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Mexicali Blues chords

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Strumming
There is no strumming pattern for this song yet. and get +5 IQ
[Notes]
I use a strum with a lot of alternating bass - usually 4th and 5th strings -
for the A and D chords.  However, I find that the strumming patterns
vary greatly throughout the song.  Play along with the record to get
the right feel.

I fake the trumpet intro with D chord forms using D, Dsus4 and D9.

The G-B-Em chord progression in some verses sounds best as single emphasized 
strums synchronized to the words (e.g. some THOUGHT he WAS the LAW).

   D      Dsus4       D9       G(open)
 EADGBe   EADGBe    EADGBe   EADGBe   
 xxx232   xxx233    xxx23x   32xxx3  

   A        G        B        Em
 EADGBe   EADGBe   EADGBe   EADGBe
 xx222x   355433   224442   x22xxx

[Verse 1]
A                                   G    B     Em
Layin' back in an old saloon with a peso in my hand
A                                  D
Watchin' flies and children on the street
      A                                       G      B      Em
And I catch a glimpse of black-eyed girls who giggle when I smile
          A                                D
There's a little boy who wants to shine my feet

         G                    B                 Em
And it's three days ride from Bakersfield and I don't know why I came
  A                                D
I guess I came to keep from payin' dues
    G                  B            Em
But instead I've got a bottle and a girl who's just fourteen
      A
And a damn good case of the Mexicali Blues, yeah

[Chorus]
D
Is there anything a man don't stand to lose
                        A
When the devil wants to take it all away?

Cherish well your thoughts, keep a tight grip on your booze
                               G(open)      A
'Cuz thinkin' and drinkin' are all I have today.

[Verse 2]
A                                  G       B        Em
She said her name was Billie Jean; she was fresh in town
  A                                 D
I didn't know a stage line ran from hell
        A                              G        B
She had raven hair, a ruffled dress, a necklace made of gold
A                                    D
All the french perfume you'd care to smell

    G            B               Em
She took me up into her room and whispered in my ear
   A                            D
Go on my friend do anything you choose.
        G                B             Em
Now I'm paying for those happy hours I spent there in her arms
       A                                    D
With a lifetime case of the Mexicali Blues, yeah.

[Chorus]
D
Is there anything a man don't stand to lose
                        A
When the devil wants to take it all away?

Cherish well your thoughts, keep a tight grip on your booze
                               G(open)      A
'Cuz thinkin' and drinkin' are all I have today.

[Verse 3]
A                               G          B       Em
Then a man rode into town; some thought he was the law
A                               D
Billie Jean was waiting when he came
    A                              G      B      Em
She told me he would take her if I didn't use my gun
    A                             D
And I'd have no one but myself to blame

  G                  B              Em
I went down to those dusty streets; blood was on my mind
  A                                    D
I guess that stranger hadn't heard the news.
     G                B                    Em
"Cuz I shot first and killed him.  Lord he didn't even draw.
       A                                                D
And he made me trade the gallows for the Mexicali Blues.

[Chorus]
D
Is there anything a man don't stand to lose
                     A
When he lets a woman hold him in her hand?

You just might find yourself out there on horseback in the dark
                         G(open)            A
Just ridin' and runnin' across those desert sands.

            
            
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2 comments total.
+2 reply
mezzyjezze 10 Mar 14, 2014 02:29 PM

Hey, first of all, you're the man for contributing.
But your tab is wrong.

The first half of the verses (with the quick transitions) is not G, B, Em, like you've written. It's C, B, Em.

This of course makes sense from an analytical point of view as well, as C is the German augmented sixth chord, resolving to the V of Em. But analysis only helps explain things. It is simple to know I'm right - simply listen to the recording on a good enough sound system to hear the bass part. It is unquestioningly C being played.
Once again, props for doing this, but I gotta come down harsh because thousands of amateur players are learning songs incorrectly from tabs like these. Keep on keeping on! And next time I suggest paying more attention to the bass.

+1 reply
artierossi 120 Apr 05, 2015 01:53 PM

great tab, good work. makes complete sense...thanks again.

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