CST Approved

Breaking The Girl is track three off the Red Hot Chili Peppers' massively successful 1991 album, Blood Sugar Sex Magik. The guitar part (on which I will focus) is unlike most of the others on the album, as it is played on an acoustic guitar, and uses more conventional chord-based ideas.

The Peppers' guitarist, John Frusciante, actually plays the song on a 12-string acoustic instrument, detuned one semitone: Eb, Ab, Db, Gb, Bb, Eb. A 12-string guitar is not essential - some chorus will help a 6-string guitar emulate the sound to some extent. Also, detuning is not necessary unless you want to play along with the CD, and even then, you could also put a capo on the 4th fret and transpose the tab given below.

At some points in the song, there are evidently two guitar parts. I will tab them both as necessary, although you can get away with only playing one part, which leaves the sound thinner and less rounded.
The strumming rhythms are quite syncopated and hence hard to tab, so refer to the album if in doubt. The song is in 6/8.

I am aware that this tab will be too wide for some displays - I apologise for any inconvenience, but I can't compress the notation or split it up any further without making the tab useless to everyone.

Notation

Pull-off    Slide       Fret-hand muting
                  
------      -9\7--      ------
--8p7-      -9\7--      --x---
--9p7-      -9\7--      --x---
------      ------      --x---
------      ------      ------
------      ------      ------

Chords

  C        G        Am     Fmaj7
x    o     ooo    xo   o   x    o
======   ======   ======   ======
||||1|   ||||||   ||||1|   ||||1|
||2|||   |1||||   ||22||   |||2||
|3||||   2||||3   ||||||   |34|||

Tab

INTRO (twice):
 Am                      B/A Am7                 D/A                         E6/A A
-----------------------|-----------------------|---------------------------|----9---9--9---9---9---9--|
-2---2-2--2----2--2--2-|-4--5---5-5----5--5--x-|-7---7-7-------7--7--7-----|-9--10--10-10--10--10--10-|
-2---2-2--2----2--2--2-|-4--5---5-5----5--5--x-|-7---7-7-------7--7--7-----|-9--9---9--9---9---9---9--|
-2---2-2--2----2--2--2-|-4--5---5-5----5--5--x-|-7---7-7-------7--7--7-----|-9--11--11-11--11--11--11-|
-0---0-0--4p0--0--0--0-|-0--0---0-7p0--0--0----|-0---0-0--9p0--0-----0---0-|-0--0---0--0---0---0---0--|
-----------------------|-----------------------|---------------------------|--------------------------|

VERSE 1:
 I                 am a man                     cut from      the           know
 rarely            do friends                   come and      then          go
 she               was a girl                   soft          but           estranged
 we            were the two                 our lives                    re-arranged
 Am                      B/A Am7                 D/A                         E6/A A
-----------------------|-----------------------|---------------------------|----9---9--9---9---9---9--|
-2---2-2--2----2--2--2-|-4--5---5-5----5--5--x-|-7---7-7-------7--7--7-----|-9--10--10-10--10--10--10-|
-2---2-2--2----2--2--2-|-4--5---5-5----5--5--x-|-7---7-7-------7--7--7-----|-9--9---9--9---9---9---9--|
-2---2-2--2----2--2--2-|-4--5---5-5----5--5--x-|-7---7-7-------7--7--7-----|-9--11--11-11--11--11--11-|
-0---0-0--4p0--0--0--0-|-0--0---0-7p0--0--0----|-0---0-0--9p0--0-----0---0-|-0--0---0--0---0---0---0--|
-----------------------|-----------------------|---------------------------|--------------------------|

PRE-CHORUS
C          G          Am       C            G         Fmaj7
Feeling so good, that day.     A feeling of love that day.

CHORUS:

  Twisting and turning your  feelings are burning you're breaking the girl
  Am           E7/B           C6           G/D           E7
P|0---0-0---0--0---0-0---0---|0---0-0--0---0---0-0---0--|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|10-1010-10-10-1010-10\|
A|1---1-1---1--3---3-3---3---|1---1-1--1---3---3-3---3x-|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9-\|
R|2---2-2---2--1---1-1---1---|2---2-2--2---4---4-4---4x-|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9-\|
T|2---2-2---2--0---0-0---0---|2---2-2--2---5---5-5---5x-|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9-\|
 |0---0-0---0--2---2-2---2---|3---3-3--3---5---5-5---5--|7--7-7--7--7--7-7--7--|7--7-7--7--7--7-7--7-\|
1|-------------0---0-0---0---|--------------------------|0--0-0--0--0--0-0--0--|0--0-0--0--0--0-0--0--|
 |                           |                          |                      |                |
P|---------------------------|--------------------------|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|10-1010-10-10-1010-10\|
A|5---5-5---5----------------|--------------------------|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9-\|
R|5---5-5---5--7---7-7---7---|9---9-9--9---12--1212--12-|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9-\|
T|x---x-x---x--6---6-6---6---|7---7-7--7---9---9-9---9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9-\|
 |x---x-x---x--x---x-x---x---|x---x-x--x---x---x-x---x--|7--7-7--7--7--7-7--7--|7--7-7--7--7--7-7--7-\|
2|5---5-5---5--7---7-7---7---|8---8-8--8---10--1010--10-|----------------------|----------------------|

  She          meant          you          no            harm
  Am           E7/B           C6           G/D           F 
P|0---0-0---0--0---0-0---0---|0---0-0--0---0---0-0---0--|1--1-1--1--1--1-1--1--|1--1-1--1--1--1-1--1--|
A|1---1-1---1--3---3-3---3---|1---1-1--1---3---3-3---3x-|1--1-1--1--1--1-1--1--|1--1-1--1--1--1-1--1--|
R|2---2-2---2--1---1-1---1---|2---2-2--2---4---4-4---4x-|2--2-2--2--2--2-2--2--|2--2-2--2--2--2-2--2--|
T|2---2-2---2--0---0-0---0---|2---2-2--2---5---5-5---5x-|3--2-3--3--3--3-3--3--|3--2-3--3--3--3-3--3--|
 |0---0-0---0--2---2-2---2---|3---3-3--3---5---5-5---5--|3--3-3--3--3--3-3--3--|3--2-3--3--3--3-3--3--|
1|-------------0---0-0---0---|--------------------------|1--1-1--1--1--1-1--1--|1--1-1--1--1--1-1--1--|
 |                           |                          |                      |                      |
P|---------------------------|--------------------------|8--8-8--8--8--8-8--8--|8--8-8--8--8--8-8--8--|
A|5---5-5---5----------------|--------------------------|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|
R|5---5-5---5--7---7-7---7---|9---9-9--9---12--1212--12-|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|
T|x---x-x---x--6---6-6---6---|7---7-7--7---9---9-9---9--|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|
 |x---x-x---x--x---x-x---x---|x---x-x--x---x---x-x---x--|8--8-8--8--8--8-8--8--|8--8-8--8--8--8-8--8--|
2|5---5-5---5--7---7-7---7---|8---8-8--8---10--1010--10-|----------------------|----------------------|


  Think you're so clever but  now you must sever, you're breaking the girl
  Am           E7/B           C6           G/D           E7
P|0---0-0---0--0---0-0---0---|0---0-0--0---0---0-0---0--|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|
A|1---1-1---1--3---3-3---3---|1---1-1--1---3---3-3---3x-|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|
R|2---2-2---2--1---1-1---1---|2---2-2--2---4---4-4---4x-|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|
T|2---2-2---2--0---0-0---0---|2---2-2--2---5---5-5---5x-|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|
 |0---0-0---0--2---2-2---2---|3---3-3--3---5---5-5---5--|7--7-7--7--7--7-7--7--|7--7-7--7--7--7-7--7--|
1|-------------0---0-0---0---|--------------------------|0--0-0--0--0--0-0--0--|0--0-0--0--0--0-0--0--|
 |                           |                          |                      |                      |
P|---------------------------|--------------------------|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|
A|5---5-5---5----------------|--------------------------|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|
R|5---5-5---5--7---7-7---7---|9---9-9--9---12--1212--12-|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|
T|x---x-x---x--6---6-6---6---|7---7-7--7---9---9-9---9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|9--9-9--9--9--9-9--9--|
 |x---x-x---x--x---x-x---x---|x---x-x--x---x---x-x---x--|7--7-7--7--7--7-7--7--|7--7-7--7--7--7-7--7--|
2|5---5-5---5--7---7-7---7---|8---8-8--8---10--1010--10-|----------------------|----------------------|

  He           loves          no           one           else
  Am           E7/B           C6           G/D           F                      F7         E7
P|0---0-0---0--0---0-0---0---|0---0-0--0---0---0-0---0--|1--1-1--1--1--1-1--1--|1--1-1--1--0--0-0--0--|
A|1---1-1---1--3---3-3---3---|1---1-1--1---3---3-3---3x-|1--1-1--1--1--1-1--1--|4--4-4--4--3--3-3--3--|
R|2---2-2---2--1---1-1---1---|2---2-2--2---4---4-4---4x-|2--2-2--2--2--2-2--2--|2--2-2--2--1--1-1--1--|
T|2---2-2---2--0---0-0---0---|2---2-2--2---5---5-5---5x-|3--2-3--3--3--3-3--3--|1--1-1--1--0--0-0--0--|
 |0---0-0---0--2---2-2---2---|3---3-3--3---5---5-5---5--|3--3-3--3--3--3-3--3--|3--2-3--3--2--2-2--2--|
1|-------------0---0-0---0---|--------------------------|1--1-1--1--1--1-1--1--|1--1-1--1--0--0-0--0--|
 |                           |                          |                      |                      |
P|---------------------------|--------------------------|8--8-8--8--8--8-8--8--|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|
A|5---5-5---5----------------|--------------------------|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|
R|5---5-5---5--7---7-7---7---|9---9-9--9---12--1212--12-|8--8-8--8--8--8-8--8--|8--8-8--8--8--8-8--8--|
T|x---x-x---x--6---6-6---6---|7---7-7--7---9---9-9---9--|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|10-1010-10-10-1010-10-|
 |x---x-x---x--x---x-x---x---|x---x-x--x---x---x-x---x--|8--8-8--8--8--8-8--8--|8--8-8--8--8--8-8--8--|
2|5---5-5---5--7---7-7---7---|8---8-8--8---10--1010--10-|----------------------|----------------------|

VERSE 2:
(tab as verse 1)
A            B/A Am7    D/A         E6/A A    A       B/A Am7    D/A         E6/A A
Raised by my dad,       girl of the day.      He was my man,     that was the way.
A            B/A Am7    D/A         E6/A A    A       B/A Am7    D/A         E6/A A
She was a    girl,      left        alone.    Feeling no need to make me her home.

PRE-CHORUS (as above)

CHORUS (as above)

INTERLUDE (8 times):

P|------------------------|------------------------|
A|------------1-----------|------------1---1---1---|
R|----2-0-2---2---2-0-2---|----2-0-2---2---2---2---|
T|----2-0-2-------2-0-2---|----2-0-2---3---3---3---|
 |0-----------------------|0-----------3---3---3---|
1|------------------------|------------------------|
 |                        |                        |
P|0---x-x-x-x-----x-x-x-x-|0---x-x-x-x-13--13--13--|
A|1---x-x-x-x-----x-x-x-x-|1---x-x-x-x-13--13--13--|
R|2---x-x-x-x-5---x-x-x-x-|2---x-x-x-x-10--10--10--|
T|2---x-x-x-x-5---x-x-x-x-|2---x-x-x-x-10--10--10--|
 |0---x-x-x-x-3---x-x-x-x-|0---x-x-x-x-10--10--10--|
2|----x-x-x-x-----x-x-x-x-|----x-x-x-x-------------|

CHORUS (as above)

OUTRO

PART 1: CHORUS, as above (fade out)

PART 2: (fade out)
|---12------12------12------12------------------------------------|
|---13------13------13------13------12-13---12-13---12-13---12-13-|
|------13------13------13------13---13-14---13-14---13-14---13-14-|
|-----------------------------------------------------------------|
|-----------------------------------------------------------------|
|-----------------------------------------------------------------|

How to play it

The order of the sections goes as shown above:

  • INTRO
  • VERSE 1
  • PRE-CHORUS
  • CHORUS
  • VERSE2
  • PRE-CHORUS
  • CHORUS
  • INTERLUDE
  • CHORUS
  • OUTRO

Some of chord changes can be a bit tricky at speed, at if you've never played any Frusciante, or indeed funk before, the 2nd guitar part in the chorus chould be troublesome, what with all the fret-hand mutings. Enjoy!

Log in or registerto write something here or to contact authors.