Guitar lesson for

Feathered Indians

by Tyler Childers

Video Lesson

Editor’s notes

Tyler Childers is one of the very best new country artists I’ve heard in the past few years - and this opening track from his album “Purgatory” is a terribly fun one to play. Here’s how to play it: intro riff, chords, and strumming. I’ll show it all, with a very thorough walkthrough of the intro riff (which can be a bit difficult at first). Even if you don’t pick up your guitar to play this song, I recommend giving Tyler Childers a listen! My other favorites by him include Whitehouse Road and Lady May (I have lessons for both).

Lyrics w/ chords

(capo 5th fret)

INTRO
    E ––2––––––––––––––––|–––––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––
    B ––3––––––––––––––––|––0h2––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––
    G ––0h2–2––4–2––2p0––|––0h2––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––
    D ––0––––––––––––––––|––0h2–2––4–2––2p0––|––0–––––0h2–4––2–0–|––0–––––0h2–4––2–0–
    A –––––––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––|––0h2–2––––––––––––|––2h2–2––––––––––––
    E –––––––––––––––––––|–––––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––
        D                   A                   G                   G                

VERSE
             D                               A
    Well, my buckle makes impressions on the inside of her thigh
              G
    There are little feathered Indians where we tussled through the night
           D                              A
    If I'd known she was religious then I wouldn't have came stoned
           G
    To the house of such an angel too f*cked up to get back home

            D                           A
    Lookin' over West Virginia, smoking Spirits on the roof
                     G
    She asked, ain't anybody told ya that them things are bad for you
           D                                                      A
    I said many folks have warned me, there's been several people try
                G
    But up till now, there ain't been nothing that I couldn't leave behind

PRE CHORUS
        A                G        A                    G
        Hold me close my dear.... sing your whispering song
        A            G        A             G
        Softly in my ear, and I will sing along

CHORUS
                                    Bm   A    G
            Honey, tell me how your love runs true
                    Bm           A        G    A
            And how I can always count on you... to be there when the bullets fly
                G                                        D
            I'd run across the river just to hold you tonight

VERSE
             D                                   A
    Well, my heart is sweating bullets, from the circles it has raced
           G
    Like a little feathered Indian, callin' out the clouds for rain
           D                                   A
    I'd go runnin' through the thicket, I'd go careless through the thorns
            G
    Just to hold her for a minute, though it'd leave me wanting more

PRE-CHORUS
        A                G        A                    G
        Hold me close my dear.... sing your whispering song
        A            G        A             G
        Softly in my ear, and I will sing along
CHORUS
                                    Bm   A    G
            Honey, tell me how your love runs true
                    Bm           A        G    A
            And how I can always count on you... to be there when the bullets fly
                G                                        D
            I'd run across the river just to hold you tonight

Capo 5th fret!

Tyler Childers plays this song with a capo on the 5th fret - and I do too in my video lesson. As always, you can follow the tabs and chords and play the song by yourself just fine without a capo - but you’ll be in a different key from the source recording. I’ll also note, that a capo makes this song easier to play - in that the fret width becomes a bit thinner up around the 5th fret, making some of your pinky stretches easier.

How to play the chords

You’ll need these four chords for this song:

E –––2–––––––3–––2–––
B –––3–––2–––3–––3–––
G –––2–––2–––0–––4–––
D –––0–––2–––0–––4–––
A –––––––0–––2–––2–––
E –––––––––––3–––––––
     D   A   G   Bm

For the A-major, play it like this during the intro riff. This will free up your ring finger (left hand) to play the necessary flourish note.

E –––––––
B –––2–––  <--  Use index finger
G –––2–––  <--  to barre the 2nd fret
D –––2–––  <--  on these 3 strings
A –––0–––
E –––––––
     A

Intro riff

First, understand the underlying structure:

E ––2––––––––––––––––|–––––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––
B ––3––––––––––––––––|––2––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––
G ––2––––––––––––––––|––2––––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––
D ––0––––––––––––––––|––2––––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––
A –––––––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––|––2––––––––––––––––|––2––––––––––––––––
E –––––––––––––––––––|–––––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––
    D                   A                   G                   G

Then, add these flourish notes. If you’re able, keep that strumming hand moving steadily, adding in the other strings as you please.

E ––2––––––––––––––––|–––––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––
B ––3––––––––––––––––|––0h2––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––
G ––0h2–2––4–2––2p0––|––0h2––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––
D ––0––––––––––––––––|––0h2–2––4–2––2p0––|––0–––––0h2–4––2–0–|––0–––––0h2–4––2–0–
A –––––––––––––––––––|––0––––––––––––––––|––0h2–2––––––––––––|––2h2–2––––––––––––
E –––––––––––––––––––|–––––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––|––3––––––––––––––––
    D                   A                   G                   G                

Strumming pattern

To start with, use all down strums - and try to give the 2nd and 4th beats an emphasis or accent.

1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +
D   D   D   D  
    >       >

If you want to flesh it out a bit, try this (down, down, down-up-down-up).

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

Song structure

Verse:

"My buckle makes impressions..."
D . . . A . . . G . . . G . . .   x2

Pre-chorus:

"Hold me close my dear..."
A . . . G . . . A . . . G . . .   x2

Chorus:

"Tell me how your love runs true..."
Bm A G . . . Bm A G . . .

"To be there when the bullets fly..."
A . . . G . . .

Good luck!

Let me know if you have questions. I hope this was helpful.

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