Big Love Guitar Lesson

Big Love by Fleetwood Mac – Guitar Lesson (TABS)

In this lesson we're going to be learning the acoustic version of Fleetwood Mac's song 'Big Love'. Lindsey Buckingham wrote the song in 1987 and his live performances of it have been staggering people's minds ever since. 

This isn't going to be a walk in the park for a lot of you, it's really very fast and incredibly demanding on the right hand. Your thumb has to work particularly hard and you may find you're getting a lot of strain. Don't worry about this, it's normal,  just avoid working it too hard and rest for a little while if your wrist starts to hurt. 

When Buckingham plays Big Love live, he usually hangs around the 140 bpm mark. However don't feel as though you need to play it at that speed, it still sounds great at lower tempos. So bring out your metronome and gradually build up your technique.

Big Love is no. 57 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. 

Big Love Guitar Lesson

Song Details:

  • Capo - 4th fret
  • Tuning - standard
  • Key - C#m
  • Tempo - 140 bpm
  • Difficulty - advanced 


First of all, let's look at the intro/verse riff. The entirety of this section is over an Am chord, just with a moving bass note. As you can see, straight away your thumb is getting quite a workout!

Big Love Guitar Tab

Learn more about the techniques used in this song.

Fingerpicking Bundle Course

Join the Academy


Into the chorus now and some new chords are thrown into the mix. Be sure to take your time (as always) and really work on getting each note to fall in exactly the right place, without disrupting the thumb.

Big Love Guitar Tab


The lick that's being played through the solo is really quite basic and somewhat cliché, however with the moving bass notes underneath, it instantly becomes 10x's harder and a lot more interesting.

Big Love Guitar Tab


Nothing lets up here, still very demanding on the right hand.

Big Love Guitar Tab

Learn more about the techniques used in this song.

Fingerpicking Bundle Course

Join the Academy

Instrumental (Part 2):

This part is very difficulty to get up to speed, at a slow tempo you likely won't find it hard to play, but as you work the metronome up you may start to fall short of the click.

Big Love Guitar Tab


Finally we have the outro section. This is the section of Big Love where Lindsey Buckingham seems to lose the plot a little, and starts screaming like a lunatic. There's not many people that could perform such an act and still look cool. 

Big love Guitar Lesson

Let me know what you thought of the lesson in the comments section below. Tell me what you found hard/easy and add any song suggestions that you may have.

Recent Fingerstyle Song Lessons:

Neon (John Mayer), God Only Knows (The Beach Boys), Never Going back Again (Fleetwood Mac), Don't Fear The Reaper (Blue Oyster Cult, Papa George (Tommy Emmanuel, Classical Gas (Mason Williams).

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. Adrian left a comment on 7th September 2019 at 5:47 pm

    Hello! As usual, thanks so much for this. I learnt this song in segregations and eventually got it down. Reckoned I should make a video of it to show my appreciation. It’s not my best attempt nor the best quality but it will make do.

    I’ve been playing for about a year now and I’ve followed your site since then, and I’m still not close to ticking off every song on your list, but I won’t stop until I do.


    • Six String Fingerpicking left a comment on 10th September 2019 at 10:21 am

      Wow! you’ve only been playing a year? There is no way I would’ve been able to play that after a year, not a chance. Great job! Keep it up.

  2. Corina left a comment on 10th December 2019 at 7:43 am

    I find your patience to put together these lessons incredible. I set this song as my goal song and I’m gaining on it. It is certainly challenging, but so very satisfying as I grasp each section. It’s going to be be awhile before I have it all down, but I’m determined to get there.

    Your videos are so great and well done. Thank you for taking the time do make them. I find yours to be clear and of the easier ones to follow. Well done.

    • Six String Fingerpicking left a comment on 13th December 2019 at 10:46 am

      Thanks Corina, I’m really pleased that you like my lessons.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *