The “right” fingering for a given chord

Many uke method books, chord diagram collections, etc. will have an indication of which finger to use on which string. While this is a good way to learn your basic chords it is not a rule carved in granite.

If I had to make “rules” for what is the right fingering for a given chord I’d say that the right fingering was the one that was:

  • most easily gotten to from the previous chord and…
  • most easily gotten from to the next chord.

The less you have to fling your fingers about—especially in those tricky, multi-chord, jazzy sounding moments—the better.

The last word on it should be: Use the fingering that you’re comfortable with. You’ll be able to grab it faster, more smoothly and with less conscious thought about it. This leaves you able to concentrate on selling the song to your audience, a much more important thing than the mechanics of which finger goes where.

(Note: This was originally post on February 12, 2007 as part of my “bi-weekly uke tips”)

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