Classical Gas Guitar Lesson Videos – Mason Williams

Well after quite a few requests I have decided to produce these free video lessons for the classic instrumental "Classical Gas" by Mason Williams.

Originally released in 1968, this instrumental shot to the top of the charts (wouldn't it be wonderful if that could still happen today? ๐Ÿ™‚ ) because of the catchy and dramatic nylon string finger-style guitar work of Mason Williams.

Although there many cover versions of "Classical Gas", this Classical Gas guitar lesson will focus on the original 1968 recording.

For those of you interested in improving your finger-style guitar technique, this Classical Gas guitar lesson series will give you ample opportunity to do so.

I suggest taking the tune section by section since each one pretty much has a new unique challenge for you. To play it correctly you need to play at a pretty fast tempo, but don't try and accomplish that from the beginning. Take it slow and let your hands develop accurate muscle memory of the entire section before moving to a faster tempo.

Also within the lessons I do point out what I feel are the most challenging parts of the song to play. I suggest turning those few parts into a repeated technique exercise for the best practice results.

I am teaching the entire song on a nylon string guitar like Mason Williams played, but if you don't have one don't worry about it. It sounds great on any style of acoustic guitar. ๐Ÿ™‚

Have Fun! Carl..

If these free lessons help you, please donate to keep new ones coming daily. Thanks!! ๐Ÿ™‚

Donate to GuitarLessons365
Other Amount:

Classical Gas Guitar Lesson - Part One

Classical Gas Guitar Lesson - Part Two

Classical Gas Guitar Lesson - Part Three

Classical Gas Guitar Lesson - Part Four


  1. jp on August 22, 2014 at 1:13 pm

    I like your lessons alot. I have some classical guitar lessons and one thing I have noticed is there are several fingerings that accomplish same thing. I try to stay with classical but when it gets in the way I play how its comfotable in learning stage. Later it may come natural. Books and methods have varing styles and if Jerry played this song he would probably be using thumb on the third string. Thanks again

  2. tony santururio on January 9, 2015 at 5:59 pm

    I cannot tell you how wonderful this guitar lesson is making me feel. For the first time in my life, I feel confident that I can accomplish something I’ve been wanting to do. I learned how to play guitar from my father, and it was all visual. He would play and I would follow along. I have always wanted to learn how to play a classical piece, and Classical Gas is just the right song. I have dedicated 2015 as the year I learn Classical Gas, so I can play it at a music venue. Please keep up the good work! Your student, Tony Santurio.

    • Carl Brown on January 9, 2015 at 6:12 pm

      Thanks a bunch for the kind message Tony! Let me know if you need any help!


      • tony santurio on October 29, 2019 at 5:59 am

        Carl I was wondering if you had a DVD of the lesson Classical Gas. If you do I would like to use it on my DVD player so I can see it better on my big screen TV,
        and study more comfortably. If you do , tell me what it would cost. Tony.

  3. Robert Fuchs on January 22, 2015 at 5:27 pm

    Hi Carl,
    you said that you focus on the 1968 original recording by Mason Williams, but then, why don’t you teach the gorgeous intro of about 20 seconds?
    That is really missing from this otherwise great tutorial.


    • Carl Brown on January 30, 2015 at 7:16 pm

      Hmmm, I think I forgot all about that part. Perhaps I should complete the lesson then. Look for it soon! ๐Ÿ™‚


    • Carl Brown on February 2, 2015 at 5:36 pm

      Upon further inspection, its seems I already cover that intro at about the 1 minute mark in the first video. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. michael bailey on February 2, 2015 at 4:20 am

    Hi Carl

    Really enjoy your lessons – thank you. I notice that with some lessons you play the piece through completely but, on others you don’t. I find a complete play-through section really helpful so, if you do add the intro that Robert mentions, I’d be really grateful if you’d also add one here.


  5. Vincent Goh on August 15, 2015 at 12:28 pm

    Hi Carl

    How can I obtain the tabs for Classical Gas? I am willing to make a donation for it.

    Best regards

    • Carl Brown on August 16, 2015 at 10:11 am

      Sorry Vincent, I can’t provide TABS due to international copyright restrictions. ๐Ÿ™


  6. J.Francois bonet darcy on August 16, 2015 at 6:07 pm

    hello Vincent…….for what it’s worth, this is what I’ve noticed and I was amazed ! I’ve been playing for a number of years, relying heavily on tab. So much so, that even after having played a tune dozen and dozens of time, I became totally unable to play these tunes by memory……could play them well when the tab was staring me in the face.

    Then Carl comes along and superbly demonstrates a fairly difficult piece of music, Classical Gas, and my first reaction was……ok, this tune is thoroughly and patiently well demonstrated, but I just know that without the tab I’ll never be able to play it from beginning to end. Well, I spent many hours just reproducing Carl’s movements one section at a time until I had all the pieces going fairly well. Now, all I need to do is add some speed to Classical Gas and I’ll have nailed it.

    But, here is what blows my mind………I actually remember every note and finger to be used without any tablature ! Don’t ask me how that can happen, but it did. Maybe Carl has a logical answer…..I don’t.

    Try it… very patient and see if that helps.

  7. Vincent Goh on August 17, 2015 at 10:08 am

    Hi Carl

    No even privately?

    Hi Francois

    Many thanks for your comments. I must admit I rely very heavily on tabs and I feel very handicap without them. Your comments is certainly an encouragement and I shall give it a try. Thanks again!

    • Carl Brown on August 17, 2015 at 7:45 pm

      Yeah not even privately. I don’t take the time to prepare any TABS anyway since I can’t give them out.

      The lessons do go slow enough though that you should easily be able to write out the TAB for any sections you can’t remember for your own private use.

      This is only true for music not in the public domain. For others, like the Bach Prelude, I do include TAB. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Gary Walters on November 5, 2015 at 7:41 pm


    Thanks for your website!

    I’m very interesting in learning finger style songs. I learned classical gas , from your website, and some Beatles finger style songs.

    I’ve been listening around on youtube and there are some great players out there playing some interesting songs and takes on known songs. Some of my favorites are songs by Gabriella Quevedo, Sungha Jung and Sandra Bae. One song in particular caught my ear, “Twilight”. I also like their versions of “Tears In Heaven”, “Whiter Shade of Pale”, “Yesterday”, “Hotel California”, and songs they play by Kataro Oshio.

    Anyway, I know you have you’re own agenda but it would be great if you taught some of these songs in the style played by the above youtube artists. I especially want to learn to play “Twilight”.
    It took me several weeks to learn “Classical Gas”, with your help, so I’m up for the challenge!

    Thanks for your perfect website and perfect note for note instructions! Your learning site is the best that I’ve discovered.
    Are you self-taught or classically trained?

    Thanks Carl!

    Gary Walters

    • Carl Brown on November 9, 2015 at 2:30 pm

      Hey Gary, thanks for the comment! I have had lots of training in everything from classical to rock, jazz to metal.

      I plan on starting up my own lesson series where I do my own solo fingerstyle guitar arrangements of popular songs. I plan on starting that by the end of the year and will have a new one out probably once a month or so. I will also be teaching all of my arrangements here on the site. ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Gary Walters on November 11, 2015 at 11:59 pm

    Thanks Carl.
    Please keep me posted as to the date that you’ll be starting this new solo fingerstyle guitar series of your own arrangements of popular songs.


  10. Jeffrey Pyatt on March 31, 2016 at 5:59 pm

    Hey Carl,

    Great lessons here. I am a beginning guitar player (2 weeks) and I’ve worked through about 75% of the intro.

    Although I’m cognizant of running before walking a little here, It’s really fun to work on. I hope to handle it some day

    Thanks a bunch!


  11. Ritwik Mishra on October 31, 2016 at 11:04 am

    Love your lessons, especially this one!
    I have a request. Can you please do a tutorial for “Classical Soul” by Oscar Lopez. I think it’s in the same key as Classical Gas, but with some (well, a lot of) complex chords and right hand fingerstyle.

  12. Alex Banks on November 19, 2016 at 7:24 am

    Hello Carl,
    When I first heard Mason Williams play Classical Gas, I said I will play this, with the help of your youtube videos, my dream became a reality! For that i say a big thank you.
    VIC, Australia

  13. Aatif Naziri on November 2, 2017 at 6:55 pm

    Hi Carl,
    I have gone through your fingerstyle lessons, as well as songs such as Classical Gas and Baby i am gonna leave you. Will work on Dust in the wind next. I was wondering if you are planning to have a section solely focused towards fingerstyle and if possible some lessons dedicated in the style of John Butler.

    I have subscribed to others but keep coming back, your teaching style beats everyone. Best wishes and continued success.

    • Carl Brown on November 3, 2017 at 11:57 am

      Hey Aatif, thanks for the continued support of my lessons!

      As some subscribers already know, the site is in the middle of a complete re-design of the Premium section. Once that is done (hopefully within the next few weeks), I am introducing a bunch of new Premium categories and will be creating a systematic lesson syllabus for each. One of those categories will be fingerstyle guitar and will have lessons added to it almost every week. Also, there will be a classical guitar section that I think all fingerstyle guitarists should check out if they really want to develop their fingerstyle chops.

      So be on the lookout for those changes coming very soon!


  14. Phill Craig on December 8, 2017 at 10:25 am

    I have been trying to play classical gas since I was young I am now 58, finally I have done it. I would not have achieved it without your excellent lessons many thanks.

  15. John Hoffman on September 21, 2019 at 11:44 am

    I am really enjoying learning Classical Gas and was wondering if the Tablature for this song is available. I think it would help me a lot as I get a little lost when the notes get quick.
    Thanks, and keep up the good work.

  16. Sherrie Delora on August 2, 2020 at 8:24 am

    Hi Carl, I love your videos and am finally learning to play Classical Gas. Is it possible to print out or purchase the sheet music for your arrangement? I like to have it to refer to along with the videos. Your arrangement has followed the music I have, up to the end of the second video. Now that I have started the 3rd video, your arrangement and the music I have are different. Thank you for all your help!
    Sherrie Delora

  17. Brian Belsey on January 27, 2021 at 3:40 am

    This is easily the best tutorial around on Classical Gas in my opinion. There are some quite decent online tabs available, and what works for me is to have one of these in front of me when going through the videos and make changes on it when Carl’s version differs slightly. Great job Carl!

  18. Alphonso Lucero on August 24, 2022 at 10:09 am

    Simply superb, Carl! You’re a very patient teacher with a very difficult tune. It’s quite amazing. Thank you, kind sir, for taking the time to teach all of us this classical jam. I’ve enjoyed every second of the lesson.

    Kindest regards,

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.