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Let us learn how to play Soul Asylum’s Runaway Train!
This song is about lost kids or teenage runaways. Another cool thing about this song or the video is that it somehow serve as a public service.
Photos of lost teenagers are shown during the choruses and in the end of the video the singer said that anyone seen any of those kids, they can call the numbers shown in screen.
Also, in each country that this music video is shown that end part was edited to show kids in that area or country. That’s a very nice thing to do.
How to Play Runaway Train
This song is a simple one. You only need to know a couple of major chords and a simple strumming pattern and you are all set to rock this song out!
From the image above, you can see how simple the strumming pattern is. It’s down, down, up… up, down, up and then repeats.
The intro is played 4 bars. Also during this four bars, a second guitar plays a somewhat lead part. Check out the tablature below:
These are all under the C major chord and you will probably notice that the notes are in the C major scale.
The riff starts with the slide on the D-string from 3rd fret to the 5th fret.
We then plucks the 5th fret of strings B and D alternately.
Next, we slide from 5th to 3rd fret of the D-string.
We then do the same plucking pattern we did on the 5th fret on this new position – 3rd fret.
The next bass note is on the 2nd fret of the D string. You probably know or notice by now that the bass notes starts from 3rd fret, slid to 5th, back to 3rd and then 2nd.
On that 2nd fret bass, the C major chord is in position.
Runaway Train Guitar Chords
C Csus4 C C/D C
/ //// // // // // // 2x
Alternative way to play this intro.
C C add f C pull off to d C. Pretty much the same as above only strike the f and d
instead of just using them as part of the chord.
Call you up in the mid-dle of the night.
Like a fire-fly with-out a light.
You were there like a blow-torch burning.
I was a key that could use a lit-tle turn-ing.
So tired that I couldn’t ev-en sleep.
So many secrets I couldn’t keep.
Promised my-self, I wouldn’t weep.
One more promise, I couldn’t keep
It seems no one can help me now.
I’m in too deep, there’s no way out.
This time I have real-ly led my-self a-stray. E———————-|
Run-a-way train nev-er going back.
Wrong way on a one way track.
Seems like I should be get-ting some-where.
G G //// Bass for guitar.
Some-how I’m neither here nor there. A——–2–3–|
1st chorus only.
Can you help me re-mem-ber how to smile?
Make it some-how all seem worth-while.
How on earth did I get so jad-ed?
Life’s mys-tery seems so fad-ed.
I can go where no one else can go.
I know what no one else knows.
Here I am just-a drown-in’in the rain.
With a tic-ket for a run-a-way train, and
Ev-er-y-thing seems cut and dry.
Day and night, earth and sky.
F Em G
Some-how I, just don’t be-lieve.
[ Tab from: https://www.guitaretab.com/s/soul-asylum/17897.html ]
F G C
Am F Em G
Barre all chords in the solo above.
Play chord once at the beginning of the next 4 verses
until *than on line four.
Bought a tic-ket for a run-a-way train.
Like a mad-man laugh-in’at the rain.
Lit-tle out of touch, lit-le in-sane.
Just easier *than deal-ing with the pain.
Chorus 3 to end verses below.
Run-a-way train, nev-er com-in’ back.
Run-a-way train, tear—in’ up the track.
Run-a-way train, burn-in’ in my veins.
Run-a-way, but it al-ways seems the same.
C Csus4 C/D C Em Em7 Am Asus4 Am Asus2 Am G 2x
Listen to the song for the way these chords are played. There are a
lot of notes “picked” out of these chords. Add on and pull off, don’t
just strum them. Play the lead solo again over this and fade.
The lead solo is pretty easy(or appears to be) with nothing fancy.
C sus4 C/D Asus4 Asus2 Em7
033010 030010 002230 002200 022030
Em barred C Am G
779987 032010 002210 355433