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Thumpetty, Thump, Thump: Strumming

 

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Frosty The Snowman

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In this lesson we'll get into the boom-chuck strumming pattern. You play a bass note, followed by a down strum, repeat twice and we have four beats: bass, strum, bass, strum.

Each chord has a specific bass (or boom) that we will play with our thumb. For example:

G, Em: 6th string bass
C, Am, A7: 5th string bass
D: 4th string bass

So if I'm playing a G chord for one bar I'd play: 6th string bass (boom), down-strum (chuck), 6th string bass (boom), down-strum (chuck).

For the down strum or "chuck", you are looking to just drop your fingers out of your palm and brush your top 3 or 4 high strings. No need to hit the bass with your chuck, in fact, you want the boom to ring under your chuck which gives is a nice combination of bass information on beats 1 and 3, alternating with a nicely brushed down strum with the rest of the harmonic information on beats 2 and 4.

The trick to a successful boom-chuck is to keep your right hand over the strings! When you are able to weave the boom and the chuck together, you are able to generate rhythmic information, harmonic information, and specific bass information. Your right hand is a drummer, bass and rhythm guitar player!
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