Babe I'm Gonna Leave You

Babe I’m Gonna Leave You by Led Zeppelin (Guitar Lesson)

Babe I'm Gonna Leave You was originally written in the late 1950s by a folk singer-songwriter called Anne Johannsen. Joan Baez then covered the song which appears as the opening track on her live album 'Joan Baez in Concert, Part one'. Led Zeppelin then covered the song in 1969 for their self-titled debut album 'Led Zeppelin', and it went on to become one of their best-known songs.

Babe I'm Gonna Leave You is no. 44 on my Top 60 Fingerpicking Songs of ALL TIME list. If you've not seen the list be sure to check it out and sign up to my weekly email lesson. That way you won't miss learning any of these great fingerstyle songs.

This is a song of epic proportions, and not for the fainthearted to learn from start to finish. It's not that it's really difficult to play the parts, it's all the twists and turns and endless nuances in the picking hand that make it so complicated. You absolutely must listen over and over again to the track as you learn it to make sure you're getting it right.

Babe I'm Gonna Leave You Song Details

  • Key - A minor
  • Tuning - standard
  • Tempo - 136 bpm
  • Difficulty - intermediate - advanced

Structure:

Intro, verse, bridge, verse, bridge, pre-chorus, chorus, bridge, solo (intro progression), verse, chorus, verse, chorus, solo (verse progression), chorus, outro.

Intro:

I recommend really familiarising yourself with the intro progression here, as most of the song is based around these chords. It's entirely up to you whether you play this song with a pick or as fingerstyle.

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Bridge:

One of the easier parts of the song here.


Pre chorus/instrumental:

This section only appears once in the song, just before the first chorus. Although it only comes up once it's still an integral part of the piece.

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Chorus:

For the chorus you take the exact same chords that are used in the verse and really dig in and strum the hell out of them!


Verse 2:

Going into the 2nd verse Page is mixing things up again and arpeggiates the chords differently. As mentioned at the beginning of the lesson, listen to the song to check you're playing it correctly.

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Outro:

Finally, after 5 minutes and 50 seconds you arrive at the outro, but you're not out of the woods just yet as Page has another surprise for you.


If you want to make sure that you're really on the right track with fingerpicking, then try one of my fingerstyle guitar courses - find out more here.

If you have any questions or want to share anything at all, then please leave a comment below.

I hope you've found this lesson useful and thank you for reading.

  1. J-Fred left a comment on 18th May 2019 at 7:24 pm

    Great transcriptions. Great tutorials.

    Access to GuitarPro files will be awesome.

    Thanks,

    J-Fred

    • Six String Fingerpicking left a comment on 20th May 2019 at 2:09 pm

      Thanks J-Fred.

  2. Russ left a comment on 3rd September 2020 at 6:49 pm

    Sir, you mention the sequence as intro, verse 1, verse 2, solo, verse 3, verse 4, verse 5. You only have verse 1 and 2 in this lesson?

    • Six String Fingerpicking left a comment on 3rd September 2020 at 7:45 pm

      I believe that the other verses are the same. If you give the song a listen you’ll be able to hear.

      • Russ left a comment on 6th September 2020 at 7:24 pm

        Thanks…sometimes I do t trust my ear. Thanks !

  3. Russ left a comment on 4th October 2020 at 2:04 pm

    Where are the tabs that were under the video lessons just a cou-le of days ago???

    • Six String Fingerpicking left a comment on 4th October 2020 at 8:01 pm

      Sadly I had to take them all down due to copyright laws. They’ll be available again soon via Musicnotes.

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