Who Says John Mayer Guitar Lesson

Who Says by John Mayer – Guitar Lesson & TAB

Who Says was written by American artist John Mayer and the song was released as a single on his 2009 album Battle Studies.

In this lesson we're going to be learning how to play Who Says in full on the guitar. If you've previously learnt other songs by Mayer, such as Stop This Train or Dear Marie, then you've got a head start with this one as it's very similar in playing style. 

Mayer uses the technique of striking a percussive tap with the thumb on the lower strings whilst simultaneously playing a note with the back of the fingernail on the first finger on the higher strings. Clearly this is a technique he likes a lot as he's used it in so many of his songs. If you've not learnt this technique before it can take a lot of work to get it comfortable in your playing. Having said that, it's well worth it as it's a great and a very useful technique. 

Alright then, let's start learning how to play Who Says!

Song Details:

  • Key - D major
  • Tuning - standard 
  • Tempo - 91 bpm
  • Difficulty - intermediate - advanced

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Who Says Guitar lesson (Verse)

In this first video lesson we learn how to play the verse of Who Says. The song is really only made up of two sections, the verse and the chorus (there's a bridge/instrumental section too but it's the same progression as the chorus).

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How to Play the Chorus of Who Says

In this lesson we learn how to play the chorus. Every time the chorus is comes up, John changes what he plays on the A major chord. Watch out for this but don't be too strict because when you watch John play it you'll see that he's always mixing things up and improvising licks on this particular chord. 

If you're finding all this a bit too hard and you think you might prefer a more straight-forward strumming version of the song, then Erich Andreas has made a lesson on a simplified version of Who Says, check it out here here.

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The 2nd Chorus for Who Says

There's a few changes in the second chorus and here I teach you the other licks that John's played on the A chord. Also the ending of this chorus is different to the first as it's leading into the instrumental section. 

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Outro Lesson for Who Says

Just the outro now and this is pretty straightforward really. There's just a few simple chords being played whilst alternating between a Dsus2 and a Dsus4 chords.

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Want to learn more or John Mayer's songs?: Neon, Stop This Train, Queen of California, Dear Marie, Why Georgia.

Alternatively you can browse the whole song catalogue: Song Lesson Library

Let me know what you thought of the lesson in the comments section below. Say what you found hard/easy, what level you're at and what your fingerpicking goals are. 

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