Country Blues > Country Blues Licks and Lessons

Big Bad Bill Is Sweet William Now

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Hi Mark,
Could you post an mp3 of your recorded version?  We use them to figure out lyrics, why not chord changes?
All best,

Will do Mr M, when I get home tonight. I'll post Leon Redbone's B flat version.
Cooder's version on 'Jazz' is in open tuning  :o , no mean feat and a brlliant rendition but I want to play it in standard tuning.

Intrigued, I found a version by Van H on the web and it sounds to me very much like the  old jazz standard Dr Jazz as the breaks and everything fit and feel it.

I can always post a Dr J mp3 or ask someone for the chords if you want, over to you..

The MP3 came out too big to upload, will have to get another MP3 maker. In the meantime I figured out this arrangement with some clues from elsewhere on the web as to structure. It's really cool to combine fingerpicking and swing chord vamping, and it moves around a lot with some satisfying changes.

Please feel free to pitch in with suggestions, it's a work in progress.

Chords in brackets are optional, for variation.
Passing chords indicated with a dash, E9?- C#o - D6
Some chords:

A6? :?5x?4?6?5?x

A7? :?5?x?5?6?5x

A/C#:?9?x?7?9?x?x (A with C# in the bass)

A#o :?6?x?5?6?x?x

Bm7 :?7?x?7?7?7?x

B7? :?x2?1?2?0?2
? 7?x?7?8?7?x

B9? :?x?2?1?2?2?2
? 7?6?7?6?x?x

Bo? :?8?x?7?8?x?x

C#7 :?x?4?3?42?x

D6? :?x?5?4?4?3?x

D#o :?x?6?7?5?7?x

E6? :?x?7?6?6?x?x

E7? :?x?7?675?x

E+#5:?0?3?2?11?0?(not sure what this chord is, E with a 5th sharped?)
? 0?7?6?55?0

E9? :?x?7?67?7x

F#7 :?x?9?8?97?x


intro vamp: A6? A#o? Bm7? E9? /? A6? A#o? Bm7? E+
A?                   C#7?          F#7        ?
In the town of Louisville, lived a man named Big Bad Bill

B9?      B7?             B9          B7?     B9 ?     E?                 E+
Let me tell you, he sure was tough, and he certainly did strut his stuff

A6                    ?C#7                 ? F#7
He had folks all scared to death, when he walked by they held their breath

B9? B7? B9? B7? B9 E?E+
He was a fightin' man sure e-nough

Bm7?- A/C#?Bo? A#o -? B7? B9?B7  E? ? (E+)
Bill took himself a wife,? now he leads a different life

A6? A#o ? E9 - D#6 - E6 - A6 - A#o - Bm7 (A/C#)
Big bad Bill is Sweet William?now

Married life has changed him somehow;

D6? D#o
He's the man they all used to fear,

?A6?- F#9 - F#7 - A#o -
Now the people call him sweet papa Willie dear

B9? B7?B9? B7
Stronger than Samson I declare,

'Til a brown skinned mama bobbed his hair

A6? A#o ?E9 - D#6 - E6 - A6? A7
Big bad Bill don't?fight?any? more

D6?(D#o)?C#7? (F#m7) 
Now he does the dishes and he mops up the floor

D6? D#o
Well he used to go out, jus' lookin' for a fight,

A6?- F#9 - ?F#7 - A/C# -
Now he's got to see his mama every night

Bm7?E7 - D#6 - E6 - A6? (- A#o?- Bm7?- E9....)
Big Bad Bill is Sweet William?now.

Might be a touch late but I have the chords to thisl tune winging themselves to me from Germany of all places ::) and I'll post 'em when they arrive.


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