The Patriot Game chords

by The Wolfe Tones

  • The Patriot Game is an Irish Rebel Song written by Dominic Behan. He set the lyrics to the tune of an earlier folk song titled, The Merry Month of May.
  • This version by The Wolfe Tones is featured on their albums, Celtic Symphony and The Anthology of Irish Song.
  • Music: Key of B♭ Major in 4/4 time at 160 bpm (♩)
  • Chords: B♭, E♭, F, F7, Gm
  • Easier: Capo on the 1st fret and play in A major
  • Chords in A Major: A, D, E, E7, F#m

The Patriot Game by The Wolfe Tones

Capo: 1st fret if playing with video

Intro: 3/4 |  A  |  D  |  A  |  E  |  A  |  D  |  A  |  A  |

                       D  A           E            A  |  D  |  A  |
1. Come all you young re-bels    And list while I sing
            E             A    D           A          F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   For the love of one's coun-try    Is a ter-ri-ble thing
       E          A    D            A         F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   It ban-ish-es fear with    The speed of a flame
            A           D   A         E       |  A  |  D  |  A  |
   And it makes us all part of    The pa-tri-ot game
  
       A          D   A               E             A  |  D  |  A  |
2. My name is O'-Han-lon    And I've just gone six-teen
       E          A  D           A          F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   My home is in Mon-a-ghan    Where I was weaned
           E            A        D   A            F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   I’ve learned all my life    Cruel En-gland to blame
       A         D   A          E       |  A  |  D  |  A  |
   And so I'm a part of     The pa-tri-ot game

         A            D     A         E           A  |  D  |  A  |
3. 'Tis bare-ly two years since    I wan-dered a-way
            E          A   D              A      F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   With the lo-cal bat-ta-lion    Of the bold I-R-A.
      E           A   D          A          F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   I read of our her-oes    And wan-ted the same
       A          D    A         E           A 
   To play up my part  in    The pa-tri-ot game

   |  A  |  D  |  A  |  E  |  A  |  D  |  A  |
    (game)

        A           D    A          E              A  |  D  |  A  |
4. This is-land of ours has    For long been half free
         E           A   D           A            F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   Six count-ies are un-der    John Bull's tyr-an-ny
         E          A   D           A           F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   So I gave up my boy-hood    To drill and to train
           A           D   A         E       |  A  |  D  |  A  |
   And to play my own part in    The pa-tri-ot game

        A        D   A         E           A  |  D  |  A  |
5. And now as I lie here    My bo-dy all holes
       E             A    D           A             F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   I think of those trai-tors    Who bar-gained and sold
          E            A  D          A         F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   And I wish that my rif-le    Had giv-en the same
               A              D    A         E       |  A  |  D  |  A  |
   With those quis-lings who sold out    The pa-tri-ot game

       A                 D   A           E            A  |  D  |  A  |
6. So come all you young re-bels    And list while I sing
            E             A    D           A          F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   For the love of one's coun-try    Is a ter-ri-ble thing
       E          A    D            A         F#m  |  E7  |  D  |
   It ban-ish-es fear with    The speed of a flame
            A           D   A         E       |  A  |  D  |  A  |  E  |  A  |
   And it makes us all part of    The pa-tri-ot game...

🗝️ A Major

Numbered Circles: Chord fingering - number inside circle indicates which finger to use
Unmarked strings: Play open
X: Don't play string
Barre Line: One finger holds down multiple strings
R: Root Note

Right Handed Charts:

Left Handed Charts:

Notes:

  • Level Of Ease: Easy with a capo
  • Song Key: B♭ major - 2 flats (B♭, E♭)
  • Song Key with capo: A Major - 3 sharps ( F#, C#, G#)
  • 3/4 time: This means there are 3 quarter-note/crotchet beats per bar, therefore the count is |1 2 3|, or |1& 2& 3&| etc.
  • Tempo: 53 bpm (Dotted Minim) This sets the metronome or click track to sound on the first beat of each bar,
    or 160 bpm (Crotchet) to sound the metronome on every beat of each bar.
  • The Wolfe Tones use a capo on the 1st fret, and play in the key of A major which audibly, is still the Key of B♭ Major. A major + 1 semitones (capo on 1st fret)= B♭major.
  • A capo was most likely used because the chords are easier to play and cleaner sounding especially for finger-pickers.
  • Transposition if you want to play in the original key of B♭Major:
Capo: Fret 1 (A Major) A D F#m E E7
Original Key (B♭ Major) B♭ E♭ Gm F F7
  • If you are not playing along with the video, you don't have to use a capo. You can play in any key you want. You just need to make the correct transposition with each chord if you do choose another key.
  • With each chord you transpose, you must apply exactly the same changes to each chord, i.e., if you decide to tranpsose from the key of A Major to the key of C Major (an increase of 3 semitones), you need to increase each chord by 3 semitones, therefore A-D-F#m-E-E7 becomes C-F-Am-G-G7.
Dominic Behan

Born: 22nd October 1928, in Dublin, Ireland

Died: 3rd August 1989 (aged 60), in Glasgow, Scotland

Occupation: Writer

Active Years: 1959 – 1989

Genre: Songwriter, short story writer, novelist, playwright

Subjects: Irish Republican struggle, Irish culture

𝐖 Dominic Behan

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