I Walk The Line by Johnny Cash Lesson

Learn to play I Walk The Line by Johnny Cash on JustinGuitar!

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4 bars each


This is the first song I played where it became clear to me that the time feel is absolutely critical to nailing the sound. And if you get the guitar part right the guitar will carry the entire song, covering the bass and drums as well as the harmonic structure.

The boom-chick-a rhythm is not trivial and has to be solid. It’s also so prevalent in classic country and rockabilly that I believe it is worth spending the time to get it really dialed in. Does anyone have any advice for nailing this sound and practicing? I am totally open to external links (if they are allowed on this forum).

To be clear I am playing the pattern as I understand it to be played originally; with the BOOM on the lower strings as a bass note and the CHICK-A on the upper strings as a chord.

What tempo should a beginner be targeting? I have Justin Guitar tabs and it indicates 100+ bpm which seems a bit fast for a beginner

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I too would like to know the answer to this question.

Start at what ever bpm you can comfortably strum 1 down strum per bar. Try 60bpm as a bench mark. If that’s to slow go higher if it to fast slow down. Once you find the comfort zone you’ll need to start pushing yourself high by about 3-5 bpm each time you practice. If you find yourself making mistakes or struggling to keep up slow down a few bpm until you get it right.

Remember “Practice Makes Permanent” so if you are practicing mistakes your learning mistakes.