Strumming / Picking Patterns

Here are a few picking and strumming patterns that you may find helpful.

Note: All patterns are using a C chord. If you are using a phone or tablet, you can play them on SoundCloud


Strumming Patterns

Use the nail of your first finger on the down strokes and then the soft part of your first finger for the upstrokes

Key: D - Downstroke, U - Upstroke, . - Rest


calypso1A basic calypso strumming pattern that suits medium and fast tempo songs (D.DU.UDU)

calypso2The calypso pattern with muted strikes on the 2nd and 4th beats of the bar

calypso3The calypso pattern with the first beat slowly strummed with the thumb


pop1A basic straight strumming pattern suited to slow tempo songs (D...D...D...D...)

pop2The same pattern with extra upstrokes (D...D..U.U.UD...)

pop3The same pattern as pop2 but with all the rests quietly strummed


shuffle1A shuffle strumming pattern suited to medium and fast tempo songs

shuffle2The same pattern with muted strikes


rock1A basic rock pattern suited to slow and medium tempo songs (D..D..D.)

split1A pseudo split stroke using rock1 as a base



Picking Patterns

Use your second finger for string #1, your first finger for string #2 and your thumb for string #3 and #4 (string #1 is the furthest away from you)

Key: #1 - 1st string (A), #2 - 2nd string (E), #1 - 3rd string (C), #4 - 4th string (G), . - Rest


pick1A simple pattern over 1 bar that only uses three strings (#3 #1 #2 .)

pick2A pattern building on pick1 over 1 bar that uses all four strings (#3 #1 #2 #4)

pick3An alternate pattern over 1 bar that uses all four strings (#3 #2 #4 #1)

pick4A pattern over 2 bars that uses all four strings (#4 #1 #2 #3 #1 #2 #4 #1)



Hope this is of some help. Feel free to contact me if you would like to see further explanations or more patterns



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