Christina Perri's song Jar Of Hearts, became popular after it was featured on the Fox TV show, So You Think You Can Dance in 2010. The song has also appeared in Prom Night, Glee, and Switched At Birth. She has also recorded songs for The Twilight Series. At the age of 16, she taught herself how to play guitar, and began her singer-songwriter career at the age of 21.
After the song was featured on So You Think You Can Dance, it went on to sell over one hundred thousand copies in the space of one month. This led to appearances on The Early Show, Jay Leno, Letterman and Conan.
She released her first album, Lovestrong in May of 2011. She also has four EP's (extended play) on the market, The Ocean Way Sessions, The Karaoke Collection, and A Very Merry Perri Christmas.
Jar Of Hearts is a beautiful song. Great melody, chord changes and lyrics. I have arranged the song for solo rhythm guitar at a beginner to intermediate level. Most of the chords are open shapes, with some difficult switching to the barre shapes. I have found, that most all beginning students (including myself, when I was just starting out), hate barre chords. Rightly so… they are not easy, and they hurt! Take your time, make sure your form is correct. This is essential to achieving the proper sound. It is not unusual for all the strings to sound muted at the beginning. Place the second, third, and fourth fingers first, then apply the barre finger. Check to see which notes are muted by picking them individually.
This piece has been notated with all rhythm slashes. There are a few different patterns, that I have used to emulate the keyboard part. Treat the whole and quarter note slashes as downstrokes. Since the tempo of the song is quite slow, try using downstrokes for the eighths and down up for the sixteenths. For example: at measure thirteen, where the rhythm kicks into a full pattern, the strum direction would be down, down, down, down, up, down, down, down, up, down, up. In order to play with the recording, a capo must be placed on the third fret.
As stated, most are open shapes. The F Major and F minor are best treated as Root 6 barre chords. this makes the transition much easier. There is also an unusual diminished shape at the end of the song (measure seventy).
Most of the transcriptions I have seen on other sites, have this chord wrong.
Diminished chords are not often used in pop songs, but are prevalent in jazz, mostly as passing chords. This version is a great accompaniment for a vocalist or a solo instrument.
The C/G in measure thirty three is a slash chord. The G is the lowest note of the chord. In reality, this is just a C Major, because the note G, is already part of the C chord (the fifth). The fingering is a bit odd, but if you look closely, it is a G Major, C Major combination.
In order for the chord to sound properly, the fifth string (A), must be muted out. I use the edge of my third finger. When releasing the the C/G to G, take off the first and second finger and continue to mute the fifth string.
Once you get used to these shapes, these forms come in very handy when a progression calls for a fast change from G to C.
The intro to 'Wild Night' by Van Morrison comes to mind.
Jar Of Hearts With Elizabeth Storms
I have arranged this version after working with vocalist Elizabeth Storms. I realized it needed a bit more variation and technique, as opposed to simply strumming the chords. I really wanted the guitar to compliment her voice and work in unison with the flow and dynamics of the tune. I have arranged it this time with a combination of fingerpicking and flat-pick strumming. For want of a better place, I hold the pick in my mouth, until it is time to employ it. Another solution would be to use hybrid picking (a combination of the fingers and pick), instead of fingerpicking. That way, the pick is still in your strumming hand, ready to go. I like the sound and feel of the fingers better, although I do employ hybrid picking quite often, when I play. Whatever works. Try different techniques and see what is best for you. For more on fingerpicking and the 'grabbing' chords technique see: Home, Dust In The Wind, Misty, When Sunny Gets Blue.
Christina Perri • Jar Of Hearts
© 2013 Lorne Hemmerling
Lorne Hemmerling (author) from Oshawa on January 10, 2013:
There are many, many versions on the interweb with the wrong chords. These are correct. Don't forget to capo on the third fret to play with the recording. Thanks to everyone for the support for my lessons!