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Easy Flatpicking Intro – Grateful Dead

Lesson ID: A0197

In this guitar lesson, we’ll take a look at some simple rhythm and lead from the song “Ripple” by Grateful Dead. First, we’ll work through two basic chord progressions in G and we’ll add some vocals for those of y’all wanting to sing with this song. Then, in the second half of this lesson, you’ll learn a nice guitar intro that mixes the melody of “Ripple” with country & bluegrass strumming.


Flatpicking Intro

Video 1 – Playthrough with Tablature – Flatpicking Intro

Video 2 – Full Breakdown – Flatpicking Intro

Video Start Time Lesson Topic
00:00 min Measures 1 through 4
04:16 min Measures 5 through 8
07:49 min Measures 9 through 12

Gear Used in This Lesson

Vintage Tone Triangle Picks (3 pack)


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George Lange
George Lange(@georgeanddoris66hotmail-com)
1 year ago

Sounds great Devin

Roy Baker
Roy Baker(@roy)
1 year ago

Thanks, like this lesson , good choice

Susan Wagner
Susan Wagner(@shysue)
1 year ago

Love it! Thanks, Devin. :^)

1 year ago

Great Lesson Devin.

1 year ago

I’ve been wanting to learn some more Dead songs. Thanks Devin

Patrick Tembo
Patrick Tembo(@tom-grace)
1 year ago

been waiting for this one!!

David Webster
David Webster(@dwebman)
1 year ago

I’m really enjoying learning this intro. The focus on the right hand steady up down pattern makes learning the flat picking a lot easier. That’s a wonderful piece of advice you emphasize in these lessons. Thanks Devon.

1 year ago

My neighbors appreciate the new song. They’re probably tired of hearing my play list!! Thanks Devin fun learning!

1 year ago

I couldn’t work out how you were getting back to the d chord from the G. It wasn’t working for me until on closer inspection i noticed you were making a D chord with your pinky. This is a first for me. I’ve never made a D like that before, but it’s a useful thing to learn.

BTW, thanks for posting this old favorite of mine.

1 year ago

You had me at “easy”!!

1 year ago

Oh, I could play everything right now!

1 year ago

PLEASE Make a video of the whole song with tabs and lyrics. PLEASE

KYLE JONES(@redicoyote)
1 year ago

I love this song!

Paul Murphy
Paul Murphy(@1malandro)
1 year ago

A really useful session!
The Grateful Dead released 2 albums in [I think] 1973, the song Ripple is taken from “American Beauty”, their other album of this year being “Workingman’s Dead”. Both albums have some great acoustic guitar, provided by the late lamented Jerry Garcia – whose own background was in bluegrass. For us aspiring pickers and strummers, these 2 albums are a goldmine!

Jean Campbell
Jean Campbell(@jcampbell)
10 months ago

Wish I could get the nice bassline walk from verse to chorus in Ripple. I have to learn to read the Tab. I am not leaving this song till I can play it well.

George Ovitt
George Ovitt(@nmgo)
7 months ago

Not only are these lessons outstanding for bluegrass/country/folk, they are excellent for learning how to create bass lines and leads from scales and arpeggios. So glad I found Devin’s site for deep dives into my favorite music.