I am new to guitar and confused between strumming patterns. I know that 4/4 have 4 beats in it and 3/4 have 3 beats in it. I can't differentiate between them, e.g : 3/4 : D DUDU D DUDU 4/4 : D D UUDUD DU or DDUU DU DDUU DU or D UDUD UDUD DU how can I learn to correctly identify between them (if a strumming pattern is written in U's and D's form), whether it is 3/4 or 4/4 pattern?
You can work out the time signature by attempting the following:
- Listening to where the first beat of each bar is - usually, this is apparent by listening to the drumkit or by feeling where each bar starts. As long as you can figure out ONE ????? ONE ?????, where the question marks are the beats in between, that's the first step.
- Once you've worked this out, you can count how many beats are in between. Is it ONE two three ONE two three, or ONE two three four ONE two three four?
Try to ignore what the guitar is doing when you're working out the time signature. Non-boring guitar is all about rhythmic embellishments (something like
D DUDU instead of just
D D D in 3/4), which can be distracting. Working out music is easiest when you strip away all of the embellishments and complexity, and just focus on the bare-bones of the song. You can work out all of the intricacies later.
Use a very basic DDDD for 4/4 and DDD for 3/4. The first D will often be more emphasised. So, if you hear the 4th D louder, it's because it's 3/4!
Sort out about U later. Let's face it, after each and every D there's going to be an U in order to strum D again...And, remember, the Ds are the basic 1234 (or123) in each bar/measure.
Those U can be put in whenever and wherever you like, but beware of the U just before a chord change. So many self taught guitarists strum U with open strings as they can't change the chord quick enough, and it is so amateur.