Strumming 8

Animated Strumming 8 tab by ActionTab on guitar. So easy you'll be playing in minutes.

This exercise is from the Core Skills section on Strumming.

Whenever you strum a chord you don't have to play it the same way all the time. A common technique guitarists use is called partial strumming. This is where you strum different parts of a chord. This can be used to get a wide range of different rhythms and musical effects. We discuss it in the video introduction, so take another look for pointers and tips.

A lot of chords share the same notes and quite often this means you don't have to move every finger each time you change chords.

In this example we are going to repeat 3 Chords we've used at different times in previous exercises. E major, A minor and C major. We already know that E major and A minor are very similar chord 'shapes' (the fingers are in the same positions, but across by a string). But also, the good thing about the next chord change (A minor to C major), is that you only need to move one finger on the fretboard!

The 3rd finger (green dot) moves from the 2nd fret on the G string to the 3rd fret of the A string. As usual, both A minor and C major chords will not include the Low E string when strumming. Use thumb muting on the Low E if you wish.

Watch the ActionTab and just try the finger changes (don't worry about your strumming hand yet). You'll probably find that these chord changes are naturally easy, but remember to keep the notes held firm to get clean notes, and don't let your fingers accidentally mute adjacent strings!

Note also that this time we strum through these 3 chords, but not all the strings are strummed. Only parts of the chords are strummed. You will need to really listen to the ActionTab and watch the strumming dots carefully to see which strings are strummed for each chord and which strings are omitted. The "Light Strings" option will help a lot here.

Don't worry about being too precise for now - as long as you get your strums close enough to what you can hear, you're getting the right idea (and skills) for genuine guitar playing. Learning to vary your strums like this will mean you can play the same 3 chords and yet get very different rhythms and feels from them.

Start mixing together all the things you have learned to make some of your own songs. Use different chords and strumming variations to experiment. By now you should be more than ready to tackle a few simple songs!

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