G/A D
Oh! Good old-fashioned war!
Gm D G5
Gm D G5

[Verse 5]
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E    G5         G5             F9 C/E   G5
Then the letters ceased to come, for a long time they did not come.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
They ceased to come for about ten months or more.
G5  F9 G5               F9 C/E G5       G5        F9 C/E   G5
Then a letter finally came saying, "Go down and meet the train.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
Your son's a-coming home from the war."

[Verse 6]
G5  F9 G5        F9 C/E G5       G5           F9 C/E   G5
She smiled and went right down, she looked everywhere around
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
But she could not see her soldier son in sight.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5       F9 C/E   G5
But as all the people passed, she saw her son at last,
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
When she did she could hardly believe her eyes.

[Verse 7]
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5           F9 C/E   G5
Oh his face was all shot up and his hand was all blown off.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
And he wore a metal brace around his waist.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5    F9 C/E   G5
He whispered kind of slow, in a voice she did not know,
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
While she couldn't even recognize his face!

[Bridge]
G     A             G5                 G/A D
Oh! Lord! Not even recognize his face.
Gm D G5
Gm D G5

[Verse 8]
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5      F9 C/E      G5
"Oh tell me, my darling son, pray tell me what they done.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
How is it you come to be this way?"
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5       F9 C/E      G5
He tried his best to talk but his mouth could hardly move,
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
And his mother had to turn her face away.

[Verse 9]
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5    F9 C/E   G5
"Don't you remember, Ma, when I went off to war,
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
You thought it was the best thing I could do?
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5       F9 C/E      G5    
I was on the battleground, you were home. .. Acting proud.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
You wasn't there standing in my shoes."

[Verse 10]
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5        F9 C/E          G5
"Oh, and I thought when I was there, God, what am I doing here?
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
I'm a-tryin' to kill somebody or die tryin'.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5             F9 C/E      G5
But the thing that scared me most, was when my enemy came close.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
And I saw that his face looked just like mine."

[Bridge]
G     A             G5              G/A D
Oh! Lord! Just like mine!
Gm D G5
Gm D G5

[Verse 11]
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5      F9      C/E            G5
"And I couldn't help but think, through the thunder rolling and stink,
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
That I was just a puppet in a play.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5       F9 C/E        G5
And, through the roar and smoke, this string is finally broke,
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
And a cannon ball blew my eyes away."

[Verse 12]
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5    F9 C/E   G5
As he turned away to walk, his Ma was still in shock
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
At seein' the metal brace that helped him stand.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       G5    F9 C/E   G5
But as he turned to go, he called his mother close.
G5  F9 G5       F9 C/E G5       F9        C/E   G
And he dropped his medals down into her hand.

Gm D G5
Gm D G5

            
            
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