Mombasa (Tommy Emmanuel) – Tutorial (Part 1)

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You could view this song as Tommy’s love letter to African music. Named after the African city Mombasa, this tune offers a lot of summer vibes, as well as a host of challenges to get your fingers around. Part 1 tackles the intro and the bridge, part 2 looks at verse B, the bridge and the ending.

Tab/notation file:

Patreon (tabs/notation, early access, backing tracks, …):

Paypal Donate Link:

Guitar used:
Mayson MS7/S, Standard tuning
Recording: a pair of Neumann 184’s through an Apogee Quartet
More info on

0:00 Introduction
1:27 Stuff that went wrong…
2:03 Pointers
2:22 Intro
10:34 Verse A, Opening melody (bars 1-4)
16:55 Verse A, Repeat and variation (bars 5-8)
18:35 Verse A, Pumping the bass (bars 9-12)
23:40 Verse A, Funky conclusion (bars 13-16)
29:05 Putting it all together



Kyle McHenry says:

*Tip for people like me with small hands. * Not sure if anyone has said this already, but I've found it much easier to play the stretchy bit in Verse A at the ninth and 5th frets by just playing the open drone note A on the b string 10th fret with the pinky since its already on the 9th fret the note before. Instead of trying to hold my index finger on the 5th fret and stretch to play at the 9th at the same time.

Kyle McHenry says:

So another little hack, while trying to play that real "beefy" chord. I've found that I can live with the sound of the D string 6th fret and G string 4 fret (barre) just ringing out a second longer and skipping trying to make my pinky reach over to play the bass note on 7th fret E string. It makes that bit much more manageable for me. Obviously not everyone will agree with how it sounds but its much easier at the start. Also I just wanted to say thank you so much Tim Van Roy for posting these tutorials. I've been looking for a way to make Tommy Emmanuel's music accessible for someone with my lack of ability for a long time, and your lessons are the first ones I've ever tried that have really helped me learn one of his songs. I am eternally grateful and will now have to turn to your patreon page to finish learning Mombasa. Cheers and Merry Christmas!

Kenneth05 says:


zakk malmsteen says:

hello !

did you get the second part?

ben ezung says:

Thank you so much for taking the trouble to make this tutorial. Been waiting for forever.🙏😁

Kerrigan says:

Thanks 🙏

Eric Bolz says:

You've learned several Tommy songs but I've only learned Angelina. I've chosen "Cowboy's Dream" as my second Tommy song but the palm muting he does is new and difficult for me. Actually, ALL his songs are above my level but they inspire me to learn new things. What do you consider to be his simplest songs, not that any are simple?

Ehtesham says:

It would be great if you added "Mr. Sandman" to the list as well 🙂
Cheers man, your lessons are awesome!

Simon Htoo says:

Thank u so much

Vaughn Maurt says:

Great! As always.

Brandon says:

thanks again 😂!

Fruchtzwergbiker says:

Good Job! I love your Videos!

Malin perera says:

I have been waiting for this..thank you so much Maestro Tim..😌

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