The ToneWay® Project: helping people play music


Roving Gambler [core]

I am a roving gambler, I've gambled all around
Wher- (4) ever I meet with a 1 deck of cards, I 4 lay my money 1 down

Refrain:Lay my money down, 4/5 lay my money 1 down

I had not been in Washington many more weeks than three
When I fell in love with a pretty little girl and she fell in love with me,...

She took me in her parlor, she cooled me with her fan
She whispered low in her mothers ear, I love that gamblin' man,...

Now mother, oh dear mother, you know I love you well
But the love I have for the gambling man, no human tongue can tell,...

Now daughter, oh dear daughter, how can you treat me so
Leave your dear old mother and with a gambler go,...

Mother, oh dear mother, I'll tell you if I can
If you ever see me comin' back, it'll be with the gamblin' man,...

I left her in Washington, I wound up in Maine
I met up with a gamblin' man, we got in a poker game,...

He put his money in the pot, and dealt the cards around
Saw him deal from the bottom of the deck, so I shot the gambler down,...

Now I'm down in prison, got a number for my name
The warden said as he locked the door, you've gambled your last game,...

It’s on Strum Machine!

Play & sing along with Roving Gambler (or any song you type in) in any key, at any speed, with Strum Machine. You have to see it to believe it. :-)

Play this song on Strum Machine

Available in these books:

Get Started Plus:
Core Songs Edition
100 songs and our acclaimed play-by-ear learning method.
Big Print Songs
Over 200 songs.
Family Tradition
The reference manual, with lyrics to 330 songs.
The first two books feature large-print lyrics (20-point type) and include chords, historical info, jamming hints, and more.

...and on these CDs:

Five CDs, 100 songs. Recordings from the Abbott family and their friends.
Listen to sample tracks.

The MP3 collection has all 100 songs on one CD for a discount. See details.


A song from the The ToneWay Mountain Music Collection, which offers lyrics and free Song Clips (recordings for learning the song by ear) for nearly 400 traditional songs, many of which are often heard in bluegrass and old-time jam circles. The ToneWay Project also offers songbooks, CDs, and a free online video series for learning to play music by ear. http://ToneWay.com