Layla - Guitar 1 (Main Rhythm)

Animated Layla - Guitar 1 (Main Rhythm) tab by Eric Clapton on guitar. So easy you'll be playing in minutes.

This famous song needs little introduction - it's a true guitar classic, and great fun to play! Don't let the difficulty rating put you off learning this song. The difficulty is mainly down to the chords and licks during the verses, however, you can just strum through without having to play like a guitar god!

Clapton seems to have gone a bit nuts in it with guitar layers, as there are at least 5 guitars used in the song! However, there are 2 main guitars that form core of the song: The main rhythm guitar, and the main lead guitar part. Together, they form the main riffs and melody for the song. If you are wondering - the other guitars play harmonies, solos and more solos (over the top of other solos, sometimes with a slide).

In this ActionTab we deal with the main rhythm guitar. After this we'll show you the main lead guitar part (in the next ActionTab).

You can hear both guitars played together in the normal speed audio. However, in the ActionTab itself - you will only hear and see the main rhythm guitar (the lead guitar is excluded). This will help you hear / learn the riffs easier.

The song starts with the main riff. This is very repetitive and quite short, so once you know it - you'll know a big part of the song. Use the live links below, and check them using the Tablature view if you get lost...

Start with the open A note, hammer to C, play the open D and hammer on / pulling off the F (getting the open D again in the process). Quickly play back to the C and open D.

Practice this part first, over and over until you get it fast and fluid with no mistakes.

Now, as that last open D note is sounding you'll have only a little bit of time to get to the D5 powerchord. Practice this transition after you can play through the last part of the riff:

From the D5, a little powerchord sequence follows: C5 - Bb5 - just remove your 1st finger to play the A and C notes together - add the low G - then back to C5 - just remove your 1st finger to play the A and D notes together - add the low G. Finish the riff on the D5 powerchord.

We recommend practicing the above chord sequence by itself, until you get it. Then go back and work on that quick change we mentioned earlier - from the open D note to the D5 powerchord. In other words, work on sewing the 2 sections together. Don't worry if it is tricky. There are quite a lot of fine finger movements (particularly with the hammers, pull offs and adding the low G notes). Just stick to the golden rule when practicing - Get it right very slowly before working on speeding up!

This riff is the backbone of the song, and once you know it, you only have the verse parts left to learn!

Boiled down, the verses are just cycling through the following chord sequence:

C#m - G#m - C#m - C7 - D7 - E7 - F#m (add / remove the add 9th note) - B - E - A - F#m - B - E - A5

However, as you can see in the ActionTab, things are a little more florid than that. Clapton plays through the chord sequence with little licks and various strumming patterns. Different for each verse too. However, if you aren't quite up to that yet - just stick to the chord sequence outlined above (strumming briskly) and you'll be fine!

Have fun!

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