transcription from jonimitchell.com


Overture - Cotton Avenue

Guitar tablature transcribed by Marian Russell
Tuning: CGCFAC   "Joni" Tuning: C75543

This is the most difficult Joni Mitchell song I have ever tried to 
transcribe and to play without any kind of backup.  I spent months of
listening to the recording and trying various tunings until I decided 
upon this one.  I think what makes tuning determination so difficult for 
this song is the fact that there is at least one other guitar in a 
completely different tuning filling out the Overture in places.

Ken Slarty believes that Jim Leahy's tuning of C75435 is the correct one; 
however, with only one guitar, the harmonics at minute 2:02 (on the CD 
counter) cannot be achieved with Jim's tuning, but they can be achieved
with mine.  Since I don't have anyone to play the other guitar, I have 
created a tab in the tuning of C75543 which I feel captures reasonably 
accurately for one guitar what is happening musically in the recording 
with two (and posibly even more) guitars.  I feel this transcription in 
C75543 captures some important musical elements that are lost when the 
tuning of C75435 is used. 

2000-01-15:  This tab has been corrected - the chord shape 0CCBA0 was 
missing in two places!  Sorry about that!

I recently (at London Jonifest 2000) had the good fortune to play this with 
the talented bass player, Chris Marshall, who flawlessly reproduced Jaco 
Pastorius' bassline.  The bass really rounded out and completed the sound.

+++++++++++++++++ 

NOTE:  I have used letters A, B, C, etc. in the tab to indicate frets 
above fret 9 sequentially as follows:  A=10, B=11, C=12, etc.

+++++++++++++++++ 


      harmonics 
    |-----------|    slide 
C------------*5------5===>7--(7)----(5)--5--------7--5----8--8--A-----| 
A-------------------------------------------5-----5--3----6--6--8-----| 
F------*7-----------------------------------6-----6--4----7--7--9-----| 
C---------*7--------------------------------0-------------------------| 
G-------------------------------------------7-------------------------| 
C-------------------------------------------7-------------------------| 
  

C----7--7---------------8-----8------8------------C-C-C-C------------| 
A----5--5---------------6--8-----7-8--------------A-A-A-A------------| 
                                             slide 
F----6--6---------------7--------------7-7-7-7===>B-B-B-B------------| 
C----0--0------------------------------------------------------------| 
G----7--7----7--5--8-------------------------------------------------| 
C--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
  

                    etc. ....        etc. .... 
C-----------C-C-C-C------------C-C-C---------------------------------| 
A-----------A-A-A-A------------D-D-D---------------------------------| 
F-----------B-B-B-B------------C-C-C---------------------------------| 
C--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
G--0---0-------------------------------------------------------------| 
C--------0-----------------------------------------------------------| 
  

C----7---------7-----5-9-9-5---7---7------9-9------A---A-A-----------| 
A-----7--------7-----5-5-5-5---6-6-6----8-8-8-8----8-8-8-8-8---------| 
F------7----7-(7)--------------5-5------7-----7----9-9-----9---------| 
C-------4---4--------------------------------------------------------| 
G-------------------------------------------------(A)----------------| 
C--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
  

C----7----------------------7---9---B--B-------7-7-----8-----A-A-A-A-| 
A----5----------------------6---8---A---A------5-5-----6-----8-8-8-8-| 
F----6----------------------7---9---B----B-----6-6-----7-----9-9-9-9-| 
C----0----------------------7---9---B-----B----0-0-----0-----0-0-0-0-| 
G----7---7-7---7-7---7-7-----------------------7-7---8-----A---------| 
C--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
  

C----7------------------------------C--C-------C--C-------C--C-------| 
A----5------------------------------A--A-------A--A-------A--A-------| 
F----6------------------------------B--B----B--B--B----B--B--B-------| 
C----0---0-------0-------0---------(0)(0)--(0)(0)(0)--(0)(0)(0)------| 
G----7-----7-7-----8-8-----A-A---------------------------------------| 
C--------------------------------0-----------------------------------| 
  

C-------0-----0--0-------0-----0--0----9--9----5--5------------------| 
A-------8-----8--8-------7-----7--7----8--8----4--4------------------| 
F----9--9--9--9--9----7--7--7--7--7----9--9----5--5------------------| 
C----9-----9----------0-----0----------9--9----5--5------------------| 
G---(0)---(0)--------(0)---(0)---------------------------------------| 
C--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
  
  
C----9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--------| 
A----7--7--7--7--7--7--7--7--7--7--7--7--------| 
F----0--0--0--0--0--0--0--0--0--0--0--0--------| 
C----9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--------| 
G----9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--9--------| 
C----------------------------------------------| 
  

C-------9--9-----9--9-----9--9-----9--9--------| 
A----7--7--7--7--7--7--7--7--7--7--7--7--------| 
F-------0--0-----0--0-----0--0-----0--0--------| 
C----9--------9--------9--------9--------------| 
G----------------------------------------------| 
C----------------------------------------------| 
  
  

C----7-7-7---8-8-8---A-A-A-A--A--A--A-----A-A-A-A----| 
A----5-5-5---6-6-6---8-8-8-8--8--8--8-----8-8-8-8----| 
F----6-6-6---7-7-7---9-9-9-9--9--9--9-----8-8-8-9----| 
C----0-0-0---0-0-0---0-0-0-0--0--0--0---9-------A----| 
G----7-7-7---8-8-8---A-A-A-A--A--A--A----------------| 
C----------------------------------------------------| 
  
  

C----7--7--C------8-----A-A-A-A-------E------------C--------C-C------| 
A----5--5---------6-----8-8-8-8-------F------------B---B--A-A-A-A----| 
F----6--6---------7-----9-9-9-9-------D------------C---C--B-----B-B--| 
C----0--0---------0-----0-0-0-0----0------0------------C-------------| 
G----7--7-----7-8-8---8-A-A-A-A--------------0-----------------------| 
C-----------------------------------------------0--------------------| 
  
  

C----9--------9-9-------(9)(9)--(9)(9)-------C-----C-----------------| 
A----8---8--7-7-7-7------8--8----8--8--------B-----B-----------------| 
F--------9--8-----8-8----9--9----9--9--------C-----C-----------------| 
C--------9-(9)-----(9)---9--9----9--9----C---C-----C-----------------| 
G--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
C--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
  

                       harmonics 
                      |---------| 
C--------0--------------*5---*7--------------------------| 
A--------3--------------*5---*7--------------------------| 
F--------2--------------*5---*7--------------------------| 
C---(0)-----------------*5---*7--------------------------| 
G----0------------------*5---*7--------------------------| 
C----0-------5-5-5-5---(*5)-(*7)-----0-3--5-5-5-5-5------| 
  
  

       harmonics 
    |-------------| 
C----*C----*5---*7---------------------------------| 
A----*C----*5---*7---------------------------------| 
F----*C----*5---*7---------------------------------| 
C----*C----*5---*7---------------------------------| 
G----*C----*5---*7---------------------------------| 
C---(*C)--(*5)-(*7)----0-3-5-5-5---0-5-5---0-7-7---| 
  
  

C-------C-C-C-C-C-C-C-C-C-C-C-C-----| 
A-------A-A-A-A-A-A-A-A-A-A-A-A-----| 
F-------B-B-B-B-B-B-B-B-B-B-B-B-----| 
C-----------------------------------| 
G-----------------------------------| 
C----0------------------------------| 
  
  

C----7--8--A-A-A----8-A------7--8--A----7--8--A---A-A----------------| 
A----5--6--8-8-8----6-8------5--6--8----5--6--8---8-8----------------| 
F----6--7--9-9-9----7-9------6--7--9----6--7--9---9-9----------------| 
C--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
G--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
C--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
  
  

C----7--8--7--8--A--7--8--A-A-A-A-A---7-(7)---8-(8)---A-A---8-8--A---| 
A----5--6--5--6--8--5--6--8-8-8-8-8---5-(5)---6-(6)---8-8---6-6--8---| 
F----6--7--6--7--9--6--7--9-9-9-9-9---6-(6)---7-(7)---9-9---7-7--9---| 
C--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
G--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
C--------------------------------------------------------------------| 
  

                                  harmonics 
                                 |---------| 
C---------------------------------*5-----*7----| 
A---------------------------------*5-----*7----| 
F---------------------------------*5-----*7----| 
C---------------------------------*5-----*7----| 
G---------------------------------*5-----*7----| 
C----3---0-----0-3---5-5-5-5-5---(*5)---(*7)---| 
  

C----------------------------(*7)--------------------------------C-----| 
A----------------------------(*7)--------------------------------A-----| 
F----------------------------(*7)--------------------------------B-----| 
C----------------------------(*7)--------------------------------0-----| 
G----------------------------(*7)--------------------------------------| 
C---0-3---5-5-5-5-5----3---0-(*7)----0-3-5-5-5---0-5-5---0-7-7---------| 
  
  
  

|||||| 
000BAC 
|||||| 
A red sun came rolling down 
  
  

|||||| 
0A098A 
|||||| 
a grey sky and the 
  
  

|||||| 
050435 
|||||| 
frogs and dogs and night 
  
  

|||||| 
080768 
|||||| 
birds then started up singing 
  
  

             harmonics 
              |-----| 
C----------------*7------------------| 
A----------------*7------------------| 
F----------------*7------------------| 
C----------------*7------------------| 
G----------------*7------------------| 
C----3---0------(*7)-----5-5-5-5-----| 

    sweet country lullaby 
  
  

|||||| 
000BAC 
|||||| 
(You) see that patch of city lights 
  
  

|||||| 
00098A 
|||||| 
          Somewhere in there's Cotton Avenue 
  
  

|||||| 
050435 
|||||| 
That's where I'm going to take myself tonight with a 
  
  

|||||| 
080768 
|||||| 
spit shine 
  
  

             harmonics 
              |-----| 
C----------------*7-----------| 
A----------------*7-----------| 
F----------------*7-----------| 
C----------------*7-----------| 
G----------------*7-----------| 
C----3---0------(*7)----------| 

     on my dancing shoes 
  
  

               harmonics 
              |---------| 
C---------------*5--*7-----------------------| 
A---------------*5--*7-----------------------| 
F---------------*5--*7-----------------------| 
C---------------*5--*7-----------------------| 
G---------------*5--*7-----------------------| 
C----5-5-5-5----*5-(*7)----0-3--5-5--5-5-----|   
  

|||||| 
0AA980 
|||||| 
       If you've got a place like that to go 
  
  

|||||| 
0CCBA0 
|||||| 
        You just have to go there 
  
  

|||||| 
080768 
|||||| 
        If you've got no place special 
  
  

|||||| 
00AAAA 
|||||| 
        Well then you just go no place 
  
  

|||||| 
000230 
|||||| 
special 
  
  

               harmonics 
              |---------| 
C---------------*5---*7---------------------------| 
A---------------*5---*7---------------------------| 
F---------------*5---*7---------------------------| 
C---------------*5---*7---------------------------| 
G---------------*5---*7---------------------------| 
C----5-5-5-5---(*5)-(*7)--------0-3--5-5--5-5-----| 
  
  

             harmonics 
              |-----| 
C----------------*7------------------------------------| 
A----------------*7------------------------------------| 
F----------------*7------------------------------------| 
C----------------*7------------------------------------| 
G----------------*7------------------------------------| 
C----3---0------(*7)-------0-3-5-5-5---0-5-5---0-7-7---| 
  
  
  

|||||| 
088760 
|||||| 
       I guess it's just the 
  
  

||||||        |||||| 
0AA980        0CCBA0 
||||||        |||||| 
summer in the young blood 
  
  

||||||   ||||||       |||||| 
050435   090879       079980 
||||||   ||||||       |||||| 
Ripe and juicy in the young blood 
  
  

|||||| 
0ACCB0 
|||||| 
Teasing to go down to 
  
  

             harmonics 
              |-----| 
C----------------*7-----------| 
A----------------*7-----------| 
F----------------*7-----------| 
C----------------*7-----------| 
G----------------*7-----------| 
C----3---0------(*7)----------| 

    Cotton Avenue 
  

C-------------------| 
A-------------------| 
F-------------------| 
C-------------------| 
G-------------------| 
C----5-5--0-7-7-----| 
  
  

|||||| 
088760 
|||||| 
       To hear the 
  
  

||||||        |||||| 
0AA980        0CCBA0 
||||||        |||||| 
shiny         shiny music 
  
  

||||||        ||||||       |||||| 
050435        090879       079980 
||||||        ||||||       |||||| 
See all the   shiny people dancing to it 
  
  

|||||| 
0ACCB0 
|||||| 
Anytime you go to 
  
  

             harmonics 
              |-----| 
C----------------*7-----------| 
A----------------*7-----------| 
F----------------*7-----------| 
C----------------*7-----------| 
G----------------*7-----------| 
C----3---0------(*7)----------| 

    Cotton Avenue 
  
  

               harmonics 
              |---------| 
C---------------*5---*7---------------------------| 
A---------------*5---*7---------------------------| 
F---------------*5---*7---------------------------| 
C---------------*5---*7---------------------------| 
G---------------*5---*7---------------------------| 
C----5-5-5-5---(*5)-(*7)-------0-3--5-5-5-5-5-----| 
  
  
|||||| 
0AA980 
|||||| 
If you've got a place like that to go 
  

|||||| 
0CCBA0 
|||||| 
You know you've got to go there 
  

|||||| 
080768 
|||||| 
If you've got no place special 
  
  

|||||| 
00AAAA 
|||||| 
Well then you just go no place 
  
  

||||||  
000230 
|||||| 
special  
  

               harmonics 
              |---------| 
C---------------*5---*7-----------------------| 
A---------------*5---*7-----------------------| 
F---------------*5---*7-----------------------| 
C---------------*5---*7-----------------------| 
G---------------*5---*7-----------------------| 
C----5-5-5-5---(*5)-(*7)----0-3--5-5-5-5------| 
  
  

|||||| 
088760 
|||||| 
You see that summer storm 
  
  

|||||| 
0AA980 
|||||| 
brewing 



|||||| 
0CCBA0 
|||||| 
in the southern sky 
  
  

|||||| 
050435 
|||||| 
By the time it 
  
  

|||||| 
090879 
|||||| 
hits here I'll be 
  
  

|||||| 
079980 
|||||| 
dancing high and 
  
  

|||||| 
0ACCB0 
|||||| 
dry to rhythm and blues on 
  
  

             harmonics 
              |-----| 
C----------------*7-----------| 
A----------------*7-----------| 
F----------------*7-----------| 
C----------------*7-----------| 
G----------------*7-----------| 
C----3---0------(*7)----------| 
   Cotton Avenue 
  

C-------------------| 
A-------------------| 
F-------------------| 
C-------------------| 
G-------------------| 
C----5-5--0-7-7-----| 
  
  

|||||| 
088760 
|||||| 
Poor boys'll be 
  

|||||| 
0AA980 
|||||| 
hanging around out-


|||||| 
0CCBA0 
|||||| 
side in the street 
  

|||||| 
050435 
|||||| 
They've got all the latest words they're 
  

|||||| 
090879 
|||||| 
dancing to the 
  

|||||| 
079980 
|||||| 
latest beat while they're 
  
  

|||||| 
0ACCB0 
|||||| 
hustling and jiving you on 
  
  

             harmonics 
              |-----| 
C----------------*7-----------| 
A----------------*7-----------| 
F----------------*7-----------| 
C----------------*7-----------| 
G----------------*7-----------| 
C----3---0------(*7)----------| 
    Cotton Avenue 
  
  

               harmonics 
              |---------| 
C---------------*5---*7----------------------------| 
A---------------*5---*7----------------------------| 
F---------------*5---*7----------------------------| 
C---------------*5---*7----------------------------| 
G---------------*5---*7----------------------------| 
C----5-5-5-5---(*5)-(*7)---------0-3--5-5-5-5-5----| 
  
  
|||||| 
0AA980 
|||||| 
If you've got a place like that to go 
  

|||||| 
0CCBA0 
|||||| 
You just have to go there 
  

|||||| 
080768 
|||||| 
If you've got no place special 
  
  

|||||| 
00AAAA 
|||||| 
Well my dear, you just go no place 
  
  

|||||| 
000230 
|||||| 
special 

  

Outtro: 
  

C---------| 
A---------| 
F---------| 
C---------| 
G---------| 
C---5-5---| 
  
  

Repeat 6 times: 

            harmonics 
             |-----| 
C---------------*7--------------------| 
A---------------*7--------------------| 
F---------------*7--------------------| 
C---------------*7--------------------| 
G---------------*7--------------------| 
C-------3--0---(*7)--------5-5-5-5----| 
  
  

Fade out with: 

C-------------------------------| 
A-------------------------------| 
F-------------------------------| 
C-------------------------------| 
G-------------------------------| 
C---5^6----5^6----5^6----5^6----| 
  
  

© 1977 Crazy Crow Music (BMI)

 

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