The man who sold the world tab

the man who sold the world tab

The iconic guitar riff of “The Man Who Sold the World” by David Bowie has resonated through generations, captivating music enthusiasts and inspiring countless cover versions. For aspiring guitarists eager to master this timeless classic, the “The Man Who Sold the World” tab is an invaluable tool. In this article, we’ll delve into the nuances of this tab, breaking down the elements that make it a must-learn for any guitar player.

Understanding the Basics

Before diving into the tab, let’s explore the song’s background. “The Man Who Sold the World” was originally released by David Bowie in 1970 as the title track of his third studio album. The song’s haunting melody and introspective lyrics have made it a staple in Bowie’s repertoire.

Introduction to the Tab Now, let’s focus on the “The Man Who Sold the World” tab itself. The song’s distinctive acoustic guitar arrangement is the centerpiece of its charm. The tab typically starts with the instantly recognizable intro, where a series of arpeggios sets the mood for the entire piece.

Decoding the Intro Arpeggios The intro arpeggios of “The Man Who Sold the World” tab are played in fingerstyle, emphasizing the delicate picking pattern that defines the song’s atmosphere. As you traverse the fretboard, pay attention to the subtle dynamics that bring out the nuances in each note. Practice precision in your fingerpicking to capture the ethereal quality of Bowie’s original rendition.

Navigating the Verse and Chorus Moving beyond the intro, the verse and chorus of the tab present a blend of chords and melodic lines. The strategic use of open chords and well-placed hammer-ons contributes to the song’s unique character.

Mastering Open Chords for the Chorus The chorus of “The Man Who Sold the World” tab features a sequence of open chords that demand a seamless transition between each chord. Focus on maintaining a steady rhythm while incorporating the necessary embellishments. This section showcases Bowie’s ability to infuse a rock edge into an otherwise folk-inspired arrangement.

Solo Breakdown An integral part of the tab is the solo that serves as a musical bridge between verses and chorus. Understanding the scale and technique behind this solo is crucial for capturing the essence of the original recording.

Unleashing the Solo’s Expressive Power The solo in “The Man Who Sold the World” tab involves a mix of bends, slides, and vibrato. To truly emulate Bowie’s emotive playing style, experiment with your phrasing and pay attention to the subtle nuances that elevate the solo’s expressiveness. Each bend and slide should be executed with precision to mirror the melancholic feel of the song.

Closing Reflections As you progress through the tab, it becomes evident that “The Man Who Sold the World” is more than just a guitar arrangement; it’s a musical journey that encapsulates Bowie’s artistic vision. Whether you’re a novice guitarist or an experienced player, the tab serves as a gateway to understanding the intricate layers of this timeless classic.

The Timelessness of “The Man Who Sold the World” Decades after its initial release, “The Man Who Sold the World” continues to captivate audiences worldwide. The tab, with its carefully transcribed notes and chords, allows musicians to step into Bowie’s musical shoes and experience the magic he created. As you practice and refine your rendition of the tab, remember that you’re not just playing a sequence of notes; you’re channeling the spirit of a song that has left an indelible mark on the world of music.


In conclusion, the “The Man Who Sold the World” tab is a treasure trove for guitar enthusiasts seeking to explore the intricacies of Bowie’s musical genius. From the haunting arpeggios of the intro to the soulful bends of the solo, each section contributes to the song’s timeless allure. Embrace the challenge, hone your skills, and embark on a musical journey that connects you with one of the greatest songs in the history of rock music. So, pick up your guitar, delve into the tab, and let the echoes of “The Man Who Sold the World” resonate through your fingertips.

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