Dirty Road by Travis Meeks…

What’s that?  Only the coolest, insanest acoustic guitar masterpiece, by a modern Rembrandt performing in the grand tradition of great songwriter/guitarist/singers…

Behold Travis Meeks from Days of the New, doing his original song, “Dirty Road,” live:  Dirty Road Live by Travis Meeks

Yeah, that’s sweet!  But if I wanted to play it, there aren’t any tabs out there.  I’d have to make my own.  Which I did, and I did.

Truth be told, this guy Darryl Banaize on youtube played the piece so well — Dirty Road Cover by Darryl Banaize

— that I was able to read his hands and write it out in guitar pro.   Write me to request that file,  but in case you don’t have Guitar Pro 5*, you can still check out the PDF version of it — Dirty Road – Travis Meeks – Guitar Tab

What I wrote out starts at 14 seconds into the video and continues for the remaining 5 and half minutes of this super-cool, fun, doable guitar part in a special tuning.  Don’t try this one in standard.  You’d have to be an alien to play it that way.

* * *

Now, the singing is an entirely different matter.  I don’t want to put the young cat down, it’s just something I’ve observed with singers, thousands of times.  Our youtube boy is singing in Travis Meeks’ vocal range, but not his own.  Some clues to this include: raising his face to the heavens; squinting as though blinded by the Overlighting Deity; there’s audible strain in his voice on the most powerful sections of the song; missing his high note (a concert A) sometimes, only reaching G#.

You don’t have to understand notes to understand this:  If our champion were to tune his guitar down one fret lower, he would never miss that high note.  If he lowered the guitar/song pitch by just two frets (a single letter of the musical alphabet), he would sound comfortable and strong — for his own voice, the only one he has to work with.  He’d even get a little bit of that growl and gravel into his choirboy voice, which couldn’t possibly hurt, on a tune called “Dirty Road.”


* need Guitar Pro 5?  go here:  http://www.toggle.com/lv/group/view/kl39472/Guitar_Pro.htm  Guitar Pro 5 is free — but you can get the new Guitar Pro 6 for 60 bucks at: http://www.guitar-pro.com/en/index.php

Published by

Phil Westfall

Veteran of over 50 bands, originator of "Fun Style" guitar lessons.

Leave a Reply