A few years ago House Of The Rising Sun was voted number 122 on the Rolling Stone magazine 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time. If you learn to play this song, even you just play the intro, people are going to recognise you for the cool dude you really are. This is a song that has been around for about a hundred years or so. It was first recorded in 1933, and recorded again by several country and folk artists over the years until the definitive version of House Of The Rising Sun Was recorded in 1964 by English group Eric Burdon And The Animals. The song was recorded in one take while the group were on the road in England as a support for Chuck Berry, and the spine tingling intro to the song was played by guitarist Hilton Valentine on a Rickenbacker 330 guitar. Many people say that it was the first time a folk song was recorded by a rock group.
The guitar chords for the song are simple and you can learn the chord sequence in a few minutes, then spend a few years fooling around with arpeggios and strumming patterns and whatnot. So the chords are A minor, C major, D major, F major and E major. To get the feeling of the recording by The Animals just play each chord as an arpeggio like this A minor chord:
If you are familiar with the original record you will know that the arpeggio pattern used by Hilton Valentine contains a few more notes but if you are play using a pick you will be able to work out what he is doing. There are video clips of the animals performing the song on YouTube.
Okay, so here is a basic guide to how the chords for House Of The Rising Sun fit in with the lyrics.
Am C D F There is a house in New Orleans Am C E E They call the Rising Sun Am C D F And it’s been the ruin of many a poor boy Am E Am And *** I know I’m one
JUST REPEAT THE CHORD SEQUENCE FOR THE REST OF THE VERSES
My mother was a tailor She sewed my new blue jeans My father was a gamblin’ man Down in New Orleans
Now the only thing a gambler needs Is a suitcase and trunk And the only time he’s satisfied Is when he’s on a drunk
Oh mother tell your children Not to do what I have done Spend your lives in sin and misery In the House of the Rising Sun
Well, I got one foot on the platform The other foot on the train I’m goin’ back to New Orleans To wear that ball and chain
Well, there is a house in New Orleans They call the Rising Sun And it’s been the ruin of many a poor boy And *** I know I’m one
If you search around the internet you will find some slightly different versions, but I would suggest you use what I have given you here as a basis for your own trademark rendition.