Nirvana/UOGB – Smells Like Teen Spirit


Probably the most famous chord riff ever and very popular on the ukulele thanks to the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain version. These chords are in the same key as those used in the UOGB version.

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  1. LonnaB March 10th, 2009 7:31 pm

    Little B’s gonna love this.

    Is it odd that my nine year old loves Nirvana?

  2. J-Hob March 10th, 2009 11:22 pm

    I reckon this would work really well on my new TV Pal! I will give it a bash in the morn when the wife’s not asleep.

    Cheers Sheddy!

  3. Musicians Gear Australia March 11th, 2009 4:27 am

    How awesome, it’s like Nirvana on 45 speed…

    Nice work!


  4. David Barnes March 11th, 2009 10:38 am

    Al (and everybody else) here’s another one for you: The Stones’ Brown Sugar riff.

    The basic chords are:

    Eb, C, Ab, Bb, C.

    Try that, it’ll sound roughly right. The Eb and C are for a full bar, the Ab and Bb for half a bar each.

    There are some embellishments.

    The Eb starts with the normal 0331 but you throw in a 0311 as well.

    The C chord starts the normal 0003 but goes to 0010.

    Ab is hard enough without any embellishments. But if I’m feeling dexterous I’ll play the Bb with with a bit of 3213.

    The C at the end is like the C at the first.

    Feel free to tab this out properly, I don’t have — and don’t plan to learn — any tabbing software. It’s an amazing riff and fun to play on the uke.

  5. David Barnes March 11th, 2009 10:41 am

    PS How about the Chuck Berry intro riff (from Johnny B Goode, Roll Over Beethoven)? Or do you already have that in your incredible Blues Uke book? (I’ve read the book, I just can’t recall if it’s in there.)

  6. Woodshed March 11th, 2009 9:21 pm

    Lonna: No, it’s entirely consistent with good musical breeding.

    John: Absolutely. Made for plastic ukuleles.

    Mr Australia: Thanks.

    David: Thanks for the chords. There is a ‘Chuck Berry Style Lick’ in the ebook which bears an uncanny resemblance to Johnny B Goode.

  7. Koerie January 21st, 2010 10:01 am

    Somebody should tab the Battlefield 2 theme. You know, the chords behind the snares? and the Bugle call. I might give that a go actually… keep an eye on the game themes area Ill try and see if I can work it out XD

  8. mcnilly February 13th, 2010 8:31 pm

    Nice tab, any help on muted string strum? i just cant get it to sound right. . .

  9. Woodshed February 14th, 2010 1:56 pm

    mcnilly: For this one, I lay my index finger flat across all the strings.

  10. mcnilly February 14th, 2010 1:58 pm

    Cheer al, I’ll have a bash at that later then!

  11. Corey C420 February 14th, 2010 9:44 pm

    Yes I was looking for this song thanks!

  12. Woodshed February 15th, 2010 9:59 pm

    Corey: You’re welcome.

  13. appsy April 29th, 2010 9:06 pm

    What would be the tabs for the verse ???

  14. stan August 20th, 2010 9:40 pm

    thx man, u are really awesome

  15. Woodshed August 24th, 2010 5:13 pm

    stan: You too!

  16. james September 19th, 2010 11:36 am

    at what fret to you mute the strings?

  17. Woodshed September 20th, 2010 10:09 pm

    james: Any fret, it doesn’t make too much difference.

  18. shamus January 20th, 2011 4:32 am

    how do you play the xxxxx’s ???

  19. Woodshed January 22nd, 2011 2:59 pm

    shamus: They’re muted strums. You stop all the strings from ringing with your fretting hand.

  20. sam March 29th, 2011 11:27 pm

    what do that arrows going up and down mean?

  21. Woodshed March 31st, 2011 2:18 pm

    sam: They’re strumming directions. An up-arrow is a down strum and a down-arrow is an up strum.

  22. Alex June 8th, 2011 5:11 pm

    How do you play the D5 chord? My hands seem to be too small. :)

  23. Tim July 22nd, 2011 3:11 am

    Alex, the way I do it is by using my pointer finger on the lower notes (i.e., barred all the way across 2) and pinky finger barring the higher ones.. so it looks as if my entire hand is just smashing across the frets but are actually positioned as such. The F5 is the same but just 3 frets higher. (Note that the C is also the same as A but three frets higher).

  24. Frederik February 2nd, 2012 8:26 pm

    i found i much easier to play
    A – 2100
    D – 2225
    C – 0003
    F – 5553 or 5558

  25. Olivier April 26th, 2012 7:29 pm

    Hey guys,
    Do you know where I can find all “5” chords ? (without 3rd note)

  26. johnny May 24th, 2012 11:31 am

    Am I the only one who noticed that Uke Hunt sounds like You C*nt?

  27. carreg wastad August 2nd, 2012 12:03 pm

    for the chorus you could try

    eeed – gggf – cccb – fff e(flat)

    then e(flat)dc

    it doesn’t sound spot on – perhaps someone can find a better way of doing it.

  28. Mark December 4th, 2012 8:50 pm



    I’ve tabbed out the solo in case anyone wants an adventure. The only problem is i stayed in the same key as the guitar version, ohh wait, actually I didn’t because I forgot to downtune my guitar :S . So it’s in some random key but no-one will notice anyway, it’s nirvana after all. Also, I changed the very last bit to make it more interesting you might notice. Enjoy!

  29. Woodshed December 4th, 2012 10:08 pm

    Mark: Thanks very much.

  30. Chris-Holdstock March 21st, 2013 5:43 pm

    My hand physically can’t move fast enough to fit the muted bits in, even when im playing slow my brain just wont let it happen :(

  31. Mark June 19th, 2013 9:37 pm

    I’d just like to say that for the solo tab i posted, it’s all picking and the note on the tenth fret on the G string comes before the 8th fret on the C string, i just couldn’t get it to look right in the comments section

  32. Woodshed June 20th, 2013 11:20 am

    Mark: Thanks. Should look better now.

  33. Lewis June 13th, 2015 3:53 pm


    I wondered if anyone can play the intro to Lithium.

    I can play the Chords but it’s not the same as being able to play the intro part.

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