Mad World by Gary Jules Lesson

Learn to play Mad World by Gary Jules on JustinGuitar!

View the full lesson at Mad World by Gary Jules | JustinGuitar

Learning lots and havin’ fun do’n it. Not.quite sure how part two of the intro went as it goes by rather quickly.

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I’m finding lots of the songs are not played in the same key as they appear to have been written and require transposing. Or is it possible my SNARK tuner is a semi-tine lower than standard?

I’m pretty sure the Gary Jules cover is in a different key than the Tears for Fears original (but don’t ask me what key it is :slight_smile: )

Justin’s lesson and the app version of the song are in the Tears for Fears key, whatever that is. (Em, G, A, and D chords)

OK great . No need to get a new Snark then. But maybe get a capo! Thanks for the help

Justin says to play with capo if playing along with original, but he doesn’t use a capo as it suits his voice better. I’ve also seen a version using no capo with Am,C,G,D instead of Em,G,D,A. I’ve tried them all, and to my beginner’s ear they all sound like Mad World. I’m also early on in the music theory lessons so I don’t really understand why they all work. Why do they all work? Should I just pick the one I like the sound of? Nothing suits my voice, so that isn’t a consideration. Thanks.

@wdperkins William, in simple terms the musical relationship between the chords in each version is the same hence both sound like the song.

If you contnue with the theory course into level 3 and begin to understand the major scale, the concept of a key, plus the chords associated with the notes in the scale in a particular key then you will be in a position to understand the reason why both versions sound like Mad World.

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the fingerstyle was abit too fast for me. anybody can break it down abit ?

So, Justin gives you the pattern at one point: Thumb-1-2-1-3-2-1-2.

Those are the fingers used to pick out the pattern. The thumb hits the root note of the chord (so it changes according to the chord you’re on), then use use fingers 1 (index), 2 (middle) and 3 (ring) in the order given in the pattern. Those fingers always play the same strings: 1 plays 3rd string, 2 plays 2nd string, 3 plays the 1st string.

The pattern takes 1 bar of music:

T 1 2 1 3 2 1 2 
1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &

This should be all you need. Take it slow!


Hello @Catweazel1 and welcome to the community.

You can slow the video down on all lessons by clicking the cog wheel:


I hope that helps.

Cheers :smiley:

| Richard_close2u | JustinGuitar Official Guide, Approved Teacher & Moderator

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By way of a short analogy …

Take the numbers 7, 8, 9, 10

Four consecutive numbers.

Take the numbers 21, 22, 23, 24

Four different numbers entirely.
But still four consecutive numbers.

The two sets of numbers have a commonality even though they are different.

So the chords Am, C, G, D compared and contrasted with Em, G, D, A have a commonality even though they are different.

I hope that helps.

Cheers :smiley:

| Richard_close2u | JustinGuitar Official Guide, Approved Teacher & Moderator

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Does anyone try playing around with the strumming pattern between the first verse and the prechorus (“and I find it kind of funny…”)?

I’ve been trying old faithful pattern for verse, but feel like the strumming should be different in the prechorus… I just don’t have an idea what yet.

Yes, but more for the Tears fo Fears version.

I do OF for the verses, straight DUDUDU for the first chorus, and palm muted 8ths for the second chorus.

Makes for a nice build up of intensity.

EDIT: Just posted a recording I made a few months back…see if you like the approach.

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