PDA

View Full Version : Strumming Question



lumahh
05-15-2013, 12:31 PM
Hello!
I recently purchased the Lanikai LU-21.
I've noticed that occasionally, when I strum, my finger will get "caught" on the first string (G). This leads me to pulling the string farther down that I would like.
Is there a solution to this other than practice? Could I possibly be strumming "too hard"?
Thank you!

Uncle Rod Higuchi
05-15-2013, 12:51 PM
you can try to cup (slightly) the fingers of your strumming hand and 'brush' them across the strings lightly.

eventually, you'll become comfortable with the pressure and speed that will become 'your' strumming motion.

at the beginning, when everything is new, just make the adjustments that seem to make sense to you. If you feel you may be strumming too hard, let off a little - even though you might see others strumming harder than you are.

a lot of the skill that makes up ukulele playing is worked out over time with a lot of practice. :)

keep uke'in',

armchair_spaceman
05-15-2013, 02:08 PM
I'm new too...FWIW I when I start to boink on the G it's often from catching a nail. The nails on my index and middle get a bit rough on the right side and a light tidy up with the nail file seems to solve the problem.

(Thanks for your Boot Camp Uncle Rod, great stuff for us newbies).

lumahh
05-15-2013, 02:12 PM
I'm new too...FWIW I when I start to boink on the G it's often from catching a nail. The nails on my index and middle get a bit rough on the right side and a light tidy up with the nail file seems to solve the problem.

(Thanks for your Boot Camp Uncle Rod, great stuff for us newbies).
Nah, it wasn't that. I think I'm still a little clutzy with it, to be honest.
but thank you though!

lumahh
05-15-2013, 02:13 PM
you can try to cup (slightly) the fingers of your strumming hand and 'brush' them across the strings lightly.

eventually, you'll become comfortable with the pressure and speed that will become 'your' strumming motion.

at the beginning, when everything is new, just make the adjustments that seem to make sense to you. If you feel you may be strumming too hard, let off a little - even though you might see others strumming harder than you are.

a lot of the skill that makes up ukulele playing is worked out over time with a lot of practice. :)

keep uke'in',

I should try that. My pointer and thumb are together, kind of like the "OK" sign, but I only strum with the pointer.
I could try the cup thing, thank you!

OldePhart
05-15-2013, 02:41 PM
1) keep your fingers flexible
2) angle slightly in the direction of the strum (i.e. so you are "leading" with the knuckle and "dragging" the tip)

Kyle23
05-15-2013, 05:53 PM
Where are you strumming and does your uke's fret board go all the way to the sound hole? I find it that if I try to strum over the sound hole that my fingers do get caught a little. But when I strum where the neck meets the body my finger hits the fret board first and it's perfect.

Tootler
05-15-2013, 07:52 PM
Are you 'digging in' too much when you strum? A light stroke that gently brushes the strings is all that's needed.

Uncle Rod Higuchi
05-16-2013, 06:48 AM
Thanks Kyle23,

I think the sound hole, like in golf, looks like a 'target' so that strumming 'above' the sound hole (where the neck meets the body) seems counter-productive to many, esp beginners (?)

I find that some have difficulty 'holding' their ukes, esp standing, because they are trying to strum over the hole instead to simply strumming where their hand naturally extends - generally where the neck meets the body.

So easy to overlook and not to take into consideration when discussing 'strumming'! Thanks for your observation and input!

keep uke'in' everybody,

cantsing
05-16-2013, 08:18 AM
Lumahh, it sounds like you might be strumming down with your nail and up with the pad of your pointer finger. When I first started, I found it easier to strum with the sides of my pointer finger as shown by Aldrine in this video (http://ukuleleunderground.com/lessons/how-to-strum-your-ukulele/). As others have said, keep your touch light and your hand relaxed.

lumahh
05-16-2013, 08:39 AM
Where are you strumming and does your uke's fret board go all the way to the sound hole? I find it that if I try to strum over the sound hole that my fingers do get caught a little. But when I strum where the neck meets the body my finger hits the fret board first and it's perfect.

The fret board is about 1.5 inches away from the sound hole.
I do think that it happens more when I strum over the sound hole accidentally.
Thank you!

Kyle23
05-16-2013, 12:44 PM
The fret board is about 1.5 inches away from the sound hole.
I do think that it happens more when I strum over the sound hole accidentally.
Thank you!

No problem. I thought that might be it!

mikelz777
05-17-2013, 11:28 AM
I sometimes have the same issue on the opposite side where the edge of my nail will occasionally catch on the A string when I do up strokes. The cause, in my case, was that I was curling my strumming finger too far in towards the palm of my strumming hand so the nail surface was at about a 45 angle facing the strings. It doesn't seem to happen when the nail of my strumming finger is perpendicular to the strings or when I'm strumming with the fleshy part of my strumming finger and the nail is facing outward.

camperman
05-20-2013, 04:13 AM
I had the same problem and received various advice.
Here's my findings.
You didn't mention what size uke you have but my strumming was exactly like you described and I felt it was worse with my soprano uke than my larger concert. I just felt clumsy. I got various good advice from and it seemed it the problem of my poor technique was highlighted by the lower tension of the soprano strings. One piece of advice I tried was to tune up to D tuning aDF#B which increased the tension but changed the key. However I was much happier with my strumming.
When I tried a tenor uke with it's higher tension strings I found I had no problem at all.
My strumming has improved but I still have to be much more gentle and light when I play my soprano.

Hope this helps
Ed

Kestrel
05-21-2013, 02:33 PM
wow, what great advice, thanks everybody..