Songs Worth Learning - 20
There are certain songs that I think every guitar player should try to learn. Either they have cool guitar parts, or they will expand your playing skills, or they will introduce you to a style of music you may not have played before. I am going to recommend songs in several styles of music and explain why I think they should be added to your “play list.” Obviously, these are my choices, and no doubt, some will disagree with my choices. But each song has something good to offer so I think they are worth learning.
This will eventually be a huge list so I am going to post them one song at a time in no particular order. Take your time and enjoy each one.
Walk Don't Run - The Ventures
This classic surf song was actually first written and released as a jazz song by the great jazz guitarist Johnny Smith in 1954. It was later recorded by Chet Atkins and played fingerstyle. The Ventures heard the Chet Atkins version, which had a slightly “country” breakdown but was still overall on the jazzy side. Chet’s use of the bass notes A, G, F, and E became the basis for the chord progression used by The Ventures. The Ventures simplified it and re-worked it into a straight ahead surf record and scored a #2 Billboard hit in 1960. Proving a good melody can be arranged in many ways.
This song has a cool descending barre chord intro and then goes into the melody. Since many guitar players rarely or never play melodies, only chords or riffs or solos, this is a good opportunity to focus on getting a melody across.
And it is just a lot of fun to play.