With or Without you is a classic song by U2 which uses only four chords. In this With or Without You Sing and Play Piano Tutorial, I will teach you how to play this iconic song. Four chords, a simple chord progression and we are good to go!
Originally released on their 1987 album The Joshua Tree, With or Without You employs the most used pop chord progression of all time, sometimes known as "The Axis of Awesome." This makes is super easy to play and to add extra touches too.
Song learning protocol
For U2's With or Without You, we are going to use our standard song learning protocol, which I outline in detail here.
Step #1: Learn the Chords
Step #2: Learn the groove
Step #3: Put it all together.
Let's Get Started!!
Lyrics and chords to Without You
To find the lyrics to any song, just do a Google search of the name of the song plus "lyrics and chords". You'll usually find a site like Ultimate Guitar, which will give you a chord chart like this one below.
Want to learn to reach a chord chart? Check out this lesson!
Below you'll find an excerpt of the lyrics and chords. The full chart is available to members only on The Versatile Musician membership site. Learn more.
Need to learn more chords?
Sign up and get my FREE Ultimate Chord Cheat Sheets! Perfect for mastering your chords on piano.
Next step: Approximate the groove of With or Without You
The original recording of With or Without You consists of a pulsing bass line, like this one below. Play this bass line with the chords in the right hand.
Last step: Put it all together
Remember that you can (and should!) customize this song to fit your skill level. If the chord inversions are too challenging for you, then play them all in root position.
Try to avoid getting stuck in the little details! The goal is for you to learn to sing and play more songs - no drown in a pool of perfectionism! Have fun - it's only music!
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Want to check out the original versions of With or Without You?
Here is Linda Ronstadt's version of Blue Bayou, from a live performance she did in the late 1970s.