Whoa Mule, Can't Get the Damn Saddle On!

As played by Gary Lee Moore from the Oklahoma region

Reel or Breakdown in G

From the Gary Lee Moore Collection

3 files for this tune:

Melody-Only Transcription (PDF)
Full Transcription (PDF)


Recording of Gary Lee Moore released on the album Uncle Pig


This isn’t the well-known old time and bluegrass standard Whoa Mule (AKA Old Sefus Brown). In my mind, it’s better. Moore calls this “a good old [Texas fiddler] Major Franklin tune” that he learned by way of hearing Montana fiddler Dick Barrett play it “so damn nice.”

The tune is in three parts, played AA BB AA CC AA BB. In my recording, I have simplified the structure to AA CC BB for brevity. Look out for a slow triplet in the A part. In slides starting on a flat and sliding up to a natural (such as B flat to B natural or E flat to E natural), really emphasize the flat to give it a nice bluesy feel.

This tune is a member of the following groups:

Texas Fiddle

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