Songs easy enough that a hack like me can play them?

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by kingrazor, Jan 11, 2018.


  1. phillybri

    phillybri Supporting Member

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    "What I Got" by Sublime

    G-D-G-D-G-D-G-D-G-D-G-D-G-D-G-D-G-D-G-D-G-D-G-D

    Enjoy...
     
  2. stevel

    stevel Member

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    Not necessarily.

    Most early Van Halen is just one guitar part. And it's not for the faint of heart.

    Wild Thing, sure, but there can be a huge continuum here from simple one guitar songs to crazy Jazz, Classical, Shred, and even SRV, Eric Johnson, and those types, that are much more advanced.

    If I could reduce guitar playing to the "things you need to know first" in terms of playing "pop" songs, while a gross oversimplification I'd say the following:

    1. "Country Strumming" Open Position Chords (hitting the bass note first then strumming the rest of the chord in various patterns).

    2. Power Chords.

    3. "Chuck Berry" type accompaniment and 12 Bar Blues form.

    These basics will teach you everything you need because everything else is just a variation on these.

    If you look at something like "Time of Your Life" by Green Day, it's a type of "Country Strumming". I see people try to learn stuff like this from tab and hit all the exact right strings and figure out how it goes and that's not how you do it. You learn to strum your chords in basic patterns first, then mix up how you do it. It's easy to get there from that direction but trying to reverse-engineer it from tabs or a lesson without understanding that very basic foundation is why people never learn to play anything.
     
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  3. kingrazor

    kingrazor Member

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    I understand that, and hear that a lot. I still want to learn songs note for note whenever and wherever I can. When I started playing bass about 8 years ago that was always my goal. There are a few songs I can do that with on bass, though most of the time I'm just trying to nail the "key" parts and then just play root notes most of the rest of the time. Or throw an extra 5th in there when that gets too boring.

    I know in many cases it won't be practical to learn a song note for note, and that's totally fine. But in cases where it is practical, that's what I want to try to do.

    Haven't listened to Louie Louie in a while, it's really not my kind of music. But I could give it a shot, I do know those 3 chords both open and barred.
     
  4. kingrazor

    kingrazor Member

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    Yes, as a Van Halen fan I can attest that even his simpler stuff can be quite difficult.

    Concepts always work better for me when I learn them in context.

    I learned the major scale 8 years ago. I've had it memorized since then, I can practically play it in my sleep. But I learned it outside of the context of a song, and so it never really helped me learn any more about music until I started playing some.

    When playing bass, I learned much, much more quickly by learning songs than by just trying to study theory and basic techniques out of context.
     
  5. Yam the BOMB

    Yam the BOMB Silver Supporting Member

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    You probably just haven’t found the right guitar teacher that can keep you focused yet.
     
  6. The Captain

    The Captain Member

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    Clearly TGearP when even a professional teacher can't support the idea of playing a whole song accurately.
    I got flamed off an Oz gear site for daring to suggest the same thing. It was actually the site owner who confessed he could not play a single song all the way through. The abuse I copped was surreal.
    C'mon, Steve, 10 pages of advice, surely you can come up with a single song suggestion?

     
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  7. davess23

    davess23 Member

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    House of the Rising Sun, Hey Joe, As Tears Go By, Louie Louie, Gloria, Eve of Destruction, Blowing In the Wind, Me and Bobby McGee, Take a Walk on the Wild Side, Twist and Shout, Dirty Water, Brown Eyed Girl and a whole bunch of other oldies are pretty accessible to people who have some basic chords down. And there are all sorts of blues songs, far too many to list, that feature just three chords.
     
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  8. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Member

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    Is strumming the chord pattern playing a song all the way through?
    I suppose it is if that is the arrangement that is presented in a recording.
    However, I suspect the OP could already do that for some songs that are based around simple chord patterns.
    Providing accompaniment to a jazz standard might be more complex.
    Most rock songs are only accompaniment pieces with riff fills and solos.
    The playing style simply does not lend itself to solo presentation i.e. playing a song through.
    Does a drummer play a song all the way through outside of using a backing track?
    Fully presenting a song in a listenable and entertaining manner is a whole other range of challenge.
     
  9. kingrazor

    kingrazor Member

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    I didn't really intend to have a philosophical debate on the meaning of the term "all the way through". The meaning is pretty darn straight forward to me.

    "Is strumming the chord pattern playing a song all the way through?"

    If there is a guitarist that is only doing that in the song, then yes.

    Yes, a musician can play a song all the way through without a backing track regardless of which instrument they're playing.

    I do this all the time on bass.
     
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  10. Mentat

    Mentat Member

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    These bands have lots of songs that are
    pretty easy to play after two years of playing.
    Tip: (if you miss a few notes,nobody cares)
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018 at 2:13 AM
  11. The Captain

    The Captain Member

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    It's totally weird, but any number of people on music forums will argue black and blue against learning actual songs.
    PM me if you want some free lessons on any of the songs I suggested, or any other, for that matter, except Van Halen. I have no affinity for VH.

     
  12. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Member

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    I guess nobody asked you what is holding you back from doing so on guitar?
    And here ya go. A classic with 2 clearly delineated guitar parts.
     
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  13. kingrazor

    kingrazor Member

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    Just a lack of chops, so most songs I listen to seemed too far out of reach.
     
  14. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Member

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    Lots of us in that boat.
     
  15. ToneDeVille

    ToneDeVille Member

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    Try "Gloria", then progress to "Satisfaction" - same chords. easy stuff
     
  16. Tommy Biggs

    Tommy Biggs Member

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    For me, it’s about learning the parts, and then finding a way to put those parts together to ‘do’ a song solo. Playing the important parts to capture the song. It’s tough for me to do, period, end of story, but i keep at it building a repertoire. I do practice my bands songs end to end, counted and on tempo.

    It’s especially difficult for me when there are complex guitar parts. Some songs Really don’t lend themselves to one man and a guitar. As an example, Van Halen bass lines may not exactly be ‘Jaco’ but MA is holding down the fort so to speak.

    After 2 years though, I’d suggest keeping it simple, Greenday isn’t a horrible suggestion. Anything to get that end to end idea fixed in your mind. Intro verses and choruses, and the big finish! Count it, use a click, and sing, no matter how badly. Nail a few, then find something with a simple solo over a simple progression. Back in Black (kinda rough to sing though!)
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2018 at 11:36 AM
  17. T92780

    T92780 Gold Supporting Member

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    Likely can't play any solos perfectly, so, I'll go with...Hey Joe, as chords are easy and mixed with a walking line...start here.
     
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  18. Floyd Eye

    Floyd Eye Member

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    What kind of music do you like? Not much point in suggesting a bunch of easy songs if you dislike them.
     
  19. kingrazor

    kingrazor Member

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    It's ok if I don't like them a whole lot, most of the music I like is difficult to play. Here's a couple of examples:





    A couple of other favorites would be Van Halen and Metallica.
     
  20. stevel

    stevel Member

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    Did I not suggest Louie Louie?
     

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