Best Fake Smile Guitar Lesson (James Bay) Electric Guitar Tutorial

Check out my new electric guitar lesson on how to play ‘Best Fake Smile’ by James Bay.

If you’re a James Bay fan, you might want to check out my other guitar lesson on how to play ‘Let It Go’ –

In this guitar tutorial I go through the chord progressions, strumming patterns and single note parts that you hear in the original recording. I’ve based the transcription on the original recording and a couple of live performances that I found on YouTube. Here’s a live performance that I found particularly useful –

The chords themselves aren’t too tricky, and we have some variations to common chords, like the addition of finger 4 for the Em and C chords, as well as a G6 chord (coming from the E-shape barre chord).

The main chord progression can be played quite simply as I demonstrate first. The key to getting it sounding cool though is adding in the syncopated rhythms whereby the strum is occurring between the beats, often as a pick up note on the upbeat of 4.

I tried my best with the unison bends, but it’s near impossible to have them play in tune on a floating bridge like I have on my stratocaster. A fixed bridge will always be preferable for bending techniques.

If you need guidance on anything in the video, I would suggest you check out my YouTube Guitarist’s Survival Guide which has loads of ideas and concepts for beginner guitarists. You can find it here –

PLEASE give me a thumbs up if you enjoyed the video, and don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE, COMMENT, LIKE and SHARE.

See you soon.

You can get a copy of the TAB for this lesson from my website. From the homepage click ‘SONGS’ and then ‘TAB’.



  1. Harry Gadverdarrie

    Thank you so much! Every guitar tutorial for this song is with the capo. I really wanted to play it without it. I had a bit of a struggle with the tuning, but I found out. You had the song exactly the same. Keep it up!

  2. Fantastic video!! Really well thought out and so helpful. You didn't leave anything out. Thank you so much! Looking forward to more from you :D

  3. TheCookiemonster xx

    You are brilliant! Thank so much! One of the best tutorials I have ever watched!!!

  4. It's wild how under noticed you are. awesome tutorials. liked and subbed

  5. Sounds great!

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