UG Weekend Riff: Part 16

Ultimate Guitar


The Cult - She Sells Sanctuary. Four-piece band "The Cult" featured the 6-string skills of Billy Duffy And, in their long career, they wrote many great songs including the classic droning riff in She Sells Sanctuary (familiar to players of Dave Mira's Pro BMX 2 as "That song what always comes on in the swampy level"). The riff is based on a simple motif running down the G string with underlying open notes on D. This creates that famous pedal sound.


Fingering technique is a matter of taste here, but I would recommend the index finger for the most part and the anular for the hammer ons to the 7th fret. You will need to practice the rhythm, probably from listening to the song or the audio below until the rhythm is firmly stuck in your head.

Gear Info:

The guitar here is most definately a Gretsch hollowbody, a marshall stack and a fair whack of reverb. Set gain at around 4 for a little crunch and reverb to about 7 or 8.

And to get in to sound exactly right? Play a D5 powerchord on a keyboard with your toes...

Audio & Tab:

140bpm E||-----|--------------------------| B||-----|--------------------------| G||-----|--14-------12-------11----| D||--0--|--------0--------0--------| A||-----|--------------------------| E||-----|--------------------------| -------------------------|------------------------| -------------------------|------------------------| -----7-------5h-7--5h-7--|--5h-7-----7-------2----| --0-------0--------------|--------0-------0-------| -------------------------|------------------------| -------------------------|------------------------| -------------------|--------------------------| -------------------|--------------------------| -------------------|--14-------12-------16----| ----------------0--|--------0--------0--------| -------------------|--------------------------| -------------------|--------------------------| ------------------------------|----------------------------| ------------------------------|-------------12-------15----| -----14-------12h-14--12h-14--|--12h-14--------------------| --0--------0------------------|----------0--------0--------| ------------------------------|----------------------------| ------------------------------|----------------------------| ------------------|----------------------------| ------------------|----------------------------| ------------------|--14----14--12----12--11----| ------------------|--0-----0---0-----0---0-----| ------------------|----------------------------| ------------------|----------------------------| --------------------------|-----------------------| --------------------------|-----------------------| --12--11--7----7----7--7--|--5----5--7----7--2----| --0---0---0----0----0--0--|--0----0--0----0--0----| --------------------------|-----------------------| --------------------------|-----------------------| ------------------------|----------------------------| ------------------------|----------------------------| --12--11--7----7--------|--14----14--12----12--11----| --0---0---0----0--------|--0-----0---0-----0---0-----| ------------------------|----------------------------| ------------------------|----------------------------| --------------------------|-----------------------| --------------------------|-----------------------| --12--11--7----7----7--7--|--5----5--7----7--2----| --0---0---0----0----0--0--|--0----0--0----0--0----| --------------------------|-----------------------| --------------------------|-----------------------| ------------------------|| ------------------------|| --12--11--7----7--------|| --0---0---0----0--------|| ------------------------|| ------------------------|| Use this link to get a midi for the tab above!

42 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Keep up the good work man, read your riff everytime, still waitin for hendrix though
    Geldof the Grey
    ^nope ok, I'm doing an acoutic riff special, some hendrix, maybe a special on a certain aritst and then a HUGE solo. Stay tuned!
    hendrix? my god so many songs, Machine Gun? Red House? Castle Made Of Sand? Wind Cries mary? man, just do them all lol.
    Good work, always had my mind on that song but never came around to learn it
    maybe you could tab a spanish guitar riff some time. it would be different but sweet at the same time
    Unknown Soul
    hey i remember this song now!!! FIREWOMAN is my fave song of theirs though. and i liked the song of GONE IN 60 SECONDS too. paper sun right? geldof you got some great articles man. i especially like how you gave tips on how use the fingers of your fretting hand.
    Unknown Soul
    oh hey what about FRIDAY I'M IN LOVE by the cure for the acoustic special...put chords and the lead part. but hendrix...that'd be pretty sweet too.
    Dude can't wait for hendrix and acoustic special good weeks up ahead
    nice article i couldnt remember the name of that song and i've wanted to learn it forever thanks dude
    nice tab and i think its a good idea to post a long solo that sounds like slayer/metallica-ish, even though i dont like the kind of music uve been posting i like how you have an audio link with ur tabs, and i would really like to see a solo
    if you want a hendrix riff, I'll do one for number 18. Vote for the song you want by suggesting it in the comments section. ALL ALONG THE WATCHTOWER!
    i dont really like this song. not interesting enough lets get some more acoustic stuf!
    Geldof the Grey
    if you want a hendrix riff, I'll do one for number 18. Vote for the song you want by suggesting it in the comments section.
    Yeah get some hendrix songs on here! preferably some that are quite difficult and aren't tabbed too well (unlike sweet child o mine which everybody and his/her cousin knows!!)
    Yah do the wind cries mary or any other song i dun really care what one.
    You Could Be Mine by Guns n' Roses. Matt Sorum (now Velvet Revolver) was in both The Cult and Guns n' Roses.
    i love this god damn segment because you tab everyrthing from fingerpicking (beatles) to nu metal to whatever. Keep up the good work, as for a hendrix song, i like little wing