In these two video guitar lessons I will demonstrate how to play "Dani California" by the Red Hot Chili Peppers in it's entirety.
The first lesson is dedicated to all the chords, riffs a short melodic phrases that make up a bulk of the song.
The second video takes a note-for-note look at the guitar solo by John Frusciante.
The chords and rhythms are pretty straight forward and simplistic for the most part. Through the verse rhythm we do a have a funky little guitar riff overdub. That little riff moves around a bit and is a bit more difficult than the chord progression underneath.
I chose to concentrate on the main guitar overdubs. Of course I demonstrate all the main riffs but there will be a couple little guitar overdubs that I ignore if they don't have much of an effect on the overall song.
The solo happens in the outro section of the song and uses a lot of catchy hooks and slippery guitar licks to accompany the upbeat feel of the song.
I think I would rate the difficulty level of the Dani California solo at intermediate.
It moves around quite a bit, especially the main melodic hook that opens the solo and is heard throughout most of the solo.
However, after getting the fingerings down it is one of those licks that just feels good to play. I don't know how to explain it, but if you lock into the groove like John Frusciante does while sliding around the fretboard, you will notice that all the notes just seem to be very well placed and fall into the rhythmic pocket perfectly.
After playing through the opening melodic idea with some slight variations a few times, John Frusciante then launches into a flurry of wah drenched fast blues licks and tremolo picking.
Remember when learning this section that it isn't necessarily about getting everything note-for-note because that would be impossible, even for John Frusciante to recreate.
These types of guitar licks are meant to be erratic and to have a flying by the seat of your pants type of feel. Simply learn the patterns to the licks and just go for it. That is all John Frusicante is really doing anyway.
Don't think of it as being sloppily played, think of it as trying to create a certain effect during this climaxing section of the solo.
In any case, I hope you enjoy learning the Dani California solo note-for-note. I feel it is a good look into the soloing style of John Frusciante, at least during his Red Hot Chili Peppers' days.
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Dani California Guitar Lesson Pt.1 - All Chords/Rhythms