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Steely Dan Database: transcriptions of "Don't take me alive"

Steely Dan Database

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Transcriptions of

Don't take me alive

View the lyrics
#----------------------------------PLEASE NOTE---------------------------------#
#This file is the author's own work and represents their interpretation of the #
#song. You may only use this file for private study, scholarship, or research. #
Date: Mon, 2 Oct 1995 20:31:44 -0300
From: Bruce & Peggy Mackinnon 
Subject: s/steely_dan/don't_take_me_alive.crd

This old thing from The Royal Scam album has some tricky parts 
in it, a lot of electric guitar shots etc. which tend to moderate
the sound of the chord, but I've tried to make it playable, while
staying as true to the actual song as possible. Note that there
is a syncopation to this song which makes it difficult to place 
the chords over the words as they change, or present it in the 
form of an even 4/4 bar count. My advice is play the chart along 
with the record if you get confused.

Also, I've included two different shapes for an F/G chord to be played
at different times. One will be called F/G*, and the other F/G**.

This tune is one of my favorite examples of brilliant Steely Dan 
lyrics and their usual superbly crafted music. 

                             " DON'T TAKE ME ALIVE "
                                   Steely Dan
                                 The Royal Scam

First slowly strum out a G7#9 with this shape: EADGBE
This may look like an impossibility, like a cruel, unusual and
unplayable chord, but it can be done. You must use the power 
of the force. First you use your ring (3rd) finger to cover 
BOTH the 4th and 5th strings on the 5th fret (straight down on 
the fingertip, not barred), and next you  use the baby finger to
barr both the 1st and 2nd strings on the 6th fret. Of course your 
index finger is on the 6th string, 3rd fret, and your middle 
finger is on the 3rd string, 4th fret. Once you've let it ring 
for a few seconds you quickly play Eb/Ab and F/G* (shapes shown 
below) as the last two beats of a lead-in bar, and you're into 
the intro, which is a guitar solo over:

 |||    |                                                    
| Cm Csus4 | Cm | F/G** | G7 |

                               ||      |     |
|Fm7 Gm7 | Abmaj7 Bb | Csus4 | Csus4  Eb/Ab F/G* |

  |||    |                                                            
| Cm  Csus4 | Cm | F/G** | G7 |

                                       |||   |
| Fm7  Gm7 | Abmaj7  Bb | Csus4 | Cm | Cm Gm7/C |

Vs. I
                          |||   |    
             |    Cm    | Cm   Cm7 |        
           Agents of the law
                            |||     |
             |     Cm    |  Gm      Gm7  |                                  
                Luckless pedestrians

             | Gm         |  Fm7     |
                I know you're out there
             |       Bb/Eb        C/F       |   D/G      | 
                With rage in your eyes and your megaphones
                                 |||    |
             |Eb/Ab    F/G    |  Cm    Cm7  |
                Saying all is forgiven

             |   Cm     |    Gm    Gm7   |                                   
                Mad Dog surrender

             |   Gm     |   Fm7    |                            
                How can I answer?
             |    Bb/Eb      C/F      |    D/G    |
                A man of my mind can do anything.

 Chorus:     |||    |
            |Eb/Ab  F/G*|     Cm      |  
                I'm a book keeper's son

           |  Cm       |  F/G**        |    G7    |
                I don't want to shoot no one

              |    Fm7             Gm7 |      Abmaj7     Bb  |
Well, I crossed my old man back in Oregon, don't take me 

                               ||     |     |
            |  csus4  | Csus4  Eb/Ab  F/G* |

                 |    Cm   |   Cm     |   
             Got a case of dynamite

                |    F/G**         |   G7    |
             I could hold out here all night

                   |   Fm7           Gm7     |    Abmaj7        Bb   |
Well, I crossed my old man back in Oregon, don't take me 

             | Csus4 | Csus4 | Csus4 | csus4 |

Vs. II  ( Chords same as for Vs. 1)       

                Can you hear the evil crowd
                The lies and the laughter
                I hear my insides,
                The mechanized hum of another world
                Where no sun is shining
                No red light flashing
                Here in this darkness
                I know what I've done
                I know all at once who I am

                * CHORUS *

BRIDGE:  There is some keyboard and guitar work here which 
mostly is played over a 'C' bass note, and although it would 
be messy to try to write it out note for note, I think you 
can get away with playing these chords: (formations shown below).

                                            ||    |   |
| Cm  Fsus4/C | F/C  Csus4 |  Cm  Fsus4/C | F/C  G/A F/G* |

                 ||   |   |                                |||    |     
| Cm  Fsus4/C | F/C  G/A F/G* |  C/F  |  D/G  |  Eb/Ab  |

|  Eb/Ab  F/G*  |


                * CHORUS * 

|  Fm7  Gm7  | Abmaj7   Bb       | Fm7  Gm7 | Abmaj7  Bb | Cm |(hold)
             . . . don't take me alive
                 *  End *        

Chord formations:  (  1 to 9 represent fret numbers, but to avoid 
confusion, a=10th fret, b=11th fret etc. ) 

XbdcbX   XaaaaX   8Xa888   8Xaa88   3X321X   3X343X   
Eb/Ab    F/G*     Cm       Csus4    F/G **   G7       

1x111X   3X333X   4X554X   6X876X   8X888X   3X433X      
Fm7      Gm7      Abmaj7     Bb       Cm7      Gm       

X6876X   X8a98X   XacbaX   8XaabX   8XaaaX   XccccX

Bb/Eb    C/F      D/G      Fsus4/C  F/C      G/A

"Always keep a bottle of whiskey in one pocket in case of
snake bite... Always keep a snake in the other pocket." -W.C. Fields





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