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America ukulele

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(Stephen Sondheim -Leonard Bernstein)

This is the instrumental version that Keith Emerson arranged initially for the 
Nice and later (like Rondo),played with Emerson, Lake and Palmer. It contains 
quotations from Dvorak’s New World Symphony and like the original is in an odd 
triplet rhythm on the 1st 2 beats, (1&&, 2&&, 3&,4,) Not all of the Bernstein song 
is used, but I have included the lyrics for illustration

Intro (New World Quote No 1)

Chords:  Cm       Bb      Cm      Gm           Cm

Notes:  CDEb      DCC      C       Bb G Bb      C

Chords:  Cm      Bb      Cm     Cm       Gm        Cm     Gm      C

Notes:  CDEb     F       G     EbDC       DCBb    EbDC    DCBb    C

Song Intro  (straight 4)

Chords:  | C C F F |  C C G G | Eb Eb Bb Bb | Ab Ab G G |  x 2


C               F        C             G        
I like to be in America! O.K. by me in America! 

Eb                 Bb       Ab                G
Ev'rything free in America  For a small fee in America!

C                    F         C                   G       
I like the shores of America!  Comfort is yours in America!  
Eb                    Bb       Ab                     G
Knobs on the doors in America, Wall-to-wall floors in America!

(Changed Tune)

F             Bb        Eb                Ab
Automobile in America,  Chromium steel in America, 

Db                  Gb       Gb               G
Wire-spoke wheel in America, Very big deal in America!

Second Quote from the New World

Chords:  Cm        Gm       Cm        Gm        Cm     Eb

Notes:  CDEb      BbGBb     CDEb      BbGBb     CDEb   BbAbG F Eb D

Chords:  Cm 
Notes:  C D Eb C D Eb C Eb G C G Eb

Chords:  Cm        Gm       Cm        Gm        Cm     Eb

Notes:  CDEb      BbGBb     CDEb      BbGBb     CDEb   BbAbG F Eb D

Chords:  G          G           Ab           Bb          C            
Notes:   GAbBbAbGF GAbBbAbGF    AbBbCBbAbG   BbCDCBbAb   C


Over | C C Gm Gm |

End of Solo Chords (1&&, 2&&, 3&, 4) | G |  G  |  Ab |  Ab |  Bb | Bb |  C  |

Back to Verse

An interesting fact is that The Nice’s  Version released in the UK during 1968 (at 
the height of protests against the Vietnam War) was considered an instrumental 
“protest song” with the US Flag being burned at live performances. Even though the 
Nice had Davy O’List as their Guitarist, he was sacked, allegedly for 
inconsistency. Although Greg Lake did play Guitar with ELP, it was rumoured that 
Emerson would have only tolerated Jimi Hendrix as “his” Guitarist. Well after 
trying to amplify his piano to compete with incompetent Guitarists when he first 
started, it is  an understandable sentiment.

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