6 Rockin’ Rhythm Guitar Lessons Inspired by Rick Parfitt & Status Quo

6 Rockin’ Rhythm Guitar Lessons Inspired by Rick Parfitt & Status Quo

If ever there was a band that epitomized the hard driving, no holds barred rock band with a two-guitar frontline, it is the British Band Status Quo that featured Rick Parfitt. These six free guitar lessons from Ray Nijenhuis’ Rockin’ Rhythm Guitar Guidebook examine this powerful style of rock rhythm guitar, with a special focus on Parfitt’s unique approach.

Slapback Echo Shuffle 1

Download the tab, notation and jam track for this rhythm guitar lesson on TrueFire.

Rick Parfitt is famous for his very specific way of playing a shuffle. As I’m sure you all know, a shuffle is basically a three note pattern, called a triplet, of which you don’t play the one in the middle. Rick though, plays all three beats of the triplet. Well, he doesn’t really play all three of them. He hits the string on the first note of the triplet, then slaps the string on second and then plays the string on the third note of the triplet.

Tuning: Low B

Download the tab, notation and jam track for this rhythm guitar lesson on TrueFire.

Parfitt used a low B-tuning for songs like “4500 Times” and “Backwater”. It’s essentially standard tuning, but the 5th string is a whole tone up to B and the 6th string is tuned down a fourth to B.

Hold Me Back – Performance

Download the tab, notation and jam track for this rhythm guitar lesson on TrueFire.

Hold Me Back – Breakdown

Playing rhythm guitar without actually playing chords may sound a bit off-topic here, but that’s what this song is all about. The main riff is a repetitive single note triplet all over the neck, based on Parfitt’s rhythm part in hold you back. We’re combining this with all kinds of cool twists and tricks.

4500 Accidents Drone – Performance

Download the tab, notation and jam track for this rhythm guitar lesson on TrueFire.

4500 Accidents Drone – Breakdown

This one is inspired by Status Quo’s “4500 Times”, “Backwater”, and “Accident Prone”. We’re using a relatively simple melody within a custom low B tuning. It’s all about grooving and droning.


Dig these free guitar lessons? Check out the full course for more: Ray Nijenhuis’ Rockin’ Rhythm Guitar Guidebook