Jambalaya (On The Bayou) ʻUkulele Chords by Hank Williams

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Jambalaya by Hank Williams is a natural fit for ʻukulele! It only uses two chords and is immediately recognizable to most folks!

To get started, just use a chalangalang strum and make sure your fingers know where to go for C and G7 (chord charts here: major, 7th).

To start, try to focus on just getting the chord changes down. If you have to skip a few strums to get to the chords on time, that’s fine. The good news is that the original recording is in the key of C so you can play along with Hank on your uke and still use easy chords.

Do this for a while before you try to sing while playing. Trying to sing and play at once is much harder and you need to be very confident with your strumming and chords, otherwise you’ll get thrown off as you try to remember the words too!

I’m too young to know the original version, but I was introduced to this song by my friend Konabob’s parody he calls “Jam Da Island.” It’s the same chords, same tune, just with some fun, island style lyrics.
jambalayaJambalaya (On The Bayou)
Hank Williams
Honky Tonkin’
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         C                       G7
Goodbye, Joe, me gotta go, me oh my oh
                                       C
Me gotta go, pole the pirogue down the bayou
                                   G7
My Yvonne, the sweetest one, me oh my oh.
                                        C
Son of a gun, we'll have big fun on the bayou.

Chorus:
     C                                  G7
Jambalaya and a crawfish pie and fillet gumbo
                                         C
'Cause tonight I'm gonna see my ma cher amio
                                   G7
Pick guitar, fill fruit jar and be gay-o
                                        C
Son of a gun, gonna have big fun on the bayou

Solo: C G7 C G7 C

      C                              G7
Thibodaux, Fontaineaux, the place is buzzin'
                                  C
Kinfolk come to see Yvonne by the dozen
                                       G7
Dress in style and go hog wild, me oh my oh
                                        C
Son of a gun, we'll have big fun on the bayou

Chorus>

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Brad Bordessa
brad bordessa smiling holding ukulele

I’m an ‘ukulele artist from Honokaʻa, Hawaiʻi, where I run this site from a little plantation house in the jungle. I’ve taught workshops internationally, made Herb Ohta Jr. laugh until he cried, and once jammed with HAPA onstage in my boardshorts. More about me