lead sheet for “He’s in the Jailhouse Now”

Over the weekend I posted my own sheet music for the old song “He’s in the Jailhouse Now” on my musician blog.

Some good things about it:

  • Carefully proofread and corrected. I used it in a couple different rehearsals and ironed out the bugs.
  • On a single page. No page turns.
  • Big type and simplified changes. Easy enough to visually parse that you can play from it on stage with minimal lighting and rehearsal.
  • Evenly spaced, with four measures to a bar.
  • Lyrics, melody and chord changes in one place.
  • Source Sibelius file provided for making modifications.
  • PNG, PDF, and Sibelius can all be shared, modified, and redistributed, because they are under a Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike license.
  • Pretty damn good if not perfect copyright status, to ensure that people could really use it.
  • Good documentation on the history of the song. I spent a couple hours looking up the details and collated a number of different sources.

Doing a clean and thorough job with sheet music is pretty rare. Free (as in beer) sources are usually a mess. Commercial sources are usually oriented towards piano players or beginners. My version is higher quality than other free sources and is oriented towards real-world players.

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