Learn to Play I Will Never See The Sun on Guitar, by The Great Lake Swimmers

Learn I Will Never See The Sun on guitar

This post is a tutorial on how to play The Great Lake Swimmers' I Will Never See The Sun on guitar.

I've rated this tutorial to be at about a 2/10 difficulty rating because this song requires three chords and has one strumming pattern throughout the entire song. I suggest that you have about 5 songs under your belt before you start learning this song.

I'll be showing you a transcription of how to play I Will Never See The Sun, and it's best played on acoustic guitar.

What skills are required? What are the benefits to learning I Will Never See The Sun?

I Will Never See The Sun is a great song for dipping your toes into 6/8 guitar strumming patterns, and it also helps you with the A—E—D chord system. I would recommend that you already be familiar with these three chords before jumping in, but of course, do what feels right for you!

Highly recommended: Download a copy for yourself

The Great Lake Swimmers aren't like Bruce Springsteen, who probably wouldn't be too hurt financially if you just listened to him on some music streaming service, but The Great Lake Swimmers are an indie band. They would highly benefit from you taking the time and the extra effort to download their mp3 and outright paying for it. They'd probably even love it more if you were to purchase a physical copy, too...

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Getting familiar with and approaching I Will Never See The Sun

I Will Never See The Sun is a simple song, with one chord progression and one strumming pattern throughout. I think it's best to be familiar with a song before playing it, as doing so makes the entire process go much faster. It doesn't make sense at first, but later on, you'll see this in a deeper way.

Approaching I Will Never See The Sun

After getting familiar with the song, it's time to jump into the guitar part. We are going to do the strumming pattern first, the chord progression next, and then we'll discuss the particulars of playing along with the recorded version of the song.

Here's where you can find all these chunks on the YouTube video, (posted below for your convenience):

Strumming Pattern — 3:39
Chord Progression — 7:06
Song Discussion — 9:18

How to practice the chord progression after you "kinda" have it...

If you have the chord progression and the strumming pattern together at a moderately slow tempo, it's time to start working on the mechanics of putting it all together. Don't take it fast at first. You need to get used to the movements of your hands. I recommend playing it slower than you want to, at first. You can always speed it up later.

Push the tempo to master the chord progression

Make sure that you can play the verse note-perfectly at a slow tempo before you speed it up. Why? Well, if you speed up a mistake, it'll still be a mistake, but a fast one. Take it at about 10-15 BPM faster than the record, which is a good tempo to shoot for since you could easily play along with the recorded version of the song if you can play it that fast.

You can also re-finger your A chord to make a smoother chord progression

Your first finger can play an A chord like this (have your index finger on the G string and your middle finger on the D):

Photo by Dave Wirth

Photo by Dave Wirth

If so, your index finger can stay on the G string throughout all three chords, thus making it easier:

Troubleshooting I Will Never See The Sun

"This new A chord sucks!"

Don't take my recommendation as the law. There's no need to simply follow my plan either! Just play it the way you were before, and you'll be fine. The fingering suggestion works if it gets you playing the song faster, that's all!

"I've got the mechanics at a slower pace, but how do I take it faster without it falling apart?"

Sometimes, you need to practice in a totally different way to solve the problem of sloppiness when you're up-to-speed. So, for you, I say this: If what you're doing to speed it up isn't working, then try a different way altogether! I've got a couple of ideas for you: Try the Up 10 Down 5 workflow or High Edge workflow. These are easy ways to speed up anything you're working on in your guitar practice.

"How will I know if I've mastered this song?"

When you play along with the recording, you've got this song. Congrats!

Resources mentioned in this article

High Edge - Workflow
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Up 10 Down 5 – Workflow
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