[Update: March 25th 2017]


Inception is a 2010 science fiction film written, and directed by Christopher Nolan. Inception stars Leonardo DiCaprio as a professional thief who steals information by infiltrating the subconscious.

He is offered a chance to have his criminal history erased in exchange for a seemingly impossible task, Inception: the implantation of another person’s thought into a target’s subconscious.

Did you see the world-bending special effects in Dr Strange? Christopher Nolan pioneered that 10 years ago with Inception.


Director, Christopher Nolan has literally a perfect track record. Every one of his movies are universally adored by audiences and critics.  Since Batman Begins, Hans Zimmer has scored all of  Nolan’s movies.

Inception, has (arguably) Hans Zimmer’s greatest score. The finale, Time, is a masterpiece.

I performed Time years ago on this blog, but it was due for a refresh. I’m a better now, at everything, across the board. I wanted to properly honor this song with a much better performance, a new transcription, and superior audio track.

Please explore my Hans Zimmer archive. I’ve performed all of his greatest music on guitar including: The Dark Knight Rises, Interstellar, and Gladiator.

Christopher Nolan’s new movie, Dunkirk, is out this summer 2017. Hans Zimmer also does the music. You can watch it the trailer here.

Gear Used

For Time, I used a cheap Alvarez AC65. I use this guitar for ultra-low, and alternate tunings. My strings (for this guitar) are Savarez Yellow Card super high-tension strings. This way the guitar performs normally in very low, or crazy tunings.

My camera is a Zoom Q8 with a SSH stereo Shotgun microphone. I use Acon Digital Acoustica to edit the audio, and Filmora to edit video. You can find a list of all of my gear with links here.

How to play Time for classical guitar

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Time is not difficult to play. Hans Zimmer uses a very simple, and brilliant chord progression. Eventually the melody weaves into the chord progression, and it sits well within the established chord shapes.

The guitar tab for Time is three pages long and spaciously written so it’s easy to comprehend. I’ve divided the guitar tab into: Intro, Section 1, Section 2, and Section 3.

My order of play within the guitar tab is: Intro, Section 1, Section 2, Section 3 – Section 2, Section 1 (End). Simple.

You’ll notice that I’m driving the bass notes with my thumb. This is indicated with dots (. . . . . . .) following each chord. In this case, there are seven dots, meaning you’ll play the bass note seven times following the chord. However, the timing is really: chord 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 – chord 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 – chord 2 3 4 5 6 7 8. So on and so forth.

Enjoy this, the guitar tab is available below.

Time is played in a low, and somewhat trick tuning. From low to high: C  E A D F# B. Or, depending on your tuner:  C E A D Gb B.

Now, you may not want to tune your guitar 2 & 1/2 steps down. An alternative is: tuning every string down one half-step except for the Low E (6th) string. Obviously, it won’t sound as low as my version, but will still sound good nonetheless.

That’s the tuning scheme: the 6th string stays one half-step higher than the rest of the guitar. Good luck!

Hans Zimmer’s Time for classical guitar

Please comment if you have any questions.


Written by:

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