Play the Guitar

Album: Strange Clouds iTunes Deluxe Edition (2011)
Charted: 98

Songfacts®:

  • B.o.B's second single from his sophomore album, Strange Clouds, finds him spitting rhymes about his favorite musical instrument over a Salaam Remi reggae-infused beat. The "Nothin' on You" MC described the track to Mack of Sound Savvy during a listening session at Tree Sound Studios as one that expresses his "love for music and love for the guitar." The song was released on December 27, 2011.
  • The song features B.O.B's fellow Atlanta native André 3000, who concludes his rap with some sage advice. "I encourage any child to pick up some instrument, because if you're mad at your dad or your mum you can grab it and strum," he spits. B.O.B said of the Outkast member's contribution to this song to Sound-Savvy: "It shows people that we are two different artists and we actually do sound different and have our own styles. Not to say that I wasn't influenced by Outkast and Andre, but I feel like it's a 'pass-the-torch' type of moment. He really gave me a lot of love on the feature and I'm looking forward to hearing what people have to say about it."
  • The hook features a sample of T.I.'s verse from Drake's Thank Me Later track, "Fancy." The song also borrows from Bob Marley's 1973 tune, "I Shot The Sheriff."
  • The song came together about the same time as Drake's "Fancy," in which T.I. says "B.o.B play the guitar." B.o.B. recalled to Pop Crush that he was in the studio with producer Salaam Remi listening to an old Bo Diddley record. "We were like, 'let's take this and put it in the club,' because it has that classic guitar feel,'" he said, "and he was like 'yeah man you play the guitar on it, we can add a guitar lick in there.' Then I was like, 'we should put the "feel good, play the guitar / feel good" and so we actually had to get [it]. We had Tip's engineer send us over his verse [from the Drake song] and we chopped it up, and we put it in there. And the actual thing is, [Tip] went back and rerecorded it, with his voice. It really was a … I think it was meant to happen. And then Andre got on it, and that was great. Plus, the guitar solo [Andre] did was great. So it really came out the way we planned it, and structured it."

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