Instead of resting on his laurels or taking an extended hiatus from the scene following the death of Kurt Cobain, ex-Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl went into the studio and recorded more than a dozen of his original songs. Playing all of the instruments, he completed the project in record time. Mostly first takes, the basic rhythm tracks were done in two and a half days, and the album was finished in seven days. Now that’s a work ethic! Dave labeled the project Foo Fighters, and formed the band after Capitol released the recording.
The Beatles’ influence in the music is a subtle issue, yet unmistakable. The use of ringing open chords, the supportive strumming approach and the power pop attitude all acknowledge the indirect influence of the Fab Four, but make no mistake – Dave is his own man and has clearly put his own stamp on the song. The piece is exclusively chordal, based on simple, common shapes trans-formed by Grohl’s musicality and the honesty and craftsmanship of his songwriting approach. The main rhythm figure is exemplary. Here, a handful of open-position chords are seamlessly connected through a useful principle known as common-tone fingering [Fig. 1]. Notice that the C, Am7, Gadd11 and F chords are bound together by a note which occurs in all four chords. This is the C note, 2nd string, 1st fret. Use your index finger as a guide finger during the progression – keep it fretted on the C note throughout the changes. Not only does it make the changes easier and the shifting of shapes more efficient, it opens the door to finding interesting voicings (like the Am7 and the Gadd11) on the neck through purely physical, guitar-oriented means. The common tone principle was one used frequently by the Beatles and hence practically every major pop and rock songwriter post-1965. Also check out the prevalent use of the G/D chord, basically just open strings hit in time between chord changes. This was consistently found in the rhythm guitar playing of John Lennon.
Another point in the chord progression where you can apply a variation of the common shape thinking is in the change from C to C7 [Fig. 2]. In this case, the overall chord shape stays the same (C) and the seventh is added by moving the pinky over from the 1st string to the 3rd string.
It’s a part of Foo Fighters Big Me guitar tab and music sheet.
Through the link below you can download a full transcription of
Foo Fighters Big Me with backing track
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