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Window to His Love

For my money, this is one of the most beautiful songs ever written. I'm sure it was originally conceived as a song about the missionary experience, but in reality, it also applies to any disciple of Christ. We all need to make ourselves into “a window to His love.”

This song is an excellent example of how barre chords can actually make a song easier to play. Six of the ten chords used are actually just two barre chords, played at different frets. Even that doesn’t tell the whole story, as the barred E-shape, barred Am-shape, and barred Am7-shape are so similar that they might as well all be one chord, thus cutting the number of chords used in half. Even the barred A-shape found in the CIII chord, while more difficult than the other barre chords in this song, actually makes the transition from GIII easier and faster than it would be if you used a normal C chord. You can substitute the four-string F-shape played in the III and V spaces some of the time, which I admit is easier, but it doesn’t work all the time. If you’re going to have to learn to play the full-barre versions anyway, why not play all six strings all the time?

Unlike most of my other tabs, this one is meant to be played as an accompaniment to a singer. If the singer wants a break after the chorus following Verse 2, just go directly to the Intro before playing Verse 3. You may even decide to insert the extra Intro yourself, just to show off. It sounds really cool with all the ligados, but is not especially hard to do. Just be sure to warn the vocalist!


Played right, the Intro sounds lovely and delicate. To avoid confusion, I’m going to refer to the fingers of the RIGHT hand as T, I, M, and R (for Thumb, Index, Middle, and Ring), and the fingers of the LEFT hand as numbers 1, 2, 3, and 4 (for Index, Middle, Ring, and Pinkie, respectively). If you play left-handed, just reverse that. If you are a classical guitarist, and think I should stick to the Spanish p, i, m, a -- Sorry! Most of my readers don’t speak Spanish, and are not classically trained. That’s why the song is in tablature.

The lead finger in the first measure (and in most others) is the R finger. This begins a pattern-pick that continues throughout the Intro, and the brief reprises throughout the song. The first four notes of the measure are played normally, followed by a double-ligado: a hammer-on and immediate pull-off, counted as, “5-&-6”, using the #1 finger. The last two notes of the measure are counted and played normally, using the fingers specified in the tab.

The M finger leads in the second measure, and the double-ligado is done with the #2 or #3 finger, which ever is easiest for you. To do this, hold the barre with the #1 finger after the third note, but release the rest of the chord, to free the other fingers of the left hand. Release the barre after the double-ligado to play the open B string at the end of the measure. This kind of left hand finger-dancing only needs to be done when playing the full-barre F chord. If it seems excessive to you, you may find it easier to play the normal, (four-string) F chord, and fret the bass E string with the #4 finger briefly.

The third measure of the Intro is exactly like the first, and the final measure is played straight, holding the fifth note for three counts (5-6-7). Lead this final measure with the R finger again.

Measure [5] is also played straight. If you are not accompanying a singer, and you want a more delicate effect, just play the treble string of each chord, using an R finger lead, instead of the three-string pinches. These single notes will get lost if the vocalist has a strong voice. Measure [6] is fingered like measure [2], releasing the fingers first, then the barre at the end, for the note on the open string. Play measure [7] straight.

Measure [8] is not difficult, but watch out for the brief slide on the treble e-string. It’s just there for a bit of expression, and is not part of the count. You don’t even have to slide all the way down to the next note. In measure [9], hold the Am chord for 1-1/2 counts (one-and-two), then pick up the note on the open e-string with an upward picking motion, followed immediately by two downward strums of the whole chord, to the beat of “DUM, da-Dum, Dum”, like the word, “pumpernickle”.

Measure [10] is split between lines. Sorry, there just was no better way to print it, for various obscure, technical reasons. The last half of the measure has a downward T strum that stops at the 3rd string. Play the next note on the B string with the thumb. It’s much easier that way. Play measures [11], [12], and [13a] straight, then go back to begin the second verse with measure [5]. continue to measure [12] again, but the second time, continue with [13b] through [33a], while the singer sings the second verse and the chorus.


Starting in measure [13b] through [31], the guitar will be the same for verses 2 and 3. Play the tremolo at the end of [13b] with the #3 finger, to ease the transition to the full barre in the V space. You can substitute a Dm chord for the Dm7v called out in measure [14] if it’s easier for you, but the Dm7v chord has a softer sound, which I find especially appropriate to underscore the word, “Love.” It’s actually slightly easier to play, too, as you are fretting one fewer string.

Through measure [28] the tab is straightforward, but in [29] you don’t actually play the full GIII chord. You only need to barre all the strings with the #1 finger, in the III space. Fret the notes in the V space with the #4 finger, and those in the IV space with the #3 finger. This may seem like doing it the hard way, but if you’re already able to play barre chords, you’ll probably find it easier than trying to hit all the notes rapidly by finger dancing.

The double-ligado in [30] is made by sliding the #4 finger up and down the neck one fret, in a move that is technically called a mordant. It doesn’t sound any better than the hammer-on/pull-off used in the rest of the song, but if you’ve been playing along with the tab, you’ll have run out of fingers, so the mordant is the only option.

Measures [31] through [33a] are played pretty much like the last three measures of the Intro, with only slight variation in the initial pinches of each measure. You can play them identically to the Intro, if you like, and most likely no one will know or care. Then go back and play the whole verse and chorus over again, while the singer sings the third verse and chorus, ending with measures [32b] through [34]. Measure [32b] is actually played the same as [32a], but the singer does not end the measure by singing the word “I.” The next measure is nearly identical to [6], and can be played that way if you like, but the pace is very different. You begin slowing in [32b], but in [33], you want to slow to half-speed by the end of the measure, then hold the final C chord in [34] as long as you can, and bask in the applause.


This song is NOT in public domain! I’ve tried to contact Julie DeAzvedo repeatedly to ask about copyrights and permissions, but she has never answered me. I’ve had the song tabbed for years, but couldn’t include it here, without permission. Recently, I learned that the LDS Church owns the copyright, and since I have their permission to publish their copyrighted songs, for non-commercial, home and church use, and since the guitar arrangement is my own, I list it here. Please honor the Church’s standards, and refrain from circulating this piece or using it for commercial purposes of any kind, without written permission from the copyright holder.

Easter Medley: a duet for piano and guitar

This is an original arrangement for piano and classical guitar, by Joanne Niewinski and me. We played it last year in our ward’s Easter Sacrament Meeting. Some of the ward leaders resisted having a guitar perform in such a holy setting, until we challenged them to show us the handbook’s ban on guitars. There never was such a ban, of course, Mormon legends to the contrary notwithstanding. As Michael Moody said, speaking as Church General Music Director, “We are an international church and do not discriminate against any instrument or musical tradition, as long as the sacred character of the Sacrament is preserved.”

For those who would like to try an ambitious project like this, I am including both my guitar part and Sister Niewinski’s piano part, (with her kind permission.) I'm sorry the piano part didn't scan well, but it is playable. It is a medley of “He Is Risen,” and “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today.” Both sound very good as a piano-guitar duet, and are in the key of C, an easy one for both instruments.

It’s intended to be an instrumental duet; the words are only included for reference. The music goes faster than it would if it were sung. Even with all three verses of “He Is Risen,” a complete verse of “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today,” a four-bar introduction, several reprises, and a finale, it barely occupies three minutes of time. Feel free to lengthen the introduction and finale, add more verses, or make other changes, if you wish.

I played my Cervantes classical guitar, with high-tension D’Addario strings, and used a regular, Church microphone on a boom, playing through the chapel sound system, which was set a notch louder than usual. The piano was not amplified. The sound balance was good, but I had to place the microphone right at the sound hole, very close to the strings, which made playing around the microphone rather awkward. It would have been possible with a straight microphone stand, but really clumsy. The boom helped a lot. A guitar mic or acoustic pickup would have solved the problem perfectly, but I couldn’t find one that would interface with the Church’s sound system. If I’d had a “stand-alone” sound system, designed for a guitar, I’d have used it.

At the end of the Guitar Coda, the meter changes briefly to 2/4, so the last two counts of the measure can be dropped. We go right into the beginning of “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today,” dropping the last syllable of “vic-tor-y.” We did this to create some musical tension, which we resolved by bringing the piano in for the “alleluyah” at the end of the line. We tried bringing the piano in at the beginning of the line, but it sounded like the pianist came in early by mistake.

There are lots of ligados-- hammer-ons, pull-offs, and slides. They make a nice contrast to the more staccato piano. Most of the ligados are simple, but in a few places, there are several in a row. The trickiest part is in the last line on page two, where you have three ligados, a fast bass run, then a complex riff in the last measure. The hard part is the timing. Some of the notes are eighth-notes, while others are quarter-notes. Remember to count: “ONE-and-TWO-and-THREE-and-FOUR-and” for every measure, paying attention to which notes fall on the counting numbers and which fall on the “ands”.

The piano part in the third verse is lighter and more delicate than most piano music played in church. It sounds a bit like a music box. The guitar just plays rhythm here, hence the strummed chords. Where the piano plays loud in the last line of the verse (“Death is conquer’d, man is free”), the guitar needs to be as loud as possible (ff, or fortissimo), or the piano will drown it out. The rest of the line can be a little less forte, but still moderately loud (mf, or mezzo-forte).

After the piano and guitar each take a solo on the same line, the finale is played together. We used these multiple repetitions to drive home the message that “Christ has won the victory,” which is the whole point of Easter. Even though the words were not sung, the congregation heard them in their heads, and got the point.

The two parts diverge musically in the finale, then reunite for the final chord, which both instruments sound simultaneously. Do whatever it takes to make it simultaneous. The slightest error in timing will be obvious. Hold the chord for two full measures, if possible. Unless you have an electric guitar, you will not be able to sustain the chord as long as the piano. It’s important that guitarist and pianist damp or release the chord at the exact same instant. If not, it will sound like you were competing for the longest hold. (And the piano won.)

We performed this duet as the climax of the Easter Sacrament Meeting, just before the closing prayer, and not as an instrumental “rest hymn” in the middle of the service. It was a wonderful, spiritual experience for everyone. Even those who had resisted having a guitar in Sacrament Meeting loved it. Several came up to me afterwards and admitted their prejudice. Only then did I learn that one of them had been the bishop.