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You Can't Always Get What You Want (Made Easy)

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Today we'll be learning a beginner friendly version of the Rolling Stone's classic, "You Can’t Always Get What You Want". This is an epic 60s rock tune that shows the Stones mixing country, blues & gospel influences into an anthemic rock and roll style.

There are several parts layered throughout this song, making for an interesting arrangement. Today we're going to let the backing track handle all that & play through the whole song on one guitar using a basic chord progression all the way through!

The intro is simple acoustic guitar strumming the basic 4 bar, 2 chord progression that forms the backbone of the tune. After the C & F, the D is the only other chord you need until the breakdown.

This song has a long gradually building arc that changes dynamics quite a few times. Our tempo actually increases several clicks from the beginning to the end of the piece. Paying close attention to the tempo and dynamic levels throughout supports the vocal storyline!

There is a brief interlude or breakdown moment that adds drama with chords climbing from (Dm, Em, F, Dm, G) to the only V chords of the entire song that leads back to a solo chorus. The guitar and piano pace this section beautifully and steer the dynamics down, down, down and back to a reprise of the first verse, not quite as small as we started, but pulled way back.

The song ends with a double chorus and then a long repeat of our 4 bar phrase, the longer it goes, the bigger it gets, finally fading into the distance...

Most of this song is a 4 bar phrase: C F C F. It’s a great example of a song that makes brilliant use of a groove and 2 chords. Each chorus pushes harmonically and rhythmically to the one D chord and then we return to our 4 bar phrase.


INTRO 8 bars
VERSE 8 bars
CHORUS 12 bars
CHORUS 10 bars

So, our job is to stick to our part for the whole song! We'll learn the chords, count out the strum and do some jamming with The Rolling Stones!