Making C, F and G Sound Beautiful

Often I’ll be noodling around on the ukulele, strumming chords I know and I find it very easy to stay in the comfort zone and play something that really doesn’t require much effort on my part.

SO I set myself a little challenge to come up with something using C, F and G that sounded rather nice but was also relatively simple for beginners to get to grips with.

Here’s what I came up with…

In the video I walk you through the arrangement so you can learn it for yourself but I thought it was also worth talking about the choices I made and why I made them…

Chord Substitutes

Rather than playing the standard open chords I opted to substitute the C and the F to add a little more interest. Substituting chords is a great way to get your creativity flowing and stopping you falling back to your defaults.

Let’s start with the C chord. Rather than playing an open C, I play the C chord here way further up the neck which is my preferred C chord generally. Here’s the chord box for this version:

What I like about this C chord is the combination of the low C from the open string coupled with the E and the additional C being played much higher up the neck. It adds a little bit more flavour.

For the F chord, I didn’t just choose a different inversion, I actually went with an F6 chord. A sixth chord is a variation on a major chord which adds a sixth interval into the mix and gives a bit more of a jazzy feel to a chord.

The good news with the F6 is that it can be played very simply by just barring all the strings at the 5th fret.

For the G chord I just went with the standard G chord that you all know and love.

The Fingerpicking

I added a relatively simple fingerpicking pattern that is almost exclusively done on just the G, E and A strings. This means you can pretty much just use your thumb, index and middle finger to pick the entire song.

Your thumb picks up the G string, index gets the E string and middle gets the A string.

Again to make things interesting I switch between picking individual strings and two strings together. This adds a little further variety.

Pull Offs

I added some additional notes to the chords which also gave me the opportunity to introduce some pull offs. These smooth out some of the note changes and make it flow a little better.

As I mention in the video, these pull offs aren’t critical and if you’re just getting to grips with this then don’t worry about them initially. I wrote a post If you’d like some further help with hammer ons and pull offs.

And that is pretty much it for this one.

I hope you enjoy learning it.

The video should be plenty good enough to help you learn it but if you would like the supporting tab you can join the Ukulele Go patreon which I run with Jon Lewis. We create and publish exclusive lessons covering a wide range of techniques.

It costs just $5/month and you can cancel at any point.

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