download (3)Intro, from Bajofondo’s newest release Presente, is originally from the film Les Yeux De Sa Mere (His Mother’s Eyes). Although Les Yeux De Sa Mere is little known in the states, I find it to be one of Gustavo Santaolalla’s best scores — if you’re into minimalist guitar.

How to play Intro from Bajofondo

Intro is played in standard tuning, and like a lot of Santaolalla’s film work, it’s essentially one long passage that is simply repeated.

For the beginning of Intro, I used the side of my right palm to mute, or slightly deaden the strings.  I continue through the rest of the song only palm-muting the low strings.  (Note: I would get comfortable with playing Intro regularly — before incorporating the palm mutes).

There are also couple of trills that will challenge beginner and intermediate guitarists.  Specifically the interaction between your 3rd and 4th fingers — which is always tough.

There’s not much from Bajofondo that would translate well to this blog, so as a Santaolalla fan, I’m psyched at the opportunity of transcribing Intro to a single guitar piece. Enjoy, the tab is available below:

Intro (Tab)

Please comment to let me know what you think, or if you have any questions.

Bajofondo, Pittsburgh 3/30/2013
Bajofondo, Pittsburgh 3/30/2013

*Update*: I just saw Bajofondo at a tiny club in Pittsburgh, and having positioned myself directly in front of Gustavo Santaolalla, I can tell you with certainty that he is definitely a guitar hero — albeit an unusual one.

Using an old VOX AC30 and a bizarre looking Klein guitar, Santaolalla achieves a crystal clear, yet punchy tone, that melds so seamlessly with his band (Bajofondo), you can hardly tell he’s playing guitar at all.

Aside from the ultra-unique composition prowess behind Bajofondo, Santaolalla’s live guitar technique is comprised of every conceivable chord position played in lightning fast bursts, with avant garde leads mixed in. 

The mostly Latin crowd was their to dance, party, and watch Bajofondo’s energetic (that’s an understatement) live show.  I’m pretty sure that I was the only guitar geek there, as well as the only white guy.  And by white, I mean: absurdly pasty, Scotch/Irish, glowing, gigantic bald-headed white.

All jokes aside, my biggest take-away from the Bajofondo show is that I need to get out more, and loosen up. I’m caught up in teaching, blogging, and generally working seven days a week — and when I do go see a show it might be: Radiohead, Grizzly Bear (playing the same night as Bajofondo actually) or even Eric Clapton.  By comparison — they’re relatively conservative, tight, and buttoned up affairs.  In other words, the exact opposite of a Bajofondo show!

When I returned home that night, I told my wife that I’m ready for tango lessons.  Having stayed home because she was “tired”, Jennifer definitely perked up at this suggestion, and I have a feeling she’ll be accompanying me to the next Bajofondo show.

Written by:

Matthew's dad, Jennifer's husband, bass player - New Invisible Joy, YouTuber, short-film composer, creator of modern content for guitar.