Roll over Beethoven
Composer(s) : Chuck Berry
Year : 1956
Chords/Tabs: Roll over Beethoven
Roll Over Beethoven
KEY D Major
FORM Intro -> Verse/Refrain(3X)-> Bridge -> Guitar Solo ->
Verse/Refrain(2X)-> Refrain (complete ending)
COMPOSER Chuck Berry
INFLUENTIAL VERSION Chuck Berry (1956)
- As with many other, if not quite literally *all*, of Chuck Berry's songs,
every section of this one is in the 12-bar blues form -- eight of them all in
a row! I only call the fourth section a bridge ("Well if you feel it")
because of the subtle change in the melody and backbeat.
- There's a minor variation here on the standard blues formula in the way that
the chord progression of the last four measures of the 12-bar pattern is
played as IV->V->I instead of V->IV->I. This is actually much easier to
hear on the Beatles version than the original, though I believe they both
play it the same way.
- Formalistically, each 12-bar section is internally sub-divided so that
the first eight measures provide verse-like exposition, and the final four
measures deliver a refrain-like hook. Note how the text of the hook/refrain
itself is varied from section to section. Also, note the subtle way in
which formal plan here contrasts from of that of "Money" below.
- The lyric is wordy to an extreme bordering on the "talkin' blues" style,
and is quite wrily irreverant. Seen in this perspective, Chuck's
performance scans the words against the beat more freely than does
George, in a way that anticipates the style of Dylan in some respects.
- The original features a drumming style that is less splashy than the
Beatles cover while the Beatles double track the lead vocal and add
their hand-claps to the rhythm track. But these are small details and
otherwise, the Beatles just about rip the whole thing off from Chuck
right down to the opening riff and "middle twelve" break.
Ook op With the Beatles:
Ook op Live At The BBC:
Ook op On Air - Live At The BBC Vol 2:
(c) 2020 Serge Girard