Back in Black is the first of may AC/DC song that we will be featuring here at RiffRiff.com! So for you AC/DC fans out there, stay updated! Visit us often! This is from the album of the same name – Back in Black. This is actually a tribute song to the original lead singer of the band.
How to Play Black in Black Guitar Riff
The riff begins with an E major chord. To play this chord, place your index finger on the 2nd fret of the A string, and your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the D string. Play this chord with a strong, pronounced down-stroke.
The next chord is a D major variation. To play this chord, place your index finger on the 2nd fret of the G string and your ring finger on the 3rd fret of the B string. For this part of the riff, you want to start with a down stroke and then alternate between down-strokes and upstrokes rapidly (listen to the song).
The next chord is A major. To play this chord place your index finger on the 2nd fret of the D string, your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the G string, and your ring finger on the 2nd fret of the B string. Strum this chord with the right hand the same way as the previous chord – down-stroke, upstroke, down-stroke.
The next part of the riff starts on the 3rd fret of the high E string. Play this note with your ring finger. The next note is an open high E string, and that is followed the 3rd fret on the B string, which you should also play with your ring finger. Play these three notes down-stroke, upstroke, down-stoke. The next part of the riff, which is marked in red, involves pull-offs. On both the G string and the D string, play the 2nd fret with your index finger, play a down-stroke and ‘pull off’ so the open string rings out as well.
Know How To Play Back In Black By ACDC
The song Back in Black by ACDC is one of the popular rock songs of all time. The band is famous for their hard rock sound and they wrote this song in memory of their lead singer Bon Scott who died in 1980.
The celebratory song was different from the usual sad lyrics found in memoir compositions and focused on the great life that Bon had with the ACDC band. It was a rocking tribute which commemorated the fast track lifestyle of the artist. The band considers their songs to be in rock and roll style but most compositions fall under the hard rock and heavy metal genres.
Learn The Chords to Play Back In Black
The main chords used in the song are A open, D open, E open and G open. The song is split into different chunks for easy learning.
What Makes Back in Black By ACDC a Great Song?
- The song features excellent guitar riffs which brings in a rocking mood.
- It has an instantly striking intro which is ideal for party performance.
- The song is a classic composition by ACDC and a favourite among rock fans.
Why Back in Black Is Great To Learn and Classified as ‘Hard’?
Back in Black is a classic rock song which has great guitar techniques that will allow guitarists to learn many facets of guitar including pull offs, bends, slides, know more about the power chords and the hammer ons. The song has high energy to it and will be an exhilarating experience for the audience.
Learn More About ACDC
The ACDC is an Australian band formed in 1973 and the first members of the group were two brothers, Angus and Malcolm Young. There are many line up changes and the death of lead singer Bon Scott had a striking effect on the band. Back in Black is one of the most successful songs in their career.
The album has sold over 200 million copies worldwide and continues to be the bestsellers for ACDC.
The Album Back in Black Came From
Back in Black was the 6th album from ACDC which got internationally released and it was also the first album which didn’t feature their lead singer Bon Scott. It was a dedication to Scott and his rocking lifestyle. The album cover was designed with a pure black design which mourned for the loss of their lead singer.
As you’ll notice from the tablature, the second half of the riff is identical. You play the same three chords the same way. The last figure, which is marked in blue is played by placing your index finger on the 2nd fret of the A string. This note is the ‘anchor’ so to speak. Pluck this note a down-stroke,ring finger with alternating upstrokes on the low E string beginning with the ring finger on the 4th fret, and then the pinky finger on the 5th, 6th and 7th frets. This will seem like a big stretch at first, but practice makes perfect.
The majority of the song is basically a 3 chord song – E major, D major and A Major.
The intro guitar of Black in Black starts with a 3 finger power chord. And those chords are the ones we mentioned before (E, A, and D).
Its basically the open E power chord (E5) . It comprises of the open E string, second fret of the 5th string and second fret of the 4rth string.
The open D power chord (D5) is the open D string (4rth string), second fret of the 3rd string and the 3rd fret of the second string.
The next power chord is the open A power chord which is the open A string (5th string), second fret of the 4th string and the second fret of the 3rd string.
I highly suggest you watch the video above again and again to get the feel of that 2 licks in the riff as well as the 3 strums on D and A major chords.
Free Video Guitar Lesson
AC/DC Artist Study: Angus Young Licks
by Prashant Aswani of GuitarTricks.com
Instructor: Prashant Aswani
Speciality: Rock, Metal
Guitar Tricks instructor Prashant Aswani takes you through some of the elements of style that make AC/DC one of the most popular
bands in rock. In this lesson we’re going to take a look at a standard pentatonic lick in the style of Angus Young. This one is in
A minor, and features the kind of aggressive bending and pentatonic playing that Angus often uses.
This free lesson is from an 8 lesson Artist Study at Guitar Tricks. This AC/DC tutorial looks at the
foundations of the band’s signature tone, how Angus and Malcolm voice their chords and give them movement, some of the pentatonic
licks they use, the use of open string licks, and double stops. In the final lesson there’s a jam along session with a rockin’
custom jam track!
For over 3000 lessons on every guitar style and technique visit