Easy One String Guitar Songs Ideal for Beginners

guitar string in pick

Guitar songs that can be played using only one string are brilliant for beginners. This is because they are super simple with the musician only having to deal with one string and none of the others. Another great thing about one string guitar songs is that they can also help you with your musical training by perfecting your inner musical skills.

In this article, we are looking at a number of songs that can be played using just one string. We’ve also included information on how you can benefit from playing and learning these songs.

Improving Your Musicality

Here’s a quick overview on how one string guitar songs can actually improve your overall guitar playing. All of the best guitar players in the world composed and put their songs together by using their musical ear. These skills are the foundation and training you need to become a great musician.

One string guitar songs are amazing for this ear training because there’s only one string you need to worry about. All you do is use the frets to find the right note that sound pleasing to your ear. If you’re completely new to one string guitar songs then this is a great place for you to start.

1. Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes

The most famous and probably easiest one string guitar song is Seven Nation Army by the The White Stripes. Anyone who is a sports fan will probably be very familiar with this tune. Here we are focusing on the bass guitar which acts as the intro into the song. It really is the basis and foundation that makes up the entire structure of the music.

You only need to use one finger and one string to be able to play this piece. Below you can find the tab for all of the notes as well as the YouTube video for the original song. When you begin to play this piece make sure to take your time and really hit those notes accurately. There are some pretty big gaps between each note in the song so make sure you are taking as much time as you need to fret all of them correctly to rock out properly to this tune.

E – | —————————- | |

B – | —————————- | |

G – | —————————- | |

D – | —————————- | |

A – | -7—7-10–7–5—3—-2—– | |

E – | —————————- | |

Seven Nation Army on YouTube

Full Guitar Tab for Seven Nation Army

2. Running Down a Dream by Tom Petty

Released back in 1993, Tom Petty came up with a classic guitar riff that is perfect for our list of one string guitar songs. It’s a pretty quick one so you’ll really have to get those fingers moving. With enough practice you’ll be able to get on top of it and play it perfectly.

The riff actually happens at the beginning of the song but also features throughout the song too. It’s much faster than Seven Nation Army. Because of the speed you shouldn’t be discouraged or put off if you can’t play it at its correct tempo right off the bat. Take your time and start out slowly until you get used to the notes and what the rhythm of the song is doing.

Once you have got the notes and the rhythm down you can gradually being to increase your tempo when you practice. Eventually you will be able to play at the same speed of the song if you practice in this way. Practicing with a metronome may also help you nail your speeds and get used to playing faster one string guitar songs.

E – | —————————- | |

B – | —————————- | |

G – | —————————- | |

D – | —————————- | |

A – | —————————- | |

E – | -0-7-0-6-0-5-0-3-0———- | |

Running Down a Dream on YouTube

Full Guitar Tab for Running Down a Dream

3. Sunshine of Your Love by Cream

We had to include Sunshine of Your Love by Cream in our list of top one string guitar songs. This riff is ideal for beginners who are new to reading a guitar tab because it literally just uses one string and one finger the entire time.

The riff is actually epic and it only uses the D string. Anyone who is familiar with the blues scale will recognize this almost instantly. If you’re not familiar with this then don’t worry about it. It’s still a great guitar song to rock out too from one of the best bands of all time.

The one thing about this piece is the timing. It’s a little bit tricky as far as one string guitar tabs go. You need to be really careful when playing this for the first time, especially if you are a beginner to the guitar.

To get started you will want to play the guitar tab riff slowly so you can make sure all of your notes are correct as you play. Listen to the original recording which we’ve provided for you below so you can nail that rhythm. You may even want to slow the music down and try to play along with it. Once you have got the piece perfect at a slow tempo, gradually try to speed it up.

E – | —————————- | |

B – | —————————- | |

G – | —————————- | |

D – | -12-12-10-12–7-6–5—0-3-0- | |

A – | —————————- | |

E – | —————————- | |

Sunshine of Your Love on YouTube

Full Guitar Tab for Sunshine of Your Love

4. Smoke On the Water by Deep Purple

It seems like every guitar player when they start out will immediately go to this as the infamous one string guitar song for the ages. For over 46 years guitarists have had this on their list of one string guitar songs because the riff is so iconic and yet effortlessly simple.

The riff that is used in the original recording was actually played using two strings. However, we’re making Smoke On the Water a bit easier for you so that you can just use the G string to get pretty much the same effect. If you want to challenge yourself you can then go on to learn the riff using both the G and D strings like the original was played. Although it’s tricky, if you persevere and practice enough you’ll be able to move on from easy one string guitar.

E – | —————————- | |

B – | —————————- | |

G – | -0-3-5—0-3-6-5–0-3-5-3-0- | |

D – | —————————- | |

A – | —————————- | |

E – | —————————- | |

Smoke On the Water on YouTube

Full Guitar Tab for Smoke On the Water

5. Thunderstruck by AC/DC

If you’re up for a challenge and want some one string guitar songs with a bit of length, Thunderstruck is the one for you. It’s completely worth having this one finger wonder in your song repertoire. Although there are two parts to the riff we’re only going to give you the first part to get you started.

Angus Young who is the guitarist for AC/DC actually plays this song without using a pick. However, because you’re just starting out we would suggest you use alternate picking which is where you play the string in an up and down motion.

Your hand movements should be kept small enough so that you don’t end up hitting any of the other strings. This will take a lot of dexterity and timing can also be a challenge but if you keep going at it, the skills you will learn with this one will absolutely make you a better overall guitar player.

E – | ——————————— | ——————————— ||

B – | -4-0-7-0-4-0-7-0-4-0-7-0-4-0-7-0- | -5-0-8-0-5-0-8-0-5-0-8-0-5-0-8-0- ||

G – | ——————————— | ——————————— ||

D – | ——————————— | ——————————— ||

A – | ——————————— | ——————————— ||

E – | ——————————— | ——————————— ||

Thunderstruck on YouTube

Full Guitar Tab for Thunderstruck

6. Mamma Mia by ABBA

So far we’ve only mentioned riffs for guitar songs which are just small parts of the entire song. With Mamma Mia by ABBA you will be playing the entire melody that is used in the chorus. The track was originally released as part of the bands 1975 album and was turned into a hit movie in 2008, with a sequel ten years later. The song has a lot going for it and you can discover the full tab below.

Learning one string guitar songs can actually show you how the pitch works on the guitar because the frets make it rise and fall. The closer you get to the sound hole of the guitar, the higher the note will be. The opposite happens when you get closer to the headstock. This is some great guitar knowledge to have under your belt that will help you with your overall musicality in the future.

E – | ——————————— | ——————————— ||

B – | ——————————— | ——————————— ||

G – | ——————————— | ——————————— ||

D – | —2-0-2-0—0–0–0-0-2-4-2-0— | —2–0—-5–5-5-5-4—0——– ||

A – | ——————————— | ——————————— ||

E – | ——————————— | ——————————— ||

Mamma Mia on YouTube

Full Guitar Tab for Mamma Mia

7. Perfect by Ed Sheeran

Ed Sheeran is known for his beautiful ballads and many of them use easy one string guitar riffs that we can put into guitar tabs for you. For this one you’ll be playing the chorus. The original recording was is A flat which isn’t a great key for guitar songs in general. If you do want to play and sound like the recording you’re going to need to grab your capo, place it onto the first fret and use the G string on the guitar.

What makes Perfect so, well, perfect is because it’s one of those guitar tabs that are fun to play and sing along to. The simplicity of the melody is similar to the one in Mamma Mia. If you want to make this one a little bit more challenging you can try to work out the rest of the song without looking at the tab we’ve provided below.

E – | ——- | —————- | —————- | —————– ||

B – | ——- | —————- | —————- | —————– ||

G – | -7-4-0- | -4–4–4–4-2-0- | -4–4–4–4-2-0- | -5–4–0–0–4— ||

D – | ——- | —————- | —————- | —————– ||

A – | ——- | —————- | —————- | —————– ||

E – | ——- | —————- | —————- | —————– ||

Perfect on YouTube

Full Guitar Tab for Perfect

Conclusion

While some of these easy one string guitar tabs are more lengthy and a lot more challenging that the others, all you need to do is practice. Have some patience and you’ll get into the swing of the strings in no time at all.

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