This set of guitar lessons teaches five songs from the early days of Lionel Richie's career.
Lesson 1: Still - Commodores - Guitar Lesson
Still, another beautiful ballad written by artist Lionel Richie, is a song by American soul band the Commodores and appears on their hit album ‘Midnight Magic’, released in 1979.
This lesson teaches an arrangement in the key of D, where the strings should be tuned down a ½ step, in order to play with the original recording.
It features four chords that are relatively easy, but using multiple shapes and fingerings.
The challenge is to incorporate melody notes as played on the piano, including a few fills which re-appear several times throughout the arrangement.
Anyone tackling this song should be comfortable fingerpicking in general and have the ability to shift from home position to shifted position back and forth.
It is encouraged, as often with this kind of arrangement, to randomly play through it. It is also crucial to pay close attention to how the notes sound and to make sure the right hand plays them with the right touch and sensitivity.
Lesson 2: Three Times A Lady - The Commodores - Guitar Lesson
Three Times A Lady, written by artist Lionel Richie, is a song by American soul group the Commodores, from their 1977 album ‘Natural High'.
This lesson shows a fingerpicking arrangement in the key of G, where the guitar is capoed on the first fret.
It features relatively easy chord shapes and several chords with bass notes other than the root.
The song is in ¾ time and one could keep the picking very simple. Yet, it is encouraged to change it up a bit and to incorporate some of the melody notes as done on the piano, including a little of the guitar solo.
Lesson 3: Penny Lover
Penny Lover is the title of the fifth and final single released from Lionel Richie’s multi-platinum and Grammy Award-winning 1983 album ‘Can’t Slow Down’.
The arrangement is done in the key of Ab, and the obvious choice for the guitar would be to play it with chord shapes in the key of G with the capo on the 1st fret, or wherever it might fit the range of your voice.
We take a close look at the chords, the strumming and of course the progression and how it is arranged.One of the challenges might be the syncopated chord changes and overall feel. You want to strum this gently.
Another challenge is to take it to the next level and include some melody notes, like for example immediately in the intro, as well as several other spots in the song. This takes quite a bit more effort from both hands and in particular the strumming, flat picking one. It sure is worth it to give it a try.
Lesson 4: Hello - Lionel Richie - Guitar Lesson
Lionel Richie is a multi Grammy Award winning American singer-songwriter and record producer. He was a member of the funk and soul band the Commodores before launching a very successful solo career in 1982.
Hello is a beautiful romantic ballad and was released in 1984 as the 3rd single from his 2nd solo album ‘Can’t Slow Down’. It became a huge hit around the world.
The song is primarily done on a piano and turns out to be easily transcribable to the guitar.
The progression is in the key of Am, with a few chords out of the key. It features several colorful chords, and the lesson shows a few different ways of playing them.
We take a close look at the right hand. This includes basic fingerpicking, strumming with either fingers or a pick, how to do a combination of both, and some ideas of how I would personally prefer to perform it.
I can’t stress enough that the song is all about the right hand. It’s about how to attack the strings and how to approach it dynamically to create the right feel and intensity.
Lesson 5: Say You, Say Me
Say You, Say Me is another number-one hitsingle written and recorded by American singer- songwriter Lionel Richie for the film ‘White Nights’. It earned him an Academy Award and Golden Globe. It was released in 1985 and appears on his album ‘Dancing on the Ceiling’ (1986).
The song is mainly performed on a piano/keyboard. It’s easy to translate to the guitar, using the chords in the key of G where the guitar is capoed on the 1st fret.
We take a look at the chords, the ballad strum and of course the progression.
It is all relatively easy, if not for the bridge. The latter introduces a few challenges such as a significant tempo change, a time signature change and a couple of much harder chord shapes.
All in all, a beautiful ballad, easy to play and challenging at the same time.