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In this High and Dry guitar lesson video, we will take a look at this popular song from Radiohead off of their album The Bends.
Most of the of song is based around the acoustic guitar, so I will teach the entire lesson on a standard tuned steel string acoustic. I do show a couple of electric guitar parts (mainly the solos), on acoustic guitar and they still sound great. Feel free to use an electric or acoustic for the entire song, it will represent well on both.
The opening acoustic guitar riff in “High and Dry” uses a melody built off an octave shape that slides down the fretboard. Along with this octave shape and the muting that is required to play it correctly, we will also have open strings ringing to create sort of a drone effect. Because of the high register this riff is played in, it can be a bit tricky to get the proper notes muted along with the open strings that need to ring. I will demonstrate how to do this so that everything will come together well.
From there we reach the verse which is made up of a pretty simple chord progression. The only challenge here will be the first chord which requires you to use your thumb on the 6th string. I will give a couple of tips to help get this technique a bit more comfortable if you are unfamiliar with it.
The strumming pattern itself is very simple with an 8th note feel. For the chorus you will basically play the same chords as the verse expect in a bit more straightforward and simple fashion.
Up next is the guitar solo which incorporates melody notes played along with an open string drone. This technique is used quite a bit in rock, folk and blues music. It creates a pretty mesmerizing sound without much effort on the part of the player.
The interlude section once again uses the familiar chords from before with a pause in-between them.
The outro solo is a little bit more involved. It starts with the same melodic figure as the first solo, followed by some double-stops played in a higher register. I will demonstrate that part at the end of the video.
Hope you guys enjoy learning this Radiohead classic!
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