Category: Folk Songs

Morning Dew by Bonnie Dobson
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In this lesson we will be learning the original version of Morning Dew by Bonnie Dobson. The song is played fingerstyle with a capo at the 2nd fret. The chords used are A, G, G/F#, D, C, G/B.

Big Yellow Taxi by Joni Mitchell
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In this lesson we will be learning Joni Mitchell’s Big Yellow Taxi. The song is played with an open D alternate tuning. The tuning of open D is shown in the tab. The song consists of a I – IV – V (E, A, and B) chord progression for the most part. The tricky part about this tune is Mitchell’s intricate rhythm playing. She keeps her strum hand going in an 8th note fashion accenting and muting various strums.

City Of New Orleans by Arlo Guthrie
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In this lesson we will be studying the Arlo Guthrie version of City Of New Orleans. The tune is played with the guitar tuned a 1/2 step down and consists of 7 familiar chord shapes, G, Em, D, C, Bm, F, and A. While I have charted the song with a fingerstyle arrangement like the recording, I do cover a basic strumming pattern you can use instead of finger picking.

Leaving On A Jet Plane by Peter Paul and Mary
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In this lesson we will be learning Leaving on A Jet Plane. Some new chords you may have not run across yet. Chords are Amaj7, D6, F#m, Bm, C#m, A, D, and E. Same strumming pattern throughout.

Harvest Moon by Neil Young
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This lesson is a song study of Neil Young’s Harvest Moon. The song requires a Drop D tuning.

Frozen Man by James Taylor
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In this lesson we will learn Frozen Man by James Taylor.

Blowin in the Wind by Bob Dylan
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In this lesson we will learn the classic Bob Dylan tune Blowin in the Wind. The tune requires a capo at the 7th fret.

Working at the Car Wash Blues
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In this lesson we will learn the Jim Croce tune Working at the Car Wash Blues.

California Dreaming by Mamas and the Papas
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In this lesson we will learn California Dreaming by the Mamas and the Papas. This song requires a capo.

Bad Bad Leroy Brown by Jim Croce
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In this lesson we will learn Bad Bad Leroy Brown by Jim Croce. There are several ways to play the tune for beginners and intermediate players.

Knockin on Heaven’s Door by Bob Dylan
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In this lesson we will be learning the song Knockin On Heaven’s Door by Bob Dylan. Very easy tune with a 4 chord progression that repeats for the entire song. None the less a great song!

Heart of Gold by Neil Young
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In this lesson we will be learning Neil Young’s Heart of Gold. This tune is fairly simple using just 4 open chords throughout. Heart of Gold chords are Em, G, C, and D.  He also uses a variation on Em called Em7 by adding the pinky to the 3rd fret of the B string.  There are basically 3 sections to the tune, an intro, verse, and chorus.

Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow by Carol King
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In this lesson we will be studying Carol King’s Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow.

Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond
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This tune requires a capo at the 2nd fret to be in tune with the original recording. The chord progression is relatively easy just using open chords.

The Weight by The Band
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In this lesson we will study how to play the classic tune The Weight by the Band.

Brokedown Palace by Grateful Dead / Adrienne Young
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This tune uses mostly open chords. The Adrienee Young version requires a capo at the 2nd fret.

Hallelujah by Leonard Cohen
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Great tune using mostly open chords in key of C. Simple arrangement. Can be played on electric or acoustic.

Ripple by The Grateful Dead
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In this lesson we are going to learn Ripple by The Grateful Dead.  This is a great example of a folk / bluegrass style where the guitar plays the melody within the chord progression.  The intro is a challenge to grasp with the combining of rhythm and melody, but the rest of the tune is quite simple. Five open chords used throughout, G, C, D, Am, and A

American Pie by Don McLean
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Learn this classic acoustic tune by Don McLean.  It is simple in the sense that it uses mostly open chords but the arrangement can be tricky to get down.  A lot of chord changes in this one

Son of a Preacher Man by Dusty Springfield
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Easy 4 chord tune with an extremely recognizable intro lick.  Based in the key of E

I’ll Fight by Wilco
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Description

I’ll Fight by Wilco is a fairly simple song to play with the exception of the melodic intro.  The song is a folk style acoustic tune using a capo on the 3rd fret.  The intro contains a melody within the strumming of the chord progression. Chord shapes used are Am, C, Dm, Em, F, and G

Wildwood Flower
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In this lesson we will be learning the Carter family classic Wildwood Flower. This is a great example of a traditional Bluegrass style tune.  The melody is played within the chords much like a chord melody or solo.

Mr. Bo Jangles by Jerry Jeff Walker
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This song is in 3/4 time and uses the same strumming pattern throughout. It requires the use of several chords, many of which are basic. The original recording is played with a capo at the 2nd fret. Chords used are C, G/B, Am, Am/G, F, E, G, and D7/F#

Old Man by Neil Young
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In this lesson we will be learning the Neil Young classic Old Man.  While the song is made up of simple open chords, it does have some complexities in the rhythm and vibe of the sound.  Neil Young’s acoustic style often incorporates a semi palm muted technique that can be difficult to grasp for beginners.  He also uses embellishments such as hammer ons within the chords to add color and movement.

Sound Of Silence by Simon and Garfunkel
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Learn how to play Sound Of Silence on guitar. This Simon and Garfunkel classic is played fingerstyle through the 1st verse and then moves to a strumming pattern. We will cover all the parts in this tutorial. You will need a capo on the 6th fret.

Friend Of The Devil by The Grateful Dead
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In this lesson we will be learning a simple version of Friend of The Devil by The Grateful Dead.  The chords used in this acoustic based song are G, C, D, and Am.  The strum pattern is the same throughout the entire song.  We will also be covering the descending intro line.