Arkansas Traveler Guitar Song Chords
Arkansas Traveler guitar song chords and easy guitar tabs, FREE!
This is a great flat-picking beginner guitar song from the American South. Many of your students may already be familiar with this tune but by another name, with the lyrics, "I'm bringing home a baby bumblebee -- Won't my mommy be so proud of me?"
Not a true folk song
Arkansas Traveler (pronounced "ahr-kuhn-saw") SOUNDS like a traditional folk song, but actually it was written in the 1800s by a fellow named Colonel Sanford C. "Sandy" Faulkner, according to Wikipedia.
A committee in the state of Arkansas wrote new lyrics for this song in 1947 in preparation for making the song the state song -- but I have put the traditional song lyrics in the sheet music.
Here is the key of C version:
Please scroll down the page for the links to the printable PDFs.
A violin performance in D
Here is a terrific rendition of the beginner guitar song, played on violin. This fiddler is a real pleasure to listen to. She is playing in the key of D, using double stops (more than one string at a time), a much fancier version than what I have here:
The key of G is easy
Here is what the key of G looks like, with a little bit different ending than the C and D versions.
Differences in the melody
I mentioned that the music is a bit different in the key of G.
That's because I didn't want to take the guitar tabs down to F#, fret 4, in the fast passage that comes at the end of each section. That's fine; every version you hear will be a little different from all the others!
Check out a duet version
In one of the guitar books I sometimes require my guitar students to purchase, The Hal Leonard Bluegrass Method, there are several flat-picking duets. Arkansas Traveler is one of them, in the key of C.
It is a lot of fun, and my beginner guitar students really like it. Mostly the parts move in parallel thirds, making nice harmony even if no one provides a chord background.
Here is the song on mandolin, with a lesson! I want to borrow a mandolin and try it:
The links for the guitar & fiddle PDFs, with guitar tabs:
Download easy guitar tabs "Arkansas Traveler" for guitar and fiddle in the key of C
Download guitar song chords in the key of D
Download beginner guitar song chords for guitar and violin in the key of G, with a different ending
For a child who is a beginner guitar player, making music can be BAFFLING. Teach them how to play guitar in small baby steps.
Frere Jacques, with lyrics in both French & English. Versions for voice (the vocal round), and for piano.
I Gave My Love a Cherry (The Riddle Song) is a very pretty folk tune with clever lyrics. Download sheet music in 3 arrangements, 4 keys.
Seek Ye First lyrics, chords, & sheet music is written for early piano. This pretty melody happens all inside 5 fingers! An optional descant is also provided.
This simple piano sheet music, Canoe Song, is high energy and singable. Just right for students who are beginning to tuck fingers under in scales, or can JUMP.
Songs Old & Songs New
All the first-year material I give my beginner students.
Piano keyboard sheets, scales, chords, note-reading exercises, and over 256 pages of music!
Queen Esther in the Bible
This beautiful song book for piano & voice "Esther, For Such a Time as This", available as a digital download, tells the riveting story of the time when Jews in ancient Persia faced a foe named Haman, and how a brave young queen risked her life to save her people.
A good choice for a singing story-teller, an operatic group, a short theater production, or a class of children!
This book is also available from Amazon as a paperback.
Just the Black Keys
This book is available as a digital download from this site. Visit this page to see some free examples from the book.
It is also available from Amazon as a paperback!
This is the perfect easy start for little pianists.
And when they start reading white-key notes on the staff, this is a fun easy resource to say each week, "Choose a new black-key song at home this week and figure it out to show me next lesson!" They will be spending more time at the piano.
The Adventures of Tonsta
A perfect read aloud storybook
for little boys or girls.
The Adventures of Tonsta highlight the travels of a very young boy with a good heart, who goes about helping folk in trouble.
With a red cap on his head and a sack of tools slung over his shoulder, Tonsta seems to meet people in distress wherever he goes.
Lots of trolls in this book - including one who gives him a Christmas gift!
Available at Amazon
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About the Author
Hi, I'm Dana! (Say that like "Anna".) I'm the owner of Music-for-Music-Teachers.com, and a newer site, SingTheBibleStory.com.
Like some of you, I've been playing the piano since early childhood, and have added a few other instruments along the way, plus an interest in arranging and composing music.
You can find out more about me and the reason for this website at my About Me page.