Top '90s Songs for Acoustic Guitar

Use Guitar Tab to Learn Songs From the 1990s That Sound Great on Acoustic

The following songs have been selected to provide beginner acoustic guitarists with popular music made in the 1990s. A guideline for the difficulty of each song has been included. The assumption with these guidelines is beginner can play the basic essential open chords plus F major.

Album: Gordon (1992)
Level of difficulty: advanced beginner

To play along with the recording, you'll need a capo placed on the third fret. Although the chords are correct, the layout of the tab linked to above is somewhat confusing. Click through, scroll all the way to the bottom of the page and locate the "Drove downtown in the rain" - these are the chords for the verse. Instead of the strumming and fingerpicking found on the original recording, I suggest you start with a more straightforward down, down up, up down up

Album: Surfacing (1997)
Level of difficulty: beginner

You'll need a capo on the second fret for this one. While the tab linked to here is complete in showing specific picking patterns for the guitar parts in "Building a Mystery", it doesn't show the simple chord changes. They are easy... for the verse, repeat A minor -> F major -> C major -> G major. For the "You're so beautiful" part, repeat D major -> F major.

Album: Automatic for the People (1992)
Level of difficulty: beginner

This is a nice easy song you can use to begin practicing pick control. The tab at the top of the linked chords above shows you the basic picking pattern, but it doesn't show you what to play when the chords change. Read on to find that information. There are a couple barre chords later in the song, but even if you can't play those, practice the opening picking part of the song until you can play it at a good speed.

What's the Story Morning Glory

Album: (What's the Story) Morning Glory (1995)
Level of difficulty: advanced beginner

The chords for "Wonderwall" are pretty straightforward (although ignore the Emin7 chord shape shown and play the chord as 022033 ), but the strumming pattern is tricky - there isn't much time to move from one chord to the next. Initially, try simply playing ​four strums per chord, using all downstrums. When you've mastered the song using that pattern, try moving to a down, down, down, down-up strumming pattern. Finally, when you're comfortable, move on the real strumming pattern for "Wonderwall". More »

Album: Pieces of You (1995)
Level of difficulty: advanced beginner

The key to playing "You Were Meant for Me" is to hold chords down in your left hand, while fingerpicking the pattern in the right hand. The chord linked to above does a good job of outlining the notes - you'll need to examine the notes being played in each bar, and hold down the finger shape that corresponds with those notes. For example, the song starts with Cadd9 - hold that shape down for the entire bar.

Album: Rush OST (1992)
Level of difficulty: intermediate

Here's another song beginner guitarists will probably struggle with for a while. "Tears in Heaven" is probably more challenging for its chord structures than it is for its fingerpicking patterns. Feel free to give it a try, but if you're a newbie, it'll probably be a while before you can make this one sound good.

nimrod

Album: Nimrod (1997)
Level of difficulty: beginner

Here's a nice easy one to get you started. The fingerpicking technique is simple, and the chords are the basic "open chord" variety. More »