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Old 02-20-2011, 08:05 PM
Cypress Knee Cypress Knee is offline
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Default Late Winter, Early Spring

March 1, 2014 - I am resurrecting this post because it has been a long, cold winter and hopefully it will soon be over!
I haven't learned this song all the way through yet, despite having the record since 1973 and access to the free tab since 2011.
This is my March 2014 goal. I know I picked up some bad habits along the way now, for instance playing the high E note on the
9th fret of the third string when Mike Taylor plays it 1st string open, and playing that same note on 2nd string 5th fret when he plays
it third string 9th fret.

Here it is - the ultimate John Denver/Mike Taylor musical score from Pete Huttlinger's website. Late Winter, Early Spring (When Everybody Goes to Mexico)
from the B side of the Rocky Mountain High album.

http://www.petehuttlinger.com/pdf/Late_Winter_Score.pdf

Click on the youtube video to start the music, then go to the tab above. Then come back and read the story below. Enjoy. CK



Pete Huttlinger's (Pete was the lead guitarist in the band when Denver died) story behind the score:
September 6, 2010
Mike Taylor

"Many of you John Denver fans are familiar with the name Mike Taylor. For those who are not, Mike was John's lead guitar player in the early days and he co-wrote a few of John's biggest hits including Rocky Mountain High, Sunshine On My Shoulders, Late Winter, Early Spring. Mike played that great opening lick on Take Me Home, Country Roads. As soon as you hear it, you know what song is coming up... that's a gift to be able to come up with parts like that. I've never done it myself... The opening lick to Rocky Mountain High was something that Mike was working on as a guitar arrangement of Floyd Cramer's big hit called Last Date. If you don't know it, buy it and compare the two. You'll hear the similarities immediately. John liked it and they worked it into what eventually became a huge hit for John.

Well, Mike Taylor passed away last weekend and it's a shame we won't be getting anymore great licks from him.

The first time I met Mike was at a show at the Birchmere in Alexandria, VA. It was just a few months after John died and a bunch of us got together to do the first Tribute show to him. I was excited to meet Mike as I'd listened to him so much when I was young. I had questions for him about guitars, and music and I wanted to see him play those great old songs the way that only he could. Instead I met a man who was battling alcoholism and was close to the bottom of the bottle that night. I felt bad for him and I was sorry that he wouldn't be able to play very well that night... if at all. I remember that he was very concerned that I was going to play Late Winter, Early Spring that night and he didn't want anyone to play it. He thought that it was a work of art that was perfect on the recording and couldn't be duplicated. I assured him that I wouldn't be playing it, hadn't planned on playing it and didn't even know all of it. He wasn't buying it. He was convinced that I was going to play it anyway and wanted no part of it.

Mike was an anthropologist living in South Carolina. Heavy use of alcohol aside, I was taken with his soft southern accent and easy going demeanor. He still played a little in local bars but really, really loved the world of old dead things. (My words, not his) He loved to search for it, look at it study it and then teach about it. I would have loved to have taken a class with him because he was so enthusiastic about his work. It always makes learning easier and more interesting when the instructor enjoys his/her work.

Now fast forward several years and it's 2005. We were in Aspen, Colorado for our annual Tribute to John Denver shows. Mike was clean and sober and was coming to join us for the shows. He and I had communicated via e-mail and telephone for several weeks about the tune Late Winter, Early Spring. He was really into playing it. I had told him to make sure he went back and listened intently to the original recording because everyone in the audience would know it note-for-note. He was surprised and said, "You mean someone actually gives s..t about this old tune." I assured him that many people gave a s..t about it and would be very touched to hear him play it. ;-)

I was going to be the rhythm player and he would play the melody. Well, we got together in my hotel room and after chatting a few minutes I was ready to play. We went through the piece and it was fantastic. From the first notes he played, it was just like playing along with the record when I was a kid. Except that this time it wasn't a record. That sound that I'd heard for so many years was right there in the room with me and coming from his guitar. There is something about players and their sound. It doesn't start with the instrument. It starts in the heart and then goes to the hands. A player could be playing a $100 pawn shop guitar, but because it's in his hands it would sound just like the player... no matter who it is. And that is exactly what was happening. Mike Taylor was playing in my hotel room and couldn't have sounded like anyone else but himself.

Then Mike told Erin and me (She was there too with tears in her eyes from seeing him play so beautifully) that he had never before played that piece with another guitar player. What about the original recording, you ask? He said they recorded the rhythm tracks and then he worked out the melody/lead part separately. Mike Taylor and John Denver never performed that piece together. I had goose bumps all over knowing what had just happened. Mike said he'd never played that piece with another guitar player before that moment! So we went through it another time or two and then that night on stage he played flawlessly and received a standing ovation from the audience. We went back to our seats with the band and Mike, who was a little taken aback by the reception, turned to me and said, "Pete, were they all just standing up?"

I said, "Yes, Mike and it's not because they're all catholic! They loved it." We had a good laugh and he played out the rest of the show sitting next to me.

He was a happy man that weekend and that's the way I'll remember him."
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Last edited by Cypress Knee; 03-01-2014 at 04:03 PM. Reason: update to an old post
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Old 02-20-2011, 08:42 PM
sargemusic sargemusic is offline
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What a touching story! This was one of my favorite cuts from the album that I practically memorized as a little boy. Thanks so much for sharing the PDF - now I have to learn it the correct way! I guess I would also need a partner that could play either the first or second part (and appreciates this piece as I do). Mike will be missed.

BTW when I tried to play the video from your link the screen had a message that it contained a malformed video ID
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Old 02-20-2011, 08:50 PM
Glennwillow Glennwillow is offline
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Wonderful story -- thank youi!

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Old 02-22-2011, 08:11 AM
llew llew is online now
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Great story thanks for sharing. Rest in peace Mike...that song took me right back to the early 70's and brought back many memories. Beautiful...
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Old 02-22-2011, 08:19 AM
Shadrack Shadrack is offline
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Thank you for the story and the score!
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Old 02-22-2011, 09:11 AM
B Chas B Chas is offline
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Nice story, thanks for sharing.
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Old 03-01-2014, 04:06 PM
Cypress Knee Cypress Knee is offline
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Just updated my March goal to finally learn this song all the way through...both parts.

CK
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Old 03-01-2014, 04:18 PM
tbeltrans tbeltrans is offline
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Amazing. Out of all John Denver's work, that tune is the one I really liked - and I did not ANYONE else who even paid attention to it. The first time I heard John Denver was when I got back from Vietnam and visited my older brother who was stationed in Kansas. He had that "Poems, Prayers, and Promises" album. It is weird how much new music you miss being out of the country like that for an extended period. But out of all of what I heard from John Denver, it was "Late Winter, Early Spring (When Everybody Goes To New Mexico)" that was by far my favorite. I never knew anybody else, until now, who even knew that song existed. ...and here are a bunch of people just like me! Who knew?

Tony
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Old 03-01-2014, 04:20 PM
zombywoof zombywoof is offline
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With the promise of ice followed by up to a foot of snow and highs not breaking 10 degrees it is hard to even imagine this winter actually letting go.
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Old 03-01-2014, 04:33 PM
tbeltrans tbeltrans is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zombywoof View Post
With the promise of ice followed by up to a foot of snow and highs not breaking 10 degrees it is hard to even imagine this winter actually letting go.
Sure seems that way here in the Twin Cities. However, I am retiring at the end of June, so next year, I won't have to drive on ice. I will be home playing guitar living in a world where every day is Friday and Monday never comes!

Tony
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Old 12-19-2018, 11:16 AM
Grandadam Grandadam is offline
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The Late Winter Early Spring guitar tab is no longer posted on Huttlinger’s website.

Does anyone have a copy they would be willing to email to me?

Thanks!
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Old 12-19-2018, 11:33 AM
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Bob Womack Bob Womack is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grandadam View Post
The Late Winter Early Spring guitar tab is no longer posted on Huttlinger’s website.

Does anyone have a copy they would be willing to email to me?

Thanks!
Lead tab is posted on his site in the tab section for $2.95, HERE. Sheet music is HERE.


Bob
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Old 12-19-2018, 12:26 PM
KenL KenL is offline
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When I saw the thread title I was hoping it would be about this song that I've loved for decades.

Thanks for the link and the excellent story about Mike.
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Old 12-19-2018, 12:53 PM
Proclaimer888 Proclaimer888 is offline
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Great story...great post!! John Denver and company.... amazing. Met Pete and didn't even know it till after. Head smack!! Most highly recommend any JD fans purchase the Pete Huttlinger tutorials. Amazing and the tabs; spot on. Thanks again for posting your story!
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Old 12-19-2018, 01:02 PM
palsed palsed is offline
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Pete was a good friend of mine. I miss him dearly. He was one hell of a human being.
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