Strumming Patterns & Changing Chords
In previous posts we looked at how we can simplify the process of changing chords. In this lesson we’ll carry on looking at guitar strumming for beginners and I’ll introduce you to more chords and rhythms.
Whenever you play a sequence of chords regardless of the tempo or rhythm you’re playing, you should always aim to do it smoothly and in time. One technique that can help you with this is ‘anchoring’ the fingers, so that the chord change can be executed faster. In the last lesson we looked at how we can change between the D and the A chord, now let’s try changing chords between C and Am.
Anchoring the fingers to the fretboard allows you to focus on the other aspects of your playing so you can multitask better. In the following examples we will look at two very simple chords and a couple of strum patterns.
Strumming Pattern 1
Here we follow the familiar strumming pattern of DOWN – DOWN – DOWN/UP – DOWN for both bars.
When changing from the C chord to the A minor chord you can very easily anchor the first and second finger and simply move the third finger down to create the A minor.
When you become comfortable with this example , why don’t you try a more complicated pattern like the one below.
Strumming Pattern 2
This strumming pattern would normally be a little bit tricky to play since you need to strum the first beat of the second bar straight after the ‘4 and’ of the previous bar. To do this on time and smoothly can be a challenge when playing at a fast tempo. For the above example however it shouldn’t be too difficult, since you really only have to change one finger to create the new shape.
Practice these strumming patterns at a slow tempo first and when you’re confident with them you can then speed up the tempo, as well as trying them with different chords like for example the E and A major chord.