Ukulele Picking Patterns in 3/4 Time

In the comments of the fingerpicking patterns post post Gretchen requested picking patterns for 3/4. Which was an excellent idea.

If you’re not familiar with it, there’s a guide to fingerpicking notation here. And there’s a beginner’s guide to fingerpicking here.

What is 3/4 Time?

Most pop songs are in 4/4 time. So you’d count along with them “1, 2, 3, 4” Joey Ramone style. But there are many songs in 3/4 time i.e. you count “1, 2, 3” along with the song.

Some well known songs in 3/4 time: Happy Birthday, Hallelujah, The Times they are a-Changing.

Thumb and Two Finger Patterns

Three patterns using the thumb and two finger method of picking.

PIMP Pattern

A very straight forward pattern with the thumb on the C-string.


PIMIPI Pattern

Similar to the last pattern but now you’re going up and down the strings (and up a bit again).


Unison Pattern

Here you’re playing the E and A-strings at the same time. There’s a bass note then the rest of chord. It’s something you hear a lot in 3/4 time.


One Finger Per String Method

Now for three patterns using the One Finger Per String Picking Method.

PIMA Pattern

Going straight up the strings. But the first two notes are eighth notes and the second two quarter notes.


Unison Pattern

Similar to the third pattern except this time playing the g-string alone. This example is a bit Beirut-y.


IMP Pattern

Another example with strings being played in unison. But this time the g and E-strings being played at the same time.


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