Creep by Radiohead Ukulele Lesson

Radiohead’s debut single Creep was a massive hit for Thom Yorke and co and makes a great song to play on ukulele because there are so many ways to interpret it. Let’s take a look…

Creep Ukulele Chords

The chord progression throughout this song remains the same, which makes it nice and easy to remember. Probably the easiest way to play this is if we use barre chords as there’s actually very little finger movement this way (woohoo).

The progression is G, B, C, Cm – rinse and repeat. If we look at those chords as barre chords that gives us…

Radiohead Creep Ukulele Chords

Check out how little we have to move our fingers between each change…

  • For the G to B change we simply move our second finger from E string to the C string.
  • For The B to C change we slide the whole chord shape up the neck by a fret
  • For the C to C minor we just remove our second finger

Strumming

On the original the chords are arpeggiated throughout the verses. If you want to replicate this I’d recommend just using a relatively simple picking pattern. I tend to mix this up a bit but picking the strings in this sequence 3,2,4,1 is a good starting point. Feel free to mix this up though, you can get pretty creative on this one.

For the strumming parts (and sometimes I just strum the whole song) I tend to play a 16th note pattern which is pretty difficult to actually get down in any form that’s actually helpful. So if you’re comfortable enough with your strumming patterns then just go for it. If you need a bit of a steer then I’d go for the following pattern to get you moving along but don’t stick too rigidly to it.

Creep Ukulele Strumming Pattern

It works pretty well with a pumping 8s rhythm (see below) too, mix it up and try some other patterns in there also. Due to the repetitive nature of the chord progression you’re going to need to use dynamics and variation in your strumming to keep it interesting. Try a few patterns from my 32 strumming patterns download, see which you like.

Creep Ukulele Strumming Pattern

Chorus crush

As the song hits the chorus you can hear Jonny Greenwood hitting his guitar very quickly and very loudly which results in a sharp crunch sound. Apparently this was Greenwood’s way of attempting to ruin the song as he wasn’t a fan of the direction of the song and thought it was too quiet.

To be pretty frank, you’re going to struggle to emulate that particular sound with a tiny ukulele but we’ll have a blast anyway.

What we’re going to play is a Z chord – essentially no chord at all. We just want to mute the strings by resting our fretting hard fingers on the strings just enough to stop them ringing out. You can play the z chord anywhere (rest your fingers anywhere) on the neck but I’d advise having the G chord fretted but relaxing your fingers. That way you’ll be ready to roll straight into the G when you need it. Smash your strumming hard down hard and fast and bring it back up quickly* and that should get you about as close as you’re going to get.

*Ukulele Go cannot be held responsible for any broken strings 🙂

 

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