How To Play The Opening Riff of “Back in Black”

Guitar is undeniably one of the coolest instruments around. All you need to make a hell of a crazy noise is to pull out an electric guitar, plug that bad boy into a loud amp, and strum. That’s why it can be frustrating when you start playing and all anybody teaches you are basic folk chords.

Fortunately, being a beginner doesn’t mean you can’t play anything that sounds dangerous! One of the dirty little secrets of rock’n’roll is that it’s often built around song structures so simple that anyone with fingers and a little bit of rhythm can learn how to do it quickly. Rock was pioneered by angry teenagers after all, so it can’t be that hard to do!

AC/DC is a classic example of a band that uses incredibly basic backbones to create a thundering sound. The twin guitar attack of Angus and Malcolm Young sounds incredible partly because it’s so stripped-down and primal.

Today, I’ll be showing you how to play the opening riff of “Back in Black,” which is possibly AC/DC’s most iconic riff. Despite its storied place in rock history, the riff is really a simple 3-chord jam with some pentatonic noodling in between.

The three chords in the riff are variations on the normal E, D, and A chord shapes we all learn when we start playing guitar. Here’s the tab:


To make it sound like it does on the record, instead of playing note on the 4th fret of the G string during the first run, bend up to it from where you are on the 2nd fret. Pull off to go to the open note. On the last note of the 2nd run, slide down from the 7th fret, ending up on the open E note.

Play this with distortion!

If you are a fun of hard rock and AC DC you may like this LEAD GUITAR LESSON

And if playing great guitar riffs is your thing, I recommend you to check out this course in DVD:


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