Wonderful Tonight appears on Eric Clapton's stunning album Slowhand and works superbly as a fingerstyle arrangement. This song is no. 3 on my Top 60 Fingerpicking Songs of ALL TIME list.
The song uses very straight forward chords and the entire piece contains only G, D, C and Em. So if you wanted to strum the piece it really wouldn't be all that difficult, however, as we are fingerpickers we combine the melody and the chords at the same time and essentially sing the melody with our fingers. This makes it a lot harder to play, but is tremendously fun and satisfying once mastered.
Wonderful Tonight facts:
- Recorded in 1977
- Written for Pattie Boyd
- Key of G major
- tempo = 96 bmp
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Let's first take a look at the intro/main melody of Wonderful Tonight:
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Here we are outlining the chords and playing the melody at the same time, essentially doing the part of two guitars. This will no doubt prove to be a little difficult at times, the last bar is the hardest to get right so as always take it very slowly.
In the video lessons I put the melody over the whole of the verse and while this sounds great, it wouldn't work so well if you wanted to sing the song. So for all you fingerpicking singers out there here is a verse for Wonderful Tonight that will accompany your voice nicely:
And here is the full TAB for the verse played as fingerstyle:
It is considerably harder if you want to play the all out fingerstyle rendition, but is well worth the extra effort. As with any song that you cover in a fingerpicking style you have to be completely true to the melody, this is probably the most important thing when covering a song fingerstyle - you MUST make your fingers sing the lyrics. Timing, accuracy and clarity of each note is essential.
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