"The Selling Of America" by Big Country
From the Album "The Buffalo Skinners"

Tab by Colin Dawson - colin_g_dawson@hotmail.com - May 2005

For more info about Big Country visit www.bigcountry.co.uk

This is one of the more difficult songs I've tried to tab. The solos were
fairly straightforward to work out and relatively easy to play apart from the
fast runs towards the end of the final solo.

The rhythm guitar was far more difficult to figure out and I'm not convinced
it's quite right yet. I'll review this when I get time and post updates
but meantime, it's close enough to have some fun with.

 

Comments and corrections welcome!

h = hammer
p = pull
s = slide
sd = slide down
r = let ring (sustain)
^ - split harmonic (artificial)

Intro;

  F#m         C#m C#m     C#m     E   F#m F#m   F#m     C#m A  A          
E|------------5-4h5p4rrr-|7-4h7p4--------------|---------------------|
B|7-5h7p5---5------------|--------7-5---5h7rrr-|7-5h7p5--------------|
G|--------6--------------|------------6--------|--------6-4---4h6rrr-|
D|-----------------------|---------------------|------------6--------|
A|-----------------------|---------------------|---------------------|
E|-----------------------|---------------------|---------------------|

                
  C#m     E   F#m F#m F#m    C#m A A
E|7-4h7p4-----5------|-----------4------|
B|--------7-5---7rrr-|-------5-7---5rrr-|
G|-------------------|-4-4h6------------|
D|-------------------|------------------|
A|-------------------|------------------|
E|-------------------|------------------|

 

  A       F#m C#m C#m     C#m     E   F#m F#m   F#m     C#m A A 
E|------------5-4h5p4rrr-|7-4h7p4--------------|---------------------|
B|7-5h7p5---5------------|--------7-5---5h7rrr-|7-5h7p5--------------|
G|--------6--------------|------------6--------|--------6-4---4h6rrr-|
D|-----------------------|---------------------|------------6--------|
A|-----------------------|---------------------|---------------------|
E|-----------------------|---------------------|---------------------|

 

  C#m     E   F#m F#m F#m   C#m A A     A       F#m C#m C#m
E|7-4h7p4-----5------|----------4------|------------------------|
B|--------7-5---7rrr-|------5-7---5rrr-|7-5h7p5-----------------|
G|-------------------|4-4h6------------|--------6-4---4h6rrrrrrr|
D|-------------------|-----------------|------------6-----------|
A|-------------------|-----------------|------------------------|
E|-------------------|-----------------|------------------------|

Verse 1;

  C#m                    A
E|-------------------------------------|
B|-------------------------------------|
G|6rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr|
D|-------------------------------------|
A|-------------------------------------|
E|-------------------------------------|
  Gonna take a message to mother

 

  E                          C#m
E|-------------------------------------|
B|-------------------^-----------------|
G|6rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr4rrrrrsd1rrrrrrrrr|
D|-------------------------------------|
A|-------------------------------------|
E|-------------------------------------|
  Tell her that I値l be home soon

 

  C#m                         A
E|-------------------------------------|
B|-------------------------------------|
G|1rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr|
D|-------------------------------------|
A|-------------------------------------|
E|-------------------------------------|
  Let her know I知 still undercover

 

F#m          E        A
Hiding out behind the moon

 

Chorus;

This guitar part plays through each of the choruses;
To make this easier to tab I've used the following shorthand;
0 = 10th fret
1 = 11th fret
2 = 12th fret
3 = 13th fret
4 = 14th fret
5 = 15th fret
6 = 16th fret

 

    C#m          A   B
E|---------2---4---2-1-----|
B|--2h4----------4-----2rr-|
G|-------------------------|
D|-------------------------|
A|-------------------------|
E|-------------------------|
The selling of America

   C#m          E       A
E|-------2---6--4----2--------|
B|--2h4-----------------4-2rr-|
G|----------------------------|
D|----------------------------|
A|----------------------------|
E|----------------------------|
Is going on now town by town

    C#m          A   B
E|----------2--4---2-1-----|
B|--2h4----------4-----2rr-|
G|-------------------------|
D|-------------------------|
A|-------------------------|
E|-------------------------|
The selling of America

   C#m             B    A
E|---------2----6--4-2--------|
B|--2h4-----------------2rr---|
G|----------------------------|
D|----------------------------|
A|----------------------------|
E|----------------------------|
You better keep it underground

 

Solo 1 (no shorthand);

 

  F#m         C#m C#m     C#m     E   F#m F#m   F#m     C#m A  A  
E|------------5-4h5p4rrr-|7-4h7p4--------------|---------------------|
B|7-5h7p5---5------------|--------7-5---5h7rrr-|7-5h7p5--------------|
G|--------6--------------|------------6--------|--------6-4---4h6rrr-|
D|-----------------------|---------------------|------------6--------|
A|-----------------------|---------------------|---------------------|
E|-----------------------|---------------------|---------------------|

 

  C#m     E   F#m F#m F#m   C#m A A     A       F#m C#m C#m
E|7-4h7p4-----5------|----------4------|------------------------|
B|--------7-5---7rrr-|------5-7---5rrr-|7-5h7p5-----------------|
G|-------------------|4-4h6------------|--------6-4---4h6rrrrrrr|
D|-------------------|-----------------|------------6-----------|
A|-------------------|-----------------|------------------------|
E|-------------------|-----------------|------------------------|

 

Verse 2;

The split harmonics here, and later in the song, are created by picking
hard and slightly deadening the string with the thumb simultaneously.
Pick the string approximately above the bridge pickup. Adjust the
position where you pick the string until you create the correct split
harmonic, and remember this position. You'll need roughly the same
position for the split harmonics later in the song.

 

  C#m                     A
E|-------------------------------------|
B|-------------------------------------|
G|6rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrsu13-|
D|-------------------------------------|
A|-------------------------------------|
E|-------------------------------------|
  Better get a message to Martha

  E                             C#m
E|------------------------------------|
B|------------------------------------|
G|13rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr|
D|------------------------------------|
A|------------------------------------|
E|------------------------------------|
  Tell her that our workers are doomed

  C#m                      A
E|-------------------------------------|
B|^------^-------^-------^--^--^--^--^-|
G|6------6-------6-------6--6--6--6--6-|
D|-------------------------------------|
A|-------------------------------------|
E|-------------------------------------|
  Better call on General McArthur

  F#m            E         A
E|------------------------------------|
B|^--------^-----^------^--^--^--^--^-|
G|6--------6-----6------6--6--6--6--6-|
D|------------------------------------|
A|------------------------------------|
E|------------------------------------|
  Tell him the invasion is due

 

Chorus;

    C#m          A   B
The selling of America

   C#m          E       A
Is going on now town by town

    C#m          A   B
The selling of America

   C#m             B    A
You better keep it underground

 

Bridge;

 

E                    F#m
Here come the dollar bombers

 

Guitar solo (no shorthand);

  C#m   E      F#m       C#m     A     E       B       A
E|------7-----|-----------------|-------------|---------------|
B|9-9-7---9rr-|7-9p7---7---9rrr-|7-7-----9rrr-|7-9p7----------|
G|------------|------9---6------|----9-6------|------9-6------|
D|------------|-----------------|-------------|----------9rrr-|
A|------------|-----------------|-------------|---------------|
E|------------|-----------------|-------------|---------------|

For the next bit I've used the following shorthand;

0 = 10th fret
1 = 11th fret
2 = 12th fret
3 = 13th fret
4 = 14th fret
5 = 15th fret
6 = 16th fret
7 = 17th fret
8 = 18th fret
9 = 19th fret

 

  C#m   E      F#m       C#m      A           E      B         A
E|------------|6-4rh6p4----------|2h4-4-2h4p2---2rr-|----2----------|
B|------2h4rr-|---------7-4h7rrr-|------------4-----|2h4---4p2------|
G|3-3p1-------|------------------|------------------|----------3rrr-|
D|------------|------------------|------------------|---------------|
A|------------|------------------|------------------|---------------|
E|------------|------------------|------------------|---------------|

 

No shorthand; (a harmony guitar joins in here)

  C#m   E      F#m       C#m     A     E       B       A
E|------7-----|-----------------|-------------|---------------|
B|9-9-7---9rr-|7-9p7---7---9rrr-|7-7-----9rrr-|7-9p7----------|
G|------------|------9---6------|----9-6------|------9-6------|
D|------------|-----------------|-------------|----------9rrr-|
A|------------|-----------------|-------------|---------------|
E|------------|-----------------|-------------|---------------|

 

Shorthand as above;

  C#m   E      F#m       C#m      A           E      B         A
E|------------|6-4rh6p4----------|2h4-4-2h4p2---2rr-|----2----------|
B|------2h4rr-|---------7-4h7rrr-|------------4-----|2h4---4p2------|
G|3-3p1-------|------------------|------------------|----------3rrr-|
D|------------|------------------|------------------|---------------|
A|------------|------------------|------------------|---------------|
E|------------|------------------|------------------|---------------|

 

The next bit is very difficult to make out due to the number of overdubbed
guitars and the thickness of all the effects. One guitar does something like
this. If you add stacks of delay and flanger it fills out quite nicely
but it really needs about 5 or 6 overdubbed guitars, each playing different
things.

Shorthand as above;

  E                               F#m             C#m     A
E|7-6---6-9-6---6-7-6---6-9-6---6-7-6---6-9-6---6-7-6---6-9-6---6--|
B|----7-------7-------7-------7-------7-------7-------7-------7----|
G|-----------------------------------------------------------------|
D|-----------------------------------------------------------------|
A|-----------------------------------------------------------------|
E|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

 

  E                               F#m             C#m     A
E|7-6---6-9-6---6-7-6---6-9-6---6-7-6-9-6-9-6-9-6-7-6-9-6-9-6-9-6--|
B|----7-------7-------7-------7------------------------------------|
G|-----------------------------------------------------------------|
D|-----------------------------------------------------------------|
A|-----------------------------------------------------------------|
E|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

 

Verse 3;

  C#m                         A
E|-------------------------------------------|
B|^------^-------^--------^-----^----^--^--^-|
G|6------6-------6--------6-----6----6--6--6-|
D|-------------------------------------------|
A|-------------------------------------------|
E|-------------------------------------------|
  Better get the word to the boss man

 

  E                        C#m
E|---------------------------------^-------------^-----|
B|^------^--------^-----^---^--^---5-^-^-------^-5-^---|
G|6------6--------6-----6---6--4h6---6-6b8b6p4-6---6---|
D|-----------------------------------------------------|
A|-----------------------------------------------------|
E|-----------------------------------------------------|
  A wire from the industry spy

 

  C#m                            A
E|----------------------------------------------------------|
B|^--------^------------^-----^---^---^---^--^---^-^-----^--|
G|6--------6------------6-----6---6---6---6--6b8-6-4h6p4-6--|
D|----------------------------------------------------------|
A|----------------------------------------------------------|
E|----------------------------------------------------------|
  Tell him that they池e over the border

 

  F#m            E               A
E|-------------------------------------^---------|
B|^------^-------^-----^-----^---^-----7b9b7-^---|
G|6------6-------6-----6-----6---6-----------6b8-|
D|-----------------------------------------------|
A|-----------------------------------------------|
E|-----------------------------------------------|
  Trying out the White House for size

 

Chorus;

    C#m          A   B
The selling of America

   C#m          E       A
Is going on now town by town

    C#m          A   B
The selling of America

   C#m             B    A
You better keep it underground

 

Chorus;

    C#m          A   B
The selling of America

   C#m          E       A
Is going on now town by town

    C#m          A   B
The selling of America

   C#m             B    A
You better keep it underground

 

Guitar solo (slightly different to intro) (no shorthand);

 

  F#m         C#m C#m C#m     E       F#m F#m   F#m     C#m A  A   
E|------------5-4rrr-|7-4h7p4------------------|---------------------|
B|7-5h7p5---5--------|--------7-5h7p5---5h7rrr-|7-5h7p5--------------|
G|--------6----------|----------------6--------|--------6-4---4h6rrr-|
D|-------------------|-------------------------|------------6--------|
A|-------------------|-------------------------|---------------------|
E|-------------------|-------------------------|---------------------|

 

  C#m     E   F#m F#m   F#m   C#m A A
E|7-4h7p4-----5--------|----------4------|
B|--------7-5---5h7rrr-|------5-7---5rrr-|
G|---------------------|4-4h6------------|
D|---------------------|-----------------|
A|---------------------|-----------------|
E|---------------------|-----------------|

  A       F#m C#m C#m C#m     E       F#m F#m   F#m     C#m A A
E|------------5-4rrr-|7-4h7p4------------------|---------------------|
B|7-5h7p5---5--------|--------7-5h7p5---5h7rrr-|7-5h7p5--------------|
G|--------6----------|----------------6--------|--------6-4---4h6rrr-|
D|-------------------|-------------------------|------------6--------|
A|-------------------|-------------------------|---------------------|
E|-------------------|-------------------------|---------------------|

 

  C#m     E   F#m F#m   F#m   C#m A A     A       F#m C#m C#m
E|7-4h7p4-----5--------|----------4------|-----------5-4h5p4rr-|
B|--------7-5---5h7rrr-|------5-7---5rrr-|7-5h7p5---5----------|
G|---------------------|4-4h6------------|--------6------------|
D|---------------------|-----------------|---------------------|
A|---------------------|-----------------|---------------------|
E|---------------------|-----------------|---------------------|

 

(the same chord sequence continues through the rest of the solo I think)

 

E|5-4h5p4rr-5-4h5p4rr-5-4h5p4rr-5-4h5p4-------------------------------|
B|--------------------------------------7-5---5h7rr-7rr-7-5h7p5---5h7-|
G|------------------------------------------6-------------------6-----|
D|--------------------------------------------------------------------|
A|--------------------------------------------------------------------|
E|--------------------------------------------------------------------|

 

E|4h7rr-7rr-7-4h7p4---4h7-9h12rr-12rr-12-9h12p9----9h12-|
B|------------------7---------------------------12------|
G|------------------------------------------------------|
D|------------------------------------------------------|
A|------------------------------------------------------|
E|------------------------------------------------------|

 

E|12p9--9--------|---------------|---------------|-------------|
B|----12-12p9--9-|12p9--9--------|---------------|-------------|
G|-----------11--|----11-11p9--9-|11p9--9--------|-------------|
D|---------------|-----------11--|----11-11p9--9-|11-9h11p9--9-|
A|---------------|---------------|-----------11--|---------11--|
E|---------------|---------------|---------------|-------------|

 

E|-------------|-----------------|---------|----------|
B|-------------|-----------------|---------|----------|
G|---9h11p9--9-|11h12p11---------|---------|9h11p9--9-|
D|11-------11--|--------11-14-11-|9rr-11rr-|------11--|
A|-------------|-----------------|---------|----------|
E|-------------|-----------------|---------|----------|

 

E|----------------------9h12p9|12-11h12p11p9---|-----9------12-|14b16b14p12--12-|
B|----------------9h12p9------|-------------12-|11s12--12s14---|-----------14---|
G|----------9h11p9------------|----------------|---------------|----------------|
D|----9h11p9------------------|----------------|---------------|----------------|
A|9h11------------------------|----------------|---------------|----------------|
E|----------------------------|----------------|---------------|----------------|

 

                                           Fade out
E|-----12-14-14b16b14p12--12-14b16-12rr----------------------------------|
B|12s14-----------------14-----------------------------------------------|
G|-----------------------------------------------------------------------|
D|-----------------------------------------------------------------------|
A|-----------------------------------------------------------------------|
E|-----------------------------------------------------------------------|

E|-----------------------------------------------------------------------|
B|-----------------------------------------------------------------------|
G|-----------------------------------------------------------------------|
D|-----------------------------------------------------------------------|
A|-----------------------------------------------------------------------|
E|-----------------------------------------------------------------------|

 

Chords:

CHORD  | E A D G B E
A      | 0 0 2 2 2 0
B      | 2 2 4 4 4 2
C#m    | 4 4 6 6 5 4
E      | 0 2 2 1 0 0
F#m    | 2 4 4 2 2 2