The Irish Bouzouki is the adaption of original Greek Bouzouki. It came into Irish music in the mid-1960s through Johnny Moynihan. Irish Bouzouki is now considered one of the standard musical instruments used in Irish music with mandolin and guitar. After some duration, the Bouzouki also incorporated with some European musical traditions. It’s most popular and plays an important role as a musical instrument in some countries such as Galicia, Asturias, Spain and infect in some Scandinavian countries. Its establishment affiliate with other influences such as Greek and Balkan rhythms in Irish dance music styles. Bouzouki has not only attained popularity but also becomes fashionable in some mix of musical instruments, creating the creativity of western their native setting. The Irish bouzouki is almost closer to mandolin. The melodious sound is created through strings which are assembling in pairs. The bouzouki is used for chordal and rhythmic music.
Although students who like to learn to play Irish bouzouki, this guide helps as well as showing the various essential elements. At the same time, you will learn the important aspects that will enhance not only your skills but also your style. So let’s start the step by step guide to learn to play Irish bouzouki.
1. Picking Your Irish Bouzouki
Before going to start learning to pick a musical instrument is the most essential part of the entire process. If you are going to buy bouzouki then its all depend on your current situations such as your budget, age etc. Basically,it depends on either you are a beginner or shift fromother musical instruments. In that case, if you are already a music player then you definitely have some sensitivity knowledge about how the musical instruments sound. And you must choose from a trusted instruments store. You may listen about some online musical instruments store such as muzikkon you can also choose your favorite bouzouki form this store. Furthermore, the bouzouki is considered just like a halfway between a mandolin and a guitar. And if you visit those instrumental stores you can also get guidelines from the experts as well as you can pick bouzouki according to your hand size and within your budget.
2. Adjust The Bouzouki To Irish Tune
Any musical instrument which consists of string can be tuned to a variety of tunings. The bouzouki is also a string instrument and you can adjust its tuning to an Irish tune. The Greek bouzouki is tuned C, F, A and D respectively which is its standard tuning. Similarly, the standard tuning for Irish bouzouki is G, D, A,and D. The thing that distinguishes between Greek and Irish bouzouki is just their distinct is just their tunings. Mostly the Irish players prefer the Irish tunings because mostly Irish songs are played in the strings of G or D. The bouzouki is made up of 8 strings which are joining together such as a pair. G and D strings are fourth and third respectively. So it’s best to tune the bouzouki to Irish tuning using your tuner before start playing.
3. Learn the Basic Chords
The four-course bouzouki mostly plays the first four strings of the guitar. The three-course bouzouki normally uses unique chord structure. The standard tuning for Irish bouzouki is G, D, A and D. G major is fourth, third, second and 1st string open. Normally D is played fourth (2nd fret), third (2nd fret), second (3rd fret) and first string open. A is played by fourth string (2nd fret), third (2ndfret), second string (3rd fret), and 1st string (2nd fret). These are some basic chords and with the help of these chords, you are able to play the major string G. So as a beginner this will help you to learn and play the few basic chords.
4. Practice the Basic Chords
By using your thumb and index fingers of your hand hold the plectrum. Practice the strumming chords by playing different patterns of rhythms such as 4/4 time and 6/8 times. Play the notes by using up and down picking pattern. Similarly, repeat the exercise by beating down and upstroke. Make sure the speed of metronome must be slow.
5. Find a Bouzouki Teacher or Other Helping Materials
For a better learning find an expert music teacher. It will help you to improve your playing skills by practicing regularly. You can also record your teacher playing and playing back the recording when needed, this will definitely excellent for learning new skills. Other helping material such as tutorials internet such as YouTube video tutorials might help you to learn more. Watch the international tutorials and study the techniques of playing bouzouki well. Furthermore, make sure that you are playing the right notes.
6. Learn About Fretboard and Practicing
Learn the basic scales of the bouzouki. Mostly the Irish music plays on the G and D keys and these scales are good to start for beginners. So learn the D and G major scales. The major scales of D areD, E, F#, G, A, B, C#,andD. similarly the major scales of G are G, A, B, C, D, E, F# and G. practicing by playing these scales by using up and down strokes. By practicing continuously on single notes you are able to learn more about bouzouki. Learn more about the intervals and basic notes that are used in place of chords. Mostly the intervals are played with D or G string.