Poll: Strumming or Fingerstyle (your primary style of playing)

What is your PRIMARY style of playing?

  • Strumming

    Votes: 13 27.7%
  • Fingerstyle

    Votes: 34 72.3%

  • Total voters
    47

GVlog

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Just a fun curiosity poll. Does your primary style involve strumming or fingerstyle?

The smart money would probably be on strumming.
 
Last edited:

merlin666

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I mix it all up and I always sing, so none of the options work for me.
 

robinboyd

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You didn't include an option that covers me. I'm 50/50...
 

Kenn2018

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I took up ukulele to accompany my singing. That has been strumming. But, I am learning fingerstyle, but it's a hard and difficult process for me. The fingers just aren't as nimble and the memory not as sharp.
 

ripock

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I am most decidedly a picker but I want to point out something. Most people tend to think that finger style is a higher ontological plane (and, of course I believe that too), but it isn't true. I can pick modes or pentatonic shapes from the first fret to the nineteenth, but ask me to sit in a senior center with 11 other ukulele players and strum "Stand By Me" and I don't think I could do it. That is just a different skill--one that I have never cultivated.
 

Graham Greenbag

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Just a fun curiosity poll. Does your primary style involve strumming or fingerstyle?

The smart money would probably be on strumming.

In recent times I’ve not been able to go to my Uke Club and meet up to strum and sing; of that reasonably typical group of players I estimate that at least 2/3 can only strum. A lot of players don’t have the skills to fingerpick and probably never will, which of course is OK if they’re happy that way (they seem to be very happy with strum and sing).

I suspect that players here, in this enthusiasts’ group, are much more skilled than the average Uke player and hence our interest in finger-style playing, but many will also be happy to strum and ‘sing’ with others.
 

Jan D

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As a life-long singer, I first learned to strum chords. Later, I began to explore fingerstyle ... and promptly fell down the rabbit hole. I still love to sing, but Covid-19 has put our community choral group, and all of the local sing and strum groups, on hiatus. So, it’s not surprising that most of my uke time is now focused on fingerstyle. Fortuitously, it’s also easier on my arthritic hands than strumming chords. And as a multi-instrumentalist with an abundance of printed music, I will *never* run out of things to play. :)
 

UkingViking

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I primarily combine the two.
In occasions I do a pure strumming or pure fingerstyle, but mostly combined.
It can be arpeggio picking, but with a strum or two build in every bar to emphasize chord changes or specific beats. Or strumming with som fingerstyle licks or instrumental breaks put in.
And I do usually sing when I play.
On some occasions I play melody while I sing, but only on a few pieces.
 

Knows Picker

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Whatever I do, I guess it could be called strumming.

Usually starts out mostly composed, but ends up in a frantic trashing at four times the original tempo.

That's what the banjo uke is for...
 

Jim Yates

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I try to do whatever suits the song, so I'm probably split somewhere between the two or maybe something else.
 

CPG

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What about chord melody playing, clawhammer, and anything else that combines harmony and melody either through a mix of strumming harmony and picking individual notes or playing melody lines within chords (e.g. chord melody) or really any combination thereof? I'm sure there are many people who focus on dedicated fingerstyles (certainly there are many pieces such as Jonh Kings arrangements that are almost exlusively fingerpicked) and of course there are many many people who use the ukulele primarly as rhythmic/harmonic backing to vocal melodies. All of that is wonderful, but personally I don't consider strumming and fingerpicking to be fundementally different styles of playing, but rather two sides of the same coin. The ukulele is an instrument that can play both harmony and melody. The relative ease at which one can play both on this instrument at the same time is part of what makes it such an amazing instrument.

I don't say any of this to be critical of the poll or the post; I just personally can't really relate to the idea of identifying as one over the other.
 

clear

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I'm surprised with the number of fingerstyle votes. I, personally, find the ukulele really limiting and unnecessarily challenging when it comes to fingerstyle because of its range (I seem to always run out of notes) and 3 strings (my hand moves much more often). Why 3 strings? Well, it's because my 4th string is a high-g.

I hate making things more difficult than necessary, so I generally play fingerstyle on a guitar since for all the scales I need, it mostly stays inside a nice 4-fret box, i.e. you don't need to move your hand. I think, for those that play fingerstyle, perhaps try a guitar. It really makes things much easier.
 

deadpool

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Hmm, not 100% either. Maybe 66.7% fingerpicking/chord melody and 33.3% strumming. At least for now.
 

captain-janeway

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I guess I'll do mostly fingerpicking when I'm not singing and maybe some variation of a travis pick while I'm singing something like a country song. I might add in strumming during a like a chorus or bridge.
I'm not good enough yet to do some fancy solos like some people yet but I'm working on it
 

VegasGeorge

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"Forced choice" would be finger style, but I usually sing and often use strumming for rhythmic interest. I'm not an accomplished strummer. That's something I always intend to practice, but never seem to get around to.