- Open chords
- Percussive slap
Stay With Me was a tremendous hit the year it was released (2014). The song is originally played on the piano, and it has a really nice soul vibe to it. Let’s have a look at the song that made Sam Smith a superstar.
The cover we’ll be learning today is suitable for beginners and intermediate players as well. Beginners can just strum the chords (all simple down strums), and if you’re an intermediate player, I’ll teach you an awesome picking pattern. We won’t be using any barre chords in this one, so rejoice J
The song is played in the key of C major at around 84 BPM. The entire song can be divided into chunks of 2 measures. Once you learn the base chords and rhythm, you’re all set.
First of all, we’ll learn to play the chords of Stay With Me. As you might expect, we’ll go through all the chords you’ll use in the song.
The base chords of Am7 – F – C in the key of C represent a 6 – 4 – 1 chord progression, an alteration of the more famous 6 – 4 – 1 – 5 progression, also known as the Sensitive Female Chord Progression.
Next, we’ll learn to feel the rhythm of the song. This is very important, and one of the elements that is really characteristic of Stay With Me. The repeating chords have a pushed quality, where the 3rd chord is played on the & of the 4th beat.
Next, we’ll learn to apply the rhythm to the various sections of the song: the intro, verse, and chorus.
If you’re a beginner, you’ll probably stop there, since you’ll already be able to play along with the song, by strumming the chords you learned.
If you’re up for it, you can take things to the next level by learning a really cool fingerpicking pattern arranged specifically for Stay With Me. You’ll learn new fingerstyle rhythm techniques, so I think this makes the lesson useful for guitarists of all levels.
Stay With Me song details
Stay With Me was released in 2014 by Sam Smith, who won 4 Grammy awards that year, including the record of the year, song of the year for Stay With Me, Best Pop Vocal Album, and Best New Artist, so this song and its album really made Sam Smith’s year 🙂
The song is about the morning after a one-night stand.
Stay With Me charts and rankings
The single achieved multiple Platinum sales around the world and reached the top of the charts in many countries. You can find all of its achievements on Stay With Me’s dedicated Wikipedia page, he is a sample:
- US Billboard Hot 100: #2
- US Adult Contemporary (Billboard): #1
- Euro Digital Songs (Billboard: #1
- Australia (ARIA): #5
- Canada (Canadian Hot 100): #1
- Ireland (IRMA) : #1
- Israel (Media Forest) : #1
- Japan (Japan Hot 100) : #5
- Poland (Polish Airplay Top 100) : #1
- Portugal (AFP) : #67
- Portugal Digital Songs (Billboard) : #5
- Scotland (Official Charts Company) : #1
- Slovakia (Rádio Top 100) : #2
- South Africa (EMA) : #1
- Spain (PROMUSICAE) : #3
- Sweden (Sverigetopplistan) : #4
- Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade) : #6
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