how to play “Rebel Rebel” on guitar by David Bowie | electric guitar lesson tutorial

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An electric guitar lesson on how to play “Rebel Rebel.” by David Bowie.
We got some very sad and shocking news this week that David Bowie, one of the great singer/songwriters of our time had passed away. He was a unique individual and a true artist. He will be missed, but his music will live forever…

I’ve been meaning to do this song for a long time but just haven’t gotten around to it. Now seems like an appropriate time…

It’s a killer lick that Bowie came up with here. I always thought that it was Mick Ronson’s contribution to the song, but in doing some digging I found out that DB played all the guitar parts on Diamond Dogs, including this tune.

I had a lot of fun making the demo for this song. I hope you enjoy the video.

I get a lot of questions about my sound so here’s what I’m using:
My amp is an Egnater Renegade head. I am using a Two Notes Torpedo Live. It’s a load box and a speaker emulator so I’m not running the Marshall 1960b speaker cabinet anymore. It enables you to crank up your tube amp but use headphones, or just listen at low volume through your monitors, so I can be rocking out and getting a great sound without bothering people around me. So far I like it!
I use a TC Electronics Nova System through the loop for effects. I also have a BB preamp which I essentially never use anymore, and sometimes (rarely) a Boss CS-3 compressor. The reverb is from the amp. My wah is a Dunlop MC404 CAE Dual Inductor, REALLY great pedal! I also use a Polytune tuner which is fantastic.
I use Elixir strings nanoweb 10-46. These are the best strings I’ve ever used. They last 5 times longer than uncoated strings and always sound great.
My guitar is a 1975 Gibson Les Paul Deluxe. I have Suhr Aldrich pickups on it. I have them coil split, but for this video they were in full humbucker mode.

Folks may be surprised at how much time and effort goes into creating these videos. If you’re getting something out of the lessons and can afford to contribute, I’ve setup a Paypal link. If you can’t afford it no worries, but if you can, any amount is appreciated and will help me to continue to make the videos.


Thanks for all the comments, and questions and of course for subscribing. A special thanks to all of you that have contributed financially by making a donation! I really appreciate the support. Good luck to everyone with their guitar playing.
Video Rating: / 5


  1. I've got a Fender Rock Pro 1000 half stack. I was trying to figure this one out with my '62 SG repop. Need new cables. Glad I found this tutorial, as I haven't played in years. Got a bunch of guitars & toys. Wanted to learn a couple songs to play for my wife on our 39th anniversary. This song has some truths in it about when we started dating 41 years ago! Great song that got a lot of radio play back in the day! I still have the Diamond Dogs album…Also, showing the chord shapes in tablature, even though arpeggiated, suspended,etc, would help too.

  2. you have some great tutorials! really accurate. I was wondering where you get the solo drum tracks you play along to in the beginning? Or do you create them before hand?

  3. College Web Media


  4. What sick piece of shit would dislike this? Unbelievable!

  5. Very well done. Your comments seemed very tasteful and sincere to me. I appreciate your talent and ability to teach.

  6. Thank you so much for sharing this. So good.

  7. Can you please do a tutorial on Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd. There are many many tutorials on youtube on how to play this song, yet you always have the best lessons on the entire internet, and I applaud you for that. I understand that you spend a lot of time on these videos and would love for you to help me learn this song. I have learned both solos of comfortably numb and goodbye blue sky, but only because of your fantastic teaching. Thank You.

  8. Good lesson, although I play upstrokes on the E chord during the verse. I guess that's what it sounds like to me on the recording.

  9. Thanks so much for the lesson once again. Particular the history lesson for each song. Just playing isn't enough, it's nice to know the background also. Cheers

  10. It's simple, Just go to woodprix page – and enter the Eco World.

  11. Great playing and lesson. I never knew Bowie actually played the riff.

  12. Shutup & Play - Guitar Tutorials

    After reading some of the comments below about Alan Parker, I did a bit more digging and found this article. It states that Alan Parker played the guitar part on the record using a Les Paul through a fender amp. Check it out here:

  13. Thanks a lot, I wanted to play this great riff and so you helped me a lot. And that's right, David was a great singer, great composer.

  14. First of all, your youtube videos are far and above some of the best tutorials anywhere. Your patience and detailed explanations are simply amazing. You have over 70,000 thousand subscribers. We should all send him a dollar of month. That's less than a cup of coffee a month for the best tutorials on the planet by some of the greatest song every written. He should be able to sit home and devote his time to more videos. 12 dollars over the course of a year is meaningless to us for all we get back. I am headed to paypal to give him 12.00 now. I challenge all of you to do the same. Let the man do what he does!

  15. What kind of idiot gives this a thumbs down? Great lesson , great song.


    great lesson…thanks

  17. This is such a great song!  An excellent tutorial!  I have been playing this song but not quite like this!  Now I see what I am missing! Knowledge!  L<3ve it!

  18. Charles Ireson

    Hey just want to sy you are doing an awesome job here and on everything I've watched from you!!! Magnificent my friend!

  19. How do you get the sound like that? You should do a channel on how to get the song songs?

  20. Helen Kate Lynch

    Love this. Is the effect a clean guitar with just a load of overdrive?

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