Learning the "Amie" Intro Riff, Step by Step

Lesson #488 • May 9, 2023

Hey there, friends! In today’s lesson I’m excited to teach you the intro riff to Amie, the 1972 classic from Pure Prairie League. Rather than showing you the full tab and expecting you to hit the ground running, my lesson will be a true getting-started guide. I’ll walk you through the very first steps I recommend taking with things, building on things layer by layer — and before you know it, you’ll be up to full speed and playing through the entire riff. Let’s get on in to it!

  • 0:00 Lesson Overview
  • 1:54 Major Pentatonic Overview
  • 3:18 Practicing “One Phrase At Time”
  • 8:21 Main Riff: Simple Version
  • 12:28 Main Riff: Full Version
  • 17:39 Add’l Tips & Advice

Instructional PDF 3 pages

Follow along with the print-friendly PDF! It includes all of my notes for this lesson, allowing you to follow along at your own pace. You're free to download, print, and share the PDF across your devices.

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Follow along with the print-friendly PDF!

It includes all of my notes for this lesson, allowing you to follow along at your own pace. You're free to download, print, and share the PDF across your devices.

To download the PDF, upgrade to premium or log in.

Lesson Discussion

Jump in the conversation with other members of the Song Notes community! Post a comment about this lesson, ask a question, or even upload a video of your progress. All skill levels welcome!

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Extended Videos

Here’s a few zoomed in videos of me playing through the different variations of the intro riff, as I show in my video lesson. In each of these, I’ll play through the intro 4-5 times total, using the 100 beats per minute backing track. Tabs are shown on screen for your reference.

Simplified Version of the Intro (100bpm)

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Full Version of the Intro (100bpm)

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Backing Track

Here’s a single-chord backing track (A major), with a nice drum beat behind it, for you to use when practicing. You could use this when playing the A major scale, the A major pentatonic, or any of the exercises I show in my video lesson… including the full Amie intro riff! This is a bit slower than the actual album recording of Amie, but it makes for great practice.

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Click to download, or play below:

Want to Learn the Full Song?

I have a separate video (lesson #504) where I teach the chords, rhythm, and strumming for all of Amie! Check out in the video below – and be sure to view my lesson notes for additional lesson materials (practice track, licensed song sheet, etc).

If you want to brush up on your scales in general, here’s a few related lessons I’ve made:


If you’re interested in how scales work or the topic of scale degrees, here’s a few videos from my Practical Music Theory course that may help:

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