"When I suddenly become popular when I am 40,
I will have 15 years of records that I will not be embarrassed by.
They will be out in libraries or something.
People can still cover the songs from them."
- Stephin Merritt, self-proclaimed megalomaniac
Time spent listening to the Magnetic Fields is never wasted. Playing Stephin's songs while trying (with mixed results) to sing those ultra-low bass notes is also something that I enjoy immensely. I have an inkling that there are at least a few people out there who share my fanatical obsession with his music, so I urge you to cover these songs and just go nuts.
If you can't play the guitar then learn. It's fun and easy. Or, transpose the chords to whatever instrument you are skilled in playing.
Obviously, the original songs are very intricate. These bare-bones chords will allow you to create somewhat reasonable facsimiles of the originals, suitable for campfire singing, serenading a paramour, or just being moody and depressed in the privacy of your own bedroom. For a couple of songs, the chords are not going to sound exactly like the recorded versions (especially "Long Vermont Roads"), so beware.

How to read guitar tablature
It's easy!
Chord Notation:
Take a chord, say C:032010.
"C" means it's the C major chord (Cm means C minor), and the numbers refer to the fret position. The leftmost number refers to the lowest string (E). "0" means play an open string. "x" means don't play that string.
If you just see some numbers and no label, like "355533," then that means I don't know what you call that chord.
Several songs are heavy on the bar chords (ones that use your index finger like a capo), so don't get discouraged if you're not used to them. It takes a bit of practice to build up your finger strength.
Tab Notation:
Let's take "Josephine":
The top line corresponds to the highest string (E). Numbers refer to the fret position. Pay attention to the spacing from left to right; it represents the length of the note.

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