Johnny B. Goode chords



You can learn how to play Johnny B. Goode by Chuck Berry!

As #7 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 500 greatest songs of all time, Johnny B. Goode by Chuck Berry is synonymous with the electric guitar.

Released in 1958 on blues label Chess, it didn’t actually reach the top spot, instead peaking at #2. It is instead its long-lasting legacy that has made it so legendary and some say, the most recognized rock n roll song of all time.

If you ever questioned if this is a song you should know, maybe you have a future career as a bass player instead! Make no mistake – This is a must-know song, only note for note will do when playing the intro!

We can only place this alongside more modern classics like Sweet Child O’ Mine, Sweet Home Alabama, and Summer Of 69 on the “must know this” list for any serious rock guitar player.

Johnny B. Goode is music history in a song – Let’s look at all the chords and lyrics!


Johnny B. Goode chords and lyrics


| N.C | N.C | Bb N.C | N.C |
| Eb6 | Eb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
| F6 | F6 | Bb6 | Bb6

| Bb6 | Bb6 |
Deep down in Louisiana close to New Orleans,
| Bb6 | Bb6 |
way back up in the woods among the evergreens.
| Eb6 | Eb6 |
There stood a log cabin made of earth and wood,
| Bb6 | Bb6 |
where lived a country boy named Johnny B. Goode.
| F6 | F6 |
Who never ever learned to read or write so well,
| Bb6 | Bb6 |
but he could play a guitar just like a-ringin’ a bell. Go, go.

| Bb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
Go, Johnny go, go. Go Johnny go, go.
| Eb6 | Eb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
Go, Johnny go, go. Go Johnny go, go.
| F6 | F6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
Johnny B. Goode.

| Bb6 | Bb6 |
He used to carry his guitar in a gunny sack,
| Bb6 | Bb6 |
go sit beneath the tree by the railroad track.
| Eb6 | Eb6 |
All the engineers would see him sitting in the shade,
| Bb6 | Bb6 |
strumming with the rhythm that the drivers made.
| F6 | F6 |
The people passing by they would stop and say,
| Bb6 | Bb6 |
“Oh my what that little country boy could play”. Go, go.

| Bb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
Go, Johnny go, go. Go Johnny go, go.
| Eb6 | Eb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
Go, Johnny go, go. Go Johnny go, go.
| F6 | F6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
Johnny B. Goode.

||: Bb N.C | Bb N.C | Bb N.C Bb N.C | Bb |
| Eb6 | Eb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
| F6 | F6 | Bb6 | Bb6 :||

| Bb6 | Bb6 |
His mother told him “Someday you will be a man,
| Bb6 | Bb6 |
and you will be the leader of a big old band.
| Eb6 | Eb6 |
Many people coming from miles around,
| Bb6 | Bb6 |
to hear you play your music when the sun go down.
| F6 | F6 |
Maybe someday your name will be in lights,
| Bb6 | Bb6 |
saying: Johnny B. Goode tonight”. Go, go.

| Bb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
Go, Johnny go. Go, go, go Johnny go.
| Eb6 | Eb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
Go, go, go Johnny go. Go, go, go Johnny go.
| F6 | F6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
Go. Johnny B. Goode.


Johnny B. Goode chord progression

Using the classic honky tonk riff, we could describe the chords as 6 chords to include the riff in the chord.

As a traditional twelve bar, Johnny B. Goode’s chords move like this:

| Bb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
| Eb6 | Eb6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |
| F6 | F6 | Bb6 | Bb6 |

This is the same for both the verse and the chorus.

The only variation is during the intro/solo section where we have stops.

The intro’s first line has just one stop, like this:

| N.C | N.C | Bb N.C | N.C |

For the solo, the stops are more frequent, like this:

| Bb N.C | Bb N.C | Bb N.C Bb N.C | Bb |

Clearly, a worldwide smash hit that has come to almost represent its genre doesn’t have to be complicated. Johnny B. Goode’s chord proves that!

Funnily enough, most bands I’ve played in that have had this song on their setlist have not done it in the original key, instead, it tends to be in either A or B. My top tip is to learn it in all three keys!


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