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I’m Only Sleeping Chords

How to Play I’m Only Sleeping Chords by The Beatles on Guitar

“I’m Only Sleeping” is a song by the English rock band The Beatles, written by John Lennon and credited to Lennon–McCartney. It was released on their 1966 album Revolver and as the B-side of the single “Yesterday” in the United States. The song is a psychedelic rock ballad that features a backwards guitar solo by George Harrison and lyrics that express Lennon’s desire to escape from the pressures of everyday life.

If you want to learn how to play “I’m Only Sleeping” on guitar, you will need to know some basic chords, a capo, and how to tune your guitar down a half step. Here are some tips and steps to help you master this classic Beatles song.

Chords

[Verse 1]
Em                          Am       G       C    G         B7
When I wake up early in the morning, lift my head I'm still yawning.
Em                          Am     G       C   G       C      Am7
When I'm in the middle of a dream, stay in bed float upstream.
 
[Chorus]
G                    Am7                Bm7                Am7
Please don't wake me no don't shake me leave me where I am
         Cmaj7
I'm only sleeping     
 
[Bass]
E  G  B  G
 
[Verse 2]
Em                           Am    G       C      G             B7
Everybody seems to think I'm lazy, I don't mind I think they're crazy
Em                           Am     G        C    G          C    Am7
Running everywhere at such a speed 'til they find there's no need
 
[Chorus 2]
G                     Am7            Bm7           Am7
Please don't spoil my day I'm miles away and after all
         Cmaj7
I'm only sleeping
 
[Bass]
E  G  B  G   Em    E  G  B  E
 
[Bridge]
Fmaj7                    E7                Am  Am7/G
Keeping an eye on the world going by my window,
Fmaj7
Taking my time
 
Em                             Am       G       C     G      B7
Lying there and staring at the ceiling, waiting for a sleepy feeling 
 
[Solo]
Em   Am   G   C   G   C Am
 
[Chorus 2]
G                     Am7            Bm7          Am7
Please don't spoil my day I'm miles away and after all
         Cmaj7   Em
I'm only sleeping                    
 
[Bridge]
Fmaj7                    E7                Am  Am7/G
Keeping an eye on the world going by my window,
Fmaj7
Taking my time
 
[Verse 1]
Em                          Am       G       C    G         B7
When I wake up early in the morning, lift my head I'm still yawning.
Em                          Am     G       C   G       C      Am7
When I'm in the middle of a dream, stay in bed float upstream.
 
[Chorus 1]
G                    Am7               Bm7              Am7
Please don't wake me no don't shake me leave me where I am
         Cmaj7
I'm only sleeping
 
[Bass]
E G B E   Em

Capo

To play “I’m Only Sleeping” in the original key of Em, you will need to use a capo on the first fret of your guitar. This will allow you to play the chords as if they were in Dm, but sound a half step higher. Alternatively, you can play without a capo and transpose the chords up a half step, but this will make some of the chords more difficult or impossible to play.

Tuning

Another option to play “I’m Only Sleeping” in the original key is to tune your guitar down a half step. This means that instead of tuning your strings to E A D G B E, you will tune them to Eb Ab Db Gb Bb Eb. This will make the chords sound lower than they appear on the fretboard, but match the pitch of the original recording. You can use an electronic tuner or an online tuner such as Guitar Tuner to help you tune your guitar down a half step.

Strumming

The strumming pattern for “I’m Only Sleeping” is not very complicated, but it requires some attention to the rhythm and dynamics of the song. You can use a simple down-up pattern for most of the song, but make sure to accentuate some of the beats and syncopate some of the changes. For example, in the chorus section, you will need to strum down on the first beat of each measure and up on the second beat, then switch to down-up-down-up on the third and fourth beats.

You will also need to vary your strumming intensity depending on the mood of the song. For example, in the verse section, you can strum softly and gently to create a sleepy and relaxed atmosphere. In contrast, in the bridge section, you can strum more loudly and forcefully to create a sense of tension and urgency.

Solo

The solo for “I’m Only Sleeping” is one of the most distinctive and innovative features of the song. It was created by recording a normal guitar solo by George Harrison and then reversing it in the studio. This resulted in a backwards sound that added a psychedelic and surreal effect to the song.

To play the solo on guitar, you will need to learn how to play it forwards first, then reverse it either by using an audio editing software or by playing it backwards yourself. You can find the tablature for the solo on websites such as ULTIMATE GUITAR or [Songsterr].

Alternatively, you can improvise your own solo using notes from the Em pentatonic scale or other scales that fit the chords of the song.

Conclusion

“I’m Only Sleeping” is a great song to learn how to play on guitar if you are a fan of The Beatles or psychedelic rock music. It is not very difficult to play, but it has some interesting and creative elements that make it fun and challenging. By following these tips and steps, you can master this classic Beatles song and impress your friends and family with your guitar skills. Happy playing!

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