Easy Fingerpicking Patterns

Today I’ve got another one of those fairly easy fingerpicking patterns for you and your guitar. I used a very simple and mellow chord progression in this lesson, and there are literally tons of different directions you could go with it.

I tried to give you a couple of different ideas on how you can change up the progression, but I really encourage you to get creative with this one and go nuts on it.

Start with the E Minor Diatonic scale (or G Major – same difference) as that gives you the root notes you can use from the key of G. Basically any of the notes in those scales on the lowest three strings will qualify.

With these fingerpicking patterns, keep your drone notes the same all the time – the open G (3rd string) and the D on the 2nd string. These two notes are the I and V of the key of G, a perfect fifth, and therefore go well with every other note in that scale, which is the reason why its easy to be creative with this one.

In addition to mixing up the root notes, try mixing up your picking pattern once you get the hang of the one I showed you in here. Try alternating different strings, or use the two strings at a time method I showed in the video.

Above all, have fun with it!

The Fingerpicking Patterns Video:

Watch Easy Fingerpicking Patterns on Youtube

Leave a Reply 11 comments

Wayne - February 17, 2010 Reply

Johnathan, sent a comment earlier but computer crashed so I don,t know if you got it. I have a question about the chord progression in the key of F. ( F G-A-Bb-C-D-E-F) I thought A# was the semi tone after A. Why is Bb used. Also could you give a video on barr chords explaing how to play them. Thought your I-IV-V video was pretty good. Maybe you can get a flip board with graphing tape on one of them so you don,t erase your lines when you have to erase the chords. Thanks for all the tips man.

Jonathan Boettcher - February 17, 2010 Reply

Hi Wayne,

One of the rules of which letter names go in which keys is that each letter name must be used, and only once, in each key. So you’re right, A# is a semitone up from A, but so is Bb. We choose which one to use by looking at the other letters in the scale. In this case, A is used already, so we can’t use A#. Also, if we’d used A#, then we would be skipping the B letter name entirely.

Here’s a link to my bar chord lesson – it could stand a bit more work, but hopefully it will help: https://playguitar.com/24/learn-48-chords-in-9-minutes/

Yeah – a flip whiteboard is an excellent idea. I’m keeping my eyes open for one. The permanent lines would also be helpful.


Kettle - December 5, 2010 Reply

Thanks Jonanthan for the video clips, they make a difference in looking at new ways of playing, and keeping it simple.

aitie - February 2, 2011 Reply

I dont find this easy at all. Guess Im not much of a picker.

geordie - March 25, 2011 Reply

just watched the video on fingerpicking and find it very informative and so interesting – inbetween a few errs and a few more ermms you certainly make it so clear how to play thanks mate for all the good work you are doing

travykatt@yayoo.com - April 17, 2012 Reply

this is good lessions ur a great person.almost more than words . ur very helpful .guess i mello .thanks anyhow Brother:)

Dougbailey - May 11, 2012 Reply

Thanks for the fingering tip  it is nice to be able to watch to see how it is done. Thanks. Doug

mandolin picks - August 25, 2012 Reply

Thank you for such great lessons.  I know that this will absolutely help me with my finger-picking technique. Thank you so much for sharing this video.

Randy Martinez - December 20, 2013 Reply


gomaonaigh - March 28, 2014 Reply

good stuff jonny

Douglas - October 18, 2014 Reply

very nice You know how to give very good ideas on how to play such a wonderful instrument.

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