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Thread: Down Strum, which fingers?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    Default Down Strum, which fingers?

    May be a dumb question, but from viewing many videos, it seems like everyone has their own style...

    Which fingers hit the strings on your down strum?

    I am opting to NOT use my thumb going down (most of the time), to get the added volume from hitting the strings with the my fingernails from my first and second fingers.. but since I am new, I am wondering if there are any pros and cons to which fingers you use on your down strum. I figured, may as well try not to develop bad habits in this early stage of learning!

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by stirman View Post
    May be a dumb question, but from viewing many videos, it seems like everyone has their own style...

    Which fingers hit the strings on your down strum?

    I am opting to NOT use my thumb going down (most of the time), to get the added volume from hitting the strings with the my fingernails from my first and second fingers.. but since I am new, I am wondering if there are any pros and cons to which fingers you use on your down strum. I figured, may as well try not to develop bad habits in this early stage of learning!

    Thanks!
    Typically I just use the pointer finger for the down strums. When I want to 'attack' a chord though I tend to use the pointer, middle and ring fingers.

    There is no *right* way to do it, but you can get the most speed typically using your pointer finger.

    Hope that helps some!
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  3. #3
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    I mostly use my thumb.

  4. #4
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    Not that I know anything, but I've been practicing with both my index finger alone and a thumb-down-index-up strum to produce different sounds. The thumb seems to give a soft, fleshy sound, with a bit of bounce, whereas the index alone gives a consistent rougher sound.
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  5. #5
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    Jul 2008
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    Norwalk, CT USA
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    I get a much sweeter sound when I stum with my finger tip then I do when I strum with my nail. I may be using the word sweeter incorectly here BTW, I am not a music expert by any means but I do recognize differences in sound. Based on what I hear, I try to strum with a finger nail when that is the sound I am looking for and I try to strum with skin when that is the sound I am looking for.

    Bottom line, there is never any right or wrong way. What you think sounds best is right for you.

  6. #6
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    Bottom line, there is never any right or wrong way. What you think sounds best is right for you.[/QUOTE]

    That's one thing I love about ukuleles

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    Melbourne, Australia
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    Just My 2cents

    i strum down with both my pointer AND thumb

    for some reason, when im ripping the uke on songs like crosscurrent, my point finger starts to get like a "paper cut" and really get annoying after when it hurts.


    Should stop mucking around with that song and play properly LOL

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    Default Thanks!

    Great feedback... maybe I shuold stop worrying about the "right" way to do things, and just do what feels best to develop my own style!

    Thanks!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by stirman View Post
    Great feedback... maybe I shuold stop worrying about the "right" way to do things, and just do what feels best to develop my own style!

    Thanks!
    Couldn't have said it any better. There is no hard and fast rule about strumming, if you're comfortable with it, go for it.

    Nana ka maka; ho`olohe ka pepeiao;
    pa`a ka waha.

    Observe with the eyes; listen with the ears; shut the mouth.
    Thus one learns.


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