Lesson Plan

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Lesson notes

Father Figure is a song taken from George Michael’s Grammy Award winning debut album ‘Faith’, released in 1988.

This lesson is based on an acoustic arrangement that Michael performed at a concert in 1996 at Three Mills Studios in London, for MTV Unplugged.

Besides going through the progression, the colorful chords and the strumming, also done in double time, we mainly take a look at how to play the beautiful signature melody line which appears in the intro, interlude and outro.

The latter is by far the hardest part to play, since it requires quite a bit from both hands, but the rest of the song is relatively easy.

The song in in the key of A, mainly using major chords with an occasional twist to minor. The guitar is capoed on the first fret, and puts it in the absolute key of Bb.

It uses the very exotic sounding Jewish scale, ‘Ahava Rabbah’, for the signature melodyline, also known as the Phrygian dominant scale, or the 5th mode of the harmonic minor scale.

For example, the popular Jewish tune ‘Hava Nagila’ is based on that particular scale. A segment which elaborates a little more on that is included.