Redemption Song chords by Bob Marley


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Redemption Song | Chords + Lyrics


Intro

||: Guitar melody :|| x8

Verse 1

| G | Em | C G/B | Am |
Old pirates yes they rob I, sold I to the merchant ships.
| G | Em | C G/B | Am |
Minutes after they took I, from the bottomless pit.
| G | Em | C G/B | Am |
But my hand was made strong, by the hand of the almighty.
| G | Em | C | D |
We forward in this generation, triumphantly.

Chorus 1

| D | G5 | C D5 | G5 |
Won’t you help to sing, these songs of freedom.
| C D5 | Em | C D5 | G5 | C D5 | G5 | C D |
‘Cause all I ever have, redemption songs, redemption songs.

Verse 2

| G5 | Em | C G/B | Am |
Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds.
| G | Em | C G/B | D |
Have no fear for atomic energy, ’cause none of them can stop the time.
| G5 | Em | C G/B | Am |
How long shall they kill our prophets, while we stand aside and look?
| G | Em | C G/B | D |
Ooh, some say it’s just a part of it, we’ve got to fulfill the book.

Chorus 2

| D | G5 | C D5 | G5 |
Won’t you help to sing, these songs of freedom.
| C D5 | Em | C D5 | G5 | C D5 | G5 | C D | G | C D |
‘Cause all I ever have, redemption songs, redemption songs, redemption songs.

Guitar break

||: Em | C D5 :|| x4

Verse 3

| G5 | Em | C G/B | Am |
Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds.
| G | Em | C G/B | D |
Have no fear for atomic energy, ’cause none of them can stop the time.
| G5 | Em | C G/B | Am |
How long shall they kill our prophets, while we stand aside and look?
| G | Em | C G/B | D |
Ooh, some say it’s just a part of it, we’ve got to fulfill the book.

Chorus 3

| D | G5 | C D5 | G |
Won’t you help to sing, these songs of freedom.
| C D | Em | C D | G5 |
‘Cause all I ever had, redemption songs.
| C D5 | Em | C D5 | Em |
All I ever had, redemption songs.
| C D5 | G | C D | G | C G/B | Am | Am | Am6 | Am6 |
These songs of freedom, songs of freedom.


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Redemption Song chords and progressions (course preview)

Redemption Song 8 step by step guitar lessons

Seen as one of the ultimate campfire songs, Redemption Song can only be compared to other acoustic guitar classics such as Wish You Were Here and Blowin’ In The Wind.

As it uses only open-position chords from the key of G, it is one of the best songs for a beginner to learn.

In the video at the top of this page, you’ll see me play Redemption Song on just one acoustic guitar with a singer, including the famous intro and all the chords.

In the course preview video, I’ll break down the intro and verse strumming. Use the TAB loops to play along, and you can learn these sections already now.

Here’s the intro TAB, notice how much detail there is in this seemingly simple part!

Redemption Song Intro TAB

To show you all the details of this intro, I must use TAB, but for the strumming of the verse, I want you to keep a more free approach where only the chords and rhythms are provided.

If you pick the bass or strum the chord on beat 1 is up to you. The key here is to experiment, keep varying when you strum and pick, here are the chords and rhythm slashes to guide you:

Redemption Song verse strumming pattern and chords

Next up in this lesson, we work on the chorus, how the following verses are varied, the m8 and the outro.

As these are all sections of Redemption Song, we are in step 3 ready to play the song with the singer.

For the remaining steps in the series, we learn a 2nd guitar part, picked along with the first strummed one. There is also a third video where I play using a capo.

You get loops to practice along with as well as detailed video lessons where I talk about how to strum every chord you find in Redemption Song.

Learning the 2nd guitar parts means that you, me, and the singer can play Redemption Song together as if we were an acoustic trio.

Here’s a link to the complete lesson series (members only): Redemption Song 8 step-by-step guitar lessons with TAB.

Become a member today and get unlimited access to all step-by-step guitar coursesTAB for the songbook, the Self-Eliminating Practice Routine, and the eBook Spytunes Method.

When Bob wrote Redemption Song he knew he was dying!

Redemption Song is a tune by Bob Marley from the album Uprising. The original and most famous recording was performed on just one acoustic guitar.

However, there are other versions, both live and in the studio, with and without a band. When Uprising was re-released in ’01, the full band version was featured as well as the original acoustic take.

When Bob wrote Redemption Song in ’79, he already knew about his cancer and was dealing with his mortality. How much this affected the meaning of the song might be dangerous waters to explore but there is usually a strong connection between timeless songs and great loss.

The lyrics have a connection with a speech by Marcus Mosiah Garvey, Jr, an African journalist, black nationalist, and a main figure in the Rastafarian movement. Garvey and Marley shared an interest in fighting issues such as slavery, colonialism, and racism.

Pan-Africanism has hundreds of years of oppression behind it. Redemption Song speaks about this like no other tune.

Rolling Stone magazine ranked Redemption Song #66 on their list of 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time.


Redemption Song | Related pages


Beginner Acoustic

Beginner Acoustic Songs

This collection of beginner acoustic tunes will teach you how to arrange for one acoustic guitar, as well as how to create a supporting part.

Playing songs will help you with switching between open-position chords and give you the context you need to understand how music works theoretically.


Five similar tunes with chords and lyrics

When you can play Redemption Song's chords, try these five tunes from the song book.

Bob Marley

Bob Marley was a Jamaican singer, songwriter, guitarist, and activist. Few artists have had such widespread recognition.

As the most widely known performer of reggae music, Bob Marley is also regarded by many as a prophet of the Rastafarian religion.


Bob Marley on the web

Listen to Bob Marley on Spotify.

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