Lesson 1   - Understanding Dave's Style -


Dave Matthews is one of the most unique guitarists to ever hit the music scene.  


Dave's style is aggressive and percussive. He has an innate abilityto mute almost any string he would like while still fully strummingeither chords or single notes. If you ever watch Dave's right handwhile he is playing, it rarely stops moving. He strums his heart out on every song he plays. Even on songs like The Stone where Dave has to hit single notes, Dave's hand is moving like a butterfly. He hits all the notes and doesn't think twice. 


Dave also wrote many of his songs with the same set of unique chords. These "Dave Chords" are played in at least fifty percent of his songs and are known and loved by all DMB fans. Although many of Dave's songs are extremely difficult to play, anyone who practices often can learn his style and how to play "like" Dave. 


Through this section I hope to show you how to learn Dave's unique style so that you can play his songs as accurately as possible and know how Dave plays his own songs.  Whether you decide to mimic Dave's style for your own songs and guitar playing is up to you.


ENJOY!!! In no time you will be playing songs like Ants Marching,Grey Street, and even...Tripping Billies. Keep at it and remember,PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE!!!



Lesson 2   - How Dave Plays Standard Chords -


Dave Matthews has a unique style of playing. As a result, he plays standard chords in various ways. I have included this section because Iam trying to show you the most accurate way to play DMB songs. Here is how Dave plays certain standard chords.


Dave has two ways to play an A chord. He either justbars the 3 notes on the second fret with his first fingeror plays it like this:

E:----

B:-2-- <---3

G:-2-- <---1

D:-2-- <---2

A:----

E:----


If Dave plays the A chord barred it will be indicated by a 1under the the chord to show what finger he uses. If nofinger is shown then he uses the fingering above.


When Dave plays a G-Chord, unless both the high-E and B stringsare fretted on the 3rd fret, he plays it like this:

E:-3-- <---4

B:-0--G:-0--

D:-0--

A:-2-- <---2

E:-3-- <---3


For Bar chords where the root bass note is on the A string,Dave bars the bass fret with his 1st finger and the othernotes with his 4th like this:

E:-1-- <---1

B:-3-- <---4

G:-3-- <---4

D:-3-- <---4

A:-1-- <---1

E:----


Any kind of chord where 2 notes are 2 off from eachother, they are played with the 1st and 4th finger like this:

E:----

B:----

G:----

D:-6-- <---4

A:----

E:-4-- <---1



Lesson 3   - The Famous "Dave Chords" -


Dave's style is often considered unique because of a chord pattern that isused in at least fifty percent of his songs. This chord pattern isbased on a very standard chord shown here:

E:----

B:----

G:-6--

D:-x--

A:-4--

E:----


To form a Dave chord you basically add a Bass note on to the lowE string. The following is the first chord of Say Goodbye:

E:----

B:----

G:-6--

D:-x--

A:-4--

E:-5--


When the note on the low E is 1 less than thenote on the G string, it is considered a major chordand played like this:

E:----

B:----

G:-6-- <---4

D:-x--

A:-4-- <---1

E:-5-- <---2


It is basically a normal chord like I showed you while thebass note is played with your 2nd finger. If the note onthe low E is the same as the note on the G string,it is considered a minor chord as shown by the firstchord of Two Step:

E:-----

B:-----

G:-10-- <---4

D:-x---

A:-8--- <---1

E:-10-- <---3


This here is the same thing but with the bass note hitwith your third finger. If you know how to play those twofingering's of Dave chords you can play the ENTIRE TWO STEP SONG!!!


There are often variations to the Dave chord but the bass notes are on the low E and G strings. You will notice Dave chordsif those two notes are either the same or 1 off from each other.


One variation of the "Dave chord" is when instead of your firstfinger being on the A string, two off from the G string fret,it is put on the D string 3 off. Here is the intro chord to Recently:

E:-----

B:-----

G:-10-- <---4

D:-7--- <---1

A:-x---

E:-10-- <---3


A Dave chord can also start on the A string as shownby the 1st chord of the Spoon Outro, shown here:

E:----

B:-7-- <---4

G:-x--

D:-4-- <---1

A:-6-- <---3

E:----


There are many variations to "Dave chords" and a few rules thatyou should know so that you can recognize and play them.Here are some variations:

E:----------------------------------------

B:-------------------------------------7--

G:-6-----7-----5-----4-----5-----9-----x--

D:-x-----x-----2-----2-----2-----7-----4--

A:-4-----5-----x-----x-----3-----x-----6--

E:-5-----7-----5-----3-----5-----9--------


Here is a list of rules on how to play these chords:

ALWAYS USE FINGER 4 ON THE G or B STRING(if Bass note is on the A-string), UNLESS OTHERWISE STATED

If the fret on the low E and G strings are the same, ALWAYS USE finger 3 on the low E

If there is a note on the D string, count the # of frets away it is from the G string and that is what finger you should use on the Low-E

If the chord has the bottom 4 strings fretted(like in the #41 Intro), USE COMMON SENSE!!!

If the Bass note is 1 off from the note on the A, ALWAYS use finger 2 on that Bass note

If the Bass note is 1 HIGHER from the note on B, ALWAYS use finger 3 on that Bass note and finger 2 on the G string



Lesson 4   - The Crash-Style Chords -


Crash is played with a very basic finger pattern. This fingerpattern is shown here:

E:----

B:-5-- <---4

G:-4-- <---3

D:-2-- <---1

A:----

E:----


This variation is used in Sleep To Dream Her, Crash, #41, andothers. This variation can be moved around through the bottom 3 Bassnotes as shown in Crash and Cry Freedom. Use common sensewhen playing these chords. Here is the other variation of this chord:

E:----

B:-5-- <---4

G:-4-- <---3

D:-x--

A:-2-- <---1

E:----



Lesson 5   - Playing Satellite Style Songs -


Satellite style songs are used in many songs that Dave uses. Heuses this riff style in Warehouse, #34, So Much To Say,and MANY others. The riff is as follows:

E:----------------

B:----------------

G:----------------

D:-------------8--

A:-------6--------

E:-4--------------   

1     2     4


The riff is mapped out starting on one note, going one stringdown and 2 frets over, and then another string down(2 from top)and 2 frets over(4 from start). You will almost always usethe fingers shown(1, 2, then 4) to play the riff. Check outthe fingerings under the songs to get it!!!



Lesson 6   - Other Important "Dave Chords" -


There are a few other chords that Dave uses a lot thatneed to be shown. Here they are with their Fingering:


Check out One Sweet World

E:----

B:----

G:-7-- <---2

D:-8-- <---3

A:-x--

E:-6-- <---1


Kind of same thing as above, just 3rd finger moved up astring(Check out Let You Down)

E:----

B:----

G:-6-- <---2

D:-x-- 

A:-7-- <---3

E:-5-- <---1


Can be moved down each string(starting Bass note on A) andkeep the same fingering

E:----

B:----

G:-6-- <---4

D:-6-- <---3

A:-x--E:-4-- <---1


First chord of Cry Freedom(also in Everyday and Tripping Billies)

E:----

B:----

G:-6-- <---2

D:-4-- <---1

A:-x--

E:-7-- <---3


2nd Chord of Grey Street Chorus(Also in Say Goodbye)

E:----

B:-2-- <---1

G:-2-- <---1

D:-2-- <---1

A:-4-- <---3

E:----


*Credit and thanks for all of these lessons go to J.Kanter and the dmbtabs crew

 












Questions from fans answered by DMB's crew:


• Question:
What is the model and gauge of the D'Addario strings Dave uses? And, if i can ask a second question: What are the gauges of Stefan's strings? Thanks for your time in answering these questions.


• DMB Crew Answer: 
Thanks for the kind words. Dave plays primarily on D'Addario strings. Model EXP17. Gauges 56, .45, .35, .26, .17, .13 respectively. Stefan's strings are 125 through 45 in gauge.



◊ Question:
What gauges of strings does Dave use for songs such as Oh, Stay Or Leave and You Never Know?


◊ DMB Crew Answer: 
B .39, E .29, A .18, D .14, F# .12, B .16



• Question:
Does Dave use his Machless DC-30 Amp for acoustic and electric?


• DMB Crew Answer: 
Yes, for both.



◊ Question:
ok ihave two questions if thats not a problem. 1. what type of taylor twelve string does dave use (Koa or Walnut) b/c the both look the same? and 2. what type of wireless cable does dave use?

◊ DMB Crew Answer: 
Dave uses Shure products for wireless and as far as I know it's walnut.


• Question:
I'm wondering how often Dave's guitar is restrung? 

• DMB Crew Answer: 
Everyday.



*Credit for this Q&A goes to Antsmarching.org for putting this together
*Credit for Dave's Gear goes to http://road.davematthewsband.com/bandgear.html

- Dave's Gear -


Current Gear:
Rockbridge Custom Sunburst - Standard Tuned (2)
Rockbridge Custom Sunburst - Drop D
Dobro - Resonator Guitar
Jerry Jones Baritone Tuning
Jerry Jones Baritone - Standard tuning 
Taylor 714CE - High B Tuning
Gibson Sunburst Custom - High B Tuning
Ukelele
Taylor 12 String (at least 2; one is in standard, and the other is a half step down)
Fender Stratocaster
Veillette Gryphon - High Tuned Unison 12 String (believe he has two)
Martin DM3MD - Drop D (Dave and Tim only)


Pre 2011 Caravan:
Taylor 914C 6-String Acoustic Guitar
Taylor W65 12-String Acoustic Guitar
Taylor 714 Acoustic Guitar
Jerry Jones Baritone
Veillette Gryphon
Veillette Baritone 12-String
D'Addario Strings
Dunlap Guitar Pics
Matchless DC-30 Amplifier
Shure UHF Wireless System
Shure UHE Antenna Distro
UltrSound/Soundweb Custom Switcher
Korg DTR-1 Digital Tuner


* Dave had 5 custom Rockbridge guitars made for him prior to the 2011 Caravan stops. He now uses these sunburst Rockbridge guitars as his primary guitars while playing both full band and Dave and Tim. 



This clip provides a good run through of Dave's guitar setup in 2010:


>> Daves guitar setup clip

- Tim's Gear -


Tim's Guitars (both past and present): 

Fender Telecaster
Gibson SG Gothic
Gibson standard Flying V (cherry)
Veillette Mk-IV Baritone 12-String
'93 Martin D-35
'93 Martin D-35
Martin D12-28 12-String
Gibson Les Paul Custom (black)
Gibson Les Paul Custom (goldtop)
Ibanez RG Series 7 String
'64 Gibson J50 acoustic
'68 Yamaha FG230 acoustic 12-String
H-S-S Strats (2)


Tim's Electronics (both past and present):

Line 6 DL4 Delay Modeler
Mesa/Boogie Dual Rectifier
Mesa/Boogie 4x12 cabinet
MXR Line Driver
Way Huge Swollen Pickle
Dunlop Crybaby Wah
Zoom Rhythmtrack 234
Yamaha DG Stomp
Boss Dr. Sample 202
Boss Dr. Sample 303
Boss DD-5 Digital Delay
Jim Dunlop Uni-Vibe
Ernie Ball Mono Volume Pedal
Morley Pro Series 1 Wah Volume (PWV)
Voodoo Lab Super Fuzz
Hughes and Kettner Rotosphere
Boss TU-12H High Range Chromatic Tuner
Sans Amp Acoustic DI
Mooger Fooger Ring Modulator
Dunlop Tortex 1.0mm Picks
Metal slide (on his pinky)


During the Dave and Tim Acoustic Tours, Tim has played 2 Martin D-35's, a '96 and a '93. They both had standard Fishman pickups and were strung with D'Addario light strings. "On the Martins I use D'Addario EJ16-Phos. Bronze/Light but I switch the low E to a .056 instead of the .053." 


On the Dave and Tim tours he played through a Morley Pro Series 1 Wah Volume (PWV), a Boss DD-5 digital delay, and then a Countryman direct box. On the 2000 tour Tim switched from the Morley Wah Volume to a Ernie Ball Mono Volume Pedal.


He still uses the Boss DD-5. The little Boss stomp box is the source of all of Reynolds' electronic trickery. "There's one backwards mode, it plays infinite, and you can mess with that," Reynolds says. "And there are delay modes that you can go infinite. There are a lot of cool little things." Tim has also been using the Line 6 Delay Module in conjuction with the Boss DD5.


"For the delay pedal setting, I usually have it set to mode# 3 for those kind of swells (although 4 is good for spacier stuff). Then the E.level is at about 1 o'clock, F.back at 12 o'clock (which can be varied to taste), and D.time is at the max. I use the reverse function for the weirdest stuff."



This video provides a good run through of Tim's guitar rig and setup in 2010:


>> Tim's guitar rig video