Sunshine Of Your Love chords by Cream


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Sunshine Of Your Love | Chords + Lyrics

Intro (0:00)

||: D blues scale riff :|| x8

Verse 1 (0:18)

||: D blues scale riff :|| x8
It’s getting near dawn, when lights close their tired eyes.
I’ll soon be with you my love, to give you my dawn surprise.
| G riff | G riff | G5 G7 | G riff G7#9 ||: D blues scale riff :|| x4
I’ll be with you darling soon, I’ll be with you when the stars start falling.

Chorus 1 (0:51)

| A | C/G G |
I’ve been waiting so long,
| A | C G/D |
to be where I’m going,
| A7 | C5 G5 | A5 | A5 | D riff | D riff |
in the sunshine of your love.

Verse 2 (1:12)

||: D blues scale riff :|| x8
I’m with you my love, the light’s shining through on you.
Yes, I’m with you my love, it’s the morning, and just we two.
| G riff | G riff | G5 G7 | G riff G7#9 ||: D blues scale riff :|| x4
I’ll stay with you darling now, I’ll stay with you till my seeds are all dried up.

Chorus 2 (1:45)

| A7 | C5 G5 |
I’ve been waiting so long,
| A5 | C5 G/D |
to be where I’m going,
| A7 | C G5 | A | A7 A7#9 |
in the sunshine of your love.

Solo (2:01)

||: D blues scale riff :|| x8
| G riff | G riff | G5 G7 | G riff |
||: D blues scale riff :|| x4
| A5 | C/G G5 | A5 | C/G G5 |
| A7 | C/G G5 | A | A7 |
||: D riff :|| x4

Verse 3 (2:59)

||: D blues scale riff :|| x8
I’m with you my love, the light shining through on you.
Yes, I’m with you my love, it’s the morning, and just we two.
| G riff | G riff | G5 G7 | G riff ||: D blues scale riff :|| x4
I’ll stay with you darling now, I’ll stay with you till my seeds are all dried up.

Chorus 3 (3:33)

| A | C5 G | A | C G |
I’ve been waiting so long, I’ve been waiting so long.
| A | C5 G | A | C G |
I’ve been waiting so long, I’ve been waiting so long.
| A | C5 G | A | A7 | A7 | A7#9 | D riff | D riff D7#9 |
To be where I’m going, in the sunshine of your love.


Sunshine Of Your Love’s chords and progressions

Let’s take a look at the chords and progression of Sunshine Of Your Love without the lyrics. Instead, let’s focus on how it changes/builds for each section.

Intro

||: D blues scale riff :|| x8

Verse 1

||: D blues scale riff :|| x8
| G riff | G riff | G5 G7 | G riff G7#9 |
||: D blues scale riff :|| x4

Chorus 1

| A | C/G G | A | C G/D |
| A7 | C5 G5 | A5 | A5 | D riff | D riff |

The second verse adds a D7#9.

Chorus 2 is not exactly the same as the first. Making subtle changes like this is what brings an arrangement alive, looks like this.

| A7 | C5 G5 | A5 | C5 G/D |
| A7 | C G5 | A | A7 A7#9 |

The solo stays on the D longer, before we return to a verse again. This is followed by verse 3.

The final chorus repeats more times and stays on A for longer.

| A | C5 G | A | C G |
| A | C5 G | A | C G |
| A | C5 G | A | A7 | A7 | A7#9 | D riff | D riff D7#9 |


You can learn how to play Sunshine Of Your Love!

My version of Sunshine Of Your Love is a combination of Cream‘s original and Spanky Wilson‘s cover. I do wish I could have integrated Ella Fitzgerald‘s version as well but I guess you can’t win them all!

Using the main riff as a starting point, the chords have sometimes been extended to a dom7#9.

Spanky’s version uses this and since it is Jimi Hendrix’s signature chord, and Jack Bruce wrote this tune on the back of an early Hendrix gig in London, I thought I’d keep that in.

Sunshine Of Your Love is a great example of a tune that can be easily jammed with a band.

Rather than the traditional V to IV movement of your average 12-bar blues, Sunshine Of Your Love stays on the V chord much longer than usual before it returns to chord I. As we stay on this A chord, we also get a C (bVIIx) and G (IV) for extra tension.

To keep the arrangement interesting and build tension, the chords are varied by finding different shapes.

This type of approach is more likely to keep a song alive compared to using muscle memory and strict parts like you would have to in a strict rock band. It also makes it more fun to jam with friends.

Perhaps most importantly, if you always play like this, writing parts for your own songs becomes easier.

Below, there’s a guitar lesson on how to play the riff for Sunshine Of Your Love. What we do is find ten ways to play it. Learn all these and you can play Sunshine Of Your Love’s chords/riff in an improvised way, enjoy!


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Sunshine Of Your Love guitar lesson | Main riff TAB in 10 areas

Let’s play the main riff in ten different ways. Your goal is to learn all of them so you can choose freely between them when you play the song.

Here’s example 1. Make sure you play the first two bars as “badly” as possible. They should sound stiff. For the second two bars, make them as bluesy as you can. The contrast should be exaggerated.

Sunshine Of Your Love chords, main riff, example 1.

Example 2 is much more difficult. Identical at first, but in the second half we throw in some fast muting. Don’t forget to bend the double stop at the end as well.

Sunshine Of Your Love chords, main riff, example 2.

In example 3 we use a D7 instead of the note C. The end of the phrase is varied, practice with the TAB loop until it’s perfect.

Sunshine Of Your Love chords, main riff, example 3.

A more intense variation is to use a D7sus4, instead of a lonely C in example 4. The fast rhythm that was previously muted is now, at first picked. This sounds “metal” so if you like that, take note.

For the second half, we’re back to the fast mutes, now as strums. Practice to TAB loop for the best result.

Sunshine Of Your Love chords, main riff, example 4.

For example 5 we have octaves of the riff at first, then a D D7 again. Ensure you play exactly as written.

Sunshine Of Your Love chords, main riff, example 5.

More octaves in example 6, followed by playing the scale up the octave. The second half uses an intricate hammer-on, finished off with a double-stop bend.

If the TAB loop is too quick, practice at a slower tempo on your own first.

Sunshine Of Your Love chords, main riff, example 6.

In example 7 we get close to what Mr. Clapton actually did. The intricate hammer-on is what you just did, although on a different string pair and therefore different frets. Confused? play both examples and you’ll get it.

Sunshine Of Your Love chords, main riff, example 7.

Let’s play the riff over the g chord as well. An open G is always nice. In example 8 we modify it into a G7 to incorporate the blues scale riff.

Notice how the final double stop feels different here, further down the neck compared to example 7.

Sunshine Of Your Love chords, main riff, example 8.

For example 9, we again get a more difficult version of the riff because we are further down the neck.

When you can play this well, example 7 will magically seem pretty easy.

Sunshine Of Your Love chords, main riff, example 9.

Finally, example 10 has taken most of what example 6 did, and moved it to G.

As with all examples, practice along with the TAB loops. If you can play along with me all the way through, you know it.

Sunshine Of Your Love chords, main riff, example 10.

In the course, we next play the missing bits in order to play the complete song. This includes the dom7#9 extensions and the turnaround.

For the complete experience, sign up here.

Sunshine Of Your Love solo

Eric Clapton‘s solo on the original recording is fantastic. Using huge bends, he manipulates the minor and major thirds, as well as the bluesy b5 better than most.

In the mid-60s when this was recorded, Eric had been pronounced a God in his native England. Nobody could believe their eyes as he played lightning-fast blues solos to adoring fans on the London live scene.

One of Eric’s secrets was that he swapped his 3rd string for one that was plain, just like the E and B naturally are. This gave him less tension and the possibility to bend further. Today this is of course standard on all electric guitars, at the time it was revolutionary.

As we learn this on the acoustic guitar, we can’t play those huge bends since our acoustic strings are (still) too heavy.

To solve this, the solo has been moved down the neck and instead of massive bends, we switch frets. Somebody should have pointed this out to Eric at the time!

In the advanced acoustic guitar course, four steps are spent on learning the Sunshine Of Your Love solo by starting slowly and nailing every single note until it sounds like Clapton played it.

Notice how he references the melody of Blue Moon at the beginning of the solo, this and the play on straight vs swung demonstrates the musical humor Cream as a band possessed.


Sunshine Of Your Love | Related pages


Sunshine Of Your Love – 8 guitar lessons

Sunshine Of Your Love, 8 guitar lessons in the course.

The most difficult part of playing Sunshine Of Your Love is without a doubt the solo. All those huge bends have to be changed in order to work on the acoustic guitar.

Learning the riff, the turnaround, and practicing the blues scale is in comparison super simple.

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love – 8 guitar lessons.


Advanced Acoustic Songs

When you can play Sunshine Of Your Love's chords, discover more advanced acoustic songs.

These songs use big chord extensions and sometimes, unique and complex chords that incorporate open strings.

Study these in-depth and you will gain a complete understanding of the fretboard, including how to build any scale, arpeggio, and chord, anywhere on the guitar.

Go to Advanced Acoustic Songs.


Sunshine Of Your Love | 5 similar tunes

When you can play Sunshine Of Your Love's chords, try these five tunes from the song book.

Eric Clapton

Find out more about Eric Clapton, the who played Sunshine Of Your Love's chords on the guitar.

As well as a member of bands like Derek & The Dominos, The Yardbirds, and Cream, Clapton has successfully played sessions for more stars than any other guitar player.

His long career earned him three inductions into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame.

Go to Eric Clapton.


Eric Clapton on the web

Listen to Eric Clapton on Spotify.

Cream

Find out more about Cream, the band that wrote and recorded Sunshine Of Your Love's chords.

The 60s British super-group that Eric Clapton joined after his time with John Mayhall and The Bluesbreakers was Cream.

Cream’s sound could be described as a hybrid of blues, pop, and psychedelic rock. Hits include Crossroads, Sunshine Of Your Love, Strange Brew, and White Room.

Go to Cream.


Cream on the web

Listen to Cream on Spotify.

Spanky Wilson

Find out more about Spanky Wilson, the woman who changed Sunshine Of Your Love's chords.

Spanky Wilson is an American vocalist best known for her version of Sunshine Of Your Love, by Cream.

Wilson has shared the stage alongside many Soul and Jazz legends, including Marvin Gaye, Sammy Davis Jr., Jimmy McGriff, and Jimmy Smith.

Go to Spanky Wilson.


Spanky Wilson on the web

Listen to Spanky Wilson on Spotify.