Chris Cornell – Seasons Guitar Lesson

*Quick note - After giving the song a second listen, it turns out that the G string should be tuned UP to C and not down to C. That will slightly change how the verse riff is played, so I have provided a TAB below of the correct way to play the verse riff with this altered tuning. All other parts are played as the video demonstrates them. 🙂

Seasons Verse Correction TAB

In this Seasons guitar lesson video, I will show you how to play this beautiful acoustic song from the Singles soundtrack by the late great Chris Cornell.

On the original recording he tuned his guitar to an open F5 tuning, which is, starting from the 6th string, F F C C C F.

This tuning creates a beautiful sound that Chris Cornell used to it's fullest potential.

There are many cool guitar chords and chord progressions in "Seasons", but I would say my two favorite sections of the song are the intro, and the arpeggio picked verse.

The intro chord progression is heard later in the song as well and it has a very etherial quality about it with the drone open strings ringing against the bottom two strings that are playing a melody in unison.

For the arpeggio picked verse riff, Chris Cornell usually opted to fingerpick it when playing it live to make it a little bit easier to play. He would then slightly pause and grab a pick for the strumming parts. However, on the original recording, it is all picked so that is how I will teach it in the video lesson.

The arpeggio picked riff does require you to be able to pick across the strings fluently. I will show you how I pick it to make it as easy as possible.

There are 3 remaining riffs to learn besides those two and they are all created by alternating between power chord shapes played on the 3 bottom strings along with a 3 string unison and octave shape played on strings 2-4. It sounds harder than it is. 🙂

In any case, I hope you guys enjoy learning this beautiful and haunting acoustic masterpiece by Chris Cornell.

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Chris Cornell - Seasons Guitar Lesson


  1. John Oostmeyer on August 19, 2018 at 5:22 pm

    Hey Carl, not sure what I could do different or what is wrong, but I broke two strings already trying to the tune the G up to the C instead of down?

    • Carl Brown on August 20, 2018 at 7:49 am

      Yeah it is a tough tuning to get into. Some guitars just naturally having a high string tension which doesn’t suit well for this tuning.

      Live, Chris Cornell played this a half-step lower so maybe you can try that? Instead of F and C’s try E’s and B’s.

      • Jeffrey on May 20, 2022 at 9:27 pm

        I actually ended up changing the G string to a B string before tuning… and then realized that it only makes a difference when picking the main part… so why not just downstroke then upstroke on the “B” string? it’s easier when using a pick anyways.

  2. Jon Howard on January 15, 2020 at 10:00 pm

    Hey Carl just wanted to say a big thank you for having this video on your song lessons.

    I have loved this song since 92 and have always wanted to be able play it.

    I’m currently in hospital for a bit and have an acoustic with me and just spent the afternoon getting it down.

    So happy to be able to play one of my all time favs now, thanks mate!

    Cheers Jon

  3. mark on February 10, 2021 at 10:32 pm

    Chris was very talented, thankfully he left us some memorable music. He was close friends with Chester Bennington (LinkinPark), both died within a month or two of each other, some say by suicide. Unlikely.

  4. Shane J. on March 2, 2021 at 1:46 pm

    Love this song, but no way can i tune the G up to C….broke 1 string already lol…did he record on a 12 string? Anyway, loved it since 92…gives me goose bumps if i hear this song and i’m not expecting it to play….ie random/shuffle….thanks a million for all you do….i’m gonna re-string now lol!!

    • Jeffrey on May 20, 2022 at 9:32 pm

      I actually replaced the G string with a B string before realizing that it only makes a difference while picking, so why not just downstroke and upstroke on the “B” string instead?

  5. Sean Rode on June 19, 2021 at 4:16 pm

    Good job bro! Thanks

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