Guitar lesson for

Enough to Leave

by Billy Strings  •  Lesson #337

Video lesson

Get the sheet music(3 pages)

  • A properly licensed, print-friendly arrangement is available for individual purchase at
  • This sheet music was designed & hand-crafted by me (David Potsiadlo) with care, providing you with everything needed to both learn and play this song.
  • On the fence? Here's a video guide I made showing the purchase & print process.
Buy at

Patreon supporters: click here to get the 50% off discount code on this purchase

Editor’s notes

Hey friends! Here’s a brand new lesson for the Billy Strings song “Enough to Leave,” which several of you wrote in suggesting I check out. While it’s easy to associate Billy Strings with virtuoso bluegrass guitar licks played at a breakneck speed – I appreciate this song for how relatively basic & straightforward it is. A common strumming pattern, standard chords – and heartfelt lyrics expressing sadness at the sudden loss of two good friends. As per the licks n’ fills that Billy’s music is known for – I do teach some of those here, but they’re a bit simplified – just because I can’t play exactly like him, and wanted to make this song accessible for all. Beyond that, I’ll show you the usual: the chords, the progressions, talk about strumming tips, show tabs for the intro & a few other fills, and then end things with a full play-through.

I hope you enjoy! If you want more Billy Strings, I also did a lesson for classic song Summertime that he covered with Marcus King – where I similarly show relatively simplified versions of the licks and fills he plays.

Video timestamps:

Lyrics with chords

See my sheet music for all the lyrics, with chords included.

Chord shapes

Here’s the chord shapes you’ll need to play this song. These are ordered by when they appear in the song (e.g., G to Bm to Em is how things begin). For the D, also get comfortable with removing your finger from the thinnest string, to play a Dsus2 (xx0230) which Billy uses a lot.

E ––3–––2–––0–––0–––2–––0–––
B ––3–––3–––0–––1–––3–––1–––
G ––0–––4–––0–––0–––2–––2–––
D ––0–––4–––2–––2–––0–––2–––
A ––2–––2–––2–––3–––––––0–––
E ––3–––––––0–––––––––––––––
    G   Bm  Em  C   D   Am

Chord progressions

This song is in the key of G and is played at a tempo of 147 beats per minute. Here’s the chord progressions used in the verse and chorus sections.

Verse (play this twice):

G               Bm              Em              Em
1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +
C               G               D               D
1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +

Chorus (play this twice):

D               Bm              D               G
1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +
Am              D               Am              D
1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +

Strumming pattern

To get started, I recommend getting comfortable doing a single down-strum on the 1 and 3 counts. Use this to get familiar with the chord shapes, the transitions, and the overall progressions.

1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +    
D       D          "down... down..."

From there, you can move to the “full” strumming pattern – which is adding an “down-up” on the final two eighth notes of each measure.

1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +
D       D   D U    "down... down, down up"

Simplifying chord transitions with “chordless” strums

A fun trick to use while strumming this song, which actually makes it easier to play – is to remove your hands from each chord on or just after the “4” count of each measure. You’ll want to keep strumming with your right hand – and the final “down up” of each measure will be played with no fingers on the fretboard. This is so your left-hand has an extra eighth note (or two) to get into the next chord’s position. See my video lesson for reference.

See PDF for diagram.

Runs and fills

Here’s some approximated versions of the main riffs, runs, and fills you hear during this song. Note, I’m simplifying all these partially, because I cannot play with the speed or agility of Billy. If you want the full what-Billy-plays tabs check out Lessons With Marcel. Otherwise, I’m here to serve us mortals.

Intro riff

The intro is 8 measures of E-minor, beginning with a raked strum (from thinnest to thickest string). Start your counting when you play the thickest (final) note of the raked chord. After that, there’s a bit of light & free strumming – with a small riff Billy plays which I show below. Return to an E-minor, and then slowly build up during your final 8 strums before starting the verse.

See PDF for full tab.

E-minor riff (during the verse)

In the first and third line of each verse section, there’s a chance to do a quick riff on the second of the E-minor measures you play. There are two versions of this, the first of which is super simple.

See PDF for full tab.

D-riff (walking up to the G)

In the verses, there’s a common walk-up Billy does. I play it as follows which is only removes one note from what Billy plays – but, the note I remove buys you back some time to switch back to the G.

See PDF for full tab.

Get my lessons in your inbox!

Every couple weeks I send out an email newsletter with links to whatever new lessons I've made. Sign up here and stay in the loop!

Enjoy my lessons? Buy me a beer!

If this and my other lessons have proven helpful to you, please consider making a one-time donation to my tip jar. Contributions of any amount help make this project possible (including the many, many hours I put into it).

You can also support me on Patreon. For only $5/month you'll get access to a print-friendly PDF of my notes for each new lesson (view free sample).


Subscribe to my YouTube channel

Be sure to never miss a lesson by subscribing on YouTube. I put out 2-3 new videos every week. These include full song lessons, as well as covers, practice tips, behind-the-scenes updates. Thanks!

Recent video lessons:

📝 My "song" PDFs are now individually purcasheable! I've arranged a licensing agreement with Musicnotes, a service that lets you buy my sheet music arrangements. Patreon supporters get 50% off each purchase. Learn more here »

June 22, 2022

How to Make Drum Tracks Using GarageBand's Beat Sequencer

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #442

A beginner's guide to using GarageBand's Beat Sequencer tool to create custom drum beats! Even if you're a total novice when it comes to drumming (like me), I'll walk you through the basic steps to create rich-sounding drum tracks to play over while practicing or performing.

May 27, 2022

Creating a Fingerstyle Arrangement of Tom Petty's "American Girl"

Practice Log  •  Lesson #438

A few years after learning American Girl the way Tom Petty plays it, I returned to it — this time determined to work out a low-key, easy-going fingerstyle arrangement. Here's how it went!

Patreon PDF

May 22, 2022

Using Triads & Double-Stops to Punch Up a Melody

Practice Log  •  Lesson #436

As part of my Learning Lead Guitar series, I share a realization I recently had showing different ways to fill out melody lines using triads, double-stops, and harmonized sixths.

Patreon PDF

May 19, 2022

Q&A: Learning a Song for a Wedding? Here's My Advice.

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #435

I answer an audience question about how to go about learning a song (with a tricky riff) for a peformance at a family wedding.

Patreon PDF

May 12, 2022

List of My Beginner-Friendly Song Lessons


After many requests from y'all, I finally created this list of all my beginner-friendly song lessons! These are grouped by key, allowing you to take the chord shapes you already know and find other songs using those same shapes.

Patreon PDF

May 4, 2022

Easier Ways to Play B-minor (No Barring Required)

Tips & Techniques  •  Lesson #431

Two easier ways to play B-minor, using open chord voicings — super helpful to have these in your toolkit. Includes different practice riffs to accompany each chord voicing.

Patreon PDF

Browse my all lessons

By lesson type

By song decade

By musical genre

By guitar technique

By musical key

By popular artist

← back to lesson list