Spider's Nest Blues

Memphis Jug Band, 1930

The original version was recorded by the Memphis Jug Band on June 5, 1930 in Memphis, with Hattie Hart on vocal, Will Shade on lead guitar, Charlie Burse on rhythm guitar, Ben Ramey on kazoo and Hambone Lewis on jug.

This is one of Will Shade's most accomplished lead guitar parts, combining some straightforward work around the E and E7 shapes with some more interesting licks, like the descending figure at the end of the first line of the second verse. Charlie Burse, meanwhile, plays a simple part on his detuned guitar, until he breaks into a series of chromatic bass runs in the solo section, similar to the part he had recorded on "Aunt Caroline Dyer" a few days earlier.

This is also a good example of Ben Ramey's ability to play kazoo throughout the song, adding an important layer to the overall texture, without ever drawing attention to himself. You can mute and unmute the kazoo part to hear how much Ramey's playing contributes to the arrangement.

Documents: Guitar Tab


Lead Guitar
Rhythm Guitar

This version is available for purchase on the Golden Harvest album.


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