By: Guided By Voices
Appears on: Alien Lanes
When I started this website, I originally had the intention of focusing on the newer works of Robert Pollard since so much of the catalog from 2004 and prior already had guitar tabs somewhere on the internet. Then I began to realize how dissatisfied I was with some of those tabs; some are either inaccurate or else poorly organized or formatted (and, as I’ve previously admitted, I’m to blame for some of the inaccurate ones).
So I then decided to also include any songs by Guided by Voices—or other Pollard-led projects—that I felt could benefit from a more accurate, more complete, or more cohesive guitar tablature transcription.
Here’s an example: there are currently no accurate guitar tabs on the internet for “My Valuable Hunting Knife.” None! “My Valuable Hunting Knife!” That classic staple of American rock music! (Or something like that.)
Anyway, in the spirit of wanting this site to become known as the best place online to find complete and accurate Guided by Voices guitar tabs, here’s my transcription of “My Valuable Hunting Knife.” For the purposes of the timings, I’ll refer to the version found on the Alien Lanes album (which doesn’t really differ greatly from any other version, musically speaking).
Here are the chords:
The riff for this song uses a “drop the bass” guitar technique, starting with the C5 chord on the eighth fret. The finger fretting the sixth string will release, dropping the bass note for that chord down to an open E. The fingers on the fifth and fourth strings stay in position, and then the sixth string finger comes back onto the C on the eighth fret.
Hit it! The next section (would you call it a chorus?) uses the same drop the bass technique, starting with the F5 chord on the first fret. To make this Cadd4/E chord, you just release the finger from the sixth string of the F5 chord.
The second verse uses the same Figure 1 riff, the second chorus uses the same chords from Figure 2, then you’ll play the Figure 1 riff again two times. Then comes this next part…a bridge, maybe? I should probably stop trying to name these. Anyway, you’ll play this part three times. Refer to the chord diagrams above for the correct voicings.
After playing Figure 3 a total of three times, play this next part. Name it whatever you want.
As indicated above, Figure 4 leads right into the riff from Figure 1 again, which you’ll play twice before coming to the last part, shown here as Figure 5. The change from Cadd4/E to F5 is a quick one. Play Figure 5 a total of three times, and that’s it!