In lesson two, we learned all about the basics
of strumming the guitar. We added another new strum to our repetoire
in lesson three. In lesson four, we studied
yet another common strumming pattern. If
you still aren't comfortable with the concept and execution of basic
guitar strumming, it is advised that you return to those lessons and
If you didn't have any problems with prior strumming patterns, then
this one won't give much difficulty either. This is another common strum,
which is just a slight variation of several strums covered earlier.
Let's take a moment to listen to what this strumming pattern sounds
like at a slow tempo (MP3 format).
Try and internalize the rhythm of this strum before you even attempt
to play it on guitar. Say "down up down up up down" along with the audio
clip. Once you feel comfortable that you know the rhythm properly, pick
up your guitar, hold down a G major chord, and try strumming along.
If you can't seem to get it right, spend more time practicing the rhythm
away from your guitar. I can't stress this enough - the key to learning
strumming patterns is to be able to "hear" the pattern in your head
before you try and play it. Once you've gotten the hang of it, you'll
want to try playing the same pattern at a faster tempo (MP3 format).
- If you are playing an acoustic guitar, make sure to strum directly
over the sound hole
- On electric guitar, strum over the body (different locations will
give you different sounds), not over the neck
- Make sure all strings are ringing clearly
- Make sure the volume of your downstrums and upstrums are equal
- Be careful not to strum too hard, as this often causes strings to
rattle, and produces an undesirable sound
- Be careful not to strum too softly, as this will produce a "wimpy"
sound. Your pick should be striking the strings with a relatively
firm, even stroke
- Think of your elbow as being the top of a pendulum; your arm should
swing up and down from it in a steady motion, never pausing at any
- Having said that, the bulk of the picking motion should come from
a rotation of the wrist, rather than from the forearm. Be sure not
to keep your wrist stiff when playing.
Let's use these new chords and strumming patterns by learning some
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