Sam Smith — To Die For Piano Sheets

Here is a new song in my piano sheet music archive. The original amateur interpretation of a tune. This sheet music is created in a transformative manner (transcription). Plus music notes in the arrangement doesn't copy any existing material.

Piano Player Ability Rating: Beginner

To print piano sheet music save the direct PDF with lyrics


🎼 More Piano Sheet Music from Sam Smith.
As I learned, many of you are self-taught piano players and never had a piano class. I try to cover several popular mistakes in piano-playing techniques that we are prone to do.

About the Sam Smith — To Die For


Sam Smith certainly liked to challenge himself when writing!
To Die For is composed in a binary verse-chorus form that consist of two four-bar phrases. Both sections are repeated before a long coda. It's perfect for those with elementary skills.
To Die For score requires arduous effort. I will add an easier one if this page will be popular.

This is a very tender song.
It should be played very slowly for a tragic, melodramatic effect.

Sam Smith presents us with a wide range of dynamics (the sound volume levels). This song follows the traditional model for the pop form. Its rhythmic basis is sustained throughout, so the LH’s principal duty will be to provide a rock-steady footing.

Common Practical Tips for Pianists


Before touching the piano keys, warm up your fingers and wrists with slow and soft rotating motions and light stretching. Rotate your shoulders and arms.

To begin with, practise hands separately, slowly, and in small pieces of one-two bars.
Practise the harder passages first and do it frequently.

Count out loud to ensure accurate rhythm. By counting I mean the tA-ta-tA-ta, not the old ineffective one-and-two-and.
Accent strong beats and play the first bar of any phrase louder than the last bar.

Make sure to arch your fingers. This is important for the health of your wrists and palms.
Slacking your fingers will overwork them and will cause strain.
Keep relaxed, flexible wrists, hands and arms when playing To Die For.
A flexible wrist allows producing a warm sound.
Both hands should play smoothly (legato) if not indicated the opposite (staccato).

How to Memorize Sheet Music


Start memorizing To Die For from the very beginning. Use the sheet music as a hint and avoid looking at a paper sheet (or a monitor) as long as you can when rehearsing the music piece.

In the left hand there are only four chords that are repeated for the whole song. It takes nothing to remember only four chords instead of 100 bars of accompaniment.

And the last, be artistic, be creative. Print the pdf, take correction fluid and a black pen and add or delete whatever you want in this arrangement.

How to Play Sam Smith — To Die For Sheet Music


Piano Playing Method


Accuracy in articulation are essential for playing To Die For piano sheet music.
Your tone should be warm and soft.
It should impart the lilting feel of a lullaby. Figuratively speaking, you should communicate a sense of comfort, ease, or pleasantness. To sound quietly, keep your fingers close to the keys and do some firm practice from the knuckles.

The articulation in this piece is tricky because it alternates between legato and staccato.

Accent every note, varying the accents each time you play. Once played lightly and up to speed, the ornament should flow naturally.
It’s worth trying out this technique for the entire song.

Among the hardest facets of piano playing is controlling a lightness of attack, and when coupled with playing at a faster speed, a reliable warm-hearted leggiero touch must rank as among the most prized piano skills.

The patterns in verses can become repetitive if not coloured imaginatively and played with rhythmic stamina. This will create some drama in your performance.

To Die For is speedy. Always keep the hands relaxed, especially with repeated notes, piano keyboard is not lightweight and causes a muscle pain.

Don’t forget to bring dynamic colour to your performance by quickly moving from piano to forte; play every new part with a different volume level.

The Right Hand


The RH here plays a melody (topline) and the LH provides some harmony and rhythm (accompaniment). Start learning the score music with the Right Hand part.

Listen to the actual track To Die For as you begin to learn the arrangement.

Keep your wrist and hand loose and relaxed as you do this.

Notice how long phrasing is. Put the emphasis on the first note of each phrase with a deeper touch and a slight tenuto. Don’t attack the keys.

The Left Hand


After getting familiar with the RH, focus on the LH. Practise the LH alone here to ensure a rich and mellow bass.
This is one of those pieces where the bulk of the practising will be devoted to an accompaniment.

The LH is generally soft throughout.

As you begin to practise both hands together, start slowly before gradually increasing your tempo.
In the last phase of learning a piece the use of a metronome is vital as you will be working on rhythmic partnerships between both hands. Nearly all modern pop music contains a firm beat. Become aware of the underlying 'pulse' and accent where the 'stronger' beat falls but remember that more is less. Avoid over-using your left hand. Aim at simple and clear playing.
Focus on soloing with the right hand without relying on the accompaniment in the left hand. Make every single note that you play to mean something.
In playing any piano transcription of a song, the aim is to give the impression of a singer (the RH) that is being accompanied by a sensitive pianist (the LH). Imagine a duet between a band and a singer, so color the two hands differently. Coordinating the parts may take some time to organise convincingly.

Pedaling


I recommend a pedal change for every bar.

Free and easy piano sheet music with direct digital preview of music notes.
All credits go to songwriters. The arrangement in sheet music is transformative.

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