This is one of the most requested songs I have ever transcribed. No matter what the age, everyone seems to like this song. A well written tune with meaningful lyrics, it has been featured at many high school proms and going away parties.
I have transcribed the song as a guitar duet. The rhythm guitar is staff one, while the vocal melody transcribed for guitar is the second standard notation staff combined with the tablature staff. I have found that a lot of beginner students get the standard notation staff mixed up with the tab staff. The lines of the tab staff are the strings of the guitar. The fretboard is depicted upside down with the low E string (the sixth) on the bottom. This way the music is read left to right corresponding to the standard notation.
The rhythm guitar is notated on the first staff. Like many of the other songs I have transcribed, this staff is comprised of rhythm slashes. The first beat is a quarter note rhythm slash and receives one beat, the same as a regular quarter note would. The second, third and fourth beats are all eighth note rhythm slashes. These slashes cut a quarter note into two parts, the same as a regular eighth note. The count for the rhythm pattern without the tie would simply be: 1 2& 3& 4&. Strum direction would be down, down-up, down-up, down-up. The tie between the second half of the second beat and the first half of the third beat, creates a quarter note in the middle of the measure. The count with the tie is 1 2& &4&. The strum direction is down, down-up, up-down-up. Keep your strumming hand moving in a straight eight note down-up pattern and miss the upstroke on the second half of the first beat and the downstroke on the first half of the third beat.
Melody • Part One
The standard notation for the melody is on the second staff, tablature corresponding to the standard notation is on the third staff. When music is transcribed with these two staves, you have all you need to play the piece on guitar. The standard notation tells you the phrasing (the duration that the notes are held) and the note names. With the inclusion of the tab staff, it is not necessary to know the note names, because the numbers indicate where to find the notes. Tablature does not indicate phrasing. Sometimes when writing tab, transcribers will leave spaces to indicate the note durations. This is not very reliable. If the tablature staff is the only staff, you will have to know how the actual piece sounds. This is the major drawback with tab verses standard notation. Learning to read music and being able to find notes on the fretboard is essential to proper guitar education.
In measure one, the first beat is a quarter rest. Do not play on this beat, start on beat two and play quarter notes for the second, third and fourth beat. Try tapping your foot four times (one for each beat) and start on the second foot tap. Continue to play the next two notes in measure one on the third and fourth foot tap. Play one note on each foot tap in measure two and three. Since measure four is a whole note (receives four beats), play the note once and let it ring for four beats. Learning to tap your foot on the quarter note results in solid rhythm and tempo. I find a lot of students have great difficulty with this. Persevere, it is well worth the effort.
Melody • Part Two
The rhythm pattern (staff one) is the same throughout the song. As in Part One, the melody starts on the second beat. Continue to tap your foot four times for each measure. Once again, do not play on the first foot tap of measure one. In measure two, there is a half note at the beginning. This note takes up the first two beats (foot taps). Play the same note (D) on beats three and four. In measure three, there is four quarter notes. Play on each foot tap. In measure four, there is a quarter note followed by a dotted half note. The dot adds half the value of the note to the note (in this case, there is a quarter note added to the half note). Hold this note for three beats (foot taps).
Melody • Part Three
The third part of the melody differs from the other two in that, the two lines are not identical. In the first measure of each of these lines there is no quarter note rest. Play four even notes on each beat (foot taps). In measure two of the first line there is a half note taking up the last two foot taps (beats). In the fourth measure play the whole note and hold it for the four beats. In measure two of the second line, the first two foot taps are taken up by the half note followed by two quarter notes played on the third and fourth foot taps. In the last measure of the section, play the open string and hold for four beats (foot taps).
This is a simplified version of the vocal melody. Most all melodies can be transcribed in this manner.
Full Arrangement • Part One
Full Arrangement • Part Two
These are the same notes and the same phrasing as part one of the full arrangement. The only difference is, the melody is voiced an octave higher. Use the four fingers, four frets guide here. The first finger plays on the tenth fret while the fourth finger is situated on the thirteenth fret. For example, in measures one and two, the twelfth fret is played with the third finger, thirteenth with the fourth and the tenth with the first. In fact the only time the second finger would come into play is on the second last note, the F♯ on the eleventh fret on the third string.
The song played with two guitar parts
© 2014 Lorne Hemmerling
Lorne Hemmerling (author) from Oshawa on December 24, 2014:
Good luck, my friend!
Jessica on December 24, 2014:
..This is where(one hole notes) I've been spending the past 5 days brfeoe I found your site now to add some method to my self teaching madness .if indeed I can do this in 30 days ..you'll be my hero Ok .so now I'll listen to day 4 so far so good