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Man of Constant Sorrow

Lesson ID: A0120

Man of Constant Sorrow” was first published by Dick Burnett in 1913 and later made popular by the Stanley Brothers in the 1950s. In this guitar lesson, we’ll show you how to play “Man of Constant Sorrow” in the style of The Soggy Bottom Boys. This song will turn some heads at your next jam! First, we’ll break down the song’s intro and guitar solo with tablature. Then, we’ll teach you the rhythm guitar part with lyrics along with some nice rhythm fills. Tablature files are available for download below the video!

Lesson Overview

Song Intro

Part 1 – Slow Playthrough of Intro with Tablature

Part 2 – Fast Playthrough of Intro with Tablature

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Part 3 – Full Breakdown of Intro

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Part 4 – Easier Way to Play the Intro

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Guitar Solo Break

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Rhythm Breakdown

Video Start Time Lesson Topic
00:00 min Chords You Need
03:56 min Chords & Lyrics Download
04:34 min Intro Chord Progression
06:37 min Main Chord Progression
07:56 min Strumming Patterns
09:34 min Progression with Lyrics
11:42 min Rhythm Fill #1
13:26 min Rhythm Fill #2
15:47 min Instrumental Break Chord Progression
17:12 min Song Ending Riff

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Chord Charts

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C White
C White(@g)
4 years ago

Awesome song, so fun to play, one of my favorite lessons!

C White
C White(@g)
4 years ago

Hey everybody,
Wanted to see if anybody knows any good tricks for the solo on measures 6-7.
Specifically Just the part where the 6 and fifth string is played on the 5th fret and then the open string on the 3rd string. I can’t seem to bar down on the 6 and 5th string on the 5th fret and hit the open 3rd string with out it being muffled. That’s the only part of the song I’m struggling with. Want to see if anyone has any tips on how to hit that open third string on the 6th measure.

Justin Castley
Justin Castley(@bloodybanjo74)
3 years ago

So good thankyou

C White
C White(@g)
3 years ago

Hey Devin,
Do you think you could do a break down of the Ron Block bonus solo as well?
It would awesome to able to play that one as well if you’re jamming out the whole song. Hope you’re doing great.

Kent John
Kent John(@kenaikent)
3 years ago

if i can pull this one off, maybe I’ll finally actually feel like i can actually play a little guitar.
If I try the easier intro, will it be tough to switch to the legitimate one? I really want to do the full on version. Thanks! Great, great song. It’s why i joined up!

Peter Yan
Peter Yan(@petermyanyahoo-com)
3 years ago

I have compared your Soggy Bottom version to the one in the film O Brother and I have to say I like your version better. Sounds *rockier* and *fuller*. Thanks for great lesson.

David Wood
David Wood(@menzies)
3 years ago

Excellent lesson. This will keep me occupied for quite some time…..

Justin Castley
Justin Castley(@bloodybanjo74)
3 years ago

Great Lesson!

2 years ago


Chris Curr
Chris Curr(@christian)
1 year ago

Wait so we play the solo 3 times throughout the song? Where can I see you play the whole song in one go?

6 months ago

I must admit I’am finding this one difficult, Could we have a less difficult lesson in the Key of G please.

6 months ago
Reply to  John

This got me too John. I’d love an easier lesson.

Süleyman Doğan
Süleyman Doğan(@sudogan)
11 days ago

Öncelikle teşekkür ederim. Gitar deyince aklıma gelen tek parçayı sunduğunuz için. Yalnız bir sorum olacak. Bu parçadaki diğer soloları çok aradım ama bulamadım. Aralardaki diğer soloları ekleyecek misiniz? Tabi eğer çok geç olmadıysa . Lütfen.