Corey Harris

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Little Red Rooster


Main Riff and Chorus

Corey Harris Lesson >

Little Red Rooster > Main Riff and Chorus

Now we are working on the acoustic guitar, meat and potatoes version of Little Red Rooster. The main riff is accomplished by hitting the open E string followed by the note G with the left ring finger on the third fret, and over to the open A string. Remember how we made the A by barring the 2nd fret with the left index finger and using the pinky? Well it's exactly the same here. The pinky covers the second and third string at the 5th fret, then lifts off, and then recovers the first and second strings, still on the 5th fret. Remember to walk your thumb up to the 2nd fret to make the D9 chord. D9 is just like a D7, except you leave the first string open. BTW, occasionally during the video, I erroneously say D7 chord when I mean D9. Don't pay me any mind, because I'm on medication... Or something! The turn around begins with an E to E7 chord, walk up to the D9 and then repeat the main riff.

Guy Davis

 

 

Topics and/or subjects covered in this lesson:
Chicago Blues
Howlin' Wolf
Guy Davis
Little Red Rooster

Print Print Chords & Tab

Loop 0:12 Performance of Little Red Rooster in Standard Tuning

$1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. | $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $6.0 $6.3 |
$5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$3.2.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.3 | $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$3.2.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.3 |
$5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$3.2.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$4.2 $4.4.$3.4.$2.3 $1. $4.4.$3.4.$2.3 | $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$3.2.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.1 |

First Chorus

$6.2 $1. $3.2 $6.2.$3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $6.0 $6.1 | $6.2 $1. $3.2 $6.2.$3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $6.0 $6.3 |
$5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$3.2.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.3 | $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$3.2.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.1 |
$6.2 $1. $3.2 $6.2.$3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $6.0 $6.1 | $6.2 $1. $3.2 $6.2.$3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $6.0 $6.3 |
$5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$3.2.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$4.2 $4.4.$3.4.$2.3 $1. $4.4.$3.4.$2.3 | $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$3.2.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $1. $4.0.$3.2.$2.3.$1.2 |
$6.0.$5.2.$4.2.$3.1.$2.0.$1.0 $1. $1. $6.0.$3.h1 $1.0 $2.3 $6.0.$5.2 $1. $1. $6.0 $6.0 $6.1 | $6.2 $1. $1. $6.2.$2.1 $3.2 $2.0 $6.2.$2.1 $1. $1. $6.2 $6.0 $6.3 |
$5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$3.2.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$4.2 $4.4.$3.4.$2.3 $1. $4.4.$3.4.$2.3 | $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$3.2.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1 $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.1 |

 

Loop 3:18 Breakdown of Main Riff

Loop 7:33 Practice Loop of Main Riff

$1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. | $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $6.0 $6.3 |
$5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.3 | $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.3 |
$5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.3 | $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$4.2 $4.4.$3.4.$2.3 $1. $4.4.$3.4.$2.3 |
$5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.3 | $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. |

 

Loop 10:18 Breakdown of D7 Riff

$1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. | $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $6.0 $6.1 |
$6.2 $1. $3.2 $6.2.$3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $6.0 $6.1 | $6.2 $1. $3.2 $6.2.$3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $1. $3.2.$2.1.$1.0 $6.2 $6.0 $6.3 |
$5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. |

 

Loop 11:12 Breakdown of Turnaround

$5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $1. $4.0.$3.2.$2.3.$1.2 | $6.0.$5.2.$4.2.$3.1.$2.0.$1.0 $1. $1. $6.0.$3.h1 $1.0 $2.3 $6.0.$5.2 $1. $1. $6.0 $6.0 $6.1 |
$6.2 $1. $1. $6.2.$2.1 $3.2 $2.0 $6.2.$2.1 $1. $1. $6.2 $6.0 $6.3 | $5.0.$4.2 $1. $5.0.$3.5.$2.5 $5.0.$3.2.$2.2 $1. $5.0.$2.5.$1.5 $5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $5.0.$4.2 $6.0 $6.3 |
$5.0.$4.2 $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. $1. |

 

 

Comments

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William DeRaymond
William DeRaymond Oct 24, 2015

Great teaching Guy!  Appreciate it!

Guy Davis
Guy Davis Oct 26, 2015

Hello William. Thank you for the complement. I reckon there are worse teachers than me.

Bruce Dumes
Bruce Dumes Oct 12, 2015

Thank you Guy for the powerful advice. 

Guy Davis
Guy Davis Oct 18, 2015

Bruce, there's always room for improvement in any piece that we play. Each time you play it, play it like you are discovering it. That keeps it alive.

Bruce Dumes
Bruce Dumes Oct 18, 2015

The day that a teacher tells me, "Bruce, that was absolutely perfect! Couldn't be improved upon!", I'll know for sure that I'm dreaming , Guy. ;-) There was a story that the great cello player Pablo Casals was asked when he was like 97 or something why he still practiced every day. "Because I feel I'm making progress", he answered.

re: "play it like you are discovering it"

I read a book by a guitar teacher who has a plaque on her wall that says, "I don't know how to play the guitar"  to remind herself to approach it like that every day. 

Thanks again, Guy! I'm getting a lot out of these lessons.

Bruce Dumes
Bruce Dumes Oct 11, 2015

Hey Guy -

I'm terrible with names, so if you don't mind, I'll just call you "guy", alright? See there, I'm trying to start off with a joke. ;-)

The Howlin' Wolf "London Sessions" has always been a guilty pleasure of mine; guilty because it's not the original great recordings, but I was just starting to learn about the blues when the album came out and I still love it, especially the acoustic part you are referencing here and on the record when Eric Clapton tells Wolf, "Why don't you play acoustic on it, so that we can follow you better?", and Wolf says, "Oh man, c'mon. You got nothin' to do but count it off, and a...change...one...two...three...four....you change...when he says...when he says...BOOM!" or something like that. My brother and I used to quote that to each other all the time.

So this version of the tune feels very familiar and happy to me. Thanks for it! I need to get that guitar a little more solid before attempting to alienate the neighbors with my vocal rendition. Any feedback along the way would most appreciated. I found that I didn't really need to do a full Bm to get the same effect. 

Best Regards and thanks again!

Bruce

Guy Davis
Guy Davis Oct 11, 2015

TO BRUCE DUMES:

Hello Bruce. Your job is to play it as if you own it. Commit to your right thumb, and don't rush anything for anyone. The slow, steady pulse of the thumb, is what drives the song. The whole band had to listen to wolf, to know exactly when to change to the 4 chord. (D9) the slow, steady pulse is what enabled them to do that. Original Rolling Stones bass player, Bill Weyman, had the extraordinary gift of being able to play just the right notes, at just the right time, especially on the slow blues, and that is what allows the band to change chords as a unit. When you are playing this song solo, focus on the thumb, even more than the B minor chord. The slow pace gives it majesty, and authority.

 

Regarding the voice, I developed as a guitar player partly in order to hide my voice. Its thickness and clumsiness where a source of embarrassment to me. Claim the rhythm, and then claim your voice.

Boyd R
Boyd R Oct 10, 2015

what if your fingers can't stretch from 2nd fret to the 5 fert. That what can you do

Guy Davis
Guy Davis Oct 11, 2015

Reply to Boyd R:

If the stretch is difficult because you need more practice, then you know what to do. If your hands are literally too small to make the stretch, then create a way. Try capoing up a few frets to lessen the space your fingers have to cover. Ultimately, you might try lifting the index finger, which bars the second fret, off of the neck while your pinky does its work on the 5th fret.( As long as you keep hitting the open A string with your thumb at regular quarter note intervals, your fingers can get away with a lot). You could resolve the sequence by doing a barred A cord at the 5th fret.

 

Mike Caren
Mike Caren Oct 09, 2015

This is a great lesson Guy.   Just love the feel / groove --- it whirls around me and takes me to a different place.

Guy Davis
Guy Davis Oct 11, 2015

Mike,I'm glad that it takes you someplace special. Make sure that you bring your wallet with you, in case you need to get a cab back home.

 
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