Easy Cripple Creek Banjo Tab

The Cripple Creek song is usually the 2nd song I give my banjo students.

I give them this exact easy banjo tab below. 

Free Cripple Creek Beginner Banjo TAB

Perhaps you got the Earl Scruggs book and are trying to learn that version?  Well, put that book down until you can play the basic tune.  Remember, Scruggs had played for over a decade when he recorded it.  It makes no sense to start as a pure beginner with that version of Cripple Creek.

You’re about to get a simplified basic banjo version.

Rhythmically this Cripple Creek Tab isn’t too challenging.  All you have are QUARTER NOTES (the slower ones) and your EIGHTH NOTES (the faster ones). You’re getting a mp3 MIDI file of this as well to keep you on track.

The right hand pattern found in measure three is what is called an

Alternating Thumb Roll (3251 3251). 

If you don’t already know this pattern, start practicing it a lot.  That’s the ONLY banjo roll in the tab and it is indeed the first roll pattern I teach students.

The only other technique you need are Pinches.  That’s the last thingy at the end of the first line.  You are simply playing the 1st and 5th string together.

Even the most hard headed beginner can learn this…..You are set up for SUCCESS!

Here is the Free Banjo Tab

Cripple Creek Banjo Tab
Cripple Creek Banjo TAB

In case you don’t know what every symbol on the tablature means, phone a friend…..no, I’m just kidding.

Those two dots found at the beginning and the end of the first line-those are called REPEAT SIGNS.  So, when you get to the end of the first line, you’ll go back and repeat that line again before moving on to the 2nd line.  Each line repeats twice.  An easy way to say this is



If you’ve never heard the lyrics to Cripple Creek, here’s a version done on banjo more old-time style where you can hear it sung.   This is an interesting banjo style-it’s part clawhammer and part up-picking fingerstyle banjo.

Cripple Creek Lyrics

Learning the lyrics to Cripple Creek will help immensely when trying to pick it out on banjo.  You can put words to the notes your playing.  Here are the first couple of lyrics

I’ve got a gal and she loves me

She’s as sweet as a gal can be

She’s got eyes of baby blue

Makes my gun shoot straight and true

2nd part (CHORUS)

Going up cripple creek, going in a run

Going up cripple creek, going in a whirl

Going up cripple creek, to find my girl

Have fun, you are well on your well to becoming a serious banjar picker now.

If you are new to the instrument, another must know, Simple banjo tune is Cumberland GAP

If you’d like more Beginner Banjo TABS, I recommend my Beginner Banjo TAB Bundle.

Recommended Recordings of Cripple Creek

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