'Technique Toolbox' contains a collection of mini-courses, with each focusing on teaching you one technique for ukulele! Each course will be placed in one of two categories: Traditional Techniques or Stylistic Techniques.
1) Traditional Techniques - These are the fundamental techniques that create the backbone of ukulele playing. In this category, we'll cover simple techniques such as: hammer-ons and pull-offs; to more advanced techniques, such as: triplet picking.
2) Stylistic Techniques - As the name implies, these are specialty techniques which add pizzazz to a performance! For example, we'll look at multiple ways to produce harmonics (a bell-like tone) on the fretboard.
Each course will be laid out in a format consisting of 3 parts. The first part is an introductory lesson, which teaches you the mechanics behind executing the technique. Next, you'll learn multiple exercises that help to deeply embed the new techniques into your playing repertoire. Lastly, the third part can be thought of as a mini-etude. This is where you’ll put the technique to use by using it in a chord melody!
Upon completing each course, you'll walk away with a newly learned skill that not only increases the dexterity of your hands, but also your musicianship!
In this course, you’ll learn a staple technique of banjo playing and bluegrass music: The Clawhammer Technique. This is a technique that is completely unique to itself. So take all of those strumming techniques you’ve learned in the past, and throw them out the window! Because, the mechanics behind performing the right hand motion for clawhammer technique is entirely different from anything you’ve done before.
So that presents the question: How are we going to learn this technique… Well, the answer is quite simple, we’re going to break it down into three easy to follow steps that relate to the three elements of music: Melody, Rhythm, Harmony. And when you put all three steps together, you’ll create the right hand motion for performing clawhammer AND in turn, create a truly unique way to perform chord melodies!
In this course, you’ll learn three ways to perform harmonics on ukulele! We’ll start off with an explanation of what harmonics are, as well as, the difference between natural and artificial harmonics.
Then, we’ll jump into learning the mechanics behind executing each technique. After that, you’ll dive into a few exercises to help deeply embed these new techniques into your playing repertoire. And finally, you’ll put it all together to perform a really unique take on, “Amazing Grace”. Which as you guessed, is performed entirely with harmonics!
Triplet Strum Magic: Beyond the Triplet Strum
The triplet strum is one of the most popular techniques in ukulele playing. Typically, this strumming technique is applied to triplet rhythms. And that’s where the technique begins and ends… until now! In this course, you’ll learn how to repurpose this right hand motion to create a highly rhythmic, yet effortlessly fluid way for playing chord melody.
We’ll split this course into three parts. In module 1, you’ll learn the triplet strum technique in its most commonly used application. This will set the foundation for the next two modules, which will transform the triplet technique into a complete, self-contained right hand playing style.