Mobiusbandwidth.com Morphine transcriptions.

Return to song list page.


"In pursuit of Lilah" by Mark Sandman.
This is an academic, but not exact note for note transcription in tablature form, for 2 string slide bass guitar, by James Möbius.

As of publication date, you can view this video at this url:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MDrMX4dGXco. You can also see the video embedded on this page below the tablature transcription.

This is posted for music education purposes and the promotion of Morphine music only, no copyright infringement is intended. If you like this song enough to read this transcription and don't already own a legally obtained copy, please purchase one, you can find it on iTunes, or in record stores if there are any of those left. Transcript mobiusbandwidth.com 2012. Song Mark Sandman 2012 hi-n-dry.com

Tuning: D A, an open 5th, the most common standard 2 string slide bass tuning, played with a pick, and a metal slide, for best effect. Note: this is not a "dropped D" tuning below the low E string on a standard bass, but the open D string. If you don't own a 2 string bass, you can play this on a 4 or 5 using the 2 highest strings, retune the G string up to an A, you will find the action too low to use a slide without fret buzz, to solve this problem some people dedicate an old 4 string bass for slide, moving the D and G strings to the center position and installing something to raise the nut 1/4". I made my own 2 string slide bass from scratch, you can see that project on this page: the Bat Bass


This is a brief, (59 seconds long) very Jewish/Middle-eastern somber melody, opens with a fade-in to the open 5th chord then noodles around with traditional middle eastern scales, which sound awesome on the 2 string, if you heard this piece knowing nothing about it in advance, and nothing about Mark, you'd probably assume it was some traditional middle eastern instrument, possibly played with a bow. (there is another instrument faintly in the background, violin with delay and reverb on it for ambiance). This transcription is approximate, there is a lot of hand vibrato not indicated, and some notes are repeated, I may not have counted with 100% accuracy, but I think you should feel ok interpreting the piece, I doubt he played it the same exact way every time if he ever played it more than once. Some of the melodies in this piece are echoed in other Morphine recordings, such as "the Other side" and "Rope on fire", which more fully develop the concepts.

Forward slash / indicates glissando (slide) up to next fret written,
Back slash \ = slide down..
< indicates volume swell (up) ie, get louder starting from nothing.
Timing/rhythm is not indicated. You'll have to pick that up by ear.
Time location in seconds are indicated above each line of tablature.

0:00
A-<-0--------------------------------------------------------------------------|
D-<-0-------4-5/10----8\7-7-0-----4/5/10---10-10--10-10--10--10--10-----|

0:15
A-------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
D----8/10\8\7--5/7\5\4---5\1-1-0-0--5\1-1-0-0--5\4-4\1-1-0-----------------|

0:23
A------------10--9/10/12-10/13--12-12-10-10-9-9---6-6-5-5---------------|
D--4/5/10----------------------------------------------------------------------|

0:34
A----0--0-0-0-0-/3-0-1/4---1-0----0-5----0-0-5-7-7-3-3/5-----------------|
D-0-0---------------------0------0-------0-------------------0---------------|

0:46
A----------0-0--0-00-0--5-5/6--3-3/5-------0-0-0-5-0-0-/3-----------------|
D-0----------------------------------------0-----------------------------------|

0:52
A--3-3-3\1-1-1--0----0-0-0-0->--------------------------------------------|
D---------------------0-------------------------------------------------------|

Return to Top of page