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This video is a guitar lesson for “7 Years” by Lukas Graham, including chords, tablature, lyrics, and strumming pattern.
Chord progression cheat-sheet
The basic progression used for most of the song (verse & chorus sections) is as follows:
Em . . D/F# G . . . C . . . . . D .
There are a few exceptions:
- During the most minimal / soft intros, the D/F# is omitted (i.e., switch from the Em directly to a G). The first chorus is an example of this.
- At the end of some of the choruses, the final “D” isn’t played (stay on C). The first chord is an example of this.
- The bridge section during the “60 years old” portion uses different progression. See the notes below about this.
Lyrics & chords
INTRO Em . . . G . . . C . . . C . D . Em . . . G . . . C . . . C . . . (play with riff) CHORUS Em G C Once I was seven years old my mama told me D Go make yourself some friends or you'll be lonely Em G C Once I was seven years old... VERSE Em D/F# G ...It was a big, big--- world... but we thought we were bigger C D ...Pushing each other to the limits, we were learning quicker Em D/F# G ...By eleven smoking herb and drinking burning liquor C D ...Never rich so we were out to make that steady figure Em D/F# G C Once I was eleven years old my daddy told me D Go get yourself a wife or you'll be lonely Em D/F# G C Once I was eleven years old... (use same verse & chorus chords for entire song) I always had that dream like my daddy before me So I started writing songs, I started writing stories Something about that glory just always seemed to bore me 'Cause only those I really love will ever really know me Once I was twenty years old, my story got told Before the morning sun, when life was lonely Once I was twenty years old... I only see my goals, I don't believe in failure 'Cause I know the smallest voices, they can make it major I got my boys with me at least those in favor And if we don't meet before I leave, I hope I'll see you later Once I was twenty years old, my story got told I was writing about everything, I saw before me Once I was twenty years old... Soon we'll be thirty years old, our songs have been sold We've traveled around the world and we're still roaming Soon we'll be thirty years old... BRIDGE Em G ...I'm still learning about life, my woman brought children for me C D ...So I can sing them all my songs, and I can tell them stories Em G ...Most of my boys are with me... Some are still out seeking glory... C Bm ...And some I had to leave behind, my brother I'm still sorry... C D/F# Em D Soon I'll be sixty years old, my daddy got sixty-one G Remember life and then your life becomes a bigger one C D/F# Em ...I made a man so happy when I wrote a letter once B7sus4 B7 ...I hope my children come and visit once or twice a month C D/F# Em D Soon I'll be sixty years old, will I think the world is cold G Or will I have a lot of children who can warm me C D/F# Em C D Soon I'll be sixty years old... Soon I'll be sixty years old, will I think the world is cold Or will I have a lot of children who can warm me Soon I'll be sixty years old... (back to normal chorus chords) (repeat first chorus, end)
Notes & tabs
Basic chords used
E ||---0----3----0----2---- B ||---0----0----1----3---- G ||---0----0----0----2---- D ||---2----0----2----0---- A ||---2----2----3--------- E ||---0----3-------------- Em G C D
Playing chords at the start of the the walk-down
If you want to start the walk-down riff by strumming a chord (instead of a single note), use these tabs. This applies to the D-chord and G-chord.
A rather recognizable part of the chord progression involves this walk-up transition from Em to G, by means of adding a D-major chord with a F# bass note. Here are a few ways to play that.
At its simplest, we’re talking about this F# on the 2nd fret of the 6th string. You can play this note by itself between the two chords and capture the spirit of this walk-up.
See PDF for diagram.
Strictly speaking, the full chords in question look like this – but when all strings are played, I find the bass transition is drown out by the higher treble notes.
See PDF for diagram. <!-- E ||---0---------2----3----- B ||---0---------3----0----- G ||---0---------2----0----- D ||---2---------0----0----- A ||---2---------0----2----- E ||---0---------2----3----- Em D/F# G -->
One way I like to play it is as follows – I’m playing only the 4-5 bottom strings, so that the transition is a bit more full sounding. If this is new to you, it’s important to recognize that the D/F# segment you’re playing is part of that “full” D/F# chord listed above.
See PDF for diagram.
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