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You Keep Me Hanging On chords

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About this tab version
New suggestion for main riff chords, which maintains the high E and A (after detuning sounds as Eb and Ab)stacatto notes throughout the progression. Was this info helpful? Yes No
There is no strumming pattern for this song yet. and get +5 IQ
Song: You keep me hangin' on
Artist: The Supremes
Composers: Holland, Dozier & Holland

Tabbed by DJ ('DiddyD' at ultimateGuitar.com)
31st Jan 2015

The original track is in the key of Ab, so to play
along tune all strings down a half -step to

You can choose not to detune, but, in standard
tuning, you will be playing a semi-tone higher, and
not be able to play along with the original record.

Please ignore any pop-up chord boxes the website
might automatically suggest, instead please use the
typed shapes indicated below in the chord legend:

A     = xx7655   C7sus4 = x33311    G    = 320033
G6    = xx5455   F      = 133211    E7/B = x22130
G6/D  = xx0055   C      = x32010    E    = 022100
Fmaj7 = xx3555   Em/B   = x22000


  A            G6          G6/D          Fmaj7
| /  /  /  / | /  /  /  / | /  /  /  / | /  /  /  / |

A                      G6
     Set me free, why don't you, baby?
G6/D                      Fmaj7
     Get out my life, why don't you,baby?
A                            G6
    'Cause you don't really love me,
         G6/D            Fmaj7
You just keep me hanging on,
A                      G6
     You don't really need me,
        G6/D            Fmaj7
But you keep me hanging on!

[Verse 1]
        Why do you keep a-coming around,
 F                    C
Playing a - with my heart?
        Why don't you get out of my life,
F                          C
   And let me make a new start?
Em/B  G
          Let me get over you,
    E7/B                   E
The way you've gotten over me!

      A                     G6
Hey,   ...set me free, why don't you, baby?
G6/D                 Fmaj7
      Let me be, why don't you, baby?
               A                             G6
(Woo -oo, hoo, oo!) 'Cause you don't really love me,
         G6/D           Fmaj7
You just keep me hanging on,
                A                           G6
(Woo - oo, hoo, oo!)  Now you don't really want me,
         G6/D           Fmaj7
You just keep me hanging on!

[Verse 2]
        You say, although we broke up,
      F                      C
You still want to be just friends,
        But how can we still be friends,
       F                         A
When seeing you only breaks my heart again?
    And there ain't nothing I can do about it!

Woh - oo, woh -oo, love,
(Set me free, why don't you, baby?)
Woh - oo, woh -oo, love,
(Get out my life!) Why don't you, baby?
A                       G6
     Set me free,  why don't you, baby?
G6/D                      Fmaj7
     Get out my life, why don't you, baby?

[Verse 3]
        You claim you still care for me,
           F                          C
But your heart and soul needs to be free,
        And now that you've got your freedom,
     F                       C
You want to still hold on to me,
Em/B  G
         You don't want me for yourself,
   E7/B                  E
So let me find somebody else...hey-hey!

[Verse 4]
A                      G6
    Why don't you be a man about it,
G6/D             Fmaj7
      And set me free?
      A                    G6
Now   ...you don't care a thing about me,
G6/D                    Fmaj7
      You're just using me,
   A                   G6
Go on, ...get out, get out of my life,
G6/D                      Fmaj7
      And let me sleep at night,
        A                      G6
Please,  ...'cause you don't really love me,
         G6/D           Fmaj7
You just keep me hanging on,
                A                       G6
(Woo - oo, hoo, oo!)  You don't really need me,
You just keep me hanging...

[Suggestion for coda -gradually slowing down]
  Fmaj7         G6    A
 |  /   /   /   /  |  /  ||

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6 comments total. Showing first comments.
-1 reply
lamouettasse 10 Jan 24, 2015 03:42 PM

All the "you keep me hanging on" tabs I've found so far are just plain wrong and only achieve to break the whole feeling of the song. Between the fancies capo-needed tabs (no capo required at all!) and the kim wylde (Kim Wylde, really?) version transcripts there's just not one tab that doesn't kill the song. My version is based upon the original Supremes track, is 100% accurate and avoid all the traps the others tabs fall into.

The main sequence (intro, verse, outro) is:


Norice the clever bass change on chord 3? The bass is the soul of the tune and everyone misses it. A bloody shame...

The bridge sequence is:


Once again the devil lies in the bass line. If it stretches your hand too much you can drop the bass for the first three chords.

Enjoy the tab, now you can pretend to be a real funk brother ;)

0 reply
DiddyD 13,123 Jan 25, 2015 11:48 PM, edited on January 31 2015, 06:54 am

lamouettasse, welcome to ultimateGuitar.Thank you for the tab comments, as positive suggestions are generally appreciated by contributors.Just a suggestion as you are new to the site, pointing out typos,or things a contributor may have missed are fine, it's not necessary to add your critisisms of everyone elses tabs, or taste in music, to do that.Just tab out your own complete version of a song and add it to the archive, there's plenty of room for various versions to suit all standards of player, and they can then choose to search for 100% perfection or something simpler to play for fun. I am not blessed with the span of hand you clearly must have (one of your suggested chords is from the 2nd to the 8th fret) so if using a capo makes things much easier, I'll always go for that option.Those that don't want to use a capo can always simply use the transpose function supplied on every tab page by ultimateGuitar.

0 reply
DiddyD 13,123 Jan 31, 2015 09:53 AM

I took on board the bass progression mentioned by Lamouettasse, and had a complete rethink on how to achieve a better representation of the song, but without, for me, the crippling chord shapes Lamouettasse suggested.
Once I dropped the tuning a half-step it made the whole thing so much easier to achieve those bass notes, and retain that repeated high note in the verses.
Hopefully I haven't 'killed' the song as much now.

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