How to play Beverly (India Pacific Railroad Blues)
by John Fahey

From Damien Batstone

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This is a quick and dirty how-to. The transcription is of course available in the Stefan Grossman book which is one of the best tab books available, period, and if you want to learn it well, or quickly please go there. He spent days on that tab, and I spent 15 minutes here.

I haven't seen that version for three years, and this is pretty much how I play it, which may or may not be right. So if you're desperately short of cash, and have plenty of time, or are the impatient type who can't wait for international mail, this is to get you started.

The tune is standard tuning, with several different themes. Nomenclature on this how to is bass string to treble string EADgbe notes in brackets (d) are actual notes i.e., third fret b string.

It starts out out with an open fretboard, and basically does a slow intro, similar to that in Some Summer Day.

You just play around with an E/A (open) bass, and play a syncopated melody on the E string (open), third fret(d) on the b string, and then bend fifth frets g and e string. Repeat and bend fret 8 b string. Play a decreasing thumb bit with an E bass and alternating with frets 7,6,5 on the A string. Repeat from the top, and finish with an F pattern (thumb over), open D and g, and G7 pattern (G) bass on E then to a C pattern and an Em pattern to finish the bar. Repeat, and go to theme two.

The second theme is the main one, and is in open C. It plays about two bars in a C major pattern chord, alternating bass on the third fret A string (C), and second fret D string (E), and playing the melody on the e string and b string. The third bar is in an F major chord (with wrapped thumb) for the bass first fret, E string (F) alternating with the third fret D string (F), and a similar melody to the previous two bars. Then there's one bar with in G7 major with third frets on E, D, and e strings, alternating bass on the (G) and (F), and hitting the b, and e (g) strings. Last note of that bar is to hit open em on the top strings. Then it goes Em/maj hammer on the g string, run down from e through (d), (c) and (b) on the b string (while alternating E bass and (e) on the D string). Then ½ bar in Am, a ½ bar in C7 (pinkie on the (bflat) on the b string). Then a bar in F, with thumb over again, and playing the melody one e string (open), (d) on the b, (c) on the b. Repeat that bar, except with the middle finger on the g string on first fret instead of second fret. Finish with the C, G, a ½ bar of C, and a ½ bar of Em, and restart from the top of the theme.

There's now an interlude in Am, with a barre across the top four strings at the fifth fret, and the fourth finger on the 7th fret, G string. Play A/A bass, and the melody on the top two strings, fingering the (c) on the e string, and the (g) on the b string. Play two bars. On the last note, slide the fourth finger to the 10th fret, replace the barre, and play a bar, and on the last two beats, barre the fifth fret top four strings, and
play a A bass/strum, and play a last bar in Open G.

The third theme is with an A bass. It starts out fiddling around with an A bass (open), and consecutive 12/10/8 frets on e and g strings (lots of tremolo and bending, especially bends on the 8th fret g string). Then do a bend on fret 5 g string, down to fret 2 and repeat. After repeating, play a barre across 2 (top four strings), and pinkie on 5 e string, and then switch to a bent fret five on the g string then back to two. The next bit involves bending the b string on the fourth fret, then playing the e string on the third fret, then switching to b string third fret, all the while playing an A bass. This takes a bit of work to get right, but is really cool. After playing this for twice, do the same starting from the 6th fret moving to the fifth fret, and play a bar across the second fret top four string, and play an (a) and (g) on the e string. Keep the A bass going. It then goes to F#sus4 with a thumb hooked over the E string second fret (bass), a finger on the g string second fret (a), and hammering the b string to c for a half a bar, the rest of the bar plays the same with the thumb moved down to an (F) on the E string. You then play a run from the bottom A string (thumb, forefinger alternating), or from the top with a bar across at the fifth fret. Then repeat from the start of the theme, or from the start of the bendy bit depending on personal preference.

To finish, either repeat themes one and finish with two, repeat theme two, or
repeat the whole thing, finishing with two.