They don’t make a guitar genius any better than Jerry Reed. If you don’t believe me, just try to write anything as good as any of Jerry’s tunes. No, just try it . Anyway, in 1972 he wrote Jerry’s Breakdown, a great tune full of banjo like rolls, but played on guitar in the key of E. When I first heard that, that very year, I thought “that’s exactly the tune I would have written if I had had the talent.” In 2002, Jerry released the hard-to-obtain-now CD called Finger Dancing. On it he included a totally re-written Jerry’s Breakdown, even more bitchin’ than the first one! It’s really just some very cool variations, I suppose, but whatever it is, I love it. He recently released a new CD, shown to the left, that has pretty much the same version on it.
I had a little free time yesterday, so I finally bit the bullet and made the essentially superhuman effort to transcribe this monster in full.
I have included an exported MIDI of the tab below. It sounds better than when the tab is played directly in TablEdit, but again, it is still nowhere near the actual sounds of guitars. I have included a rhythm guitar track just to put the melody in context. This is a fingerstyle tune, but it is a single note line, so flatpickers could bust their knuckles crosspicking it if they had a mind to.
Play MIDI of the tab
Download: Jerry’s Breakdown Revisited tab here (Note: If you have not downloaded this tab since 11/6/05, you do not have the latest version)
(in TablEdit Format, which you can download a free viewer for)