Learn to play - "Roxanne" by the Police

Click here to check out my first attempt at creating a video lesson dedicated to a particular song. In this post we are looking at “Roxanne” by The Police. A radio hit for years, it’s probably drifted past your ears without so much as a second thought. “Was that a Maj7 chord?” The answer is, yes! There is some pretty slick harmony happening in this tune. The trick with any well written song is to use advanced harmony to stimulate your ears and create the expectations and resolutions that you brain demands without creating anything so jarring that you are turned off. “Roxanne” checks all those boxes. Well done Gordon, err I mean Sting.

So let us talk about this tune a little bit. The form is pretty standard, nothing there really stands out as odd or unusual. The whole tune is in 4 and structured reasonably with verses, a pre-chorus, and a chorus. The guitar stuff in this tune is really all about consistent picking and good left hand muting. It is a great tune to put together with a little practice and then rock out with the recording.

In the video I cover all the chord voicings and muting information you’ll need to learn the tune from start to finish. You might need to click here to download the PDF chart of the tune in order to play along and see exactly what I’m talking about, but If you already know the tune really well then all my yammering will make perfect sense to you without the chart.

If you like the video and think that it’s helpful let me know and I’ll do more. If you have requests, I’ll do my best to accommodate them.

Teague Bechtel