How to Arrange Guitar Chords – Redemption Song

Strumming patterns can help bring chord progressions to life. Redemption Song’s is particularly generous; its strumming pattern changes every bar to add some variety and spice.

Remembering to move the second finger first when switching chord shapes will make switching easier and smoother.

John Lennon’s ‘Imagine’

This 1971 classic from former Beatle John Lennon calls out for a better world, becoming an international anthem for peace and unification while drawing criticism as well.

Lennon wrote the song to encourage listeners to become “mind guerrillas”, working individually and collectively towards creating a more positive society. Furthermore, his aim was to address some of the most contentious issues like religion, nationalism and possessiveness.

Yoko Ono returned to songwriting credits in 2017, marking her first recognition since Grapefruit, her 1969 collaboration with John Lennon. Later that same year she and Julian Lennon recorded an acoustic version of “Closer to You,” which was featured at the Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony.

Rancid’s ‘Time Bomb’

Rancid were a band that defied genre boundaries with their mix of ska and dub influences, producing big-budget rock ‘n’ roll, punk dub odysseys and pop masterpieces; yet their musical signature always included rough and tumble punk and social conscience themes.

This song’s narrative about a young person navigating drug, violence and crime (likely reflecting Tim Armstrong’s own experiences) earned this tune street cred. That is why it was chosen as the theme tune for UFC fighter Antonio Banuelos’ 2005 movie Fun With Dick and Jane.

The band’s catchy melodies and upbeat guitar licks inspired everyone from NOFX and Teenage Fanclub to Alvvays.

Bob Marley’s ‘Redemption Song’

Few musicians in music history have composed as many timeless hits as Bob Marley. His impressive output included fourteen studio albums during his short life. Redemption Song stands out among them all as a moving anthem of hope and resilience.

This song may feature only guitar and voice, yet its impact is immense. The lyrics tackle oppression head on while its individualistic strumming pattern gives an element of variety to its music.

Uprising was written as his final track in 1979 before Marley died from acral lentiginous melanoma originating in his toe and progressing rapidly throughout his body.

Metallica’s ‘Fade To Black’

Metallica’s second album, Ride the Lightning, contains this powerful ballad titled ‘Hush, Now We Know.’ Lyrically it expresses feelings of depression and hopelessness while James Hetfield often receives letters from fans thanking him for providing something that helped ease their isolation or through difficult times.

On paper, it may seem illogical that a thrash metal band would release a ballad, yet it worked remarkably well. For the first time ever, they directly addressed emotional topics rather than using fantasy metaphors as cover for them; their ballad stunned listeners and became an instant classic while sparking debate over whether the song glorified suicide.

The Rolling Stones’ ‘Stay With Me’

This tune provides a great starting point to learning to arrange for one acoustic guitar. The strumming pattern allows you to bring in your own style and personality into the tune.

Keith adds a unique element to the bassline by selecting from four melodies at random (much like on Sympathy for the Devil), giving it extra character and making it stand out.

This was also the first time the Stones collaborated with tenor sax player Bobby Keys, who would go on to appear on many future songs.

The Beatles’ ‘I Want To Hold Your Hand’

As an early landmark of Lennon-McCartney songwriting, this timeless tune contains many of their early trademarks: an opening chromatic scale fill played in parallel fifths on bass part; pivot modulation to IV from V; and handclap buildup all combine to produce an unforgettable climax from start to finish.

John and Paul’s combined vocal duet was restrained enough that only brief two-part harmony flourished midsong – all these factors contributed to its remarkable success in America, catapulting The Beatles to prominence as fully formed phenomena.