Manuel Gardner Fernandes releases intricate guitar-driven rendition of Rosé's K-Pop smash hit On the Ground

Manuel Gardner Fernandes has released a guitar-infused cover of K-Pop artist Rosé’s new single On The Ground, which once again showcases the social media sensation’s intricately percussive style of playing.

Having been alerted to Rosé’s song by his Discord group, the contemporary electric guitar guru notes he was “amazed by the production, harmonization and the technicalities” behind K-Pop, saying, “I’m blown away by it and I’m sure it will go nuts in the future.”

The arrangement is everything you would expect from a track that has received the trademark Fernandes treatment – namely, rapid-fire right-hand strums, string-skipping hybrid picking lines and punchy open-string chords.

Commuting the full length of the fretboard via a series of octave slides and arpeggiated runs, Fernandes’ clean guitar effortlessly mirrors Rose’s vocal melodies, embellishing them with decorative stabs and nonchalant knocks on the whammy bar.

Just as you think he's used every trick up his sleeve, Fernandes then uses his Ibanez to fire through an expertly executed harmonic chordal part during the track's middle eight.

“My goal was to surround the guitars around the vocal lines so that the vocals don’t drown because of the guitars,” Fernandes told Guitar World. “It can be really heavy sometimes to find the right mix and balance between flex and melody.”

When asked what he has in store for future covers, Fernandes revealed, “I will stay up to date when it comes to K-Pop and let’s see, maybe there will be something by other artists at some point.

My goal was to surround the guitars around the vocal lines so that the vocals don't drown. It can be really heavy sometimes to find the right balance between flex and melody

“Currently I’m in touch with an awesome K-Pop producer from Korea, but that’s more like a producer, topliner job instead of a guitar kinda thing,” he teased. 

If you fancy giving the cover a go yourself, you can get access to the tabs by joining Manuel Gardner Fernandes’ YouTube channel.

By now, we're used to picking our jaw up off the floor following a Fernandes masterclass, especially after he recently teamed up with Tim Henson for a mind-blowing rap-shred cover of In The Cut.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.