Guitar lesson for

Mrs. Robinson

by Simon and Garfunkel  •  Lesson #51

Video lesson

My beginner lesson, focusing on chords and strumming:

For an intermediate lesson showing some of the runs and fills, see this:

Get the sheet music(4 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

In my first lesson, I show you how to play the basics of “Mrs. Robinson” by Simon and Garfunkel. I’ll be using no capo and will focus primarily on the chords and strumming patterns you’ll need to play the song. This lesson includes chord charts, tablature, strumming pattern diagrams, and the progressions you’ll need for each section. If you’re looking for some of the more advanced riffs, runs, and fills this song uses – look for my other lesson where I break those down in detail.

In my second lesson, I’ll show you how to play some of the fills, riffs, and runs for this song. This is a slightly more intermediate lesson, following up on my beginner-friendly lesson that shows the basic chords and strumming patterns needed to play this song. In this lesson, I’ll be playing without a capo –– and will show you how to play the (1) intro/filler riff; (2) a verse melody riff; (3) the verse walkdown from C to A minor; and (4) the chorus walkdown from C to D to G.

Timestamps for my second lesson:

My guitar cover of the entire song

Lyrics with chords

Capo 2nd fret. 184 bpm.

See my sheet sheet music for all of the lyrics, with chords shown at the same time.

Chords needed

E ––––0–––0–––3–––0–––0–––––––0–––2–––2–––0–––0––––
B ––––0–––3–––0–––0–––1–––0–––1–––3–––1–––2–––2––––
G ––––1–––1–––0–––0–––0–––0–––2–––2–––2–––2–––0––––
D ––––2–––2–––0–––2–––2–––0–––2–––0–––0–––2–––2––––
A ––––2–––2–––2–––2–––3–––2–––0–––––––––––0–––0––––
E ––––0–––0–––3–––0––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
      E   E7  G   Em  C  G/B  Am  D   D7  A   A7

Chord progressions

See my sheet music for the chord progression diagram.

Strumming pattern

There’s some flexibility with how you strum, though I think the most important thing is to accent the 2nd (and possibly 4th) beat of every four-beat measure. You might start with practicing down-strums only, on the 2nd and 4th beats:

See my sheet music for the strumming diagram.

Once you have that, you can add to it by adding some additional strums (played not quite as loud) on these other beats. Again, make sure the 2nd and 4th beats are where most of your accent is.

See my sheet music for the strumming diagram.

Intro and fill riff

Repeat this as desired (usually two or four times is what I do). If you prefer, you can strum the E-chord for the full duration of this 8-count section, while accenting the bass-line melody notes. Or you can play a straight E chord and ignore the melody notes – it’s up to you.

See my sheet music for the guitar tab.

Other riffs and fills

Verse melody

If you want to emulate the vocal melody with your guitar while staying in the open E and open A positions, focus on these notes. You can strum along if you’re able to do so (though that’s a bit trickier).

See my sheet music for the guitar tab.

Verse walkdown

See my sheet music for the guitar tab.

Chrous walkdowns

See my sheet music for the guitar tab.

Thanks for reading!

I hope this was helpful! Please don’t hesitate to hit me up with any questions you have. And as always, please let me know what other songs from Simon and Garfunkel you might want to hear lessons for. Have a great day!

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 $3/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 sheet music. Patreon suppoters get 50% off each purchase. Get the latest info here »   (last updated July 1, 2021)

November 24, 2021

Combining Strumming with Walk-downs (Key of C)

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #401

In this video I answer a patron question about how to add a walking bassline to a fully strummed chord (in the Key of C).

Patreon PDF

October 14, 2021

How to Tune Half-Step Down (E-Flat Tuning)

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #394

A quick guide to tuning all your strings down 1/2 step (E-flat tuning), which is a very common alternate tuning used in many songs.

Patreon PDF

October 2, 2021

F Chord Cheat Sheet! 7 Easier Ways to Play It

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #392

A quick inventory of 8 different ways to play the dreaded F chord, 7 of which are easier than the dreaded six-string barred version.

Patreon PDF

September 28, 2021

Beginner Riffs with Major 7th Arpeggios

Warm-Up Exercise  •  Lesson #390

A quick exercise where I share over 10 riffs based on a single arpeggio shape, using major 7th chord tones. Backing track included!

Patreon PDF

September 19, 2021

Key of C Major Cheat Sheet!

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #388

A deep dive into everything you need to know when playing in the Key of C: notes, chords, fretboard map, tips & tricks, easier ways to play the F chord, and plenty more.

Patreon PDF

September 12, 2021

Major Scale Positions & CAGED Chord Shapes

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #384

A deep-dive into the common positions of the major scale, and how they each relate to the CAGED chord shapes... which makes it all easier to understand!

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