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Ukulele Tab: Learn To Play Christian favorite song Amazing Grace

Aug 17, 2007
Ukulele is a fantastic little instrument. You can play chords on it as you sing but you can even play melodies. With the help of ukulele tab notation you can learn to play Amazing Grace in a few minutes. Let's start!

Amazing Grace is one of the most well-known Christian hymns. The words were written by John Newton. Here are the lyrics to the first verse:

Amazing grace! How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now am found
Was blind, but now I see

You don't need to know sheet music notation on your ukulele. Instead we will use a form of notation known as ukulele tab.

The ukulele tab notation I will use is my own form of tabs that are readable on article sites. You will find the more common ukulele tab notation on my own site with ukulele tab and free sheet music.

When you hold your ukulele in playing position you will have the first string nearest your feet. It is the string with the highest pitch and it is usually an A.

Here comes an example on how to ukulele tab:

01 11 31 11 01

The first digit in the pair tells you what fret to press down. The second digit what string to play. 01 means that you play the first string without pressing down a left hand finger. In other words you play on the open first string.

11 means that you press down a left hand finger on the first fret on the first string and play. Now you can play the easy ukulele tab above.

Let's play the first part of Amazing Grace:

Amazing grace! How sweet the sound

03 12 01 12 01 32 12 23 03

03 means that you play the third open string. Play the notes with your right hand thumb or in some other way you like.

The length of the notes is not indicated with this type of ukulele tab notation. I guess you will find out how to play the notes by your self.

Let's play the next line:

That saved a wretch like me!

03 12 01 12 01 32 01 31

What left hand finger should you use when you play?

Even if it can be a little bit difficult at first I suggest that you play the notes on the first fret with your first finger, the notes on the second fret with your long finger and the notes on your third fret with your ring finger.

Of course, you can play all notes with your first finger but when your left hand fingers get used to playing the way I suggested it will actually become easier to find the right notes.

The next ukulele tab comes here:

I once was lost, but now am found

01 31 01 12 01 32 12 23 03

You know how to read this ukulele tab by now so I don't need to help you!

The last line with lyrics and ukulele tab follows:

Was blind, but now I see

03 12 01 12 01 32 12

Now the melody is complete and you can play Amazing Grace with ukulele tab!

This melody can be played on guitar too with the use of the above ukulele tab notation! The first three strings on a guitar are tuned in the same way but in a different pitch.

May I recommend you to take one ukulele tab line at a time and practice it until you know the whole song by heart. It is fun to have a repertoire with songs to play anywhere and anytime!
About the Author
Peter Edvinsson is a musician, composer and music teacher. Visit his site Capotasto Music and download your free sheet music and ukulele tab at http://www.capotastomusic.com
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