Guitar lesson for

On the Road Again

by Willie Nelson

Video lesson


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Capo 4th fret to play with Willie

On this page, I’m teaching this song using chords in the key of C (which are easier to play than the key of E, which is what Willie uses). Add a capo on the 4th fret, using chords in C, to play with Willie. Otherwise, a capo isn’t needed.

Lyrics with chords

VERSE
           C                                           E
    On the road again... just can't wait to get on the road again
                              Dm
    The life I love is making music with my friends
        F                   G           C
    And I can't wait to get on the road again

           C                                    E
    On the road again... going places that I've never been
                             Dm
    Seeing things that I may never see again
        F                   G            C
    And I can't wait to get on the road again

CHORUS

           F                                               C
    On the road again... like a band of gypsies we go down highway
              F                                                        C
    We're the best of friends... insisting that the world keep turning our way
        G        (silence chord)
    And our way...

SOLO

    (use verse chords)

CHORUS

    (repeat same chorus above)

VERSE
                 C                                        E
    ...is on the road again just can't wait to get on the road again
                              Dm
    The life I love is making music with my friends
        F                   G           C
    And I can't wait to get on the road again

How to play the chords

Here’s the easiest way to play the chords. Of course, I’m showing a simplified F below (use a full F if you’re able to play it). You can also use an E7 and G7 if you wish - but these aren’t required.

E –––0–––1–––0–––––––3–––
B –––1–––3–––0–––1–––0–––
G –––0–––2–––1–––2–––0–––
D –––2–––0–––2–––3–––0–––
A –––3–––––––2–––3–––2–––
E –––––––––––0–––––––3–––
     C   Dm  E   F   G

Strumming pattern

To keep things simple, I recommend all downstrums (4 per measure) with accents on the 2 and 4 counts. See my video lesson for some context here.

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

From there, you could add some upstrums within this pattern – specifically in the final half.

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

Chord progressions

Verse:

"On the road again, just can't wait to get on the road again..."

C  . . . C . . .  C . . . C . . .
E  . . . E . . .  E . . . E . . .
Dm . . . Dm . . . F . . . G . . .
C  . . . C  . . .

Chorus:

"On the road again, like a band of gypsies we go down the highway..."

F . . . F . . . F . . . F . . . C . . . C . . .
F . . . F . . . F . . . F . . . C . . . C . . .
G . . . G . . .

Good luck!

Thanks for reading! I hope this helped you. Questions? Comments? Requests? Let me know!

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