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Basic Fingerpicking -- Pattern 3

This fingerpicking pattern combines quarter notes and eighth notes to give your picking a little more interesting sound. Notice also that instead of being confined to one measure it is spread out over two measures. This cuts down on the redundancy of the same thing being played over and over again also.

The most important thing to learn with this pattern is the constant movement of the thumb. In the two previous patterns that you learned, the thumb played bass notes on the count of 1 and 3. In this pattern the thumb plays 4 bass notes in every measure, directly on the counts of 1, 2, 3, and 4. The pattern on the higher strings can be varied hundreds of different ways, but the constant bass with the thumb is a standard that is played by almost every folk and blues fingerpicker.

Remember that the bass notes will change according to the chords you are playing. The example below uses a G chord so the bass notes are on the 6th string and 4th string respectively but, for example, the D chord bass notes would be the 4th string and 5th string, etc.

The midi file repeats this pattern slowly eight times so you can try to get comfortable with playing along.