Guitar lesson for

Shallow

by Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper

Video lesson

Guitar lesson:

Play-along cover (full song):

Support me on Patreon to get access to a print-friendly PDF chord sheet (w/ tabs, etc) for this lesson. This will also give you access to chord sheets I’ve already made for other lessons. Thanks for your support!

Lyrics w/ chords

INTRO (use this same tab during the verse)

    E ||–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––0–––––––––––0h2p0–––––
    B ||–––––3–––––3–––3–––––––––––––––––––––1–3–––––––3–––3–––3––––––3––––
    G ||–––0–––0–––2–––0–––––––––––––––––––0–––––0–––––––––0–––2––––––––2––
    D ||–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––0–––––––––––
    A ||–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––3–––––––––3–––––––––––––––––––––––
    E ||–0–––––––2–––––3–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––3–––––––––––––––––
         Em      D/F#  G                 C               G     D
         1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +

    E –|–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––||
    B –|–––––3–––––3–––3–––––––––––––––––||
    G –|–––0–––0–––2–––0–––––––––––––––––||
    D –|–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––||   ...then, start verse
    A –|–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––||
    E –|–0–––––––2–––––3–––––––––––––––––||
         Em      D/F#  G                 
         1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +

VERSE #1

    Em         D/F#       G     C                       G      D
    ...Tell me somethin', girl... are you happy in this modern world?
    Em       D/F#     G      C                                G         D
    ...Or do you need more?... is there somethin' else you're searchin' for?
    Em   D/F#   G    C                         G      D
    I'm  fall---ing... in all the good times I find myself a-longing...
    Em  D/F#  G       C                        G      D
    ......For change... and in the bad times I fear myself

        [ Em - D/F# - G    x2 ]

VERSE #2

    Em         D/F#       G    C                            G         D
    ...Tell me something, boy... aren't you tired tryin' to fill that void?
    Em       D/F#     G      C                          G      D
    ...Or do you need more?... ain't it hard keeping it so hardcore?
    Em   D/F#   G    C                         G      D
    I'm  fall---ing... in all the good times I find myself, longing...
    Em  D/F#  G       C                        G      D
    ......For change... and in the bad times I fear myself

PRE-CHORUS

        Am                    D
        I'm off the deep end, watch as I dive in
        G          D/F#     Em
        I'll never meet the ground
        Am                         D
        Crash through the surface, where they can't hurt us
              G            D/F#    Em
        We're far from the shallow now

CHORUS
            Am        Am/G    D/F#
            ...In the sha-ha, sha-ha-low
            G         D/F#            Em
            ...In the shallow, sha-la-la-la-low
            Am        Am/G    D/F#
            ...In the sha-ha, sha-ha-low
                  G            D/F#    Em  (stay on E-minor before the build up)
            We're far from the shallow now

BRIDGE
                Bm     D       A       Em
                Oh, ahhhhh.... Ah, hahhhh.....
                    Bm          D      A
                Oh, ahh..... ahhhhhh----------

PRE-CHORUS

        Am                    D
        I'm off the deep end, watch as I dive in
        G          D/F#     Em
        I'll never meet the ground
        Am                         D
        Crash through the surface, where they can't hurt us
              G            D/F#    Em
        We're far from the shallow now

CHORUS
            Am        Am/G    D/F#
            ...In the sha-ha, sha-ha-low
            G         D/F#            Em
            ...In the shallow, sha-la-la-la-low
            Am        Am/G    D/F#
            ...In the sha-ha, sha-ha-low
                  G            D/F#    Em
            We're far from the shallow now

                [ ...end with a single E-minor strum ]

Chords needed

“Magic ring” chord shapes (used for intro & verse fingerpicking):

E ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
B ––––3–––––3–––––3–––––3–––––  <== left ring finger stays here,
G ––––0–––––2–––––0–––––0–––––      on 3rd fret, for all chords!
D ––––2–––––0–––––0–––––2–––––
A ––––2–––––0–––––2–––––3–––––
E ––––0–––––2–––––3–––––––––––
     Em7   D/F#   G   Cadd9

Conventional chord shapes (used throughout the song):

E ––––0–––––3–––––3–––––0––––0–––––0–––––2–––––0––––
B ––––0–––––3–––––3–––––1––––1–––––1–––––3–––––2––––
G ––––0–––––2–––––0–––––0––––2–––––0–––––4–––––2––––
D ––––2–––––0–––––0–––––2––––2–––––2–––––4–––––2––––
A ––––2–––––––––––2–––––3––––0–––––x–––––2–––––0––––
E ––––0–––––––––––3––––––––––––––––3––––––––––––––––
      Em    D     G     C    Am   Am/G   Bm    A

How to learn the intro riff

When learning this song, I recommend using the following as a guide to understand the rhythm of the intro & verse chords. Whether you strum or fingerpick, you’ll want to note which chords are switched to on the beat, and which are “pushed” so that you switch to them an 8th note ahead of the main beat (e.g., the first G is played on the “4 +” count instead of the “1” count).

E ||––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––0–––––––––––––––3–––––2–––––––––|–
B ||––3–––––––3–––––3–––––––––––––––––1–––––––––––––––3–––––3–––––––––|–
G ||––0–––––––2–––––0–––––––––––––––––0–––––––––––––––0–––––2–––––––––|–
D ||––2–––––––0–––––0–––––––––––––––––2–––––––––––––––0–––––0–––––––––|–
A ||––2–––––––0–––––2–––––––––––––––––3–––––––––––––––2–––––––––––––––|–
E ||––0–––––––2–––––3–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––3–––––––––––––––|–
      Em      D/F#  G                 C               G     D
      1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +

From here, you can bring in the fingerpicking tab as heard in the actual song. Notice how the chord changes happen on the beats prescribed above.

E ||–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––0–––––––––––0h2p0–––––
B ||–––––3–––––3–––3–––––––––––––––––––––1–3–––––––3–––3–––3––––––3––––
G ||–––0–––0–––2–––0–––––––––––––––––––0–––––0–––––––––0–––2––––––––2––
D ||–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––0–––––––––––
A ||–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––3–––––––––3–––––––––––––––––––––––
E ||–0–––––––2–––––3–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––3–––––––––––––––––
     Em      D/F#  G                 C               G     D
     1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +

Simplifying the intro & verse riff

Here’s the same intro progression, but using the simplified chord shapes that keep your left ring finger on the same note for all chords. Can’t beat that!

E ||–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––|–
B ||––3–––––––3–––––3–––––––––––––––––3–––––––––––––––3–––––3––––––––|–
G ||––0–––––––2–––––0–––––––––––––––––0–––––––––––––––0–––––2––––––––|–
D ||––2–––––––0–––––0–––––––––––––––––2–––––––––––––––0–––––0––––––––|–
A ||––2–––––––0–––––2–––––––––––––––––3–––––––––––––––2––––––––––––––|–
E ||––0–––––––2–––––3–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––3––––––––––––––|–
      Em      D/F#  G                 C               G     D
      1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +

If you want to keep things simpler for the intro and/or the verse, I recommend learning this approach. The benefit is that your left ring finger stays on the B string (3rd fret) for all chords, which makes things so much easier. Note, this gets looser with the timing - which also keeps things simpler (don’t feel like you HAVE to match the exact timing of the song, if it’s giving you a hard time).

E ||––––––––– ––––––––– ––––––––– –––––––– –––––––– –––––––– –––––––– –––––––––
B ||–––––3––– –––––3––– –––––3––– ––––3––– ––––3––– ––––3––– ––––3––– –––––3–––
G ||–––0–––0– –––2–––2– –––0–––0– ––0–––0– ––0–––0– ––0–––0– ––0–––0– –––2–––2–
D ||––––––––– ––––––––– ––––––––– –––––––– –––––––– –––––––– –––––––– –0–––––––
A ||––––––––– ––––––––– ––––––––– –––––––– –3–––––– –3–––––– –––––––– –––––––––
E ||–0––––––– –2––––––– –3––––––– –3–––––– –––––––– –––––––– –3–––––– –––––––––
     Em        D/F#      G         G        Cadd9    Cadd9    G        D

Chord progression cheat sheet

There are four beats per measure - and each of the main song sections used the following chords (sometimes you stay on a chord for 4 counts, other times you split a measure between two different chords).

Verse:        "Tell me something, girl..."
              | Em    D/F# | G          | C          | G     D    |

Pre-chorus:   "I'm off the deep end..."
              | Am         | D          | G     D/F# | Em         |

Chorus:       "In the shallow, shallow..."
              | Am    Am/G | D/F#       | G     D/F# | Em         |

Bridge:       "Whoaaaa....."
              | Bm         | D          | A          | Em         |
              | Bm         | D          | A          |

Strumming pattern

After the verse sections are over, I usually strum the rest of the song. Quite simply, I’ll use a “down, down up… up down up” pattern, over and over again.

1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +
D   D U   U D U

Good luck!

I hope this helps, and as always let me know if you have any questions.

Enjoy my lessons? Buy me a beer!

If this and my other lessons have proven helpful to you, please consider making a one-time donation to my tip jar. Contributions of any amount help make this project possible (including the many, many hours I put into it).

You can also support me on Patreon. For only $3/month you'll get access to a print-friendly PDF of my notes for each lesson.

Thanks!


Subscribe to my YouTube channel

Be sure to never miss a lesson by subscribing on YouTube. I put out 2-3 new videos every week. These include full song lessons, as well as covers, practice tips, behind-the-scenes updates. Thanks!


Recent video lessons:


Monthly email updates

If you want to keep posted of new lessons over email, sign up for my newsletter. I'll email once a month with a digest of all my new videos. I promise: no spam.


← back to lesson list