Newk Lesson #3, Nov 17, 2016

Material covered: C, C7, F, G7    Single and Double strums,  a touch of music theory: what makes a chord. (i will cover this again; i made an error on describing 7th chords. .oh well!)

Let’s review body placement relative to the uke; Hold the uke flat against your body, 45 degree angle, flattish wrist on the chording hand, curved fingers  (cut those nails if need be) with the tips not inadvertently touching a neighboring string); thumb centered about 1-2 inches down from top of fretboard (more or less behind 2nd fret), left elbow pointed away from body, at least enough to flatten the wrist. Each finger used to form a note in a chord should be just above (not touching), the fret wire below. Strumming hand: strum where the neck meets the body of the uke.  Use of index finger’s nail  to strum creates a crisp, louder sound, use of thumb pad creates a soft, harp-like sound.  Can use all fingers, just thumb, interchange as desired.

Review of the 8-Count Slap Method used to help attain  muscular memory for the G7 chord:
1. Strum G7 8 times, with an even motion, not too fast (go for precision, not speed)
2. Slap thigh 1 time, (use left chording hand);  keep up counting rhythm strumming G7 seven times.
3. Slap  2 times, keep up the counting rhythm and strum G7 six times.
4. Slap  3 times, strum 5 times
5. Slap 4 times, strum 4 times.  Continue pattern, ultimately slapping 7 times, strumming once.

Today we’ll review Buffalo Gal with a single strum, then Deep in the Heart of Texas with a double strum. Then, on to Washington, Washington with a double or single strum, whichever you prefer; either way,  we’ll concentrate on economy of movement, just lifting fingers enough to get the chord changed..the flow from F to G7 as you root the index finger while moving the other fingers. And, the slide from G7 to C with your ring finger.    We’ll  discuss amount of finger pressure to create the chords. (Here’s a video that talks about proper pressure, can skip the first minute of it if you’d like:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7JxhMO6NGUQ.

Using the slap method, we’ll learn the easy C7 chord, one of a few “one-finger” chords. (Others are Am, A7,  CM7,  and C ).  Then we’ll use it in Red River Valley.