Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Tabs

The chords and tunes for “Shallow” by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper from the movie “A Star Is Born” won two Grammys and an Oscar. In this blog we dissect the track so that everyone can jam to it on piano, ukulele and guitar, regardless of skill level. We’ll explain the “Shallow” chords and tabs and dive deeper into the history of the song and the music theory behind it. Use the table of contents to navigate to your instrument of choice.

Table of contents

Guitar

  • Song structure
  • Beginner (easy chords and tabs)
  • Intermediate & pro (advanced chords and tabs) 

Piano

  • Song structure
  • Beginner (easy chords and tabs)
  • Intermediate (advanced chords and tabs) 

Ukulele

  • Song structure
  • Beginner (easy chords and tabs)
  • Intermediate (advanced chords and tabs) 

 

Guitar

In this section:

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Guitar: Song structure

Welcome guitarists. The first step in learning a musical piece is getting a general idea of the arrangement of its individual parts; therefore, before we start unpacking “Shallow,” we’ll need to have a look at the song structure of this gem.

Intro
Verse 1 (“Tell me something, girl…”)
Pre-Chorus 1 (“I’m falling…”)
Interlude
Verse 2 (“Tell me something, boy…”)
Pre-Chorus 2 (“I’m falling…”)
Chorus 1 (“I’m off the deep end, watch as I dive in…”)
Bridge (“Oh, oh, oh…”)
Chorus 2 (“I’m off the deep water, watch as I dive in…”)

As you can see, there are nine parts in total in this song. It’s worth noting that some parts contain the same chord changes but a different lineup of instruments. Because of the similarity and repetition between the parts, we introduce three chord sequences (Figure 1). Learn these three chord sequences, and you’ll be able to play all parts of the song. The benefit of this bite-size approach is that you only have to learn three chord sequences. 

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords figure 1

Figure 1: Song structure of Shallow by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper

You’ll notice that each sequence has its own color. These colors will return throughout the blog in all figures.

Each time we explain a chord sequence, we will start by showing its chord diagrams. Once you’ve mastered the sequences, we’ll let you stitch them together by showing the entire chord sheet with lyrics — there are two versions: beginner or intermediate & pro. Here’s a little something to look forward to: By knowing how to play the first chord sequence and its variations, you can already play half of the song! Let’s dive in, shall we?

Guitar: Beginner

In this part:

  • easy guitar chords
  • chord sequences with lyrics
  • video tutorial
  • chord overview with lyrics

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First chord sequence

If you’re a beginner who just started playing guitar, this song is great for expanding your skills. The track contains many basic triads, better known as open chords. So, great practice material! Let’s start with the first chord sequence. It consists four different chords: Em, D, G, C (Figure 2). Let’s take a look at these chords on your axe.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 2

Figure 2: Em, D, C, G, C.

Try to play the first chord sequence (Figure 3). When you feel comfortable playing this sequence, we have good news: Now you can already play about half of the song. Many parts of the song consist of this sequence or variations on it.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 3

Figure 3: First chord sequence.

Remember the song structure we showed earlier? After you’ve mastered this first chord sequence, you will be able to play the intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2 and pre-chorus 2. Now it’s time to take a closer look at these parts to see how the first chord sequence fits into the chord progression (Figure 4). We’ve also added the lyrics, so you can start singing along.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 4

Figure 4: Intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.

Watch our guitar teacher play the first part of “Shallow” in the video tutorial to get the hang of the chord changes:
Video 1: Guitar beginner — intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.

As you can see, the first chord sequence is repeated in each part. Watch out for the intro and the interlude, those are variations on this chord sequence. Now it’s time to take a look at the second part of “Shallow.” We’ll start with the chorus.

Second chord sequence

The chorus (chorus 1 and chorus 2) is based on our second chord sequence. So it’s definitely worth checking out. Just like in the first chord sequence there are four chords in this sequence: Am, D, G, Em (Figure 5). Take a look at these chords on your guitar.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 4

Figure 5: Am, D, G, Em.

Now look at the second chord sequence and try to play the chords in progression (Figure 6).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 5

Figure 6: Second chord sequence.

Once you feel comfortable playing this sequence, you’re ready to practice the chorus of “Shallow.” Let’s take a look at how these chords are applied in the song together with the lyrics (Figure 7).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 6

Figure 7: Chorus 1, chorus 2.

Watch our video tutorial for the fingering of the chorus on your six string. This is what chorus 1 and chorus 2 sound like on guitar:
Video 2: Guitar beginner — chorus 1, chorus 2.

Third chord sequence

Now it’s time for the third chord sequence, played by Bradley Cooper in the bridge. It appears in the song only once, during the vocalization “Oh — oh …” where Lady Gaga shows off some mad singing skills while building up to the final chorus. For this third sequence we have four different chords: Bm, D, A, Em. Let’s take a look at these chords on your axe first (Figure 8).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 7

Figure 8: Bm, D, A, Em.

As we place them in sequence you can see how these chords are played in progression during the bridge (figure 9).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 8

Figure 9: Third chord sequence.

Our guitar teacher shows you what this should sound like on your guitar:
Video 3: Guitar beginner — bridge.

Wow, you’ve done it! You’ve now mastered the beginner version of “Shallow.” You’re good to go now. Just practice the song a few times and don’t be afraid to perform it at the next campfire session.

Stay with us for the intermediate and pro version where we’ll learn the fingerpicking melody of the intro and the actual, more complex, chords that Bradley Cooper uses for “Shallow.” But first: Check out the chord sheet of whole song with lyrics (Figure 10).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 9

Figure 10: Guitar beginner — chord sheet and lyrics for Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper – Shallow.

Guitar: Intermediate & pro

In this part:

  • advanced guitar chords
  • chord sequences with lyrics
  • tabs and sheet music for the Shallow Intro
  • video tutorial
  • chord overview with lyrics

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First chord sequence

So, you’re an experienced player? Great! In this section we’ll show you how to get as close as possible to the original sound of “Shallow.” This gem is written for guitar, that’s why it’s a great song for working on your fingerpicking skills.

A very important part of “Shallow” is the intro. This is the kind of intro that all your friends will instantly recognize as soon as you pluck the first chords. And since you’re an advanced player, we would like to dive deeper into the intro and show you how to get the fingerpicking right.

But first things first. We’ve divided this song in a few chord sequences to make it easy for you to learn. The intro, verses, interlude and pre-choruses are based on the first chord sequence. They have the same chord shapes and colors as shown in the song structure at the beginning of this section. Let’s take a look at those chords first (Figure 11).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 10

Figure 11: Em7, D(sus2)F#, G, C, D.

As you can see, this sequence has five different chords: Em7, D(sus2)/F#, G, C, D. “What does ‘sus2’ mean?” you ask. Well, welcome to a very quick explanation of the sus chord (or suspended chord). Simply put, a sus chord is neither a major nor a minor chord. It doesn’t have this quality. These types of chords rely on the chords that surround them: They reflect the context they’re played in. So, a sus chord can sound major or minor. Kind of like a chameleon. Let’s take a look at the chord sequence (Figure 12).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 11

Figure 12: First chord sequence.

So, now is the time to dive into the pro part of the track: the intro. Excited!? I know we are.

You can find the tutorial of this intro in the explanation video below (Video 4). Let’s talk a bit about the right-hand technique: it’s a combination of arpeggio and plucking. You can also see many ties — those are the curved lines connecting notes — between notes here. This intro is based on the open chord shapes for Em, D, G and C. The effect that you accomplish by letting your open strings ring while you change the current chord or add some extra passing notes above is amazing.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 12

Figure 13: Intro.

Watch our video tutorial to get a grip on the fingering of the intro:
Video 4: Guitar intermediate & pro — intro

Let’s go back to the first chord sequence (Figure 12). Do you remember the structure of “Shallow” we showed at the very beginning of this article? Imagine that it’s a to-do list, and you now can cross off the intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2 and pre-chorus 2. Cool, huh? It’s time to take a closer look at these parts and see how the first chord sequence is applied in the song when we add the lyrics to it (Figure 14).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 13

Figure 14: Intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.

Watch this video tutorial to see how this part should sound on your guitar:
Video 5: Guitar intermediate & pro — intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.

Second chord sequence

Alright, now we know how to play 50 percent of the track. How about we learn the second half? The chorus (chorus 1, chorus 2) is based on the second chord sequence, which contains the following five chords: Am, Am7/G, D(sus2)/F#, G, Em (Figure 15). Of course, the Am7/G is basically an Am7 chord with G as a passing bass note. Let’s take a look at these chords on your guitar.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 14

Figure 15: Am, Am7/G, D(sus2)/F#, G, Em.

Here’s how these chords are lined up in the second sequence (Figure 16).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 15

Figure 16: Second chord sequence.

And this is how this sequence is used in the chorus of “Shallow” (Figure 17).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 16

Figure 17: Chorus 1, chorus 2.  

Check out our guitar teacher playing chorus 1 and chorus 2 in this video tutorial:

Video 6: Guitar intermediate & pro — chorus 1 and chorus 2.

Third chord sequence

Are you ready for the third and last part of this song? Cool, let’s proceed with our third chord sequence, which is used in the bridge. It appears in the song only once, during the vocalization of Lady Gaga when she builds up to the last chorus using these chords: Bm, D5, A, Em (Figure 18).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 17

Figure 18: Bm, D5, A, Em.

This is how the chords are lined up in the sequence.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 18

Figure 19: Bridge.

If you’re not sure about how to play these chords, just check out our video tutorial:
Video 7: Guitar intermediate & pro — bridge.

It’s fair to say that we are proud of you! If you have followed along with every step of the way, your fingers must hurt like hell. And your head must be on the brink of exploding. That’s okay! Tomorrow you’ll see how this song will flow out of those hands — a bit easier than today in any case. Just keep practicing and try to imagine the look on your friends’ faces when you start jamming this track out of the blue. Yeah, it’s going to be epic.

To make it easy, we’ve put all the parts together so you can play the whole song without scrolling up and down too much.

Figure 19: “Shallow” on guitar entire song with lyrics

Figure 20: Guitar intermediate & pro — chord sheet and lyrics for Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper – Shallow.

 

Piano

In this section:

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Piano: Song structure

Welcome pianists. The first step in learning a musical piece is getting a general idea of the arrangement of its individual parts; therefore, before we start unpacking “Shallow,” we’ll need to have a look at the songs structure of this gem.

Intro
Verse 1 (“Tell me something, girl…”)
Pre-Chorus 1 (“I’m falling…”)
Interlude
Verse 2 (“Tell me something, boy…”)
Pre-Chorus 2 (“I’m falling…”)
Chorus 1 (“I’m off the deep end, watch as I dive in…”)
Bridge (“Oh, oh, oh…”)
Chorus 2 (“I’m off the deep water, watch as I dive in…”)

As you can see, there are nine parts in total in this song. It’s worth knowing that some parts contain the same chord changes but a different lineup of instruments. Because of the similarity and repetition between the parts we introduce three chord sequences (Figure 1). Learn these three chord sequences, and you’ll be able to play all parts of the song. The benefit of this bite-size approach is that you only have to learn three chord sequences. 

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords figure 1

Figure 1: Song structure of Shallow by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper.

You’ll notice that each sequence has its own color. These colors will return throughout the blog in all figures.

Each time we explain a chord sequence, we will start by showing its chord diagrams. Once you’ve mastered the sequences, we’ll let you stitch them together by showing the entire chord sheet with lyrics — there are two version: beginner and intermediate & pro. Here’s a little something to look forward to: By knowing how to play the first chord sequence and its variations, you can already play half of the song! Let’s dive in, shall we?

Piano: Beginner

In this part:

  • easy piano chords 
  • chord sequences with lyrics
  • video tutorial on each sequence 
  • chord overview with lyrics 

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First chord sequence

Welcome to the show piano beginner! We are about to take you on a journey through chord progressions that will make your skills explode in no time. But most of all, at the end of this quest you’ll be able to play along with this awesome track “Shallow” by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper. Since you’re a beginner, we have simplified the chords for you. Let’s start with the first chord sequence for which we use four chords: Em, D, G/D, C/E (Figure 2).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 2

Figure 2: Em, D, G/D, C/E.

It’s interesting to mention that two chords have strange symbols: G/D and C/E. Don’t worry, they are still triads but with a special order of notes. You might ask why that is. Answer: To let you play the four-chord sequence easier. And to prevent your fingers from jumping all over the keyboard. These types of chords are called inversions. Okay, let’s check out how these chords relate to each other in the first chord sequence (Figure 3).

Figure 3: First chord sequence.

Play the sequence a couple of times. When you start to get the hang of it, it’s time to take a closer look at how this sequence is actually applied in the song. We’ve also added the lyrics, to make it easier and to have a good orientation point for chord changes.

Figure 4: Intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.

As you can see, the first chord sequence is repeated in each part. And the intro and interlude are variations on it. 

Watch our piano teacher play these parts on piano:

Video 1: Intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.

Second chord sequence

As soon as you feel comfortable playing this first chord sequence, you can play all parts of “Shallow” except the chorus and the bridge. So, now, let’s check those out. We start off with the chorus, where we play the second chord sequence. The chorus (chorus 1, chorus 2) is based on this sequence, and we use the following chords for it: Am, D/A, G/B, Em/B (Figure 5). 

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 5

Figure 5: Am, D/A, G/B, Em/B.

The sequence looks as follows (Figure 6).

Figure 6: Second chord sequence.

Again, you can see some strange symbols, like D/A, G/B, Em/B. So, these are inversions and, yes, we’ve covered some of those already in posts about the Am7 and the G7 for example. Playing these chord positions will help you to go through these chord changes very smoothly.

After you feel comfortable playing this second chord sequence, let’s go back to the song and check the first and second chorus in particular (Figure 7). It’s time to take a closer look at how the second chord sequence is played in the chorus and make yourself familiar with the lyrics.

Figure 7: Chorus 1, chorus 2.

Have a look at our piano teacher in this video tutorial of the second chord sequence:

Video 2: Piano beginner — chorus 1, chorus 2.

Third chord sequence

You’re almost there! As a matter of fact, you are now able to play 90 percent of the whole track. That final 10 percent is the third chord sequence that is played in bridge. It appears in the song only once during the vocalization “Oh – oh…” where Lady Gaga builds up to the final chorus and shows off some mad singing skills. During the bridge you’ll have to play the Bm, D/A, A and Em/B chord (Figure 8). Let’s take a closer look at these chords on your piano. At this moment you already know what a D/A chord and an Em/B chord are, right? Yup, these are inversions indeed.

Figure 8: Bm, D/A, A, Em/B.

Figure 9: Bridge.

Check out our video tutorial where we show you how to play the bridge:

Video 3: Piano beginner — bridge.

Congratulations are in place here, since, from this moment on, you are able to play all three chord sequences. This means you know how to play “Shallow.” Yeah, this is the time for a victory lap. Take your time, we’ll wait. But all jokes aside, you did it! Here is what the whole song looks like (Figure 10).

Figure 10: Piano beginner — chord sheet and lyrics for Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper – Shallow.

Piano: Intermediate & pro

In this part:

  • advanced piano chords
  • chord sequences with lyrics
  • video tutorial on each sequence 
  • chord overview with lyrics

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First chord sequence

Aha! We have an experienced piano player here. Great! In this chapter we’ll show you the chords that allow you to get as close as possible to the original sound. Since “Shallow” by Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga is written for guitar, it will sound a bit different on piano. But different doesn’t mean it can’t be awesome. And this track definitely is.

The intro, verses, interlude and pre-choruses are all based on our first chord sequence. As you can see, this sequence has five different chords: Em7, D/F#, G, C, D (Figure 11). Let’s take a look at these chords on your keyboard.

Figure 11: Em7, D/F#, G, C, D.

This is how these chords are lined up in the first sequence (Figure 12).

Figure 12: First chord sequence.

You can see the symbol D/F#. It means that here we’re dealing with an inversion of the D major triad. Inversions mean that we play the notes of a chord in a different order. These different orders allow us to avoid jumping from left to right on our keyboard. And, also, we are able to connect the chords more smoothly. Try to play this chord in sequence on your piano. When you feel comfortable, we have some good news for you. This sequence covers 50 percent of the song (Figure 13). Yeah really, you’re halfway! 

Figure 13: Intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.

Want to know how we play this first sequence? Check out the video tutorial:
Video 4: Piano intermediate & pro — intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.

Second chord sequence

So, now we only have half of the song left. This second half is split up into two sequences. One stands for the chorus, the other for the bridge. Let’s check out the chorus part first. This is where we play the second chord sequence.

The chorus (chorus 1, chorus 2) is based on this sequence. So, it’s definitely worth checking this out. This sequence contains these five chords: Am, Am/G, D/F#, G, Em (Figure 14). Of course, the Am/G is basically an Am chord with a passing bass note. Let’s take a look at these chords on your piano.

Figure 14: Am, Am/G, D/F#, G, Em.

Figure 15: Second chord sequence.

Check how to play chorus 1 and chorus 2 in our video tutorial:
Video 5: Piano intermediate & pro — chorus 1, chorus 2.

Figure 16: Chorus 1, chorus 2.

Third chord sequence

And now it’s time for the third chord sequence. This is played during the bridge and appears only once in the whole song. It is also the part where Lady Gaga goes ballistic with her singing skills. It has four different chords: Bm, D/A, A, Em/G (Figure 17). Let’s take a closer look at these chords on your keyboard.

Figure 17: Bm, D/A, A, Em/G.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 18

Figure 18: Third chord sequence.

To check if you’re playing this third sequence right, just watch the video tutorial:
Video 6: Piano intermediate & pro — bridge.

This is it! Now you know how to play the whole song from beginning to end. Here’s an idea for ya… How about you sit behind those keys and play the shall…ow out of them? Is that even possible? Only one way to find out. Here is the summary of all chords for this song (Figure 20).

Figure 20: Piano intermediate & pro — chord sheet and lyrics for Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper – Shallow.

Ukulele

In this section:

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Ukulele: Song structure

Welcome ukulelists. The first step in learning a musical piece is getting a general idea of the arrangement of its individual parts; therefore, before we start unpacking “Shallow,” we’ll need to have a look at the structure of this gem.

Intro
Verse 1 (“Tell me something, girl…”)
Pre-Chorus 1 (“I’m falling…”)
Interlude
Verse 2 (“Tell me something, boy…”)
Pre-Chorus 2 (“I’m falling…”)
Chorus 1 (“I’m off the deep end, watch as I dive in…”)
Bridge (“Oh, oh, oh…”)
Chorus 2 (“I’m off the deep water, watch as I dive in…”)

As you can see, there are nine parts in total in this song. It’s worth knowing that some parts contain the same chord changes but a different lineup of instruments. Because of the similarity and repetition between the parts we introduce three chord sequences (Figure 1). Learn these three chord sequences, and you’ll be able to play all parts of the song. The benefit of this bite-size approach is that you only have to learn three chord sequences. 

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords figure 1

Figure 1: Song structure of Shallow by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper.

You’ll notice that each sequence has its own color. These colors will return throughout the blog in all figures.

Each time we explain a chord sequence, we will start by showing its chord diagrams. Once you’ve mastered the sequences, we’ll let you stitch them together by showing the entire chord sheet with lyrics — there are two version: beginner and intermediate & pro. Here’s a little something to look forward to: By knowing how to play the first chord sequence and its variations, you can already play half of the song! Let’s dive in, shall we?

Ukulele: Beginner

In this part:

  • easy ukulele chords 
  • chord sequences with lyrics
  • video tutorial on each sequence 
  • chord overview with lyrics  

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First chord sequence

Welcome young ukulele Padawan! We are going to have some fun with you today. So, you want to play the “Shallow” chords on your uke? Great! Time for some action. Let’s start with the first chord sequence. For this sequence we have four different chords: Em, D, G, C (Figure 2). Let’s take a look at these chords on your ukulele.

Figure 2: Em, D, G, C.

Try to play this chord sequence first (Figure 3). If you feel comfortable with it, we have good news for you: You can already play about half of the song because many parts of the song consist of this sequence or variations of it.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 3

Figure 3: First chord sequence.

Remember the structure of this song? Imagine that now you can play the intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2. It’s time to take a closer look and see how the first chord sequence is represented in those parts. To make it easier, we’ve also added the lyrics (Figure 4).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 4

Figure 4: Intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.

As you can see, the first chord sequence is present in each part. The intro and the interlude are variations of it, but the chord progression is the same.

Check out the tutorial video:
Video 1: Ukulele beginner intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.  

Second chord sequence

Let’s move on and check the second chord sequence, and the chords that are used in it. The chorus (chorus 1, chorus 2) is based on this sequence. For this sequence we have four different chords: Am, D, G, Em (Figure 5). 

Figure 5: Am, D, G, Em.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 5

Figure 6: Second chord sequence.

As soon as you feel comfortable playing this sequence, let’s return to the song and check the first and the second chorus in particular. It’s time to take a closer look at how the second chord sequence is played in the chorus. Since this is the real thing, we’ve added the lyrics (Figure 7).

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 6

Figure 7: Chorus 1, chorus 2.

Watch this video tutorial to see what the chorus sounds like on your ukulele:
Video 2: Ukulele beginner — chorus 1, chorus 2.

Third chord sequence

After part two comes … yes, part three. In this case the third chord sequence. It appears in the song only once, during the vocalization “Oh – oh…” where Lady Gaga builds up to the final chorus and shows off some mad singing skills. For this sequence we use the Bm, D, A and Em chords (Figure 8). Have a look at the chord diagrams below, followed by how they should sound on your instrument in the tutorial video.

Figure 8: Bm, D, A, Em.

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Shallow Chords Figure 8

Figure 9: Bridge.

Check out the video tutorial to see what the bridge sounds like:
Video 3: Third chord sequence

Cool huh? Now you can play the whole song! Yeah, that’s right, you are most definitely allowed to be proud of yourself. To make it all a bit easier for you, and to skip the effort of scrolling up and down for all the parts of the song, we’ve made a summary of all the chords and lyrics (Figure 10). Enjoy!

Figure 10: Ukulele beginner — chord sheet and lyrics for Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper – Shallow.

Ukulele: Intermediate & pro

In this part:
 
  • advanced ukulele chords
  • chord sequences with lyrics
  • video tutorial on each sequence 
  • chord overview with lyrics

First chord sequence

So, you’re an experienced player? Great! In this section we’ll show you the advanced chords, that allow you to get as close as possible to the original sound. It’s a very guitar-oriented song, isn’t it? That’s why it will sound a bit different on your ukulele. But, don’t worry, this doesn’t mean it won’t be amazing.

A very recognizable and important part of this song is its intro. This is the kind of intro that all your friends will instantly recognize as soon as you play the first chords. And since we’re only professionals here, we would like to dive into this intro and show you how to play it on your ukulele.

This intro, verses, interlude and pre-choruses are based on the first chord sequence as we showed in the beginning of the ukulele part (Figure 1). If you want to refresh your memory, just scroll up a bit [anchor link]. Ready? Cool, let’s have a look at the five different chords that are used in the first chord sequence: Em7, D(sus2), G, C, D.

Figure 11: Em7, D(sus2), G, C, D.

“What does ‘sus2’ mean?” you may ask. Well, welcome to a very quick explanation of the sus chord (or suspended chord). Simply put, we can’t say whether a sus chord is a major or a minor chord. It just doesn’t have this quality. This type of chord reflects the context it’s played in: They rely on the type of chords that surround them. So, a sus chord can sound major or minor. Kind of like a chameleon.

Try to play this chord sequence on your ukulele (Figure 12). If you feel comfortable with it, then we have good news for you: Now you can already play about half of the song. Many parts of the song consist of this sequence or its variations.

Figure 12: First chord sequence.

It’s time to take a closer look at the real thing. How does our first sequence actually work out in the first half of “Shallow”?  Well, here is how. We have put all the parts together and added the lyrics (Figure 13). Try to play them as shown and, while you’re at it, see how our chord sequence is repeated over and over again.

Figure 13: Intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus 2.

We have half of the song left. Check out how we play the first half in our explainer video:
Video 4: Ukulele intermediate & pro — intro, verse 1, pre-chorus 1, interlude, verse 2, pre-chorus.

Second chord sequence

Now that we’ve mastered the first part of “Shallow,” we can focus on the second chord sequence, which returns in the chorus (chorus 1, chorus 2). For this sequence we have five chords: Am, Am/G, D, G, Em (Figure 13). Of course, Am/G is basically an Am chord with a passing bass note.

Figure 14: Am, Am/G, D, G, Em.

Figure 15: Second chord sequence.

Let’s continue and have a look at the second chord sequence (figure 15).

This is how you apply the second sequence in the chorus (Figure 16). Since this is the real thing, we’ve added the lyrics.

Figure 16: Chorus 1, chorus 2.

Watch this explanation video to see what chorus 1 and chorus 2 sound like on your ukulele:
Video 5: Ukulele intermediate & pro — chorus 1, chorus 2.

Third chord sequence

Are you ready to seal the deal on the “Shallow” chords? Great! Check out the third chord sequence. It appears in the song only once, during the vocalization. It has four different chords: Bm, D(sus2), A, Em (Figure 17). Let’s take a look at the ukulele chord diagrams first, shall we?

Figure 17: Bm, D(sus2), A, Em.

Play around with the chords. And when you’re done, try to apply them to the third chord sequence; used in the bridge (Figure 18).

Figure 18: Bridge.

Let’s check out those chords in the video tutorial:
Video 6: Ukulele intermediate & pro — bridge.

Before we congratulate you on a job well done, check out the whole song (Figure 19). Play it, enjoy it and when it’s done, start over again.

Figure 19: Ukulele intermediate & pro — chord sheet and lyrics for Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper – Shallow.

Music theory: key center, diatonic situation and scales

As we showed you before, this song consists of nine different parts which are based on three chord sequences. Since you’re now experienced enough, we want to invite you to a harmonic analysis of this song. Where we’ll address the key, scale and diatonic situation.

Music theory: Key center of the first and second chord sequence

First of all, you probably already got the impression that this song has many chords. We have good news for you: The whole song has just two key centers! “Why is that good news and what does it actually mean?” So many questions, yes, we know. Give us a chance to explain.

The first and second part of the song, based on the first and second chord sequences — the whole song actually, except the bridge — are in the key of G major. Simply put, the G chord is the main chord in these sequences and all other chords are related to G; which means they’re from the G major scale. This phenomenon is called the diatonic situation. Knowing that, you can be sure that all notes from the G major scale will fit with the chords. So, for this song, it’s important to know the G major scale!

Don’t worry, we’ve got this figured out for you. The scale of G is: G (root), A, B (major third), C, D (fifth), E, F# (major seventh).

Music theory: Key center of the third chord sequence

Now let’s check the rest of the song — the bridge. It’s is in the key of D major. All chords in the bridge are related to the D major scale. And as a consequence of this diatonic situation, all notes from the D major scale will fit the bridge.

This is what the D major scale looks like: D (root), E, F# (major third), G, A (fifth), B, C# (major seventh).

So now, using the G and the D major scales, you know how to jam on this track. But there’s even more to say about the chord changes here. Let’s take a look at the first chord sequence again.

These four bars are repeated a few times during the verses and pre-choruses. We would like to attract your attention to this detail: It starts with the Em chord and finishes with the D chord. Each round after the D we go to the Em chord again. Or, putting this more technically, the D chord resolves to the Em chord. Remember, in this particular part of the song we’re still in the key of G.

This is interesting because in the diatonic situation of G major the D chord usually tends to resolve to the G chord. Simply put, the D chord leads us back home to the G chord. When the D chord resolves to the Em chord, which is the 6th degree of the G major scale, we don’t miss the G but really enjoy how the Em chord serves as a home base.

The same interesting thing happens when we transition from the pre-chorus 2 to the chorus 1. Here are the chord changes for the second chord sequence, played in the chorus:

The last chord of the pre-chorus 2 is D. And, instead of G, the progression goes to the Am chord — the first chord of chorus 1. The Am chord is the 2nd degree of the G major scale. Again, Am sounds very naturally, and helps us to recognize the beginning of the chorus.

Three things you didn’t know about ‘A Star is Born’

“A Star is Born” tells the classic story of an artist who falls in love with a singer and kick-starts her career. The first movie was made in 1937, followed by two musical remakes in 1954 and 1976. The 2018 version with Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga addresses themes like the hardcore lifestyle of artists and the way they cope with stress, depression and addiction.

The main character, Jackson Main, played by Bradley Cooper, is the embodiment of rock ’n’ roll. He drinks heavily, uses drugs and lives like there’s no tomorrow. This all changes when he sees Ally, Lady Gaga’s character, perform in the bar La Vie en Rose. He is amazed by her voice and takes her out after she’s finished with her shift. It turns out she’s a waitress but also a singer-songwriter.

They fall in love, and Jackson writes a song for Ally which he makes her perform with him on stage. After that, we see how Jackson’s career slowly declines while Ally becomes a superstar. This shows us the two sides of the coin, first you work hard for recognition and fame. After that, as we see in Jackson’s storyline, you can hit the ground hard. The lyrics of “Shallow” reflect this subject matter. 

Lines like, “In the good times I long for change, and in the bad times I fear myself” address the stress and depression triggered by this lifestyle. According to Lady Gaga “Shallow” is also about the conversation between a man and a woman in which they both really listen to each other. It’s all about being heard equally.

Here are three facts you probably didn’t know about the 2018 movie “A Star is Born.” After reading these, you can act all sophisticated at parties when the subject comes up, or just use them for a self-made pub quiz. Ready?

Did you know that “A Star is Born” was written and directed by Bradley Cooper himself? Yes, he also plays the main character because that’s what you do when you direct your debut. To get in the proper vibe for the role Cooper hung out with Pearl Jam’s frontman Eddie Vedder, just to experience what it means to be a rockstar.

The concert scenes that you see in the movie were shot during real gigs. The scene where Jackson Main invites Ally on to the stage for the very first time, to perform “Shallow,” was recorded during a Lady Gaga concert. Some other scenes were shot during Willie Nelson gigs. So, the crowd consists of real people who go absolutely mental when the film crew is on stage. Not because of the cameras, but because Cooper and Lady Gaga know how to put on a great show.

Before Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper teamed up to make this movie, the initial idea was that the remake was going to be directed by Clint Eastwood with Beyoncé as the star. Plans for this project started in 2011, but after several years of nothing happening, Bradley Cooper signed to star and direct the flick.

Did we promise you three facts about “A Star is Born”? We lied. Because here’s a bonus one for ya. The band that accompanies Jackson Main in the movie are none other than Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real — yeah, that’s Willie Nelson’s son with his band. Lukas and Promise of the Real contributed to the soundtrack and starred in the movie.

Guitar used in ‘Shallow’

The main instrument that is used in “Shallow” is, of course, the guitar. Jackson Main plays an acoustic Gibson J-45. This jumbo guitar is one of Gibson’s most popular instruments ever. As a matter of fact, it is still in production and very often used by blues artists because the sound is full and round. The shape of the body also stays true to the shape that western guitars had early in the 20th century.

The body is made out of spruce and mahogany wood, so the sustain is amazing. The neck is made of mahogany as well, and for the fretboard the guitar manufacturer has used rosewood. The form of the guitar resembles earlier Gretsch models. If you’re a beginner, this may not sound interesting at all. But for the connoisseurs among us, we bet you are just drooling over your computer right now. Yeah, we were too while writing this. 

So, we’ve come to the part where you stop drooling, grab your axe or sit behind the keys and start kicking out verses and choruses of “Shallow.” If you’re a beginner and you find out that the skill level is too easy for you, but the intermediate level is a bit hard, just try to play along with the harder version anyway. It will get your motivation pumping, and your skills will sky-rocket in no time. Happy jamming!

All music theory and transcriptions by Kirill Dumchenko

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