Guitar lesson for
On the Road Again
by Willie Nelson • Lesson #139
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In this video I’ll show a guitar tutorial for an EASY version of “On the Road Again” by Willie Nelson. I’ll explain how to play the song in the easiest possible way - using chords in the key of C, simple strumming pattern, and no capo. Perfect for a campfire version. If you’re looking to learn a more complex version of the song (key of E, etc) – this will be helpful as well!
- 0:00 Greeting & lesson agenda
- 1:48 Chords needed
- 5:30 Strumming pattern
- 7:04 Verse & chorus progressions
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
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 > >
"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 . . .
"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 . . .
Thanks for reading! I hope this helped you. Questions? Comments? Requests? Let me know!
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