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Hitch a Ride: Introduction


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Hitch a Ride

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What's up? It's Mike from Guitar Tricks, teaching you "Hitch A Ride" as made famous by Boston. This is a classic rock anthem with all the essential ingredients: an acoustic intro, soaring vocal melodies, and guitars layered into a powerful arrangement with crunching rhythm riffs and screaming harmony leads. The song weaves through a number of dynamic changes from quiet and serene to loud, wide open rocking out!

There are 5 guitar layers in this tutorial. The tune starts out with an acoustic guitar that plays by itself through the first verse and chorus, and continues to play with the other guitar layers for the rest of the tune. A clean electric guitar comes in for the second verse and chorus to build the arrangement. A crunch guitar appears for the explosive organ solo, and continues through the final chorus. There are also two lead guitar layers that play melodic and blistering classic rock licks. All of these guitars appear throughout the tune creating a rich tapestry of sound that became an industry standard of how to multi-layer guitars in the studio. All guitars in this tutorial are tuned 1/2 step higher to E#.

The verse sections feature a lower dynamic with an acoustic guitar playing an arpeggiated riff. The chorus builds the arrangement with some relaxed strumming of open chords and melodic riffs. The organ and guitar solos blow the song wide open with a high dynamic. There's also an extended outro vamp with two lead guitars battling for supremacy, but also playing together with some sweet harmonizations.

For the single guitar performance of this song, you'll want to play all of the acoustic parts with a clean electric sound. You'll also switch to the crunch guitar for the organ solo rhythm, and play the primary lead guitar licks.

In the following lessons, we'll talk about open chords and power chords, chord arpgeggiation, dynamics, guitar layering, and harmonized leads. We are in the key of Bb, with a 4/4 time signature, at a tempo of 116 BPM.