Aura Lee

American Civil War song
First published in 1861
Words by the American writer W. W. Fosdick

First lines in the song:
As the blackbird in the Spring,
Neath the willow tree,
Sat and rocked', I heard him sing,
Sing of Aura Lea.


Aura Lee guitar tab and notes (pdf)

tabs tabs & notes


Aura Lee instrumental guitar (mp3)

Aura Lee - guitar tab, notes, chords and lyrics

“Aura Lee” is an American Civil War song from the 1860s. The melody may be more known as a song recorded by Elvis Presley with the title “Love Me Tender”. “Aura Lee” is written by W. W. Fosdick and the music by George R. Poulton.

The music transcriptions of the song with tabs and notes are available for download as PDFs. It's free for personal use only.

Aura Lee (full accompaniment)

"Aura Lee" for guitar with full accompaniment. Free download in pdf-file and audio.

Aura Lee guitar accompaniment

Aura Lee for ukelele

"Aura Lee" for ukelele in the C tuning. Free download in pdf-file and audio.

Aura Lee ukelele

Aura Lee (only melody)

"Aura Lee" tablature notation for guitar.

Aura Lee tabs

Tips on how to learn this song

The presented arrangement of the melody is played in open position (open strings and the first four frets). As you can see, the highest and the two lowest strings aren't involved, which makes the song easier to memorize. Notice the 16-bar structure with the identical parts of bars 1-4 and 5-8. The last part of the song, bars 13-16, is also almost identical with the first two parts, which makes it a AABA structure.

Lyrics and chords

Aura Lee chords in the key of G
Verse 1:
(G)As the blackbird (A7)in the spring
(D7)'neath the willow (G)tree
(G)Sat and piped I (A7)heard him sing
(D7)sing of (G)Aura Lee.

(G)Aura Lee! (Em)Aura Lee! (C)Maid of golden (G)hair
(G)Sunshine came along (A7)with thee, and (D7)swallows in the (G)air.

The lyrics above presents a shortened version of the song. Notice the chord progression in the verse and second part of the chorus. It starts with the I chord and when the fifth intervals in the changes (A7 - D7), before returning to the home chord.

There are possibilities to change to key by using a capo. These are the keys that the song would transpose in depending on which fret the capo is put:

Key, time, tuning and tempo

Information about "Aura Lee" considering musical key, time signature, tuning and bpm.

Key signature music symbol


Aura Lee is played in the key of G.

Time signature music symbol

Time signature

The song is played in 4/4 tempo (counted one, two, three for each measure).

Tuning overview


The song is normally played in standard tuning (EADGBE).

BPM symbol and numbers

Tempo (BPM)

The tempo in beats per minute is 100 for the presented version.

Tags: Ukelele