Questions about strumming in songs

So I’m trying to go back and play some of the these songs. In the previous module I was playing the chord 4 times a measure. I’m doing this here and following the strumming pattern. I guess I have a question when playing a measure with multiple chords. For example I’m playing Another saturday with Sam Cooke. The strumming pattern is D D U UD
Ok no problem but when I get to the measure with E,D,A on one measure i’m not sure how to play it? Down on E then DU on D and then UD on A?

1 Like

I’ve struggled with that often too (not with the specific song you mentioned but generally) so I’m interested in the answer as well.

However, my way around this for the time being is to listen to the song, try to listen when the change comes, perhaps also in relation to the melody/singing. Try to find a video on youtube from a live performance to see if I can spot something useful. And in the end, I just experiment on my own until it sounds about right.
Trying to sing along, even though not easy and my voice isn’t for singing, actually helps (me).

I find it a good exercise for the ears, albeit a frustrating one.

1 Like

It sounds to me like a lot of the covers of the song (such as Jimmy Buffet) use the rhythm push with strumming pattern DDUUDU.

Actually, I think this is one measure of E and D (2 beats each) and then a full measure of A. A simple solution to your strumming pattern would be Old Faithful (i.e. your D DU UD ) everywhere except for the one bar of E D, in which you could play e.g. D DU D DU. You play E for the first half and D for the 2nd half. This allows you to put a strong accent on beat 3 of this measure, which I’m hearing in the song. Try it and see if you like it. You could play almost any pattern, actually ,that has a down strum on beat 3.

OK, just for clarity, I’m no expert and was struggling with this same question. So I asked a couple professional musicians who were also instructors and they looked at me like I was crazy. Their answers were the same. Just do whatever you feel like and what sounds good. No rules. I was stuck because the music I downloaded would say play such and such a pattern “all the way through”. Nope.

I checked out that section of Another Saturday Night on the Songs App, which is usually accurate for this sort of thing.

This is what they are doing:

There’s clearly a push on the change to A. (The change happens on the “and of 4” of the measure, instead of the “1” of the next measure).

You may find that tricky if this is the first time you’ve encountered it…I certainly did!

1 Like