Roads Girdle the Globe


#\#i#/#Drums and Wires#\#/i#/#

Drums and Wires

XTCfans interview with Andy Partridge
XTCfans interview with Dave Gregory
Chords and Tablature
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  1. Album version, 4'30.
    Released on Drums and Wires.
    Featuring the Vernon Yard Male Voice Choir:
    Al Clark
    Laurie Dunn
    Roadie Steve
    Roadie Jeff
    Hugh Padgham.
  2. Live version.
    Recorded live 20 July 1979 at the Marconi Club, Sydney, for JJJ radio, Australia.
    Produced and engineered by Keith Walker.
    Released in January 1981 on the B-side of the Canadian Love At First Sight single.
    Andy Partridge - Guitar, Keyboard and Vocals
    Colin Moulding - Bass and Vocals
    Dave Gregory - Guitar, Keyboards and Vocals
    Terry Chambers - Drums
  3. BBC version (Peel Session), 4'58.
    Recorded 8 October 1979 at BBC Studio Maida Vale 4.
    Produced by Tony Wilson. Engineered by Dave Dade.
    First broadcast 15 October 1979 on the John Peel Show, BBC Radio 1.
    Released on 5 October 1994 on Drums and Wireless in the U.K.
    Also available on Transistor Blast.
    Andy Partridge - vocals, guitars and keyboard
    Colin Moulding - vocals and bass guitar
    Dave Gregory - guitars
    Terry Chambers - drums
    Andy: “A great little version. It's has a big, monolithic ‘can't-stop-it’ feel. It's from a John Peel session in '79, and I remember him commenting very favorably on it at the time. I think it's better than the Drums and Wires version.”
  4. 2014 stereo mix.
    Mixed and produced by Steven Wilson from the original multi-track tapes.
    Released on the DVD and Blu-ray reissue of Drums and Wires on 27 October 2014 in the U.K.
  5. 2014 5.1 mix.
    Mixed and produced by Steven Wilson from the original multi-track tapes.
    Released on the DVD and Blu-ray reissue of Drums and Wires on 27 October 2014 in the U.K.
  6. 2014 instrumental mix.
    Mixed and produced by Steven Wilson from the original multi-track tapes.
    Released on the Blu-ray reissue of Drums and Wires on 27 October 2014 in the U.K.




Am I asleep
Or am I fast
You every race
You first, you last
Roads girdle the globe
We all safe in your concrete robe
Hail mother motor
Hail piston rotor
Hail wheel
Roads girdle the globe
Am I tied in
Or do I turn
Your sacred incense
You tyre burn
Steer me Anna
Am I get there
When is A, B
Oil, iron, steel
You holy three

© 1979 Virgin Music (Publishers) Ltd.

Chords and Tablature

Date: Thursday, May 19, 2016
From: Jeff Truzzi <jefftruzzi (at) gmail dot com>
Subject: Roads Girdle The Globe (Tabs) by Andy Partridge

Roads Girdle The Globe chords - from Andy Partridge

Didn't I do this one already,somewhere? No idea what Dave plays, here are my parts, ears down for a full house....


same again,but substitute last chord with...

Around again

"roads riff" part=


GIR...... x. ...DLE....low E note

THE......Gb note



G note





then the single line run on top E string 4-2-4-2

B string 3-2



then ROADS riff again

Tell you what,that took forever. First master that bit and then i'll post the verse bits.


Time to put you from your agonies. The verse chords of ROADS are.........


Then all that down a tone

Then again down another tone


Then hit the chorus.

* * * * * *

(JEFF TRUZZI) I DID post my guitar and bass transcriptions to Dave Gregory, and got a great response! I don't have his permission to post it all here, so I'll summarize and excerpt.

He said he was laughing out loud scrolling through it (not a good sign!) knowing how long I must have spent on it, and that it has been so long he couldn't remember it all without sitting down with a guitar for half an hour - but my effort was "jolly good," and "...there was quite a bit more to it than you have written down, that's for sure."

"Some of the chords I would certainly have trouble naming as they are somewhat ambiguous; that's the trouble with working in dissonance - it's not meant to make sense harmonically."

"I do remember a lot of augmented shapes and 'Wes Montgomery'-style octave playing. The 'steer me, Anna' section is definitely guitar, not synth; and I seem to remember playing an F with the bottom E string hanging open for the 'hail, wheel' chord..."

He agreed that the bass part was genius, and said he's looking forward to hearing "Drums & Wires" in 5.1 - as are we all!

Date: Wed, 15 Nov 1995 01:20:35 -0600
From: jh3 (at) ns dot cencom dot net (JH3 Unlimited, Ltd.)
Subject: The Chords to "Roads Girdle the Globe"
Message-Id: <9511150720.AA11568 (at) ns dot cencom dot net>

It seems I've been getting more active on this list lately. Hmmm...

Anyway, I can't resist a challenge, and someone DID ask. So here, ladies and
gentlemen, appearing for the very last time...

The Chords to "Roads Girdle the Globe"

As anyone who's tried this one knows, it's a doozy. I don't claim that these
chords are accurate, especially since they're not always playing actual
chords to begin with, and you'll have to excuse my unorthodox tabbing
method. Still, if you're sitting there by yourself with an acoustic guitar
trying to piece it together, this might help. Some.


For the guitar this is a fairly simple figure based on XXX777 moving up to
XXX988, moving up to XXX-12-12-12 and XXX-14-14-14 as punctuation.
Meanwhile, the bass guitar is sliding up and down on the low E string like
this: D-G-D-G-E-G-E-G. (This is why most bass players love this song.) The
basic chord pattern is just G, C (G bass), G, C (G bass). Later, this is
also the part between the choruses and verses where they're going "Whoa,
ho-ho, ho-ho"... Anyway, then you go into a chorus with no singing, followed
by the first verse.

                        (Only need the 3 low strings
B     A   E   F#  G#     on those last three)
Roads gir-dle the globe

G  G      G    G       F#-F#-F#-F# (flourish)
...We all safe in your con-  crete  robe

B    B      A     A    G      G     F    F
Hail mother motor hail piston rotor hail wheel

B     A   E   F#  G#
Roads gir-dle the globe...


A  A  A  A  Amaj7  Amaj7  Amaj7  Amaj7
...Am I  a-sleep?

G  G  G  G  Gmaj7  Gmaj7  Gmaj7  Gmaj7
...Or am I  fast?

F  F     F  F  Fmaj7(add D) four times
...You  every  raaaaace...

F# (flourish, or...    F#7)
......You first you laaaast...

I play the Amaj7 as X02120,
the Gmaj7 as 354433,
and the Fmaj7 (add D) as 13223X.
(But that's just me.)

"Whoa ho-ho, ho-ho";
"Whoa ho-ho, ho-ho"...

And now for the rather complex MIDDLE BIT. This is picked, but the basic
chords are, as far as I can make out, these:

Bm7      E7       A6
...Steer me, Anna...Steer me, Anna

Bm7      E7       A6
...Steer me, Anna...Steer me, Anna

Dm7      G7       C6
...Steer me, Anna...Steer me, Anna

Dm7      G7       C6
...Steer me, Anna...STEER ME, ANNA!

I play the Bm7 as X2423X,
the E7 as 02010X,
and the A6 as X02222.
The other three are the same chords transposed upwards three frets.

And the rest you know. Good luck!

--John H. Hedges

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