In previous rhythm guitar tutorials, we have looked at how to count and perform whole notes, half notes, quarter notes and eighth notes.
In this tutorial we begin our look at triplets.
Here is what triplets looks like in standard notation:
How to Count Triplets
The triplet divides the beat into 3 divisions.
Triplets can also be counted as:
And by the way the “+” is pronounced as “and”. So you would count 1 + ah, 2 + ah, 3 + ah, 4 + ah as: “1 and ah, 2 and ah, 3 and ah, 4 and ah”.
Now let’s look at some examples so you can get used counted and clapping triplets.
Be sure to count out loud as you tap your foot with your metronome while you play through the following rhythm exercises.
Rhythm Exercise 1
Start with a moderate tempo and then move to a faster tempo.
Remember that accuracy is always important, so pick your tempo based upon where you make minimal mistakes. You do want to challenge yourself, but there is a fine line between pushing yourself and unknowingly teaching yourself to repeat mistakes.
If you practice something over and over and are consistently making mistakes, you are actually teaching yourself to make those mistakes. If this is the case, it means you need to slow it down.
Now it’s time to mix triplets with quarter notes.
Rhythm Exercise 2
Rhythm Exercise 3
As you will recall, eighth notes are counted as:
In rhythm exercise 3 you switch between triplets and eighth notes.
Rhythm Exercise 4
In Rhythm Exercise 4 we combine eighth notes and triplets in the same measure.
Rhythm Exercise 5
In Rhythm Exercise 5 we also combine eighth notes and triplets in the same measure, but this time we switch the order around.
Isn’t it time to get your hands on a proven, fast and easy way to learn the basics of music theory for guitar? The Absolute Essentials of Music Theory for Guitar lays out what you need to know about guitar music theory so it’s crystal-clear.
Mastering the basics of guitar theory will open up a whole new world for you. You will learn guitar faster and feel and hear big improvements in your guitar playing.