I Walk the Line by Johnny Cash – 3-string Open G GDG – Cigar Box Guitar Tablature

Open G GDG Listing ImageThe tablature in the PDF link below will show you how to play the melody and chords for the song I Walk the Line, written and performed by the “Man in Black” himself, Johnny Cash. Cash first recorded this song way back in 1956 and it quickly became one of his signature pieces. The recorded version is a little more complex than what we present here, but this version should work just fine. When you get your invite to appear on the Grand Ole Opry, you can take the time to learn the official version.

All of the cigar box guitar tablature here on CigarBoxGuitar.com is presented by The Southbound String Company, the only strings specifically chosen and voiced for cigar box guitars. Be sure to check out our line of Open G GDG cigar box guitar string sets here!

We also have a video by Glenn Watt that shows you how to read and play this style of 3-string CBG tablature: click here to view it!

Click this link or the image below to view the printable PDF:  I Walk the Line by Johnny Cash – Cigar Box Guitar Tabs PDF

I Walk the Line by Johnny Cash - Cigar Box Guitar Tabs PDF

 

I’ll Fly Away – Alfred E. Brumley

As performed in O Brother Where Art Thou, as well as by Alison Krauss, Alan Jackson and a host of other artists. View the full text of this entry by clicking the “Read More” link below for the formatted canjo tab…

American Canjo Company

Arrangement courtesy of C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply, intended for playing on American Canjo Company™ brand one-string canjos with dulcimer-style fretting, with fret numberings as shown below. The open unfretted string is notated as “0″.

Canjo Diagram

I’ll Fly Away – Alfred E. Brumley

5    3    0   3    5    4    5    6  5 4   3    1   1 0
Some glad morning, when this life is o’er, I’ll fly away
5  3 0    3  5     4  5  6   5      5    4   4 3
To a home on God’s celestial shore, I’ll fly away.

Chorus
8    5   5 8  5  4  3   3    1   1 0   0  0   1   0
I’ll fly away oh glory, I’ll fly away (in the morning)
0    1 3    3 4 5 4    5  6   5   5    4   4  3
When I die, hallelujah by and by, I’ll fly away.

To learn more about this classic American song, and to find more verses, check out this Wikipedia article.

Arrangement by C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply
Words and Music Copyright: Glad Music Co., Albert E Brumley & Sons, Bridge Building Music

I’ll Fly Away – O Brother Where Art Thou – 3-string Open G GDG – Cigar Box Guitar Tablature

Open G GDG Listing ImageThe tablature in the PDF link below will show you exactly how to play the melody and chords for the well known hymn I’ll Fly Away by Alfred E. Brumley. This song is one of the classic Christian anthems and has appeared many times in recordings and even movies such as O Brother Where Art Thou

All of the cigar box guitar tablature here on CigarBoxGuitar.com is presented by The Southbound String Company, the only strings specifically chosen and voiced for cigar box guitars. Be sure to check out our line of Open G GDG cigar box guitar string sets here!

Click this link or the image below to view the printable PDF: I’ll Fly Away Cigar Box Guitar Tablature PDF

I’ll Tell Me Ma – Tablature for One-String Canjo

“I’ll Tell Me Ma” is a popular children’s song dating back to 19th century England.

Also known as “The Belle of Belfast City”, it has since become somewhat of a staple in Irish music sessions.

Below we bring you a version of this popular tune for Diatonically fretted one-string Canjos, as well as the first verse of the song.

 

0    2  2  2    3 2  2
Tell me ma when I go home

2   2    1     1     2   1     0 0
The boys won’t leave the girls a-lone

0    2    2  2     3    2     2  2
They pull my hair, they stole my comb

2   2      1 1     2    1 0  0
But that’s alright till I go home

4   4  4   2     3   3  3   1 
She is handsome, she is pretty

2   2  2   2     0  1  1   1 
She is the Belle of Dublin city

4   4  4 4   2    3    3    3   
She is a-courting one, two, three

2      1     1   0    1  2   1  0   
Please won’t you tell me who is she

I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry by Hank Williams – 3-string Open G GDG – Cigar Box Guitar Tablature

This tablature was created by Glenn Watt.

All of the ciOpen G GDG Listing Imagegar box guitar tablature here on CigarBoxGuitar.com is presented by The Southbound String Company, the only strings specifically chosen and voiced for cigar box guitars. Be sure to check out our line of Open G GDG cigar box guitar string sets here!

This tablature is meant for playing on a 3-string cigar box guitar (or other instrument) tuned to GDG (though any open chord 1-5-1 tuning like DAD or EBE would work as well). In the video below the tab image below, Glenn shows you how to play this tab on a cigar box guitar.

Click Here to view a how-to video where Glenn shows you how to read this style of tablature.

 

 

 

 

Introduction to using Magnetic Pickups

A typical humbucker magnetic pickupIf you have been thinking about using a magnetic pickup in your next cigar box guitar build, but aren’t sure about how they are different from piezo pickups, then here is a quick overview for you. Magnetic pickups can be a nice addition to most any cigar box guitar, but they do require some different handling and some knowledge of their unique properties.

Be sure to check out magnetic pickups and other great gear (all at great prices) over at C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply!

  1. Magnetic pickups respond only to the vibration of the strings, not the acoustic vibration of the instrument body.
    • It is the interaction between the vibrating steel strings and the magnets in the pickup that cause slight voltage to be created, which is picked up by the amplifier and reproduced as recognizable sound.
    • With a piezo pickup, which responds to pressure changes from string/instrument vibration to create voltage. So while a piezo responds to the instrument’s vibration, and as such will pick up more of the acoustic properties, the magnetic pickup responds only to the strings.
    • This means that a magnetic pickup underneath the same strings should sound the same on a Les Paul electric guitar, a cigar box guitar, or a cinder block. The acoustic properties of the instrument itself do not come into play. This can be both a good and a bad thing – if you want a CBG that sounds like an electric guitar through an amp, then it is great. If you want a CBG that sounds like a CBG through an amp, then it is not so great.
  2. Magnetic pickups need to be mounted directly under the strings.
    • While a piezo can be mounted inside the box, a magnetic pickup cannot. It has to be mounted such that the poles are very close to the strings, so that the string vibration will excite the magnets.
    • The distance from the strings can vary, but it is generally in the range of 1/4″ to 1/2″ – usually, the closer they are the more sound you will get out of the guitar.
    • Personal preference comes into play here. Getting the magnetic pickup into the right position almost always means cutting an appropriately shaped hole in the top of the instrument so that it can extend through it. Mounting it fully inside the box is almost guaranteed to yield poor results.
  3. Magnetic pickups require strings that have some steel in them.
    • Magnets are only excited by “ferrous” metals – such as the steel in standard guitar strings. Non-ferrous metals, such as brass and bronze, and non-metallic substances like nylon, will not produce any sound through a magnetic pickup.
    • Standard acoustic guitar strings, even Phosphor Bronze and 80/20 Bronze, have steel cores and will work for magnetic pickups. There are also nickel-wound strings sold specifically as electric guitar strings.
    • Usually electric guitar string sets are somewhat lighter in gauge than acoustic sets — this is because acoustic guitars need to produce a lot more sound to be effective, and heavier strings under greater tension produce more sound. Since the only thing electric guitar strings need to do is excite the magnets, they can be lighter in gauge and still work great – keep in mind that the electric guitar has the amplifier to do all of the work of making the sound louder.
  4. There are many variations in how magnetic pickups can be combined and arranged in a build.
    • There are both single-coil and double-coil (humbucker) varieties of magnetic pickup, and they can be used singly or in matched pairs on a build. One popular configuration is to have one pickup close to the neck and one close to the bridge, with either a switch or some sort of fader potentiometer to either select between them, or blend their sounds together.
    • Some builders go even further and put both a piezo and a magnetic pickup in their build, with a switch or pot to select between them, so they get a blend of electric guitar and acoustic guitar sounds. When it comes to guitar electronics, the possibilities are pretty much wide open to experimentation.
    • There are very few hard-and-fast rules of what is right and wrong, so feel free to experiment and try new things!

We hope that this brief overview of magnetic pickups is helpful and answers some of the questions you might have in regards to using one in your build. There is a great deal of additional information out there, on sites such as http://www.CigarBoxNation.com, as well as a number of books published on the subject.

Happy building!

Irish Tune Set: 3 Polkas – 3-string Open G GDG – Chords & Tablature for Cigar Box Guitars

Open G GDG Listing ImageWhen most people think of cigar box guitars, they do not think of traditional Irish tunes… but it turns out that a lot of Irish tunes are fairly simple melodies and are quite well suited to playing on a 3-string cigar box guitar. So here are 3 of my favorite Irish polkas (the term polka refers to the time signature and rhythm of the piece, not any German origin), which I used to play when I was in an Irish band. You may recognize the second tune as the popular Irish/kids song “The Rattlin Bog/Bog Down in the Valley-o”, and the third one from the Irish party scene of James Cameron’s hugely popular movie The Titanic.

To play these in the traditional way, you treat the first line of notes in each tune as the “A” part and the second line as the “B” part. You repeat the A part twice and the B part twice, and then repeat the whole thing over again. AABBAABB, then move on to the next tune.

All of the cigar box guitar tablature here on CigarBoxGuitar.com is presented by The Southbound String Company, the only strings specifically chosen and voiced for cigar box guitars. Be sure to check out our line of Open G GDG cigar box guitar string sets here!

Click this link or the image below to view the printable PDF: Irish Polka Set – Traditonal Tunes Tablature for Cigar Box Guitar

Click the image above to view the printable tablature sheet.
Click the image above to view the printable tablature sheet.