george michael
Tania Harcourt-Cooze (Father Figure music video)

When I was 13, and just learning guitar, my guitar teachers and musical mentors ALL really respected George Michael. (I initially thought that was odd for a bunch of rock musicians.) Specifically, everyone cited Careless Whisper as one of the greatest songs ever written.

So, I grew up with the understanding that, like Prince, George Michael was also a superlative musician. What is most remarkable: George Michael was 23/24 years old when he wrote the iconic pop songs from, Faith.

My favorite song was, Father Figure.

How to Play Father Figure by George Michael

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When I arranged Father Figure on Christmas night, I had in mind two things: big hall Jeff Buckley-esque reverb, and John Mayer’s Human Nature (tribute to Michael Jackson). 

The guitar tab for Father Figure is 6 pages long. I initially had this guitar tab written on three pages, but it was so condensed, that it looked overwhelming to play.

I stretched it out (and beautifully wrote it) on 6 pages — and now the guitar tab looks far more manageable and elegant. My order of play, looks like this: 

Intro, Verse, Pre Chorus — Verse, Pre Chorus, Chorus #1, Post Chorus — Verse, Pre Chorus, Chorus, Bridge — Solo, Post Solo — Chorus #1, Chorus #2.

[Note: At the beginning of the Pre Chorus (0:30 of the video) I use my thumb to fret the note on the 6th string within the chord shape. This is initially hard to do, but if you try a few times, you’ll be able to get it. It also gets easier day after day. I have extremely small hands, but I was able to do competently within a few days. Stay with it!]

Please enjoy, the guitar tab is available below:

Father Figure is played in standard tuning with a capo on the first fret.

Father Figure, instrumental guitar

Written by:

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