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How To Save A Life Tab

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Difficulty
Capo
intermediate
3rd fret
Song    : How To Save A Life
Artist  : The Fray
---------

NOTES   : All chords and fret positions are relative to CAPO 3rd fret. The rhythm guitar chords
          are written out for the sake of simplicity, regardless of the fact that most of this
          song is constructed of piano, bass, lead guitar, and drums.

LEGEND  :
          { } = half mute (note is played then muted immediately)
          < > = heavy emphasis (the most recognizable note)
          [ ] = medium emphasis (typically the 2nd most audible note)
          ( ) = light emphasis (a note only heard from reverb or echo)
          « » = harmonic (finger lightly touching string directly above fretbar)
          huf = hold until fade (usually a single note on the piano or guitar)

          x = string mute     & = short pause
          / = slide up        a = half pause
          \ = slide down      z = full pause
          ^ = bend            h = hammer-on
          r = release bend    p = pull-off
          ~ = hold ring       v = vibrato
          * = heavy damping   d = drum note
          % = fade in         ; = fade out

TUNING  :
          1} E up 1½ steps (3 semitones) -> G
          2} B up 1½ steps (3 semitones) -> D
          3} G up 1½ steps (3 semitones) -> Bb
          4} D up 1½ steps (3 semitones) -> F
          5} A up 1½ steps (3 semitones) -> C
          6} E up 1½ steps (3 semitones) -> G


{Piano 1}:
medium reverb

        M1                M2                M3                M4                = measure number
        1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &   1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &   1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &   1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &   = timing count
        d                 d                 d                 d                 = bass drum tap
1: G  +-3---------------|-5---------------|-7---------------|-2-------5-------+
2: D  |---3---3---3&~~~-|---3---3&--3---3-|-----0-------0---|--(3)--3---3---3-|
3: Bb |-0---4---0~~-----|-----4-------4---|-0-7---7&~-7---7-|-----4---4---4---|
4: F  |-----------------|-4---------------|-----------------|-4---------------|
5: C  |-----------------|-----------------|-----------------|-----------------|
6: G  +-----------------|-----------------|-----------------|-----------------+


{Verse One}:
only piano accompanying

     G   M1            D/F#   M2
Step one, you say we need to talk
  Em7  M3            D  M4      D/F#    G  M1
He walks, you say "Sit down, it's just a talk"
        D/F# M2         Em7 M3
He smiles politely back at you
         D  M4      D/F#
You stare politely right on through

[drums start]

G M1 G    D/F# M2       Em7 M3
Some sort of window to your right
         D   M4    D/F#    G   M1 
As he goes left and you stay right
G          D/F#   M2        Em7   M3 
Between the lines of fear and blame
           D   M4   D/F#   %R1 
You begin to wonder why you came


{Chorus Piano}:
piano, bass, lead guitar, drums

        1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &   1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &   1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &   1 & 2 & 3 & 4  &
1: G  +---7-------7-----|-5---7---5---7---|-----7-------7---|-5---7---5---10---+
2: D  |-------8---------|-----------------|---8-----8-------|------------------|
3: Bb |-----7---7---7---|---7---7---7---7-|-7-----7---7---7-|---7---7---7----7-|
4: F  |-----------------|-----------------|-----------------|------------------|
5: C  |-----------------|-----------------|-----------------|------------------|
6: G  +-----------------|-----------------|-----------------|------------------+

1: G  +---7-------7---|-5---7---5---7---|-----7-------7---|-5---7---5---2-3--+
2: D  |-------8-------|-----------------|---8-----8-------|------------------|
3: Bb |-----7---7---7-|---7---7---7---7-|-7-----7---7---7-|---7---7---7------|
4: F  |---------------|-----------------|-----------------|------------------|
5: C  |---------------|-----------------|-----------------|------------------|
6: G  +---------------|-----------------|-----------------|------------------+


{Chorus R1}:
octaves, full sustain
        1&2&3&4&   1&2&3&4&   1&2&3&4&   1&2&3&4& = timing count
1: G  +----------|----------|----------|----------+
2: D  |-%5~~~~~~~|-/7~~~~~~~|-/8~~~~~~~|-8~~~~~~~~|
3: Bb |----------|----------|----------|----------| Play
4: F  |-%2~~~~~~~|-/4~~~~~~~|-/5~~~~~~~|-5~~~~~~~~|  2x
5: C  |----------|----------|----------|----------|
6: G  +----------|----------|----------|----------+


Repeat: {Piano 1]


{Chorus R2}
medium sustain

        1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & = timing count
1: G  +-----------------+
2: D  |-----------------|
3: Bb |-----------------|
4: F  |-4/5\4---4\2~~~;-|
5: C  |-------5---------|
6: G  +-----------------+


{Chorus}
C            D
Where did I go wrong
       Em
I lost a friend
              G  R2  D/F#
Somewhere alone in the bitterness
   C                 D               Em
And I could have stayed up with you all night
          G    D/F#    G
Had I known how to save a life


{Chorus Outro}
medium reverb

1: G  +-0---------------------+
2: D  |---3-1-0-1&-0-0&-------|
3: Bb |-----------------0&----|
4: F  |--------------------0&-|
5: C  |-----------------------|
6: G  +-----------------------+


{Verse Two}

G              D/F#
Let him know that  you know best
    Em7          D        D/F#
Cause after all, you do know best
G              D/F#
Try to slip past his defense
Em7           D       D/F#
Without granting innocense
G       D/F#            Em
Lay down a list of what is wrong
             D       D/F#
The things you told him all along
G           D/F#
Pray to God he hears you
    Em7          D/F#
And I pray to God he hears you


Repeat: {Chorus} including associated bells and whistles, then {Chorus Outro}:
{Chorus}
C            D
Where did I go wrong
       Em
I lost a friend
              G  R2  D/F#
Somewhere alone in the bitterness
   C                 D               Em
And I could have stayed up with you all night
          G    D/F#    G
Had I known how to save a life


{Chorus Outro}
medium reverb

1: G  +-0---------------------+
2: D  |---3-1-0-1&-0-0&-------|
3: Bb |-----------------0&----|
4: F  |--------------------0&-|
5: C  |-----------------------|
6: G  +-----------------------+


{Verse Three}:
bass, drums, piano

  G           D/F#
As he begins to raise his voice
  Em7
You lower yours
  D/F#              G
And grant him one last choice
              D/F#
Drive until you lose the road
  Em7                      D/F#
Or break with the ones who follow
G        D/F#
He will do one of two things
Em7           D/F#
He will admit to everything
G         PAM        D/F#
Or he'll say he's just not the same
   Em7           D/F#
And you'll begin to wonder why you came


{Piano Alternate Measures}:
Referred to as [PAM] in Verse Three and Interlude

        1 &  2  &  3  & 4 &   1  &  2  &  3  & 4 & = timing count
1: G  +---10-10-10----8-7---|-10-10-10-10----------+
2: D  |------------10-----8-|-------------10-8-7---|
3: Bb |---------------------|----------------------|
4: F  |---------------------|----------------------|
5: C  |---------------------|----------------------|
6: G  +---------------------|----------------------+


{Chorus} 2x with bells & whistles, then {Piano 1} w/ {Piano Alternate Measures}


{Interlude}:
just {Piano 1} with [PAM]

G D/F# G
D/F#        G   PAM  D/F#  G
How to save a life
D/F#
How to save a life

Repeat: {Chorus} 2x with bells & whistles


{Song Outro}:
Just piano and drums throughout song outro


Repeat {Chorus Outro} and {Piano 1} simultaneously


G D/F# G
D/F#        G  PAM  D/F#  G
How to save a life

Repeat {Chorus Outro} and {Piano Alternate Measures} simultaneously

D/F#        G  D/F#  G
How to save a life
D/F#         G
How to save a life


Repeat {Piano 1}
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9 comments total. Showing first comments.
+3 reply
Pi3_M4N 135 wrote on August 3 2007, 01:05 pm

just capo the third so you wont have to down tune just saying nice tab tho

0 reply
Robbiekeano 99 wrote on July 18 2008, 02:32 pm

Nice tab, mate. Seriously good.

0 reply
bjdf 90 wrote on May 10 2009, 08:42 am

love the intro man!!!

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