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Paper Ships

Dead Man's Bones

from the album Dead Man's Bones released in 2009

jump to: lyrics / notes & tabs / videos / chord progressions / song info

Lyrics

Intro

G ... B7 ... C ... G ... (x4, with doo-bee-doo-wah)

Verse

G B7 ...Sailed on a ship of paper C G And I sank in the deep of your eyes G B7 ...I got lost in your graveyard C G Now I dream on a bed of knives G B7 ...I found the map to your maps C G ...I lost the shores for you G B7 ...But now I'll never get back C G 'Cause I'm a ghost ship on the blue

Pre-Chorus

Bm C .....Now, I hold my poems Bm C .....For ladies unknown

Chorus

Cm G Until my hands go weak Cm G Oh.......... I'll be Cm G Em Oh............... la la la la la, la la la la la C Cm G A ghost ship on the blue (quieter, let chords ring) G B7 ...The birds are in the sky C G ...The land's been gone for days G B7 ...And all you left was time----- C G To find a solid grave (louder, back to normal strumming) G B7 ...Pirates never loved C G ...The way that I do G B7 ...You never said enough C G To keep me next to you (instrumental break) Bm C .....Now, I hold my poems Bm C .....For ladies unknown Cm G Until my hands go weak Cm G Oh.......... I'll be Cm G Em Oh............... la la la la la, la la la la la C Cm G A ghost ship on the blue

Notes & Tabs

Guitar Chords Used

Here is how to play the guitar chords used in this song. It is fairly standard using chords in the key of G, but you have some interesting chords being Cm and B7, which aren't super common. Just the same, this is a great chord to learn those chords.

e-|----3----2----0----2----3----0-----
B-|----0----0----1----3----4----0-----
G-|----0----2----0----4----5----0-----
D-|----0----1----2----4----5----2-----
A-|----2----2----3----2----3----2-----
E-|----3------------------------0-----
       G    B7   C    Bm   Cm   Em 

Playing the Pre-Chorus

One quick trick here -- when you switch from the Bm to the C chord, apply your pinky on the 3rd fret of the highest string. This will sound better with the melodic voicing of the song.

e-|---2------------3--------2---------------3-------
B-|---3------------1--------3---------------1-------
G-|---4------------0--------4---------------0-------
D-|---4------------2--------4---------------2-------
A-|---2------------3--------2---------------3-------
E-|-------------------------------------------------
      Bm           C        Bm              C 
     "So I hold my poems...    for ladies unknown..."

Playing the Chorus

Similar to above, there is a little trick you can use here that makes the Cm to G transition easier. Instead of playing the G in open position, play it as a barre chord on the 3rd fret. Because you'll already have the 3rd fret barred for the Cm, this makes the transition much easier.

e-|-----3---------------3--------3------------3----
B-|-----4---------------3--------4------------3----
G-|-----5---------------4--------5------------4----
D-|-----5---------------5--------5------------5----
A-|-----3---------------5--------3------------5----
E-|---------------------3---------------------3----
        Cm              G        Cm           G 
     "Until my hands go weak... ohh..... I'll be..."

Videos

Songnotes Guitar Lesson

Here is a video I made showing how to play this song, using the chords and tabs shown on this page. If this is helpful, subscribe to the Songnotes YouTube channel for more tutorials and lessons like this.



Official Album Version

To hear the official album version of this song, listen to this. Helpful for playing along if you don't have the recording handy.



Chord Progressions

Intro

| G . . . | B7 . . . | C . . . | G . . . | x4

Verse

"Sailed on a ship of paper..."
| G . . . | B7 . . . | C . . . | G . . . | x4

Pre-Chorus

"So I hold my poems..."
| Bm . . . | C . . . | Bm . . . | C . . . |

Chorus

"Until my hands go weak, oh..."
| Cm . . . | G . . . | Cm . . . | G . . . |
| Cm . . . | G . . . | Em . . . | C . . . |
| Cm . . . | G . . . |

Song Info

Song: Paper Ships
Artist: Dead Man's Bones
Album: Dead Man's Bones
Year: 2009
Label: Anti/Epitaph

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About

My name is David Potsiadlo, and I created Songnotes to share my collection of guitar tabs, chords, and lyrics for my favorite songs.

Since I started playing guitar over 10 years ago, I've often been frustrated by the preponderance of mediocre and incomplete song tabs littered across the internet. To combat this, I started keeping my own collection of notes for each song I learn -- always taking the extra time to make sure accuracy and completeness are never compromised. Years later, my collection grew to the point where I knew I had to share it online with fellow aspiring musicians.

In December 2012, I began designing & developing a website that became Songnotes. Here, I share my personal collection of hand-crafted music notation with all those online. I hope you enjoy.

You can also view my personal website or follow me on Twitter / Dribbble / GitHub / LinkedIn.