Solsbury Hill by Peter Gabriel | acoustic
An acoustic guitar lesson on how to play "Solsbury Hill" by Peter Gabriel from his 1977 self titled debut solo album.
This is one of those songs from the seventies that will be around for a long time. It's so well written with such an inspiring and uplifting sentiment and is musically really interesting as well.
It came about when Peter Gabriel decided to quit Genesis and go out on his own, stepping away from a very popular and successful band into unknown territory as a solo artist with no guarantees.
He explained it this way:
"It's about being prepared to lose what you have for what you might get, or what you are for what you might be. It's about letting go."
It's a place just about everyone gets to at some point in their lives in some way or another. Maybe that's why the song resonates with so many people year after year.
Solsbury Hill is an actual place in Somerset, England.
The record was produced by Bob Ezrin who is well known for working with Alice Cooper and Lou Reed and although the tune starts out with just the acoustic by the end it's really heavily produced with all kinds of things coming in and out of the mix.
But the thing that drives the song is the acoustic guitar part. That was played by Steve Hunter, another Alice Cooper/Lou Reed connection and undoubtedly brought into the sessions by Bob Ezrin.
Here's a great Guitar Player article that I found written by Steve Hunter about how that guitar part came about.
I think it's a genius bit of guitar playing. Travis picked in 7/4! With alternating sections of a bar of 3 followed by a bar of 4, with the next section reversed, a bar of 4 followed by a bar of 3 and finally 2 bars of 4 to end the cycle (read the article!)
Anyways, it probably sounds more complicated than it is and my advice is not to count! Once you understand what's going on, just play the patterns. I think this is good advice for any odd time signature music.
I really had a great time working on this song as it's always been one of my favorites. I hope that you enjoy the video and it helps you to play this total gem of a song! Cheers
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