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Guitar Tablature: “Ave Maria”" by Bach and Gounod

"Ave Maria" is a beautiful piece of music composed entirely of arpeggios. This makes it the perfect choice for practicing your guitar chords and arpeggio patterns. One of Bach’s most famous compositions is his “Prelude No. 1” from The Well-Tempered Clavier. But 137 years after it was written, the French Romantic composer Charles Gounod came along and composed a melody to go on top of the chords. He called his mash-up “Ave Maria,” even though everyone knew where he got the chords from.

The chords in “Ave Maria” change at the rate of one per bar, but the sequence is half a bar long, so each chord gets treated to two sequences. The arpeggio sequences presented in this piece are very close to those that Bach wrote. The pairs of sequences give the accompaniment a strong, predictable quality, yet it provides a subtle lift upward, capturing in this arrangement the ascendant quality of the original.

This piece almost begs to be played legato, so after becoming familiar with the arpeggio patterns called for in the music, try employing barres and held-down chord forms to make the notes ring out as long as possible.

Bach and Gounod’s “Ave Maria”
Bach and Gounod’s “Ave Maria”

Click here to download and print this guitar tab.

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