This week we're embarking on something I've been excited to teach since I first started teaching here at Sonic Junction: Norman Blake's song Church Street Blues. And although Norman wrote it and recorded an absolutely sublime version, Tony Rice also has an equally iconic recording of the song. To me, Church Street Blues is the perfect song to be played and sung by one person with a flatpick and an acoustic guitar. This first week I play/teach the song itself and go over the various chordal schemes that Norman and Tony have used.
Over the course of the remaining lessons in this series we're going to look at a simple but Norman Blake-y way to play the melody, Norman's actual version, and, finally, Tony Rice's version.
Topics and/or subjects covered in this lesson:
Church Street Blues
Loop 0:00 Run-Through of Church Street Blues
Lord I been hangin' out of town in that low down rain
Watchin' good time Charlie friend is drivin' me insane
Down on shady Charlotte Street the green lights look red
Wish I was back home on the farm in my feather bed.
Get myself a rockin' chair
To see if I can lose
Them thin dime hard times
Hell on Church Street blues.
Found myself a picker friend who's read yesterday's news
Folded up page twenty-one and stuck it in my shoe
Gave a nickle to the poor my good turn for the day
Folded up my own little folder threw it far away.
Lord I wish I had some guitar strings Old Black Diamond brand
I'd string up this old Martin box and go and join some band
But I guess I'll just stay right here just pick and sing a while
Try to make me a little change and give them folks a smile
Loop 3:40 Introduction to the Series of Lessons
Loop 5:53 Chord Breakdown in the Style of Norman Blake and Tony Rice
Loop 14:12 Closing Thoughts and Outro