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One Thing • Guitar Chords, Strumming Pattern, Tab • One Direction

Updated on September 12, 2014

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As a guitar teacher, I am exposed to all sorts of music, through my students. Before I transcribed this piece, I had no idea who One Direction was. I now know they are one of the hottest 'boy bands' around. The saving factor for me, is that most of their songs actually have a dominant guitar line. This, of course, makes my job much easier. I have taken some liberties here and transcribed what can be thought of as a 'campfire strumming version'. All songs have a chord progression (even if the song hangs on one chord only).

One Direction: This is Us (Two Disc Combo: Blu-ray / DVD + UltraViolet Digital Copy)
One Direction: This is Us (Two Disc Combo: Blu-ray / DVD + UltraViolet Digital Copy)
Blu-Ray edition includes bonus DVD pressing. BR disc includes the theatrical and Extended Fan Cut. Billed as an intimate all-access look at life on the road for the global music phenomenon, This Is Us follows the lives of the five members of the boy band, One Direction. It contains live concert footage from London's O2 Arena, and footage from their lives pre- and post-X Factor appearance, and gives insight into the preparation for their concerts and ultimately what it is like to be One Direction.

The Chart

Once again, it is all rhythm slashes. These slashes correspond to standard notation. They are non-pitched (they do not move up and down on the staff, there is no need to include a key signature). They tell you how to play the rhythm patterns. There is syncopation throughout the chart (accenting the weak beats). When a slash is syncopated, it falls on the part of the beat that is not the number (usually the 'and'). For example, in the second measure, the half note slash, falls on the 'and' of one. The dot to the right of the slash note head means to add half the duration of the note to the note. For example, in the second measure again, the dotted quarter note strum is one and a half beats, because the dot extends the quarter note slash by adding an eighth note to it.

Song Structure

The song is firmly rooted in the key of D Major. All the chords are diatonic to that key. There is only four chords in the entire song, D Major, A Major, G Major and a barre shape, Bm. This seems to be a fairly common format these days. Many modern country and pop songs follow this same structure. It is the one, four, five pattern with the relative minor added. In the key of D Major, the one chord is D, the four chord is G, the five chord is A and the relative minor (the sixth chord) is Bm. These chords are built on the Major scale my constructing triads. The chords in the key of D Major are: D Major, Em, F sharp minor, G Major, A Major, Bm and C sharp diminished.


Play the Major chords as open shapes and the Bm as a Root 5 barre shape. This is not easy, and will take practice for the beginning guitarist. at measure thirty eight, repeat from the forwards facing repeat barline (measure eleven). On the second pass, play to measure thirty four, then continue playing at measure thirty nine until the end of the song, bypassing the first ending (measures thirty five to thirty eight).

On the video, I have played the intro and first verse with all downstrokes. The rest of the song is the same strumming pattern as You Belong With Me, until measures twenty five, twenty six, thirty seven, thirty eight and the bridge and first line of the last chorus, where I have moved into downstrokes again. Also, I recorded the video at one hundred and thirty beats per minute. I believe the tempo to be between one hundred and twenty five to one hundred and thirty. It seem s a bit fast, but is a great work out. Once again, accent the second and fourth beats. If you can, practice with a metronome or drum machine, or simply play with the song.

On the video, I have employed an alternate fingering for the A Major chord: 2, 1, 3.

One Thing • Rhythm Guitar

One Thing • One Direction • One Catchy Song!


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    • Lorne Hemmerling profile imageAUTHOR

      Lorne Hemmerling 

      7 years ago from Oshawa

      Thanks very much for the compliment!!

    • profile image


      7 years ago



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