Ukulele & Languages

Different countries,
Different cultures
one common language... the ukulele.

7 ukulele tutorials for strumming and fingerpicking

24 2010

Today’s post will feature a selection of ukulele tutorials which should help you improve both your strumming and your fingerstyle techniques.

Before we move on to the tutorials, here is a link to a nice chord chart complete with fingering information created by Japanese Kunihisa Ogawa.

Tutorials for fingerpicking

Aaron has uploaded a very good fingerstyle ukulele tutorial. It is progressive, well explained and should help you get up to speed with a fingerpicking pattern. Aaron is giving a few useful tips for fingerpicking throughout the video.

Music Teacher Michael Lynch teaches you Travis picking pattern for the ukulele. As a compliment to what is explained in the video, Michael has written a document (download here) detailing finger notation for the right hand as well as covering details of the Travis fingerpicking pattern.

Various strumming techniques

Piers explains how to play what he calls the 4th best ukulele strum in the world. Check his YouTube channel for other strums.

YouTube user tafkam explains how you can spice up your ukulele strumming with some nifty tricks that will make your playing sound more jazzy or bluesy.

For some flamenco style ukulele playing, Sonny explains how to play the fan strum.

Other useful tutorials

CaptainofUke explains about moveable major chord forms (video below) and the moveable minor chord forms here.

Here is another video by Aaron who teaches you how to adapt banjo clawhammer style to your ukulele playing.

For more ukulele tutorials, check my first post on the subject.


  1. Ron Hale on the 25th of January 2010 @ 03:48

    You know, Armelle, we really are spoiled by the sheer abundance and high quality of instructional
    material today. And sometimes that can be a two-edged sword. It may sound counter-intuitive and maybe heretical, but some people may get confused with so much choice. It may be difficult to stick with something long enough to get the full benefits of it because something new comes along to tempt you with its siren song of ukulele greatness and stardom.

    I know I jumped around from one thing to another quite a bit when I started out – one DVD to another, one video to another, one book to another, one style to another. Part of that is simply finding your feet and your place on the instrument, but eventually you do need to settle down. My preference is to go into one or two areas in some depth, rather than to flit about trying everything under the sun and not really getting anywhere in any one of them.

  2. Armelle Europe on the 25th of January 2010 @ 18:22

    Ron : there are indeed many good tutorials on the internet. But there are also many videos tagged as ukulele tutorials that are far from interesting.
    I wrote this post so that people wouldn’t have to go through 50 different videos before they found an interesting one.
    This said, it is always a good idea to focus on a technique before jumping to the next or if a technique seems too difficult, to leave it aside for later.

  3. Lea on the 1st of July 2010 @ 10:57

    This is great! I was searching for beginner ukelele tutorials on youtube and got all sorts of things except what I wanted. These tuts are great and I’ve already learnt in minutes what took me ages to simply FIND on youtube. Thanks!

  4. Armelle Europe on the 1st of July 2010 @ 20:09

    Lea : I’m glad you found this useful. I had the same problem finding valid YouTube videos when I started playing the uke which is what inspired me to write this post.
    Good luck with your ukulele learning process !

  5. pamela on the 17th of July 2010 @ 16:57

    I’m so glad to have found this site. The instruction here is excellent, particularly Aaron’s. I’ve looked at many tutorials on the web and youtube and what many demonstrators don’t seem to understand is that it takes more than good ukulele skills to be a teacher of ukulele. Good communication and good filming technique is paramount.
    Aaron’s lessons are great, he doesn’t try to do too much in one session, goes slowly through each step and we see clearly where he places his fingers on the frets and strings. I’m so happy to have learned great new technqiues from him, and hope to see more. Now just gotta practise what he’s taught.
    I know there’s other great stuff on this site too, and when i’m ready for them I’ll be checking them out. I love the diversity on this site, I’ll keep coming back for a long time.

  6. Armelle Europe on the 17th of July 2010 @ 21:04

    Pamela : Welcome here. I am glad you got something out of my selection of tutorials. One can waste a considerable amount of time listening to pointless tutorials on YouTube.
    I agree that Aaron’s tutorials are very effective and that he does teach at a suitable pace.
    Thanks a lot for the positive feedback.

  7. Bart on the 3rd of May 2011 @ 04:01

    Fantastic site! I hope you continue to add to it. I’ve been tinkering around with the Uke for almost a year and love it. My son plays guitar and has started to pick up my Uke over the past few weeks. I’ve struggled trying to find good sites with a variety of instruction that meets my needs and desires. I’ll surely direct my son to your site too. THIS IS THE RIGHT PLACE…WOOO HOOO!!!

  8. Armelle Europe on the 3rd of May 2011 @ 13:50

    Bart: Thanks for your feedback! I’m very glad you enjoy the site. I will be adding more to it soon.

  9. Craig on the 2nd of June 2011 @ 15:50

    I really enjoy Aaron’s videos, he’s very good on technique and has a nice teaching style. I just wish he would tune his ukulele :(

  10. Armelle Europe on the 2nd of June 2011 @ 18:32

    Craig: glad you enjoyed Aaron’s videos. I find them very helpful too.

  11. Magnus on the 3rd of July 2011 @ 03:05

    Great tips! If you have more good tutorials hidden away somewhere, keep em coming! ;)

  12. Armelle Europe on the 3rd of July 2011 @ 21:48

    Magnus: thanks, glad you found them useful. Have you checked my other ukulele tutorial posts?

  13. Nick Thiedeman on the 16th of November 2011 @ 13:47

    Excellent website.
    Being a Uke newbie your website is goldmine of inspiration and education.
    I’ll definitely be a regular visitor

    Thanks for all of your hardwork!

  14. Armelle Europe on the 16th of November 2011 @ 14:48

    Nick: thank you so much for taking the time to leave your feedback. Comments like yours really encourage me to carry on.

  15. karen on the 14th of January 2012 @ 06:58

    Is there a second tutorial on finger picking by Aaron? Great site, keep up the good work

  16. Armelle Europe on the 14th of January 2012 @ 16:12

    Karen: Thanks for the feedback. There are other fingerstyle uke tutorials on Aaron’s YouTube channel, some for Low G and Low A.
    You can find them here :

  17. Eduardo on the 3rd of June 2014 @ 15:58

    Nice post! This is one of the things I love about the Ukulele, you can strum to your hearts content in the way that satisfies you the most. Thanks for sharing these videos.

  18. Armelle Europe on the 11th of June 2014 @ 10:57

    @Eduardo : thanks, glad you enjoyed the post. Happy strumming !

  19. Serendipity and Learning to play a new musical instrument | The Retirement Game on the 18th of August 2014 @ 02:41

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  20. Phil on the 10th of November 2014 @ 18:48

    Very helpful stuff here…Thanks

  21. Armelle Europe on the 10th of November 2014 @ 19:36

    @Phil : Thanks for your feedback, glad you found the post helpful!

  22. Jim Demello on the 23rd of August 2016 @ 10:50

    That strum by Piers is awesome or awefully good!
    This is about one of the most inspiring single collection of videos on strumming I have seen. It just keeps me coming back here to work on em.

  23. Armelle Europe on the 5th of September 2016 @ 18:25

    @Jim: glad you found tutorials that you like! Keep on strumming!

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