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Learn how to play the song Hotel California in acoustic guitar.
Tags:acoustic guitar,chords,eagles,guitar lesson,helisell,hotel california
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So, literally the whole thing starts off with 8 different chord shapes and 8 picks that go along with them. Now the nice thing is that the picks have very similar patterns. There’s a pattern like this, and that’s repeated with almost every chord. So, once you get used to doing that with one chord, you’ll get very used to doing it with the rest of the chords.
Now the chords we’re going to use are an E minor, which most people will know, now one of the notes we don’t play the 5th string but we still hold it because that string, string will vibrate while we’re playing the others, and if it’s not held, and this is a question I get asked all the time, “Why do I hold strings that I’m not playing?” The reason is if I don’t hold the string, it will vibrate when the others play, and if it’s not held correctly, it will vibrate with the wrong note. So, at least if it’s held, when it vibrates, it will be vibrating with the right note. So, that folks is the answer to the question, “Why do we hold down strings that we don’t play sometimes?” We hold the full chord down, usually because it’s easier but also it does change the sound of the piece.
So, we start off with an A minor, and this is the picking part, now I’ll show at once and then I’ll show you in really close detail, so that you can pick it up easily, 1, 2, 3, 4. Again. Now the way to learn this piece is to hum in your mind each one of those picks, and hum the tune of it. So, this one, Is this…(humming) Now, I promise you that’s a really easy way to learn it. If you hum that was in your mind, you’ll find this humming so easy. So let me show you what I’m doing, with this chord I’m picking the 6th string, then I hit the 4th, 3rd, 4th. I use my thumb and my 1st finger, and my thumb. And then the next note is the 2nd string picked with the middle finger, and then the 3rd string picked with the first, and then it opens 1st string.
So, together, 1, 2, 3, 4. Again. Then we have a couple of notes that link that chord with the next chord. Now the next chord is actually a B7. But we’re not going to play this full version of the B7, that’s what’s it looks like, because we don’t need -- 5th and 6th strings. So we’re going to play slightly altered version, which is actually the first finger on the 4th string 1st fret, the 2nd finger goes on the 3rd string 2nd fret, and the ring finger goes on the 1st string 2nd fret. And we’re going to play these 4 strings, but we have a couple of linking notes to bring that chord in.
So from the top, 1, 2, 3, 4. The linking notes. So as the 3rd string open, 3rd string, 2nd fret, and then hold the chord down, and do this pattern. So you as you can see it’s the same pattern as the 4th, 3rd, 2nd, 3rd, but then we have the 1st, 2nd, and then we hold down the 2nd string on the 4th fret with the pinky, so, again. So, from the top, then we move to a D chord, but we’re only going to use the 2nd string and the 3rd string so we don’t need to hold anything on the first string. And the pick is almost exactly the same again. In fact, I’ll play into it, and then. That’s the first bit. I can’t recognize the pattern. Then we played the 4th, 3rd, 2nd, and then the 5th, 4th, 3rd, so. So, that’s the full section.
All of it together now, and then this chord which is the 5th string held on to 4th fret, and the 4th string held at the 2nd fret, that shape yes, 1st finger and ring finger, same pattern. So, all of the chords now, E minor, two linking notes, B7, then the D, then this chord, and we change to a C, which is this C without using this 6th string, same pattern, and a couple of linking notes, so. Those notes, you’ll memorize, of course, because you have heard them so many times in the piece. So from this chord, C, so that’s the 5th string, 3rd fret, open 4th, hammered onto the 2nd, and then the 3rd string open, again.
The next chord is a G and we don’t need to hold anything down, because we’re playing the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th strings, and of course non of those are fretted with the G, again, and then. So, the two base notes coming afterwards. Then we move to an A minus 7, that’s the A minus shape, that’s the A minus 7. And the pick, again, similar pick but it’s just slightly longer. Now the way to get our pick is from the top, again, and then we finish with a B7. And then that pinky goes down on that 1st string there. So, from the top, A minor, some joining notes, and then that chord the B7, then the D, then, then the C, that was joining notes and then the open G chord, and then the A minus 7, and the B7, and then we’re back to the beginning.