Learn to play "Bennie And The Jets" by Elton John
Play along with the ukulele cover of "Bennie And The Jets" (Elton John) performed by Aldrine Guerrero. There are a bunch of chords to this song, but feel free to dive right in and try out the Play-Along above. If you need some extra help learning this song, start with STEP 1 below:
STEP 1 - The Chords
The Intro to this song consists of 2 chords, Gmaj7(0222), Fmaj7(5500):
The diagram for the Gmaj7 also has some faded dots on the A string 5th and 7th frets, while the Fmaj7 has a faded dot on the E string 3rd fret. Don't worry about these for now, but you will need them when you learn the Intro Riff (Step 4), so make sure you keep a few fretting fingers free to be able to hold these down.
For the Verse you'll need to know the following chords:
Am(2000), D7(2223), Gmaj7(0222), G#dim(1212), Em(0432), Bm7(2222), and Cmaj7(0002)
For the Chorus, you'll need also need to know C(0003), D(2220), and C7(3433):
Practice holding each chord and memorize the names of each chord. When you can see the name of the chord and instantly know how to hold it, you're ready to move on.
STEP 2 - Chord Switching
Now that you can hold all of the chords and know them by name, you need to be able to switch chords smoothly. Play along with the practice video below and be sure to switch to the next chord right on time with Aldrine. There are some quick changes here, so you may find pairs of chords that you aren't able to switch quickly enough between. In those cases, isolate the two chords and practice switching between them over and over again on your own until the switch is smooth.
Once you can hold the chords, switch between them, and play them at the right times, you can already play the song! Go back to the Play-Along video at the top of the page and play through the whole song, holding the chords and strumming them once, right when they change. Great job, you've just played the beginner version of this song.
STEP 3 - The Strumming
Now that you're able to switch to all of the right chords at the right times, let's work on the strumming. In the video we'll be cycling through the chords Am, D7, Gmaj7, and G#dim. Aldrine starts off with a simple down-up-down-up strum, then starts adding emphasis to the first beat, then starts adds chunks. Try your best to watch, listen, and copy what you hear and see on the screen. If at any point the strumming becomes too difficult, just keep strumming the last rhythm you felt comfortable with.
As soon as you are able to play along with any of the strumming examples shown in the strumming video, you can now add rhythm to the song! Go back to the Play-Along video at the top of the page and play through the whole song, switching through the chords and using the strumming rhythm that you learned.
STEP 4 - The Riffs
Now that you're able to hold the chords and strum the song, it's time to add some fancy riffs to it. Aldrine explains the Intro Riff, which incorporates the first two chords that you learned for this song, Gmaj7 and Fmaj7:
At the very end of the song there is another Ending Riff, which incorporates really quick fingerpicking patterns for each of the two chords:
When you can do either of these riffs proficiently, feel free to go back to the Play-Along video at the top of the page and play through the song, adding the riffs in.
STEP 5 - The Picking
If you're really adventurous, Aldrine created an ukulele picking part and added it to the middle of the song. This is the picking that he usually plays when performing this tune on stage. Check out the slowed-down video below to help you practice the picking. If you need even more help, check out the TABS for the picking:
That's everything - be sure to test your skills by playing along with the Play-Along video at the top of the page. This one is a pretty involved song, with lots of intricate moving parts. So whether you're a total beginner now able to hold and strum just a couple of the chords at the right times or an advanced player who made it all the way though to the picking part pretty easily, congratulations! Keep playing, keep practicing, and keep having fun with that uke of yours. And as always, if you have any questions, we got your back. Have a great one UUers!