Essentials Lesson: Strumming (TG216)

A few simple chords and beginner rhythm techniques go a long way.

Essentials Lesson Strumming TG216

Master the essential basics with TG's simple guide to strumming and pick up Total Guitar issue 216 (on sale 10 June to 7 July) for the accompanying tab and explanation.

Example One: Chords

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Example Two: Downstrokes

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Example Three: Downstrokes and upstrokes

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Example Four: Rhythms

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Example Five: Targeting strings

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Example Six: Backing track

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Tutor: Chris Bird
Videographer: Martin Holmes

In addition to at least three full tabs of classic and contemporary songs from your favourite artists, every issue of TG features three full-song Video Lessons and a Riff Of The Month for the more visually orientated learners among you.

The Video Lessons are hosted online through, but you'll need to buy the mag to get the most out of them. Each issue includes the story behind the songs, clearly explained amp and effects settings and backing tracks for all of our Video Lessons and tabs. See below for more information.

In the mag:

Read it!
Every song has a story. Where possible we speak to the musicians and studio technicians to explore the inspiration, as well as the writing and recording processes behind your favourite songs.

Get the sound!
As well as a backing track, every song comes with easy-to-read illustrated settings for amps and effects. This enables you to not only play classic riffs, solos and tunes, but to replicate the tone, too.

Backing tracks!
Every song you learn in the magazine comes with a backing track on your CD, so you can play the guitar parts along with a full band. The CD is just that, a CD of music, so you can play it anywhere and easily transfer the songs to your PC or MP3 player.