Ayala (Outro) XXXTENTATION Guitar Tutorial

The new album by controversial rapper XXXTENTATION is full of surprises. You wouldn’t recognize him if you know anything about his past releases.

This song is both lyrical and downright gripping. Who else could mix acousitic guitar and piano with such minimalist skill than X.

Then there are the lyrics…

Ohh, ahh, ahh

She showed me the thing love can’t forget

How we fell in love, ohh

I made a list of my regrets

And you were first love, ohh

Oh it hurts, I can’t forget

How we fell in love

Made a list of my regrets …

It would be great if X keeps on this track.

Here is the guitar pro score and video for anyone wanting to play a duo or (if converted a bit) solo arrangement/accompaniment to Ayalya (Outro).

I may tweak the tab a bit more to finish up a couple loose ends.

tentation

TUTORIAL

Alana (Outro) Tutorial

PDF

Ayala

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“Love Yourself” Live from Manchester

Chord Overview

The chords that Justin Bieber plays on his solo acoustic performance, “Love Yourself (Live – #OneLoveManchester) are some of the hardest to see that I’ve run into. I’ve received more that one request to clarify my fingerings of the chords. So here goes:

First of all, Justin has his guitar tuned down 1/2 step, which is a common pattern I’ve seen from him over the last year.

Problem 1

Therefore, tune to Eb tuning. Now the confusion begins. Justin plays in what appears to be the key of F# minor. However, being that we have tuned the guitar down 1/2 step, the “sounding” key is really F minor. Ugh!!! Now what?? Well, don’t panic, just play the forms where I show you to play them and have a blast. Do not become thrown by the sometimes confusing theoretical details of keys and tunings, although you will want to take care of this gap in knowledge eventually.

Problem 2

Justin’s chord pattern is fairly basic, however if you have not played block/barre forms you may be a little confused. Basically, Justin plays, F minor 7 – F minor/Ab – C minor 7. Practice the following chords slowly and carefully. Do not become frustrated as they are very useful chord forms for many songs.

Here are your fingerings:

And there you have it. If you need further clarification on these chord forms let me know.

-Mark

Justin Bieber’s “Fast Car”

“Fast Car” by Justin Bieber (Live Cover) Tutorial

I’ve put this post up in order to “house” the Guitar Pro score of “Fast Car” by Justin Bieber that I transcribed. Some have had a hard time getting the link to work on Dropbox. Sorry about that.

Here is the link:

Fast Car

In addition, since it’s a tutorial on the live version I’ve had questions about the basic, and alterations of, the guitar strumming pattern for the song. I’ve also had more than a couple questions about the the outro section. Justin seems to “improvise” his way out of the tune thereby creating some very interesting rhythmic devices. It is a little tricky as Justin has clearly learned a thing or three from Dan Kanter🙂

Here are the links to part 1 and 2 of my tutorial set for Justin’s unique and guitar-friendly cover.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Lorde’s Three Shades of “Green Light”

Lorde’s new single Green Light is a study in contrasts for a guitar cover/tutorial/play-through. It’s the kind of song that grows on you after a couple listens. But, still you sit and ponder. It is worth it? But then you realize that this one has something to work with, it does have merit after all! After listening to what seems like a patchwork of disjointed ideas scattered about it soon becomes clear in the mind of the listener that Green Light does what all pop songs are programed to do.

66c454136a8b9858252bf1bc4124d64bThe content is not heavy. Basically, we have a 5 chord pop song like many others. Where as Green Light revs up slowly and patiently, most pop songs don’t have the patience for such maneuvering as their game is always centered on getting to the point early and often. It’s a mainstay of popular music. Lorde, is a “developer”. Her tendency is to take sparse material and dial things up as the minutes pass. Green Light is no exception,

The pre-chorus/chorus sections are a thing of lighthearted genius as a masterful but typical riff takes over that lights up the song with such energy that even Lorde can’t stay in control (check 3:03 of the video).

For your part, keeping the chorus riff even and controlled is no easy task on guitar, especially acoustic. Keep your right hand solid and bear down on the strumming pattern. That is, if you are covering it at it’s recorded tempo.

I can see this section played a little slower without damaging the intention of the writer. Experiment and see what you come up with.

-Mark

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Here is the guitar tutorial:

“Green Light” Acoustic Guitar Tutorial

Here is the chord chart for “Green Light”:

“Green Light” Chords PDF

 

 

The “Issues” of Julia Michaels.

A Textbook Acoustic Guitar Accompaniment

Say what you will about pop music, but it does have quality players and producers if you look for them. Take this performance by Julia Michaels with Dan Kanter on guitar. It’s nothing but beautiful and expertly performed. Dan Kanter is the best guitar accompanist around. His work on Justin Bieber’s acoustic “What Do You Mean” opened up the world to just how good a guitar part can be behind a pop vocalist.

Why Dan?

Dan raises the bar when it comes to harmonic choices in his playing. Give him three chords, four chords, five chords, it matters not. Dan will take what are usually easy throw away guitar forms and turn them into incredible soundscapes that lift the song beyond what most would deem possible.

Dan’s Method

RvnIg3c_In this song, Dan has tuned his guitar up one half step. Oh that Dan, you never know what he has up his sleeve. This will, of course, put more stress on your fingers as the string tension will be higher. Don’t worry if you have a smooth playing acoustic. If not, be advised that your fingers may not be happy with you. Read on for a couple solutions I’ve come up with.

 

julia-michaels-391

For her part, Julia Michaels was nothing short of fabulous. Maybe a little nervous at first? Well, who would fault her. The nervousness did not last long as Dan’s guitar lifted the session and Julia picked up on that energy immediately. Her vocal performance is fabulous and I would dare say that it rivals the original. A wonderful artist in her own right she has also co-written works for Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez! This gives her big street credentials and should keep her busy for quite a while.

Solutions to the Dan Dilemma

My solution to the “tuned up” Dan guitar was to simply capo on fret one. The only reason I did this was to avoid the obvious sound of breaking strings as people who watch this tutorial attempt to tune up. Heaven’s no. I’m not going to be responsible for that mess. Another solution? Play it in the original key of Ab major. One warning, you will all but lose any open strings. My advice is to either capo, tune up, or play in open position (without the capo) and sing it in the key of G major. Whatever you chose will depend on your experience and finger strength.

And Finally…

Have fun with this upper intermediate to lower advanced guitar part and please, don’t ask me to make it easier for you. It would be irresponsible of me to do so. Hey, eventually you have to deal with the reality that playing guitar is hard work and sometimes you have to step it up and push yourself.

Here is a link to your guitar pro pdf:

“Issues” julia Michaels Guitar Pro Tab

Here is the tutorial link:

“Issues” Guitar Tutorial

 

-Mark

 

 

Right Hand Exercises for the first Year Guitarist: Marching towards Mastery

This is a right hand exercise using only the right hand thumb and index finger.

It is a little tricky at first as the movement collapses from the top to the bottom (lower) 6th string. In order to keep the exercise within the first year limitation, the thumb plays on the 6th string only.

*Keep in mind that we are working towards the Travis Style of picking and in that vein, you will use both the index and middle fingers on the upper three strings. 

Please take your time with this going slowly and carefully. This will develop your ability to play more complex patterns with independence between the thumb and the index, middle, and ring fingers.

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The song I didn’t know. Adele strikes again…at least for me.

“Send My Love (To Your New Lover)”

Acoustic Guitar Tutorial and Score

 

Okay, I admit it. I have been annoyed by Adele’s music. Why? Well, it turns out that I’m as susceptible to radio/media overkill as much as anyone. However, On July 25th 2016 at  approximately 2:30 pm I was sitting at a red light about a half mile from the studio.

Adele-adele-31416030-1920-1200Lo and behold I hear this music…this guitar and bass drum. Then, I hear the voice. Instantly, I knew it was her. I’m thinking no not again! But, this was different. This song cut through my musical being like a knife. The songs ends and the light turns green. I rush into the parking lot, into the

1Adele-Premieres-Send-My-Love-To-Your-New-Lover-VIDEO
I dial in the song on YouTube and the studio and drop everything.That day, and my opinion of Adele changed. This two-chord guitar gem has taught me another valuable life lesson. Judging based on how you think things are is a tragic mistake. The wonder woman of music has done it again…lest you think you can be this creative with just two chords an acoustic guitar and a drum:) Okay, enough of that.

adele picHere is what I have so far of the guitar and percussion part for the song. I will have it finished tomorrow and will turn this into the finished product. This should suffice for the next 12 hours.

Guitar Score PDF:

Send My Love (To Your New Lover) GTR

Percussion Score PDF:

Send My Love (To Your New Lover) PERC

Here is the YouTube Link for my tutorial: