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View Full Version : Strum Patterns... Don't use em...



JT_Ukes
11-13-2009, 04:45 PM
I keep hearing people ask about strum patterns, and I understand the concept. But I don't really use em.

I Strum what sounds right for the song I'm playing. No concious desision about up down chunk etc...

I couldn't tell anyone the strum pattern of any song I play, even one I JUST finished playing, if they held a rabid (sorry Sally!) muskrat to my head in a threaening manner.

I just play...


Anyone else do this?

JT

ritzer012
11-13-2009, 04:57 PM
i find that i tend to start a new song with a set strum pattern. as i get used to the chord changes/lyrics/melody/etc. then my strumming becomes less mandated and more just playing the song like you described.

but i always start out with a strum pattern in mind....helps keep me focussed i guess...or something like that...

hoosierhiver
11-13-2009, 05:04 PM
I do the same thing JT. Occasionally I'll realize I have a certain pattern I play for a particular song, but I never plan it.

HelloDisaster
11-13-2009, 05:09 PM
yep! i find that if i try to follow a set strum pattern that it messes me up a whole lot trying to concentrate on the strum, as opposed to the chords,especially if i am working on learning a new song...so i just kind of mess around until i figure it out

haole
11-13-2009, 05:15 PM
i find that i tend to start a new song with a set strum pattern. as i get used to the chord changes/lyrics/melody/etc. then my strumming becomes less mandated and more just playing the song like you described.

but i always start out with a strum pattern in mind....helps keep me focussed i guess...or something like that...

I work the same way. Definitely helps to know a few basic ones and what kind of feel each one gives to the song. After you play them for a while, they become second nature and you don't have to think "down, up chunk up down, up, up chunk up down" the whole time you're playing. It all comes down to whatever's comfortable for you and still conveys the feel you're going for. It's not nearly as set in stone as some players think.

ritzer012
11-13-2009, 05:19 PM
It's not nearly as set in stone as some players think.

hear, hear!

Ahnko Honu
11-13-2009, 05:29 PM
I strum by ear, but now have cauliflower ears. :(

schubs
11-13-2009, 05:55 PM
i sometimes play the strum differently. It depends on the song.

clayton56
11-13-2009, 08:39 PM
I try to play it differently each time around. I remember when I was in a band, the bandleader thought that was fantastic, everyone else he knew would always play the same pattern.

It helps to change the emphasis, lead up to the next phrase, etc. It helps to support the melody.

cashew
11-13-2009, 08:42 PM
JT, you and me both :)

A big thing with me is that you just CANNOT emulate the sound of a guitar with a uke..You can kinda sorta resemble it, but you can't emulate it.

Best bet, play around, and play what sounds good to you :)

Chrisuzwhite
11-13-2009, 08:59 PM
I almost always have a set strum pattern for every song I play, but I couldn't tell you any of them off the top of my head.

I have an original song that has a very specific pattern of strumming with accents and whatnot, but when I tried to write down said accents on musical notation paper, I couldn't do it correctly. And yet I never screw it up while playing!!

nohandles
11-14-2009, 12:58 AM
I have to9 agree with JT. I strum what ever feels natural and sound good for the tune I'm strumming.

molokinirum
11-14-2009, 02:01 AM
I have to9 agree with JT. I strum what ever feels natural and sound good for the tune I'm strumming.

The same with me!!:agree: I strum what feels right for the song!!! If I follow a set pattern, I spend more time trying to follow the particular pattern than enjoying playing the uke and singing the words...not that I can sing!:o

ukecantdothat
11-14-2009, 06:12 AM
Strum patterns are fun me to try, but I don't have the knack really. Then one day something pops out and I think "Where did that come from?"

I saw a bumper sticker once: Joe The Strummer

I was guessing he either played or was a Clash fan...

freedive135
11-14-2009, 06:46 AM
At one time I posted a long list of different strums when I first started.

The only time I use a strum now is when I am trying to play a song that Aldrine is teaching or something that needs a certin strum like JJ's "Breakdown" to sound like the song.

Mostly when I play it's strumming the words/notes like the Uke is singing!!!

Ukulele JJ
11-14-2009, 10:44 AM
But I don't really use em.

Really? I use Em all the time. Sometimes Em7.

JJ

JT_Ukes
11-14-2009, 10:51 AM
Really? I use Em all the time. Sometimes Em7.

JJ

Damn... left my snaredrum and cymbal at home...


But I see what you did there and I commend you sir!


:)

lisaxy424
11-14-2009, 10:53 AM
Really? I use Em all the time. Sometimes Em7.

JJ

*shaking head :rolleyes: and laughing at same time :biglaugh:*

Really the only strum pattern I spent wakeless hours learning was my first " D D U U D" - after that, I just kind of blossomed into different patterns. I like to keep it fresh, the same pattern can be boring (although, I notice I LOVE to strum up - probably more than I should).

I have to admit though, once I learned how to "chunk", everything changed.. :)

JT_Ukes
11-14-2009, 10:55 AM
*shaking head :rolleyes: and laughing at same time :biglaugh:*

Really the only strum pattern I spent wakeless hours learning was my first " D D U U D" - after that, I just kind of blossomed into different patterns. I like to keep it fresh, the same pattern can be boring (although, I notice I LOVE to strum up - probably more than I should).

I have to admit though, once I learned how to "chunk", everything changed.. :)

I am a habitual chunker... The Uke is a precussion instrument as far as I'm concerned!

pulelehua
11-14-2009, 11:18 AM
I'm new to the ukulele, but in terms of guitar strumming, I discovered once upon a time that if I didn't think about it, I only ever used one of about 5 patterns. So, I think intuitive playing is great, but if you spend some time learning strum patterns that don't come instinctively to you, then you have more stuff in your bag of tricks.

Just IMHO...

:)