I recorded this song on my 2008 CD, ‘Uncovered’, where I chose cover tunes to arrange and perform as Duets with some of my favorite artists from Europe. As it turns out, I did Long Train Running with my American friend, Trina Hamlin, who happens to play a mean harmonica….somehow it felt right to do this one with Trina.
From the start, I planned on playing the ‘original’ funky, recognizable rhythm guitar part – but I wanted to find an open tuning to play something complimentary along with it. As I fooled around with some minor tunings (since the song is in a minor key), I found D A D F A C. The ‘riff’ that’s heard as almost a background part in the original came to my fingers and sounded cool in the tuning. Then, I looked for the rest of the chords for the song and found some really beautiful voicings that were actually pretty easy to play! Bingo!
The trick for me with this was to find ways to ‘add’ energy to each verse as the song progresses. There’s really no chorus, B section or bridge, just 4 verses. The solo in the original is played over the chords of the verse. The ‘ending’ got stretched out….I came up with the last 16 measures as I was working on this arrangement, after 12 years of playing it!
Have fun with it – and don’t try to play it like me….make it into something that’s yours.
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