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John Henry
American Folk Somg
In 1996, the U.S. Post Office issued a John Henry 32-cent postage stamp.
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G - - -
- - D7 -
G - - -
- - Em -
G D7 G  -      (repeat)
16-beat intro. with 2 lead-in notes.  Play 4-beats for each cell, reading from left to right.
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When John Henry was a little baby,
A sitting on his papa's knee,
He picked up a hammer and a little piece of steel,
Said, "Hammer's gonna be the death of me," Lord, Lord,
"Hammer's gonna be the death of me."
 
John Henry, speaking to the captain,
Said, "A man, should prove himself a man,
And before I'll let your steam drill beat me down,
I'll die with the hammer in my hand, Oh Lord,
Die with the hammer in my hand."
 
They took John Henry to the graveyard,
And they buried him in the sand,
And every locomotive comes a roaring by,
Says, "There lies a steel driving man," Oh Lord,
"There lies a steel driving man."
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Listen to "John Henry" played on the 5-string banjo, finger picking style (The Mountaineers)
 
Listen to "John Henry" played on the 5-string banjo, frailing style (Tom Paley)
 
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Arranged by Jim Bottorff
 
This Chord Chart may not appear correctly with some browsers.  It should be viewed with a full size window.
The chord names should appear in single rows.   Let me know of any problems.
 
email: jbott@ix.netcom.com