Madame Geneva’s | Mark Knopfler Songbook


It was me with my dear friends from Moscow performing together for the first time exactly one week ago, and we actually recorded Madame Geneva’s in one take, it’s a rare occasion for me. Always try to hang out around better musicians than yourself, it’s probably the best way of learning I can think of, but you have to be interesting for them, too, like me recording the performance, so the overall exchange is pretty equal. And this is the main lesson, you can close the video now. Thanks for watching! If you still here, the song is a typical waltz which I wouldn’t consider too hard to play, but it has a couple of twists AS USUAL. Many people think it was played with a capo on the 2nd fret, but for one guitar it actually works way better with no capo at all because of the low end it gives you. The picking pattern is just like in The Ragpicker’s Dream, All That Matters and many other MK waltzes — thumb, thumb, downstroke. The intro (or the organ solo part) is Bm, G, Em, A and repeat, nothing’s too hard. Ending is Bm with some folk fingerpicking. And here goes the verse: Bm, A, Bm, Bm, A, Bm. D/A, A, G, G, F#, Bm. The chorus is: D/A, G, A, D/A, G, D/F#, A. I play D with an A in the bass by the way. Then A/G, F#m7, Bm, Em, A, F#. Now this guy is a kind of a chord that makes a good song — a great song. One chord was used for transitions between the verses and the solos, for the ending and for this sudden and haunting hanging day line from the song. And all it is is just F# with an open G. Then I was picking out the tune I was like — yeah, Bm, A, D, OK, Bm. And then this happens and I go — wait a minute! It is not just the 7th chord or something like that, or is it? And this is the joy of learning the good songs — always picking up as much of “aha!” moments as possible and I hope you learned something new like I did. One chord makes the whole song. If you have any song suggestions, I have a form on the website to help me steer my decisions, I already got a couple of dozens of requests and non of them is for Sultans Of Swing, which is always great! Thank you!

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