Jason Mraz’s massive hit is without doubt one of the most covered songs on ukulele over the past few years which is pretty interesting when you consider that Mraz actually wrote the song on an electric guitar. Here’s how to play I’m Yours on ukulele…
I’m Yours Chords
Just 4 chords will see you through the easy version of this song (there are a few more in the middle section which I’ve not included in this post) and they are C, Am, F and G. The good news is that’s a pretty easy set of chords and shouldn’t trouble you too much if you’ve been playing a while.
The actual song is in the key of B but it’s way easier to play this song in the key of C so I’ve transposed the chords. If you are wanting to play along with the recording (or even with Jason if you know him) then you’ll either need to tune down half a step or brave it in the key of B.
This is a great strumming pattern and it fits so well with the ukulele. It’s upbeat, fun and really enjoyable to play.
The strumming pattern at it’s heart is very simple. It’s just DUDUDU played pretty much throughout but there strums are damped and don’t ring out.
To begin with I’d recommend laying your fretting fingers across the frets and just getting the feel right. You’re going to need to get a bit of a swing feel to your strumming to get the relaxed feel of the song.
Which sounds like this…
Notice the emphasis that I’m putting on beats 2 and 4 by strumming with a bit more strength and purpose than the other strums.
Messing With Muting
I like to mute the 2nd and 4th strums (the backbeat) and let the rest ring out but you can get a little creative here. This makes use of some muted/chunk strums and it’s a great song to really get your chunking nailed down (you’re going to be doing it a lot throughout).
Pretty much everyone that covers this song strums it in a different way and that’s fine – as long as you’re getting the feel of the song then it doesn’t matter whether you’re putting an up strum in a different place. If it sounds good, go with it.
There seems to be a few versions of this one out there but they’re all very much based around the same structure, which rather handily is largely just a repeat of the chords C G Am F repeated throughout. You can grab my PDF song sheet below…
Strum Like A Pro
If you really want to progress your strumming at a rapid rate then I’d highly recommend taking a look at Al Wood’s downloadable ebook How To Play Ukulele Strums. For just $12 you get an in-depth guide showing you how to play 49 different strums with supporting videos and MP3 files. There’s also a really useful section that focuses on counting strums the easy way (something I wish I had when I was learning to play).