Why do so many websites copy others’ mistakes?


When I want to play a song on my uke, usually the first thing I do is search the internet (using the privacy search engine duckduckgo.com) for chords/lyrics to the relevant song. If this comes up with a version that seems okay to me, or transposable, I use that as a basis for my attempt. Usually, that is all that is needed. However, I have observed that, even though there may be quite a few apparent versions on the web, often they are just copies or links to other ones I have already looked at. This is annoying enough if I have already decided a particular key isn’t right for me, and then find several others exactly the same. Okay, I can (either manually, or using a transpose tool like http://www.transposechords.com/) transpose it to a different key, but it is easier if someone else has already done it (no point in reinventing the wheel).

BUT, if is even more annoying when that version is wrong. Sometimes, the lyrics are incorrect. And just because a major website has the lyrics, doesn’t mean they’re right. And today, it was even worse. I was looking up an old hymn. There appears to be only one version (across a half-dozen different websites) for this – all of which present it as a two-chord song. Whilst there are a few two-chord songs (Lily the Pink, Jambalaya both spring to mind), most songs have three or four, or can be simplified to that many (and a lot with more than 4 are only not 3- or 4-chord songs because of a key-change). This hymn is definitely NOT a 2-chord song. So WHY have so many other websites perpetuated the mistake? I can only presume that it is because many of them are automated ‘chord- or lyric- scrapers’, just picking up the original version.

Basically, I had to work it out for myself. It is, basically 3 chords. Which, in the key of C are C, F, and G7. So not a problem for even a basic uke-player to play. (I did add the odd C7 in the refrain some of the times I played it, but that is not significant, and even then a beginner can play it.) In case you’re wondering, the video of me doing it is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSTReqH8X3k

So, next time you want to look for the chords for a particular song, it might be better to look at specific websites first. Nowadays, I often check the main uke resources before at the general ones: https://scorpexuke.com/ https://www.doctoruke.com/ and http://www.cathyschords.com/listofukulelesongs.htm are good for a lot.

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