Insight 6 Swing Your 1/8th’s


In today’s Insight video we discuss a little right hand technique and how you can swing where you place your upbeats to create a slightly different feel to your strum patterns.  In our Insight 2 video we discussed how we create rhythm on the ukulele by playing a set pattern of strums against a constant beat or pulse that’s happening in the music we play.  I like to think about building strum patterns as a subtractive process where we start with a foundation of alternating down and up strums and take certain parts away to create a pattern.  Remember that our hand should be continuing to move in a constant down and up motion to keep us in tempo and we just decide when we play the strings.  So what happens when we alter that foundation slightly by moving where we place our upbeats?  We get what we call “swung” or “shuffled” 1/8ths.

STRAIGHT
1  +  2  +  3  +  4  +

SWING
1    +2    +3    +4    +

So the downbeats occur in the same place but the upbeats get shifted to be closer to the next down beat which can create that “swing” feel to our rhythm.  Now we can remove certain parts from both these foundations to create patterns and they will technically be the same but have a different feel because of where we place the upbeats.  Give it a try, take some strum patterns that you already know and try swinging those 1/8th’s to give you little bit different sound and feel.  Thanks for watching!
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