Here’s a guitar lesson on Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes with a guitar tab (guitar tablature).

Yours truly! Will Ripley (Campfire Guitar Star)

Seven Nation Army

The White Stripes had a chart topping hit with “Seven Nation Army” back in 2003.  After weeks at #1 it went on to win the Grammy Award for best rock song of that year.  Jack White’s guitar sound was fundamental to the band as they performed only as a 2 piece (drums/guitar/vocals).

For the famous riff, Jack used a vintage Kay guitar through a pedal called a “DigiTech Whammy”.  This pedal was used to move the pitch down exactly one octave while the hollow-body of the guitar produced a more rounded tone.  The result is a unique ‘bass like’ guitar riff.  This song as been the protest song for Egypt in 2011 and the anthem of Italy’s World Cup win in 2006 as well as countless other sporting events, movies, tv shows and video games… and it’s just 5 notes!

When I teach this song to my students, I transpose the key to “A”. The original version is in E. If you don’t have the DigiTech Whammy pedal, it sounds a bit better like this.

Getting ready –

  1. Look up “Seven Nation Army – White Stripes” on the internet and have a listen.
  2. Become familiar enough with the riff so you can hum along in real time.
  3. Read the tab, play the notes and see how close you can come to nailing the riff!

Start by playing the 5th fret of the E string with your 3rd finger.  This will get your hand into the perfect position to play that 3rd fret of your A string with your 1st finger.

To complete the riff continue to move your hand down, playing the third and first frets with your first finger.

* Sit up straight & remember proper technique.

* Find the rhythm with your body.  Tap your toe, dance a little bit in your chair etc.  This will help you stay on beat and play with more feel.

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Thanks and keep on rippin it! – Will Ripley & Mike B