Guitar lesson for

Wild World

by Cat Stevens  •  Lesson #282

Video lesson

Get the sheet music(3 pages)

  • A properly licensed, print-friendly arrangement is available for individual purchase at Musicnotes.com
  • This sheet music was designed & hand-crafted by me (David Potsiadlo) with care, providing you with everything needed to both learn and play this song.
  • On the fence? Here's a video guide I made showing the purchase & print process.
Buy at Musicnotes.com

Patreon supporters: click here to get the 50% off discount code on this purchase

Editor’s notes

Hey friends! Here’s my lesson for “Wild World” by Cat Stevens. Played in the key of C, this is an intermediate song (requiring only 1 barre chord) which offers many opportunities to add fills & riffs in between your normal strums. I’ll teach you the intro, verse, chorus, the various riffs and fills, as well as walking you through a few different strumming patterns. I hope you find this helpful!

Timestamps for this lesson:

Lyrics and chords

    Am             D             G
    ...La la la la la la la, la, la...
                   C             F
    ...La la la la la la la, la, la...
                   Dm                  E      Esus4 E
    ...La la la la la la la la, la, la la la...


    Am               D                  G
    ...Now that I've lost everything to you
                C                     F
    You say you wanna start something new
             Dm                       E                     Esus4 E
    And it's breaking my heart you're leaving.... baby, I'm grieving

    Am                  D                G
    ...But if you wanna leave, take good care
                      C                     F
    I hope you have a lot of nice things to wear
               Dm                      E       G        G7 (walk down)
    But then a lot of nice things turn bad out there...


            C      G                  F          (riff)
            ...Oh, baby, baby, it's a wild world
            G                   F              C     (riff)
            ...It's hard to get by just upon a smile
            C      G                  F          (riff)
            ...Oh, baby, baby, it's a wild world
            G                F                 C            Dm  E
            ...I'll always remember you like a child, girl...

    Am                      D                         G
    ...You know I've seen a lot of what the world can do
             C                    F
    And it's breaking my heart in two
              Dm                    E                     Esus4 E
    Because I never wanna see you a sad girl... don't be a bad girl

    Am                  D                G
    ...But if you wanna leave, take good care
                      C                       F
    I hope you make a lot of nice friends out there
               Dm                          E      G     G7 (walk down)
    But just remember there's a lot of bad and beware...

          [ chorus x 1 ]

    Am             D             G
    ...La la la la la la la, la, la...
                   C             F
    ...La la la la la la la, la, la...
                   Dm                  E               Esus4 E
    ...La la la la la la la la, la, la la la... baby I love you

    Am                  D                G
    ...But if you wanna leave, take good care
                      C                       F
    I hope you make a lot of nice friends out there
               Dm                          E      G     G7 (walk down)
    But just remember there's a lot of bad and beware...

          [ chorus x2 ]

          G                F                 C (let ring)
          ...I'll always remember you like a child, girl

Guitar Chords Used

Here is how to play the guitar chords used in this song. Note, I’m also including some alternative chord positions you can use, mainly the Cmaj7 (in place of the C) and the D7 (in place of the D). These are optional, but may help change up the sound.

e-|---0---2---3---0---1---1---0---   ---2-----0----1----0---
B-|---1---3---0---1---1---3---0---   ---1-----0----0----0---
G-|---2---2---0---0---2---2---1---   ---2-----0----0----2---
D-|---2---0---0---2---3---0---2---   ---0-----2----0----2---
A-|---0-------2---3---3-------2---   ---------3----2----2---
E-|-----------3-------1-------0---   --------------3----0---
      Am  D   G   C   F   Dm  E         D7   Cmaj7 G7   E4

Transition from Verse to Chorus

At the very end of the verse, you’ll transition from a G to a G7 to the C that begins the chorus. Here are a few ways you can play that transition. The first is to do this walkdown that uses the highest four strings:

e-|-----------0-------3---|---------3--------3--------3---|---0------3------
B-|-----------0-------0---|-------0--------0--------0-----|---1------0------
G-|-----------1-------0---|-----0--------0--------0-------|---0------0------
D-|-----------2-------0---|---3--------2--------0---------|---2------0------
A-|-----------2-------2---|-------------------------------|---3------2------
E-|-----------0-------3---|-------------------------------|----------3------
     "...turn bad out there...                                ...Oh, baby..."

Or, you can play the same general thing but focus the walkdown on higher strings:

e-|-----------0-------3---|---1--------0------------------|---0------3------
B-|-----------0-------0---|---0--------0--------3---------|---1------0------
G-|-----------1-------0---|---0--------0--------0---------|---0------0------
D-|-----------2-------0---|---0--------0--------0---------|---2------0------
A-|-----------2-------2---|---2--------2--------2---------|---3------2------
E-|-----------0-------3---|---3--------3--------3---------|----------3------
     "...turn bad out there...                                ...Oh, baby..."

Chorus Turnaround Riffs

During the chorus there are a few guitar riffs you may want to play for extra embellishment. The first is a complete descending C scale:

e-|---0---3----------------1----------|---------------------------|---3---
B-|---1---0----------------1----------|---1--0--------------------|---0---
G-|---0---0----------------2----------|--------2--0---------------|---0---
D-|---2---0----------------3----------|--------------3--2--0------|---0---
A-|---3---2----------------3----------|----------------------(3)--|---2---
E-|-------3----------------1----------|---------------------------|---3---
     "Oh, baby baby it's a wild world..."

The second is a bass line turnaround on the 6th and 5th strings.

e-|-----------------0-------|--(0)-----------------------|---0------3----
B-|-----------------1-------|--(1)-----------------------|---1------0----
G-|-----------------0-------|--(0)-----------------------|---0------0----
D-|-----------------2-------|--(2)-----------------------|---2------0----
A-|-----------------3-------|---x-----0--3--3--3--0------|---3------2----
E-|-------------------------|---3--3-----------------3---|----------3----
  "...just upon a smile...                                 ...Oh, baby..."

Other videos of this song

1970 album version:

1971 live version:

Get my lessons in your inbox!

Every couple weeks I send out an email newsletter with links to whatever new lessons I've made. Sign up here and stay in the loop!


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 $5/month you'll get access to a print-friendly PDF of my notes for each new lesson (view free sample).

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:

📝 My "song" PDFs are now individually purcasheable! I've arranged a licensing agreement with Musicnotes, a service that lets you buy my sheet music arrangements. Patreon supporters get 50% off each purchase. Learn more here »

June 22, 2022

How to Make Drum Tracks Using GarageBand's Beat Sequencer

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #442

A beginner's guide to using GarageBand's Beat Sequencer tool to create custom drum beats! Even if you're a total novice when it comes to drumming (like me), I'll walk you through the basic steps to create rich-sounding drum tracks to play over while practicing or performing.

May 27, 2022

Creating a Fingerstyle Arrangement of Tom Petty's "American Girl"

Practice Log  •  Lesson #438

A few years after learning American Girl the way Tom Petty plays it, I returned to it — this time determined to work out a low-key, easy-going fingerstyle arrangement. Here's how it went!

Patreon PDF

May 22, 2022

Using Triads & Double-Stops to Punch Up a Melody

Practice Log  •  Lesson #436

As part of my Learning Lead Guitar series, I share a realization I recently had showing different ways to fill out melody lines using triads, double-stops, and harmonized sixths.

Patreon PDF

May 19, 2022

Q&A: Learning a Song for a Wedding? Here's My Advice.

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #435

I answer an audience question about how to go about learning a song (with a tricky riff) for a peformance at a family wedding.

Patreon PDF

May 12, 2022

List of My Beginner-Friendly Song Lessons

About

After many requests from y'all, I finally created this list of all my beginner-friendly song lessons! These are grouped by key, allowing you to take the chord shapes you already know and find other songs using those same shapes.

Patreon PDF

May 4, 2022

Easier Ways to Play B-minor (No Barring Required)

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #431

Two easier ways to play B-minor, using open chord voicings — super helpful to have these in your toolkit. Includes different practice riffs to accompany each chord voicing.

Patreon PDF

Browse my all lessons

By lesson type

By song decade

By musical genre

By guitar technique

By musical key

By popular artist


← back to lesson list