Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now

"We went to America to play Danceteria on New Year's Eve and Mike got ill so we couldn't do the rest of the gigs, and 'Heaven Knows' was written in a hotel room while me and Morrissey were waiting to go home. And I wrote the music for 'Girl Afraid' the day I got back, so really we were more concerned with what came next. I don't really like 'Heaven Knows'. Well, I like it but less than the others. I don't like the tune and the backing track. I don't like the rhythm or anything."

"'Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now' is a period piece to me. It's probably a lot of people's introduction to this strange band with the flowers or whatever, but as a musical experience I'm not that keen on it."

- Johnny Marr

Here is a great video of Johnny recounting the story behind the writing of the song and how he got the 355 from Seymour Stein.  He plays several parts of Heaven Knows and a bit of Girl Afraid as well.

I have uploaded a Guitar Pro file for the song here. Right click to save as. I have re-uploaded the file to include a second version of the file as well; one has 6 tracks, one has 10. You'll need Guitar Pro to use the file. I have received an improved version of the 10 track Guitar Pro file, and I have re-uploaded this upgrade in place of the original. Thanks to Nanuke for making corrections to the file and making it available for us.

I have another scanned tab here, along with 2 backing tracks that accompanied it. I have uploaded them here(right click to save as).

Here is the complete score from the "Louder Than Bombs:Off The Record" book:

Here are the scans from the Singles book:

Here are the scans from the Smiths Best Complete Score:

Here are scans from the March, 2012 issue of Totar Guitar:

Here are the scans from the Complete Chord Dictionary:

theunsheep does an awesome version. Theres a lot of subtleties that he does really well.

lunachangue's version has a spot on tone through his roland amp and some nice details, like the slight whammy on the intro. Also, nice flower!

thirdynumberone has yet another really cool electric version. Great tone and whammy action:

nicknoh69 does an awesome job on a Les Paul:

As well as a Ric 330:

Here's ResidentSmith78:

Here's Pandaprops:

And here also is his great, slowed-down tutorial:

ramonesrule1234 does a cool version, slowed down in a lesson format:

Here's another great take by buckleyboyben:

Here's johnnymare killing it on his tele:

Here's davidguitarist91 on his Les Paul:

djs1986 does a great version of Rourkes bass part which is very accurate, to my ears.

Here is his full band version:

Here's a great multitrack version by captaincarwash:


Mr. Mandelbrot said...

Why some of the scans are appearing in sort of a slide show (with thumbnails at the bottom of the page) and the scans can't be zoomed in?

Thom said...

Hi Mr. Mandelbrot. This is a quirk of blogger. If you want to see the slide show images full size, open them in a new tab or right click and save as.

Dougie said...

Just wanna say thanks for this wonderful resource which must be a real labour of love.

I had got bogged down in bluesy guitar riffs and solos and finding this has given me a new direction and is really helping to improve my technique and rhythm. I've always been a Smiths fan which helps!

Anonymous said...

Which of the scans would you say is most accurate?

Thom said...

I wouldn't know, I would say the Off The Record score is maybe the most comprehensive but I think all existing Smiths tabs have some errors.

Anonymous said...

Hi Thom,
Johnny Marr has a NME video clip where he talks and plays how Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now? came into being. He says he hasn't played the song in 25 years and he doesn't remember parts evidently.