How to Play Are You Gonna Be My Girl by Jet (Guitar Lesson)

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David Wallimann

Are You Gonna Be My Girl

David Wallimann and Mark Lincoln team up to teach the classic Jet rocker "Are You Gonna Be My Girl." This lesson features both an acoustic and electric version.

Taught by David Wallimann in Songs with David Wallimann seriesLength: 44:15Difficulty: 2.0 of 5
Please note, this writeup is for the acoustic version of the song taught by Mark Lincoln. Tabs and backing tracks for the electric version are available under the "supplemental content" tab.

Jet is an Australian rock band that started to demand attention in 2003 and has made quite a name for themselves over the last few years. The song that we're going to talk about today is probably their most well known and is certainly one of their most rocking, at least from this player's perspective. So fasten your seat belts everyone as we take off with Jet and "Are You Gonna be my Girl."

The chords for this song are straightforward and can be played as simple open chords or as power chords. There is a signature riff in the song which is probably better accessed while playing the rhythm with the power chords but that decision will be up to you. I'll show you both versions of the chords so you can make an educated decision for yourselves:


A5 (5th fret)


C no fifth (5th fret)

C5 (8th fret)

C5 (3rd fret) Type II


D5 (10th fret)

D5 (5th fret) Type 2


G5 (10th fret)


Please familiarize yourself with each of the chords even if you're only planning on playing the song using open chords. Are You Gonna be my Girl is, in reality, played with power chords so hopefully by acquainting yourself with the power chords you'll eventually be able to play the song just as the band does it.

Play Along
Please play the chords with me to get comfortable with the rhythmic portions of this song.

The Boom
Many of you have heard me use this term when it comes to using your voice to gain momentum and power during a certain portion of a song. Jet's "Are You Gonna Be My Girl" is no exception to this rule as you can use your voice to really accentuate the vocal portions of the song to make it more dynamic. In fact, the singer (Nicholas Cester) comes into the song immediately with a boom letting the listener know that the song begins on a high note and is undoubtedly going to rock your socks off! Keep in mind that there are certain techniques and integral factors to using your voice with this much power and intensity without causing yourself irreparable harm including proper warm-ups (see my Voice and Performance series in Phase 2 for more on warm-ups). Watch me for more on this in the video and I'll show you how to add power and intensity during a given portion of a song.

"Are You Gonna Be My Girl" uses a number of stops and this technique can add some great shifts in dynamics as well as drama. Stops can also help to emphasize the singer's parts in the song and when it comes to performing a piece as a solo artist, this facet can be especially important. Pay attention to the use of stops while you are learning the song and how they affect the overall feel of the song.

The Main Riff
The key Riff in the song (referred to as Riff 1, from this point on) really defines this song and sets it apart from other rock songs. The tab for the riff looks something like this:
Watch me closely in the video as the riff should be played as part of the rhythm chords i.e. the A5 chord. See if you can get a good feel for the riff as it appears numerous times throughout the song and is undoubtedly an important part of the song.

The Bridge
The bridge for this song looks like this:
D5         C5   G5   
And has a quick fluid change to the chords. Play the chords along with me using the power chord versions of them and see if you can get the hang of them before you delve head first into the song.

Exercise 1
Play the verse chords in the proper rhythm like I'm doing in the video. Get a good feel for the flow of the song as well as where the riff is and how it coordinates with the rhythm guitar. The transition between the riff and the rhythm is perhaps one of the most difficult parts of the song and certainly may warrant an extra amount of time and attention.

Exercise 2
Practice the bridge chords like I'm doing in the video. This is really a simple progression especially if done with the power chords so work through these and make sure you can do them smoothly and without slowing down.

Exercise 3
Play the whole song with the lyrics. Take your time with it and try to hit the changes cleanly and without losing the rhythm while you sing. Please open up the "Song Lyrics and Chords" entry in the supplemental content section for a play along guide.

Well, that's it! Really a fairly simple song that can be played in a number of different ways depending upon your skill level. You may want to learn the rhythm portions of the song before attempting to sing along but that's certainly up to you. Again keep in mind that this is a fairly difficult song to sing and may require some work in terms of finding the power and breath to sing the vocals correctly and in tune. In addition as I will always remind you, please please please make sure to warm-up your voice before attempting something as demanding as this! Improper warm-ups will not only mitigate your ability to sing s song like Are You Gonna Be My Girl but may also create potential complications for you and your singing voice in the future so be careful! Enjoy responsibly!

Video Subtitles / Captions

Member Comments about this Lesson

Discussions with our instructors are just one of the many benefits of becoming a member of JamPlay.

kcacciatorekcacciatore replied on May 22nd, 2014

Can you post a backing track that doesn't have the guitar?

kcacciatorekcacciatore replied on May 22nd, 2014

To be a little more specific, a backing track without the rhythm guitar part. Thanks!

andydanandydan replied on July 6th, 2013

Great song and great lesson. I'm finding it much easier to play the A power chord at the 5th fret, rather than the open position. Saves leaping up and down the fingerboard.

stringbender515stringbender515 replied on May 1st, 2013

Jet actually plays this song with full barre chords (A at 5th fret), not with a first position A power chord as this lesson shows.

shiroshiro replied on July 9th, 2015

The A barre chord at the 5th fret is built root, 5th, root, 3rd, 5th, root, but in the song, they don't seem to hit that high A note, which means that you get R-5-R-3 5, which is exactly the same chord as the open position A...:)

costeffcosteff replied on April 5th, 2013

Great lesson guys. I noticed that when comparing the Backing track to the Rhythum pages there is a bar missing between no. 17 & 18. ie. Bar 17 should be repaeted 1 more time. Cheers, Will

costeffcosteff replied on April 5th, 2013

To match the backing track that is.

davidinladavidinla replied on June 30th, 2012

Fun, thanks! Love this song and now can play it!

teagarden soundteagarden sound replied on June 24th, 2012

Thank you! Great Lesson!

nukedognukedog replied on May 6th, 2011

Great job on the lesson! What amp and amp settings are you using for the sound?

lordzeagerlordzeager replied on December 18th, 2010

Hello, the backing track download doesn't work. Please make it available. Each time, I right-click save as, it saves the David HTM page.

gromlomgromlom replied on November 17th, 2010

Great job on the teaching your awsome :P For those of you who think it took to long cuz of his explanations. People pick up things at diffrent speeds so just bare with it or i would join in with "keep it simple stupid" if this was another case.

black5black5 replied on November 6th, 2010

Hi! I just wanted to know, what is the strumming pattern for the electric version?

pmedmdpmedmd replied on December 26th, 2012

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pmedmdpmedmd replied on December 26th, 2012

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GarrusGarrus replied on September 21st, 2010

Good lesson. Thank you! I would like to learn the 2nd guitar part of the electric version. I think the 2nd guitar is playing full barre chords instead of power chords. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

floorshakerfloorshaker replied on August 22nd, 2010

Hi David. My laptop jumps from Scene 1 to Scene 3. Is there a Scene 2 or is it a blip in the program? P.S. I love the way you teach, constantly reminding me of things I had forgotten. Helps and suits me. Cheers. Chris

jboothjbooth replied on August 23rd, 2010

It actually plays scene 2, there is just a bug in the flash player we use that for some reason if the lesson has more then 10 scenes it won't display the scene name for scene 2 while scene 2 is playing. Very weird i know, its on the "fix" list!

judewaddlejudewaddle replied on August 9th, 2010

l v ur lesson bit long though soz just ma dumb opiniyon

thomas1943thomas1943 replied on July 24th, 2010

My question is on the electric version. Are you using a foot pedal to distort or just using the distort in the amplifier?

judewaddlejudewaddle replied on August 1st, 2010

i think its just an efect on the amp

cyanide cloudcyanide cloud replied on July 3rd, 2010

There is somebody in my town that looks almost exactly like David. Also, great lesson.

rtbrunellertbrunelle replied on June 4th, 2010

good song and great lesson , but i mean you describbed everything wayyyyyyyyy toooooo indetail cause you could have taought this lesson in about 10 minutes instead of 44

dino2009dino2009 replied on March 15th, 2010

great job guys !! Two different perspectives with lots of different chops and riffs and ways to get the song down. Yeaaahhh !

dreadedliondreadedlion replied on March 8th, 2010

You guys rock!! You guys do great lessons and pick good songs to learn, love it!! Keep up the great work guys.. You make it easy and fun to learn guitar!!

Mark.LincolnMark.Lincoln replied on March 8th, 2010

Thanx Lion great to hear from you!

ruribarreruribarre replied on March 8th, 2010

Very nice lesson! You both did a great job. Mark, I think you had a couple of espresso shots. Love the energy. Gave me something to help me work on landing some Power chords but have fun at the same time. Ralph

Mark.LincolnMark.Lincoln replied on March 8th, 2010

Hey Ralph I dont drink coffee but I think it was Walliman's rockin' chops that got me going!

David.WallimannDavid.Wallimann replied on March 6th, 2010

Thanks everyone, and thanks a lot Mark for making this song so cool! :-)

frank1980frank1980 replied on March 5th, 2010

Marc, pushing your voice to the limit really hits the mood of this song. Thank you!

frank1980frank1980 replied on March 5th, 2010

Right I got it; comments go on top, that's why I could not see them when I hit replay. Feel free to delete :D

frank1980frank1980 replied on March 5th, 2010

Ah David, cool how you push your voice to the limits. This really fits to the song's mood.

Mark.LincolnMark.Lincoln replied on March 5th, 2010

Hey Frank that's me (Mark) wailing and cracking on the vocals, I couldn't get David to sing the parts so I thought I'd step in for a song! Thanx for the feedback anyway...Mark

sanctumzerosanctumzero replied on March 5th, 2010

Props to the filming/editing team there ;D for making JamPlay vids ever more stylish!

Mark.LincolnMark.Lincoln replied on March 5th, 2010

Yes Sanctum the team has really been stepping up on the production values of these right? Props to Jeff, Nessa, Tyler and Jason for the great work:)

davidlambdavidlamb replied on March 5th, 2010

great rendition Mark, loved it

Mark.LincolnMark.Lincoln replied on March 5th, 2010

Thanks Fleet we're trying to give more than one rendition when David and I put these together so we hope you all enjoy this stuff.Good to hear from you:)

dagchristiandagchristian replied on March 5th, 2010

Excelent work guys! Geniuos making a acoutisc version and a electric!

Mark.LincolnMark.Lincoln replied on March 5th, 2010

Thanks Dag nice to hear from you! Mark

zuckuss00zuckuss00 replied on March 4th, 2010

WOW! Really Good! Im a kinda glade Jet ripped off Iggy Pop for this song...

mattbrownmattbrown replied on March 4th, 2010

Ha! Yeah...this song does have pretty much the same groove as Lust for Life.

mkorsmomkorsmo replied on March 4th, 2010

OH... you mean the Royal Caribbean cruiseline song... right? =P

tammy7689tammy7689 replied on March 4th, 2010

great job guys!!!

roy944roy944 replied on March 4th, 2010

Nice choice of song!

Songs with David Wallimann

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

David Wallimann explores some of his favorite songs in this phase 3 lesson series.

Lesson 1

Canon in D

David Wallimann teaches his own version of the classic song, "Canon in D."

Length: 54:30 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 2


David Wallimann teaches the classic rocker "Shine" by Collective Soul. This lesson features the entire song, including the lead and backing tracks.

Length: 56:41 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 3

Don't Fear the Reaper

David Wallimann and Mark Lincoln team up for a two part lesson on "Don't Fear the Reaper" by the Blue Oyster Cult. Learn both an electric and acoustic version in this fascinating lesson.

Length: 81:49 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 4

Are You Gonna Be My Girl

David Wallimann and Mark Lincoln team up to teach the classic Jet rocker "Are You Gonna Be My Girl." This lesson features both an acoustic and electric version.

Length: 44:15 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 5

I Can See You Through The Clouds

David Wallimann smashes this original song into the clouds. Entitled "I Can See You Through The Clouds," David teaches all the amazing finger work in this song.

Length: 73:15 Difficulty: 4.5 Members Only
Lesson 6

Duke Nukem Theme

David Wallimann teaches the Duke Nukem theme by Megadeth.

Length: 40:22 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 7

It's Time You Learned About Goodbye

David Wallimann teaches Alan Jackson's hit country song "It's Time You Learned About Goodbye".

Length: 38:01 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 8

It's Five O'Clock Somewhere

In this lesson David Wallimann teaches the classic song from Alan Jackson "It's Five O'Clock Somewhere."

Length: 39:01 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only

About David Wallimann View Full Biography David was born in Aix-en-Provence, South France in 1977. At the age of 15, he picked up the guitar and started developing a true love for instrumental music and composition.

In 1999 he was recognized by Ibanez for his promising musical achievements and received an artist endorsement. That early recognition in David's musical career encouraged him to consecrate more time on crafting his musical art and apply to the school of modern music Artist' in Cavaillon, France. He received a full scholarship there where he graduated with honors.

In 2001, David won first place for the Tal Farlow French national jazz contest which gave him a full paid scholarship to the CMA school of modern music in Valenciennes, France. He graduated specializing in advance guitar with honors.

Following his school years, David spent the next 5 years working with several bands recording, writing and playing shows in France and Belgium. It's during that time that Wallimann was exposed to the world of progressive rock which opened new doors to his musical creativity.

Deep inside the Mind is his first release as a solo artist in which he exposes his Christian faith. The album was well received in the specialized press and was compared several times to some of Frank Zappa's approach to music adding an element of humor to deep subjects.

In 2005 he joined the internationally renown progressive band Glass Hammer based in Chattanooga, TN. He released several studio albums and live DVDs with the band.

David is today working on his next upcoming solo release and is also spending quite a bit of time teaching guitar in his studio and online at JamPlay.

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