The xx: Intro | fingerstyle guitar
Photo by . liane . on Unsplash

Why it’s OK to be okay at guitar

Free download of this performance on SoundCloud.

Within my lifestyle as a guitar teacher and guitar blogger, nothing is more apparent to me, then people’s lack of self-confidence, or perceived status, as a guitarist. I’m not immune either. However, it’s important to realize that it’s often your identity as a guitar player, rather than your skill, that is far more important. The Xx is a perfect case in point.

The Xx’s Romy Madley-Croft is one of my personal guitar heroes. From what I can tell, she largely makes her music with just a few notes on one or two strings — yet Romy has a STRONG musical identity. It’s what she plays, and how she plays it, that makes her sound (The Xx’s sound) unmistakable.

I would encourage you to de-emphasize skill with regard to your guitar playing. It’s highly overrated. However, you should be writing and creating your own riffs. Even if you’re a beginner and you only know one or two notes — the less bound by convention you are, the better. You can always use a black Les Paul and crank the reverb.

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My Gear

For Intro, I used my Cordoba C7. It’s a warm and dark sounding guitar that I use for low and alternate tunings. You can find a current list of my gear here.

My music

You can find my personal music on Spotify, Apple, and all steaming services:

Evan on Spotify

Evan on Apple

The Intellimusica Spotify Playlist: Ethereal and Cinematic Music
(This playlist is curated and updated by me. It’s music that I’ve played and intend to play on Intellimusica. It flows beautifully — and additionally works as music for focus, meditation, and self-reflection.)

How to play Intro, by The Xx, for classical guitar

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Not surprisingly, Intro is very easy to play. The guitar tab is beautifully written across two pages — and it’s spaced out just right, to give you a feel for the timing. My order of play looks like this in accordance with the guitar tab:

Verse 2x, Chorus 2x, Verse 1x, Chorus 2x, Verse 1x, End.

I performed Intro years ago on YouTube. Musically, both versions are identical, but they’re played differently. I find the new version to be even easier to play (and more resonant) with the use of open strings. However, both guitar tabs will be available below:

The xx: Intro | fingerstyle guitar (NEW version)

Your tuning will look like this from Low to High, 6-1: E F C F A D.

The xx: Intro | fingerstyle guitar (OLD version)

Your tuning will look like this from Low to High, 6-1: D G C F A D.


Written by:

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