Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes

Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
8
Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
Essential Guitar Skills
Lesson 008 IGS IS
Lesson EIGHT
Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
Introducing Strumming
Lesson Objectives
In the previous lesson we learnt how to play the Chords of G, E minor, A
•Introduce the technique
minor and D7.
of strumming.
•Develop control of In this lesson we will learn the new chords of D, A and E. Furthermore
rhythmic patterns by though, we will learn how to strum the guitar creating more interesting
rhythms whilst developing the ability to change between the many new
chords we are learning.
introducing Up strokes.
•Develop the ability to
change chords more
To get used to the motion of strumming it is useful to play the following
exercise using alternate down and up strokes. (Down strokes go from
the lowest pitched string to the highest pitched string and Up strokes go
from the highest pitched string to the lowest.)
lesson008.igsis.techstore.01
Keep the strumming hand relaxed and gently play up and down strokes on
the rhythm below. In the video David is playing the chord of G.
U
D
U
D
U
D
U
D
U
D
U
D
U
D
U
Play the above exercise at 100 beats per minute, no slower. If the rhythm is
played any slower it’s difficult to build up any momentum.
On the down strokes allow the weight of the arm to fall through the guitar.
You will hear how the up strokes sound slightly different to the down strokes
as the treble strings are being hit before the bass strings. On the down
strums we are hitting the bass strings first.
•Build our library of
chords by introducing
the chords of D, A and E.
Exercise 1 Strumming using Up and Down Strokes
D
fluently within rhythms.
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Lesson EIGHT
Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
Applying Strumming to the Chord of E minor
Once you are comfortable with the up and down strokes, place a chord of E
minor on the guitar neck.
We are now going to practise a common rock rhythm on the chord of E
minor. The strums which land on the beat are down strums and the beats
which are off the beat are up strums.
In this example this creates the pattern: Down, Down, Down-Up, Down-Up.
Play the exercise at 100 beats per minute, no slower. If the rhythm is played
any slower it’s difficult to build up any momentum.
On the down strokes allow the weight of the arm to fall through the guitar.
You will hear how the up strokes sound slightly different to the down strokes
as the treble strings are being hit before the bass strings. On the down
strums we are hitting the bass strings first.
Exercise 2: Lesson008.igsis.01
D
D
D
U
D
U
D
D
D
U
D
U
Applying Strumming to Changing Chords
We are now going to move on to applying this same strum pattern over a
chord change. Probably the easiest chord change on the guitar is G to Em
so we will start with this.
Exercise 3: Lesson008.igsis.02
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
Lesson EIGHT
Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
Changing the chords (one chord every two
bars)
As with the exercises in Lesson Seven, it is essential that the strumming
continues in time and un-interrupted, regardless of how well the chords are
being changed. The chord changes will catch up with the strumming.
Now that there is less time to change chords because the strum pattern is
busier than in Lesson Seven make sure that when changing from G to Em
that the G chord comes off the guitar on the final up stroke prior to the Em.
This allows enough time for the new chord shape to be formed and placed
on the guitar on the first beat of the next bar. Leaving the previous chord on
for too long, right up to the bar line will not leave enough time to execute
the chord change smoothly. This rule applies no matter what chords are
involved.
With certain changes it may be possible to leave the first chord on longer
but this technique will ensure that all chord changes are smooth. Once this
chord change can be executed correctly move on to the following exercises
where the rhythm is played over the four chords learnt so far.
Exercise 4: Lesson008.igsis.03
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
5
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
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Lesson EIGHT
Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
Changing chords (one chord every bar)
It may be necessary to practice each of the individual changes with this
rhythm as was practiced in the changes from G to Em. For example, Em
to Am, Am to D7 etc.
Once the above exercise can be executed correctly proceed to the
following exercise where the chords change every bar.
Exercise 5: Lesson008.igsis.04
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
D
D
D U D U
Introducing the Chords of D, A and E
The next three chords that we will learn are; D, A and E. The chord boxes
for these new chords are shown below, together with their multimedia files.
Exercise 6: Chord of D
lesson008.igsis.techstore.02
Chord of D
Technique Tips
Notice which bass note is
played in each chord…
The third lowest string is the
D string (4th string) and so we
strum the chord of D from the
open D string.
Lesson EIGHT
Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
Exercise 7: Chord of A
lesson008.igsis.techstore.03
The second lowest string on
the guitar is the A string (5th
string) and so we strum the
Chord of A
chord of A from the open A string.
Exercise 8: Chord of E
lesson008.igsis.techstore.04
The lowest string on the guitar
is the E string (6th string ) and
so we strum the chord of E
Chord of E
To learn these 3 chords thoroughly we need to again practice strumming the
chord slowly making sure that each note plays clearly without buzzes.
Remember that an open string is so named as it does not have a finger on
it and is therefore left open to ‘ring’.
from the open E string.
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Lesson EIGHT
Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
As with the four chords learnt in Lesson Seven, ensure that each finger in
each chord is not touching another string. This is the most common reason
for strings not sounding clearly. Once you feel comfortable with the form
of these chords lets practise them. Play along with the media files to help
fluency, timekeeping and accuracy of sound.
Exercise 9: Lesson008.igsis.05
Exercise 10: Lesson008.igsis.06
Exercise 11: Lesson008.igsis.07
Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
Developing Chord Changes (every bar)
In the following exercises we will change chords at the beginning of
each bar rather than every two bars, focusing on our ability to develop
fluency in changing chords.
For the moment we are keeping the rhythm simple and once we are
secure in the changes we will look at integrating more rhythm by using
the skills we developed in strumming earlier on this lesson.
Exercise 12: Lesson008.igsis.08
Exercise 13: Lesson008.igsis.09
Exercise 14: Lesson008.igsis.10
Lesson EIGHT
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Lesson EIGHT
Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
Developing our rhythmic playing using our
new chords
Now that we have become more secure with the new chords, let’s try
changing the chords over the strum pattern we learnt earlier in this lesson.
As usual play along with the media files to help fluency and control.
Exercise 15: Lesson008.igsis.11
5
Developing greater fluency by combining all
chord changes
By the end of this lesson you will not only be able to play 2 positions of each
power chord but also play 7 new chords, of both the Major and Minor variety.
It is, however, very important that you can change from each one of these
chords to any other of the 7 chords. There are numerous combinations and I
have listed a few here which you should try with the strum pattern.
This is far from an exhaustive list of combinations but provides you with
the idea of what needs to be developed to enable you to become a fluent
guitarist.
Exercise 16: Lesson008.igsis.12
Introducing Strumming and Developing Chord Changes
Exercise 17: Lesson008.igsis.13
Lesson EIGHT
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