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Chessabelle
08-10-2009, 08:41 AM
I started learning the uke about a week ago and have been playing really basic songs and strumming with a pick.
I'm now trying to follow Aldrine's Uke lesson on Island in the sun but i'm finding it really hard to strum upwards without my finger getting caught. Does anyone have this problem or know why I have this problem? Ifyou do, how do i fix it?

sukie
08-10-2009, 09:23 AM
I started learning the uke about a week ago and have been playing really basic songs and strumming with a pick.
I'm now trying to follow Aldrine's Uke lesson on Island in the sun but i'm finding it really hard to strum upwards without my finger getting caught. Does anyone have this problem or know why I have this problem? Ifyou do, how do i fix it?

I'm not sure what your problem is, but I know how to fix it. Go slowly and when it feels right, speed up a little bit. THen just keep going. My mantra is practice, practice, practice. Boring advice but it usually works.:D

Isn't playing ukulele fun? Welcome to UU.

Chessabelle
08-10-2009, 09:38 AM
Thanks, yes it is :) I'm wondering if it's because I have no real nails to speak of. Would it be easier if i grew them?

buddhuu
08-10-2009, 09:44 AM
Hi Chessabelle. Welcome to UU :)

Nails may help. While you're waiting for them to grow, how about trying to develop a nice loose hand for strumming. Tense rigid fingers often get caught up, so you want a nice relaxed, almost floppy wrist, hand and fingers.

Uke isn't the loudest instrument there is, but don't let that lead you to strum hard to get more volume. Just a nice, easy brush across the strings is all you need until you get that fluid strumming thing down. Let your hand just dangle there on the end of your arm (where else?) and gently strum it up and down.

I'm sure you'll get it just fine in no time at all. :shaka:

the.ronin
08-10-2009, 09:54 AM
Total noobian here so take what I say with a humungous grain of salt ... when I strum upwards I usualle use the inside part of my index finger. At first, I would strum with my thumb. Not sure there is a “right” or “wrong” way to do it but they definitely create two different sounds since one uses the softer skin side of the finger and the other uses the harder nail of the thumb.

One thing I am experimenting with is strumming down with my thumb and up with my index finger. The reason I am doing this is the song I’m learning requires fingerpicking after a chord which I do with my thumb. It just feels right that way.

I tried strumming with a regular guitar pick and that turned out rather disasterously haha.

dnewton2
08-10-2009, 10:08 AM
You might check out Uke Minutes 2. (http://ukuleleunderground.com/2008/01/21/uke-minute-2-basic-strum/) For a quick lesson on a basic strum. Also One of the First Aldrine videos I ever saw was on the iamhawaii.com site. If you are able to access this the first lesson goes into strumming but I think it is basically the same as the Uke min.

zaiu
08-10-2009, 10:10 AM
Uke isn't the loudest instrument there is, but don't let that lead you to strum hard to get more volume. Just a nice, easy brush across the strings is all you need until you get that fluid strumming thing down. Let your hand just dangle there on the end of your arm (where else?) and gently strum it up and down.

I'm sure you'll get it just fine in no time at all. :shaka:

good advice. I think that's what I've been doing , strumming way too hard. Sound much nicer when I just brush across the strings.

sukie
08-10-2009, 10:21 AM
I have just recently chopped off my nails. I prefer the sound of the flesh on the strings. That's the really cool thing about playing the ukulele -- whatever works for you is great. Try with longer nails but don't quit playing while growing them out.

You'll get the greatest advice here. Keep asking questions.

UkEdman90
08-10-2009, 12:04 PM
strum with your finger and relax that bad boy :D :shaka:

ukulelearp
08-10-2009, 01:18 PM
Thanks, yes it is :) I'm wondering if it's because I have no real nails to speak of. Would it be easier if i grew them?

I don't grow my nails, I think it's just as easy.

Bluke
08-10-2009, 01:23 PM
I agree with all that Sukie says here. But I still have my nails..........

Chessabelle
08-11-2009, 04:12 AM
Total noobian here so take what I say with a humungous grain of salt ... when I strum upwards I usualle use the inside part of my index finger. At first, I would strum with my thumb. Not sure there is a “right” or “wrong” way to do it but they definitely create two different sounds since one uses the softer skin side of the finger and the other uses the harder nail of the thumb.

One thing I am experimenting with is strumming down with my thumb and up with my index finger. The reason I am doing this is the song I’m learning requires fingerpicking after a chord which I do with my thumb. It just feels right that way.

I tried strumming with a regular guitar pick and that turned out rather disasterously haha.

I tried a guitar plectrum too. It sounds awful doesn't it? felt or leather plectrums sound good but i can't do the chunking thing when i use one.