Not so fast!
I was working on the lead to the 80’s classic “Hit Me with Your Best Shot” by Pat Benatar the other day. The guitar lead is done by her main squeeze, Neil “Spyder” Giraldo. Anyone with a cool nickname like that has to be a good guitarist.
Anyway, Neil always had a very “polished” sound and the lead in this hit song is very nicely planned out. I had played this years ago but had forgotten it.
So for Wednesday’s practice with my band, I sat down with my iTunes and started to work on it. Maybe I didn’t have enough caffeine that day, maybe I needed more sleep, but it wasn’t coming to me. So I thought “Hey, why re-invent the wheel, someone else has done this and stuck it out on the web in tabs so I’ll snag these first 11 notes since I have the rest of it”.
Sure enough, the first hit on google I took a look at. But….this couldn’t be right. It had these notes all on the 1st string, Hammer on Pull of (HOPO) 12 14 12, HOPO 10 12 10, HOPO 9 10 9, HOPO 7 9 7. Not only are those the wrong notes but it’s one note to many. That’s 12 notes and the intro is 11.
Suddenly, as in an epiphany (don’t you love those?) it came back to me as:
All notes picked. I don’t even thing the last note is pulled off since it’s punched pretty well with vibrato.
Now, I don’t fault whoever put up the wrong tablature in first place. He or she spent some time hunched over a speaker and that was the best they could do. And on top of that, they were nice enough to share what they had with the rest of the world for free.
That said, let your ear be the final judge if someone has the right content on the web. Remember there are no restrictions on the web and sometimes it’s easy to believe what we read.
Be a “critical” consumer of tab content on the web. Some day, if you keep at it, you’ll be a better guitarist than most and you’ll be able to correct these mistakes yourself.