You can learn how to play Scarborough Fair by Simon & Garfunkel!

Originally an old folklore, Scarborough Fair was made worldwide famous by Simon & Garfunkel.

The chords of Scarborough Fair take full advantage of the II chord. By using the extensions sus2, 13 and sus4, we get a clear sense of the Dorian scale ringing through.

It would be impossible to play Scarborough Fair using different shapes to what you see above. It is the shape and the incorporated open strings that make the arrangement what it is.

Using a capo on fret 7, we think in the key of Am, but what you hear is the key of Em.

You can’t change the finger style patterns or chord shapes, as they are what gives Scarborough Fair its distinctive sound.

But what you can do, is add a 2nd guitar part, doing this will enhance the first part as well as teach you more about how this song is put together.

We spend a considerable amount of time doing this in the advanced acoustic guitar course, as well as learning the original part, of course.


In the verse, we use all kinds of intervals from the Dorian scale, maintaining the open 5th string.

To name the chords can cause all kinds of debate, after all, they are unique due to the open strings so reading them as you would with any song, doesn’t make all that much sense.

Still, this is what they actually are, thinking in A (remember there’s a capo on fret 7!)


| A13sus4 | Dsus24 Dsus4/F# | Cmaj7 G/B ||: A13sus4 | Asus2 :||


||: A13sus4 | Asus2 | G C/E G | A13sus4 | A7sus2 |

| C | Am7 | C D | A13sus4 | Asus2 |

| A13sus4 | Asus2 | Asus2 | C | C G/B Am7 | G C/E G |

| C/E G | A7omit3 | G C/E | G C/E G | A13sus4 | Asus2 |

| A13sus4 | Asus2 :||


| A13sus4 | Dsus24 Dsus4/F# | Cmaj7 G/B | Asus2 |

Scarborough Fair – Guitar Lessons

You can learn how to play Scarborough Fair by Simon & Garfunkel!

Step 1 (6 loops at two slow tempos)Step 2 (6 loops at two fast tempos)Step 3 (Complete song)Step 4 (2nd guitar part, 6 loops at two slow tempos)Step 5 (2nd guitar part, 6 loops at two faster tempos)Step 6 (2nd guitar, complete song)Step 7 (Dorian, 2 master exercises & Developed vocal melody)Step 8 (Dorian, 3 master exercises & Developed vocal melody).

Scarborough Fair – Lyrics

Are you going to Scarborough Fair?
Parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme.
Remember me to one who lives there,
she once was a true love of mine.

Go to Scarborough Fair – Lyrics.

Simon & Garfunkel – Biography

Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel was a hugely successful American folk duo starting out as Tom & Jerry, before they adopted their more obvious choice of stage name.

Their hits include Homeward Bound, Scarborough Fair, The Boxer, Mrs. Robinson, Bridge Over Troubled Water, and American Tune.

Go to Simon & Garfunkel – Biography.

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