"The House of the Rising Sun" is traditional folk ballad that was made incredibly popular with the 1964 version of it recorded by The Animals.
After it's release it quickly shot to the top of the charts in countries all over the world, including going number one in the United Kingdom, the United States, Sweden, Finland, and Canada.
The first thing you will want to practice when learning how to play The House of the Rising Sun is the arpeggiated picking style that is used on all the chords throughout most of the song.
This arpeggiated picking style requires some decent picking control since you have to control the speed of the strum to make it sound like the pick is sort of raking across the strings one by one.
I suggest practicing this picking technique on just one chord (A minor), and then adding all of the other chords after you can effortlessly control the picking.
I think it is easier to think of "The House of the Rising Sun" as consisting of two different parts except for the very end. One is the chord progression used while the vocals are being sung, and the other being the chords that are played in the short instrumental sections between those vocal parts.
I break the lesson up into those two section so it should be pretty easy to follow and memorize the chords quickly.
As the song builds, and especially during the solo section, you will be playing the same chord progression except this time with a full strumming pattern.
To close everything down at the end of the song, we get to a simple repetitive A minor to D minor progression.
All-in-all I think "The House of the Rising Sun" is a great tune for a beginning guitarist to learn or any level of guitarist who simply wants to learn a cool tune. 🙂
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