Talk About the Passion

One of the great songs Peter Buck played on the 12 string Rickenbacker 360.  This is one I had played incorrectly for all these years and thought I had correctly figured out through video recently and continued to play (wrong) for a year.  Here is how I think it is actually played.

Again, one of the videos gives us a good look at just about every part–Meredith College:

This is a great 1983 video (from “The Tube”) with the song played on the 6 string Rickenbacker. Not enough visuals on hand position, but it is a cool version

The opening is probably D, with first and second fingers. with the little riff played in between the Csus4 and the A with riff after. On that D, I think he is just playing the D string and the G string with a hint of the B.

That opening serves as the chorus throughout, but the second and third times throuh, he throws a curveball:

F and Open A

For the chorus, Peter Buck plays an A right before the first time, and a D right before the second and third times after the curveball part of the verse.

The chorus is A followed by this G thing, with the first finger moving down and then off and then to “D” note on the third fret second string.

There is a little bridge after the chorus the second go around–it is a D with a little riff on the high E string(s), followed by the G thing from the chorus and same riff, ending with an Open A.

This leads me to trying it on the 12 string I got last year:



Further Reading

Absolutely fascinating video from 1983. You can’t see a thing on guitar, but I could watch this stuff all day–Peter fooling with his amp before the song:

Possible Lyrics (I think in the live version from Meredith College, Michael Stipe is saying “Empty Pockets” the second line of the verses–they apparently changed things as much as they liked)


2 thoughts on “Talk About the Passion”

  1. Great blog. I love Peter Buck’s early guitar sound and churning riffs – this is a great help in understanding what he was doing. For some strange reason (as a Brit) it took REM and the Document album to get me into Indie music and from there to check out their great earlier catalogue. I hope you add some more songs!


    1. Thanks for commenting! I’m glad you’ve been enjoying the blog. I started this blog so that guitar players interested in the way Peter Buck played these songs could review and discuss–because I certainly don’t claim to have anything right!

      I plan to add more songs soon–just have had a few things with my children taking up most of my time.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s