Welcome to my Guitar Man chords page you'll find the lyrics to this song, a free pdf chords and lyrics sheet along with tutorial demos and a link to purchase full lessons in .mp4 format.
Guitar Man was originally written and recorded by Jerry Reed in 1967, but Elvis recorded his own version in 1968. Elvis's rendition of "Guitar Man" was featured on his album titled "Elvis (NBC TV Special)" or commonly referred to as the "68 Comeback Special."
The song showcases Elvis's vocal and musical abilities, with his passionate delivery and guitar skills on full display. It became a fan favourite and is often remembered as one of the standout performances from the '68 Comeback Special.
It's worth noting that Elvis's version of "Guitar Man" was not released as a single during his lifetime, but it has since been included on various compilation albums and reissues of his music.
The song remains popular among Elvis fans and is recognized as one of his notable recordings.
Well, I quit my job down at the car wash
Left my mama a goodbye note
By sundown I'd left Kingston
With my guitar under my coat
I hitchhiked all the way down to Memphis
Got a room at the YMCA
For the next three weeks I went huntin' them nights
Just lookin' for a place to play
Well, I thought my pickin' would set 'em on fire
But nobody wanted to hire a guitar man
Well, I nearly 'bout starved to death down in Memphis
I run outta money and luck
So I bought me a ride down to Macon, Georgia
On a overloaded poultry truck
I thumbed on down to Panama City
Started pickin' out some o' them all night bars
Hopin' I could make myself a dollar
Makin' music on my guitar
I got the same old story at them all night piers
There ain't no room around here for a guitar man
We don't need a guitar man, son
So I slept in the hobo jungles
Roamed a thousand miles of track
Till I found myself in Mobile Alabama
At a club they call Big Jack's
A little four-piece band was jammin'
So I took my guitar and I sat in
I showed 'em what a band would sound like
With a swingin' little guitar man
Show 'em, son
If you ever take a trip down to the ocean
Find yourself down around Mobile
Make it on out to a club called Jack's
If you got a little time to kill
Just follow that crowd of people
You'll wind up out on his dance floor
Diggin' the finest little five piece group
Up and down the Gulf of Mexico
Guess who's leadin' that five-piece band
Well, wouldn't ya know, it's that swingin' little guitar man, yeah yeah
This one is played with a drop d tuned guitar mainly because of the fast pace of the song and since it's in the D chord, makes for a much fuller rhythm. Your right hand will be in constant motion pretty much all the way through as you'll see in the demo but it's a steady down up down up and repeat.
There are only four chords with some variation shapes on the D in the beginning and they are D, G, A and E or E7.
There is some string bending in the lead but most of the break is taken up with walking bass riffs across the chords.
Guitar Man is a song that was indeed performed by Elvis Presley as part of his 1968 television special titled "Elvis," often referred to as the "Comeback Special."
The song was written by Jerry Reed, a country musician and songwriter known for his finger-picking guitar style. The song was originally released by Reed in 1967 as a single. Reed's version was more uptempo and featured his characteristic guitar work.
Elvis Presley was a fan of Jerry Reed's music and guitar skills. He heard Reed's original version of "Guitar Man" and was impressed by the song's energy and the way it showcased Reed's guitar talents.
The "Elvis" television special, often referred to as the "Comeback Special," marked a turning point in Elvis Presley's career as it was his first live performance in several years and was aimed at reestablishing his connection with fans and revitalizing his music career.
In the special, Elvis performed "Guitar Man" as part of a medley that also included his hit "Trouble." The performance featured a blend of both the rock 'n' roll and country influences that defined Elvis's early music.
For his rendition of "Guitar Man," Elvis and his band gave the song a fresh arrangement that combined elements of rock, country, and blues. The arrangement showcased Elvis's own distinctive vocal style and brought his own musical sensibilities to the song.
The Blossoms, a renowned vocal group, provided backing vocals for Elvis's performance of "Guitar Man" during the special. Their harmonies added depth and richness to the performance.
The "Elvis" special was recorded with a live audience, adding to the intimacy and excitement of the performances. The special was a departure from the big studio productions that Elvis had been doing, and it allowed him to connect directly with his fans.
"Guitar Man" and the entire "Comeback Special" played a pivotal role in rejuvenating Elvis Presley's career. The show was well-received by both fans and critics, and it helped reestablish him as a relevant and dynamic performer.
Following the success of the "Comeback Special," Elvis recorded a new studio version of "Guitar Man." This version, featuring a slightly different arrangement, was released as a single in 1968 and later included on his album "From Elvis in Memphis."
Elvis's performance of "Guitar Man" remains a memorable moment in his career and a testament to his versatility as a performer. The song's blend of genres and Elvis's charismatic delivery continue to captivate audiences.
"Guitar Man" is not only a song that showcases Elvis Presley's musical talent and versatility but also a pivotal piece in his career comeback. Jerry Reed's original song and Elvis's re-imagined version both contribute to the enduring legacy of this memorable track.
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