In this fingerstyle guitar lesson we're going to be learning a really fun, easy arrangement of Ring of Fire.
This classic country song was originally written by June Carter and Merle Kilgore in 1963 but it was the great Johnny Cash that popularised it. This is certainly a much loved song and one that never fails to get people up and dancing.
Ring of Fire is made up of just three very simple chords (G, C, & D). It's short, upbeat and a real foot tapper. If you've not been fingerpicking all that long and are looking for an easy-ish, enjoyable arrangement to learn, then this is a great choice for you.
OK, let's get on with learning Ring of Fire (number 1 on my Top 10 Country Songs for Fingerstyle Guitar list).
- Key - G major
- Tuning - standard
- Difficulty - easy
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Ring of Fire Guitar Lesson
To make things easy on yourself, I'd recommend breaking things up. First learn the chords to Ring of Fire, then the melody and finally the bass notes. Practise them all individually and then when you feel ready, start jigsawing them all together. This is definitely the fastest way to learn a new fingerstyle piece.
If you want the lyrics of Ring of Fire and just the chords in their most basic form, then you can find them on Play Song Notes.
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How to Play the Chorus for Ring of Fire
If you've been OK up to this point then you shouldn't struggle too much with the chorus of Ring of Fire. It's the same chords as before, just rearranged slightly differently. However, you may find the first D major chord a little hard as it requires a fairly sizeable stretch.
Want to learn more fun fingerstyle songs?
Structure of Ring of Fire
Intro, Verse, Chorus, Bridge (same as intro), Chorus, Verse, Chorus x2, Outro
Want to learn more fingerstyle arrangements of famous songs?: Can't Help Falling In Love (Elvis Presley), Take Me Home, Country Roads (John Denver), Don't Look Back In Anger (Oasis), Ticket to Ride (The Beatles), Have You Ever Seen The Rain (Creedence Clearwater Revival).
Alternatively you can browse the whole song catalogue: Song Lesson Library
Let me know what you thought of the lesson in the comments section below. Say what you found hard/easy, what level you're at and what your fingerpicking goals are.