Classic Track: Dear Prudence

Album: The Beatles (White album) | Year: 1968 | Artist: The Beatles | Guitarist: John Lennon

This is one of my favourite Beatles tracks and also happens to be a great song to learn if you’re getting into finger picking. John Lennon wrote the main chord progression whilst out in India and the song is believed to be about Mia Farrow’s sister Prudence, who was suffering with depression.

Lennon’s guitar part is played in Drop-D tuning so tune the 6th string down to D. He uses this string as a pedal-tone throughout the song.

With your strumming/picking hand use your thumb to play the 5th and 6th strings. Use your 1st and 2nd fingers for the 4th and 3rd strings with your third finger playing the 2nd and 1st strings. 

The picking rhythm can be a bit of a challenge at first so it’s a good idea to get this correct before trying to learn the song. Forget the fretting hand for a moment and just finger pick the open strings: 5th and 1st string together, 4th, 3rd, 1st, 2nd then 4th to the rhythm in my examples. This will make the chord changes a lot easier!

Intro

                                 Dsus4add2
|------- ------- ------- -------|12----- ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------------------|-------------------10----------|
|Fade-in-from-previous-track----|-----------12------------------|
|-------------------------------|--------0---------------0------|
|-------------------------------|0------------------------------|
|-------------------------------|---------------0---------------|
  D                              Am11/D
|10----- ------- ------- -------|8------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------10----------|-------------------8-----------|
|-----------11------------------|------------9------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|0------------------------------|
|-----------------0-------------|---------------0---------------|
 D6sus4                          Dmaj7sus2
|7------ ------- ------- -------|5------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------8-----------|-------------------5-----------|
|-----------7-------------------|-----------6-------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|0------------------------------|
|----------------0--------------|---------------0---------------|
C6/D
|3------ ------- ------- -------|3------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------5-----------|-------------------5-----------|
|-----------5-------------------|-----------5-------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|0------------------------------|
|----------------0--------------|---------------0---------------|

Verse

  D                               D11
|2------ ------- ------- -------|2------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------3-----------|-------------------3-----------|
|------------2------------------|------------2------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|3------------------------------|
|----------------0--------------|----------------0--------------|
Gmaj7/D                           Daugadd4
|2------ ------- ------- -------|2------ ------- ------- -------|
|--------------------3----------|-------------------3-----------|
|------------0------------------|------------0------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
|2------------------------------|1------------------------------|
|----------------0--------------|-----------------0-------------|

Chorus

  D                               D11
|2------ ------- ------- -------|2------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------3-----------|-------------------3-----------|
|------------2------------------|------------2------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|3------------------------------|
|----------------0--------------|----------------0--------------|
 C                                Gsus2
|0------ ------- ------- -------|3------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------1-----------|-------------------3-----------|
|-----------0-------------------|-----------0-------------------|
|--------2---------------2------|--------0---------------0------|
|3---------------3--------------|-------------------------------|
|-------------------------------|5---------------5--------------|

Middle Eight

  D                               D6sus4
||2------ ------- ------- -------|3------ ------- ------- -------|
||-------------------3-----------|-------------------3-----------|
||------------2------------------|------------4------------------|
||--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
||0------------------------------|0------------------------------|
||----------------0--------------|----------------0--------------|
  Dmaj7sus2                       D6sus4
|5------ ------- ------- -------|3------ ------- ------- -------||
|-------------------5-----------|-------------------3-----------||
|------------6------------------|------------4------------------||X3
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------||
|0------------------------------|0------------------------------||
|----------------0--------------|----------------0--------------||
  Dm7                             Cm6#5/D
|1------ ------- ------- -------|4------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------1-----------|-------------------4-----------|
|------------2------------------|------------5------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|0------------------------------|
|----------------0--------------|----------------0--------------|
  D6sus4
|3------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------3-----------|
|------------4------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|
|----------------0--------------|

Outro

 D6                              Dsus4add2
|14----- ------- ------- -------|12----- ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------12----------|-------------------10----------|
|-----------14------------------|-----------12------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|0------------------------------|
|-----------------0-------------|---------------0---------------|
 D                               C6/D
|10----- ------- ------- -------|8------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------10----------|-------------------8-----------|
|-----------11----------11------|------------9------------------|
|--------0----------------------|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|0------------------------------|
|-----------------0-------------|---------------0---------------|
 D6sus4                          Dmaj7sus2
|7------ ------- ------- -------|5------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------8-----------|-------------------5-----------|
|-----------7-------------------|-----------6-------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|0------------------------------|
|----------------0--------------|---------------0---------------|
 C6/D
|3------ ------- ------- ------0|3------ ------- ------- -------|
|-------------------5-----------|-------------------5-----------|
|-----------5-------------------|-----------5-------------------|
|--------0---------------0------|--------0---------------0------|
|0------------------------------|0------------------------------|
|----------------0--------------|---------------0---------------|
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