This soul classic was written by Calvin Lewis and Andrew Wright, members of the Esquires, an Alabama band whose lead singer was Percy Sledge. It was the first #1 hit produced at Muscle Shoals, reaching #1 on both the Hot 100 and the R&B charts in 1966. It was also a #1 hit for Michael Bolton in 1991.
Here’s how I played it…..
There are 6 counts in each measure (6/8 time):
1 – Pinch 4th, 2nd, and 1st string with thumb, index, and middle fingers
2 – 3rd string played with thumb
3 – 2nd string played with thumb
4 – 1st string played with middle finger
5 – 2nd string played with index finger
6 – 3rd string played with thumb
That’s how I do it, but if you don’t want to use your thumb that much it’s up to you. You could even use your thumb and 3 fingers and designate a different finger for each string, for example, 4th string thumb, 3rd string index, 2nd string middle finger, and 1st string ring finger. Whatever works for you.
There’s also a separate “6/8 Time” category for other songs that use this same pattern. Here’s a link: