5150 Guitar Lesson – Van Halen

In this 5150 guitar lesson video, I will show you how to play this great Van Halen track note-for-note.

The tuning is dropped "C#" tuning. That is, starting from the 6th string, C# G# C# F# A# D# OR if your tuner displays notes as flats instead, you will tune to Db Ab Db Gb Bb Eb.

Eddie starts things off with a great riff that uses a lot of muted arpeggios. It is pretty tricky to play, but a lot of fun once you get it under your fingers.

From there, the intro moves into the same riff that is used during the chorus. This riff uses simple chords, but has sort of a strange timing to it, so you will need to listen to the riff closely when playing along.

The verse is probably my favorite riff of the "5150". It has a really cool laid back groove to it and just a great feel, like many of Eddie Van Halen's riffs do.

The pre-chorus is basically two different riffs back to back. The first is a challenging muted arpeggios riff that requires some big stretches, followed by another riff that also requires some large stretches and has some tricky timing to it.

I will go through each riff in the order that each appears throughout the song.

I will then cover Eddie's killer guitar solo note-for-note. This solo has many of Eddie's trademark techniques and will be a nice challenge for even advanced guitarists.

Have fun with this Van Halen classic!


5150 Guitar Lesson - Van Halen


  1. Michael McIntyre on August 11, 2020 at 4:29 am

    put more lynrd skynrd songs please

  2. Mike Kolaski on July 7, 2023 at 3:12 pm

    I love Skynyrd but when you learn songs from Van Halen your learning some of the best rhythm sections ever thought up by any guitarist. Both bands were outstanding in what they accomplished!

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