3 Fun & Easy Riffs From The 1980s – Vol-3

Learn to play three more fun and easy riffs from the 1980s with Guitar Control instructor Darrin Goodman, aka Uncle D. Be sure to get the free tabs to go along with the step by step video instruction and you will be rockin’ these classic riffs tonight!

1980s riffs 3.0


How’s it going everybody? This is Darrin with GuitarControl.com bringing this video Lesson and today I’ve got three more fun and easier for you from the 1980s.

Right now Guitar Control is giving away this really cool free chord chart, there’s a link down the description where you can get yours. It’s in PDF format and just has every chord that could ever need all neatly compiled into one sheet. So you can download it, you can print it off, put a copy in your gig bag, put a copy where you practice; just so at any given time whatever chord you might need at a glance and it’s a free download.

So be sure to click on the link in the description for the tabs and let’s get close up and take a look at these.

1980s Riff-1 – Smooth Criminal

All right, so the first one to look at is the riff from a Smooth Criminal by Michael Jackson. So this one’s pretty easy, it’s all just played on the low E string with single notes. So we’re going to start off on the fifth fret we’re going to want to use your third finger and this is kind of weird because we rest and then we play the first note on the and of four on the first measure. So it’s like one two three four and, and then the downbeat of one of the second measure is a rest and this is all palm muted too by the way. So now we’re going to store here the fifth fret again and we’re going to play four times; so down up down up and then with your first finger go back to the third fret, back to the fifth fret…  Then we move up to the seventh fret and that’s eighth notes and then we rest and then we go five seven again and that takes care of all the second measure. Then on the third measure we move up a half step so now we’re on the eighth fret and we’ve got rest seven slide to three and then back to five on the and of four and then it just repeats…

1980s Riff-2 – I Wanna Rock

All right so the next one to look at is I Wanna a Rock by Twisted Sister and this one’s pretty easy; it just uses a bunch of power chords and then a variation of the D chord. So we start off we’ve got A5; so I’m just playing the A string open and I got my first finger fretting the second fret of the D and the G string. So we hit this as two quarter notes one two and then we’re going to go to a G5; so first finger third fret of the low E string and then my third finger is picking up the fifth fret of the A string and my fourth finger is picking up the fifth fret of the D string. Now if you’re a beginner and this is hard. What’s hard a lot of times is to get this note with your pinky. So if you can’t get it and all you get is the low E string it’s fine because this note on the D string is just the same note that’s on the low E; so like in this case it’s one five eight and eight is the same as one. So we’ve got A, G, B and then another G. So we hit this starting on the downbeat of three and it’s an eighth note and then two sixteenth notes and then a quarter note… Then starting on the second measure we’ve got a D5; so if you just take your regular D chord that you probably already know but we just omit the first string so we’re playing the D string open second fret of the G string with my first finger third fret of the B string with my third finger. I got the first string is just muted so I’m just letting my finger kind of hang over it a little bit and we hit this the same timing that we did but it’s on beat one and two… Then starting on beat three we have E5; so now I’m barring the second fret of the A and the D string and the low E is open, three and then on four we go back to the G5. And then the third measure is the same as the first measure. So it’s just the fourth measure that’s a little bit different. So far we’ve got… Okay so that fourth measure is the same as the second measure with the exception of the last two chords. So on the second measure we go the E5 to G5 and on this fourth measure we’re going to go E5, but it’s E5 up here, so first finger is picking up the seventh fret of the A string and then my third finger is picking up the ninth fret of the D and G string or you could do it like this with your pinky or omit the third string altogether and just play on the A and the D string. So we hit that three and then on beat four we come down we just take this shape and move it all the way down to C5; so first fingers on the third fret and then picking up the fifth fret of the E and or G string and that’s basically the whole riff and it just repeats…

1980s Riff-3 – Pride In The Name Of Love

All right, then the last one we look at here is the riff from Pride In The Name of Love by U2. So this is actually kind of a cool. The Edge, guitar player for U2, the Edge he does a lot of really kind of neat things like this that’s just kind of an ambient. You know, it’s not really riffs so much as just kind of this ambient sound. I think it sounds really cool. So we start off, you’re going to want to put your first finger you’re going to want to bar it basically at the ninth fret on the G and the B string because this whole thing is just on the B in the G string and then we’re going to take your pinky and we’re going to pick up the 12th fret of the uh the B string and then with your third finger the 11th fret of the G string. So this is easy as its all 16th notes. So we’ve got one and two and then on the second beat of the two we’re going to remove our third finger. Now before we were doing 11 and 12 and now it’s 9 and 12, 9 on the G string and 12 on the B string. So we start after 11 and 12th fret and we hit this… then starting on beat three we’re back on the 11th fret; one e and uh, there actually would be three and uh, like that… so that’s the first measure. Now the second measure is exactly the same thing. Then starting on the third measure the note on the G string is going to stay here on the ninth fret, but we’re going to go to the 10th fret on the B string and now it’s got the same kind of timing, but we’re going to be switching between having our second finger on the 10th fret and letting it off. So we’re picking up B the ninth fret on the B and the G string with just your first finger and that’s the third measure… On the fourth measure we’re gonna put our third finger onto the 11th fret of the G string and keep our first finger where it is and now we take our second finger and put it on the tenth fret of the B string and now we’re going to be doing that same Rhythm, but the finger that we’re beginning to raising and lowering is our second finger. So we’re going to alternate between the tenth and ninth fret on the B string and then it would just repeat…


All right, so there you have it, another installment of fun and easy riffs from the 1980s. So if you like this lesson be sure to give me a thumbs up and leave a comment down below if you have any questions about this or other guitar related topics. If you’ve not already done so please subscribe to the channel and hit that notification bell so you don’t miss any of the content we upload throughout the week well that is all I have for you today. Thanks for watching and have a great day.

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