Whistle For The Choir

Learn How To Play Whistle For The Choir

Chords and Guitar Lessons

Watch These 2 Videos

Complete song – Acoustic guitar and vocals in 2 keys


Whistle for the Choir is a song from the 2006 album Costello Music by British indie/rock band The Fratellis.

We recorded our one guitar version of the song in the keys of E and A. You’ll learn both versions when you take the course.

As the instrumental section has the same progression as the verse/chorus, but in a new key, after you played the song in two keys, you will actually have played it in four keys.

This makes it a great opportunity to not just learn this song, but also learn from it and actually get better at playing and understanding the guitar fret board.

Chord progression

In the key of E, we get these progressions.


| E | E | G#m | G#m Gm | F#m | F#m | B | B7 |


| D | D | F#m | F#m Fm | Em | Em | A | B7 |

In the key of A, the chords are as follows.


| A | A | C#m | C#m Cm | Bm | Bm | E | E7 |


| G | G | Bm | Bm Bbm | Am | Am | D | E7 |

Keys and strumming patterns

When changing key we can’t just simply change the chords and play the same parts.

All chords will lend themselves to playing the song in different ways, especially when it’s a one guitar arrangement.

For example, if chord I is an E chord, switching the bass between the root and 5th, the 5th will be higher than the root. When in the key of A, the 5th will instead be placed below the root.

By changing key like this you’ll discover more about a song, its chord progression, and what can be done with it.

In both versions, the strumming technique of first playing the bass note, then the remaining chord shape is applied.

This is a standard, one guitar arrangement technique as you need to incorporate both bass line and chords when playing just one instrument.

CAGED Fretting Exercises

When you initially look at the CAGED system and see the full shape, you will be struck down, the shapes are just too big!

When changing key for Whistle For The Choir, and trying out every possible area, it’s a good idea to really get to know what’s possible with each shape.

Do this and you will start to see the possibilities and strengths with the system, not the flaws. This mindset is key to move forward in a positive way.

To get you on the right track, in the course, we spend four steps playing CAGED fretting exercises.

This may seem like a lot of work, but the funny thing is, once you’ve done these, in a way, you already know all possibilities for how you could possibly fret the chords when playing Whistle For The Choir, not to mention all other songs!

Guitar Lessons

CAGED Fretting Exercises – Step 1

In this step, we start working on a bunch of fretting exercises from the CAGED system.

First we learn the C, Cm, A, and Am shapes.

Go to CAGED fretting exercises step 1.

CAGED Fretting Exercises – Step 2

In this step, we continue working on our CAGED fretting exercises.

It’s time to nail the G, Gm, E and Em shapes. Practice along to the loops for best results.

Go to CAGED fretting exercises step 2.

CAGED Fretting Exercises – Step 3

In this final step of fretting exercises for the CAGED system we work on the D and Dm shapes.

First, practice each line individually on your own, then put them together and play with the loop.

Go to CAGED fretting exercises step 3.

The I III II V in C

In this step, we put the CAGED systems shapes to the test as we play a chord progression in every area of the neck.

The progression is I III II V and the key is C.

Go to The I III II V in C.

Whistle For The Choir – Step 1 (Free Preview)

Let’s start learning this song.

First, we go through all the areas you can play this song in when in the key of A.

Go to Whistle For The Choir step 1.

Whistle For The Choir – Step 2

You’re almost ready to play the complete song with a female singer.

However, in order to do this, we must first learn it all over the neck in the key of G.

Go to Whistle For The Choir step 2.

Whistle For The Choir – Step 3

Let’s learn Whistle For The Choir in the key of E as well.

After all, this is the original key of the song.

Go to Whistle For The Choir step 3.

Whistle For The Choir – Step 4

In this final step, we play in the key of D as this is what the instrumental section is in. Still, the progression is I III II V.

Playing this progression in so many keys and positions, you’ll probably recognize it on the radio now, in other songs!

Go to Whistle For The Choir step 4.

Related Pages


Whistle For The ChoirWell, it’s a big, big city and it’s always the same
Can never be too pretty, tell me your name
Is it out, of line, if I were simply bold to say would you be mine?
Because I may be a beggar and you may be the queen

Go to Whistle For The Choir lyrics.

The Fratellis

the-fratellis-thumbBeing one of the few bands named after their manager, The Fratellis shot to fame during late 2006, and mainly 2007 when they had three successful singles from their debut album Costello Music.

Since their debut, The Fratellis have continued to gather new fans around the UK with their blues-influenced pop songs.

Go to The Fratellis biography.


Learning how to play guitar is best done through playing and learning from songs.

The intermediate songs require you to learn barre chords and pentatonic scales. This will be revolutionary for your understanding of the guitar fret board.

Go to Intermediate guitar course.

Intermediate Acoustic Songs

You can learn how to play these intermediate songs on the acoustic guitar.

A Change Is Gonna Come, American Pie, Angie, Babylon, Blowin’ In The Wind, Dreadlock Holiday, Fast Car, Hey There Delilah, I Can’t Stand The Rain, I’m Yours, Kiss Me, Mad World, Red, Starman, Sunny Afternoon, and Whistle For The Choir.

Go to Intermediate acoustic songs.


All those open position chords you learned in the beginner course now become barre chords and pentatonic scales.

We’ll use this to map out the entire fret board. Everything becomes easier to visualize once this foundation is laid.

Go to Intermediate guitar exercises.

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