"How to Save a Life," is a song by a pop group known as The Fray. It appears on a CD of the same name, which was released in 2005. The song, which speaks of dealing with a troubled youth, begins with a simple but capturing piano introduction. As the song unfolds, other instruments join in, but the piano provides the basic framework of the tune. If you want to play this beautiful song, listen to it a few times and then follow a few tips on how to create the chord progressions and melody.
Play an arpeggiated Bb chord in your left hand using the following repeated pattern: Bb-F-D-F-F-D-F. All the notes are eighth notes except for the second F, which is a quarter note. Continue the pattern with the exception of replacing the Bb in the bass with an A. Alternate back to Bb in the bass, and then A once more to complete the introduction.
Play the following whole notes (all above middle C) in your right hand as you play step 1 in your left: Bb-C-D. Play these half notes: A-C. End the phrase with another whole Bb note. Repeat this pattern once more for the intro to the song.
Continue the patterns from steps one and two for the verse of the song.
Play the following chords for the chorus: Eb-F-Gm-Bb. Use double octave notes in the left hand using the root note for each chord. Play the root position chords for Eb and F in the right hand, second inversion chord for Gm (D-G-Bb), and first inversion for Bb (D-F-Bb).
Listen to the song and play along as you learn the chords and patterns. Advance with patience; master one section of the song at a time before moving on to other parts.