Campanella Swing – Video, Tab, Tutorial


Here is a campanella (or 99% campanella) version I came up with for Chatanooga Choo Choo. Thanks to Ken Middleton and Al Woods for taking the time to look over the TAB and offer a few suggestions. Sometimes it helps to have some fresh eyes look at something when yours get tired.

I have included a 10 minute tutorial video if you have trouble getting the TAB and performance under your fingers.

In the performance video you will see/hear me use improvised chord fills between the campanella melody lines. I didn’t include this on the TAB as I play it differently every time. Mainly they are C6’s with D7 to G7 vamps. I encourage you to explore different inversions and have fun with it. I cover this a little in the tutorial video.

As with most of my campanella arrangements, look for places to use triad forms or places to have more than one finger on the neck at one time. This helps let the notes ring. It also sounds good letting the open strings ring.

Probably the biggest challenge will start at measure 36. I am playing the entire line with one chord form. To get to it quickly I grab the first two notes with the pinky and ring fingers FIRST. Then I let the other two fingers catch up. I suggest practicing the chord,


ahead of time so you will know what it looks like when you get to it. But remember to start learning the shape by putting the pinky down first and then the ring finger. This will make it easier on you.


Here is the TAB
Chatanooga Choo Choo


And here is the performance video..


And here is the tutorial video. Get to work!


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7 responses to “Campanella Swing – Video, Tab, Tutorial

  • Dan


    Thanks so much for this! I love songs popular in the 40s and your arrangement sounds so nice! I’m going to spend the next week or so of ukulele time working on it!


  • Gady Mirtenbaum

    Good job Tim! Thanks a lot.

  • carregwastad

    Great- those last to chords you can make a trainy kind of whistle sound if you slide them

  • carregwastad

    doh – should read

    Great- those last 2 chords, you can make a trainy kind of whistle sound if you slide them

  • Art

    Thanks a bunch for the performance and tutorial video, they are a great help to the catchy tune. And it is great that you take the time to add comments on how to do the improvised chord fills, they Really add lots to the song and make a player like me sound good,

  • Pete

    As you demonstrate in the video and state in the tab in measure 21 you fret both the F note at string 1, fret 8 and at also at string 4, fret 10. Why not just play string 4, fret 10 twice thus UN-complicating the fingering? Same with the next measure, fret string 1 and 6 only and play string 1 twice. Thanks for all you do for us and especially the relaxed friendliness of your delivery, it makes it so easy to listen to you. Pete

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