Personal Jesus Guitar Lesson – Depeche Mode

In this video guitar lesson, I will take you note-for-note through Depeche Mode's massive hit "Personal Jesus".

First off, guitarist/songwriter Martin Gore tunes his guitar up a whole-step on the original recording and in live performances. The notes to achieve that tuning, starting from the 6th string are, F# B E A C# F#.

I will be using this tuning during the lesson, but also explaining another way to achieve this tuning while keeping your guitar in standard tuning using a capo.

The main riff, with it's catchy blues based feel, is instantly recognizable. This riff is relatively easy to play, but getting the pull-offs and slight bends just right can be a bit of a challenge.

During the verse sections, I have arranged the synth parts for guitar. It would be cool to use an auto-wah and tremolo effect during these synth chords.

Most of the riffs repeat multiple times throughout the song, but there are so slight variations thrown in there. You will also see me cover the opening harmonics and talk about what the slide guitar overdubs are doing as well, just in case you have a second guitarist that can play that with you.

I hope you enjoy learning this classic guitar based track from one of my favorite bands, the great Depeche Mode!


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Personal Jesus Guitar Lesson - Depeche Mode


  1. Jason Lee on February 21, 2018 at 6:41 am

    There is also another KILLER version of this song done by Johnny Cash on the acoustic guitar. As far I can tell it’s standard tuning and you don’t have to monkey around with the guitar to get going.

    • Carl Brown on February 21, 2018 at 10:40 am

      I will have to check that out! Love his version of “Hurt”.

      • Jason Lee on February 21, 2018 at 12:20 pm

        Yes! For that matter check out his version of Rusty Cage too (Soundgarden).

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