How to play Parang by Dominic Thompson


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Dominic Thompson is a professional cuatro player from Trinidad, and he has put together this lesson where he shows how to play the rhythm of Parang.

The Parang rhythm derives originally from Venezuela and Colombia, the “Parranda” in Spanish that was brought to Trinidad by the cuckoo planters that migrated into Trinidad.

Rhythm of Parang

The Parang rhythm has two accents, one accent going down first and then a second accent or chunk going up later.

The chunk or accent sound is muted and comes in a 6/8 pattern, so you play it going down at the first strum and then up at the fourth strum. Listen to Dominic’s explanation of how to play this wonderful rhythm from Trinidad:

Rhythm Rhythm Rhythm Rhythm Rhythm Rhythm

There are a few variations of the Parang, where you do some strumming or “repiques” on top of the basic rhythm at 6/8. There’s one variation where you put a “Gaita” accent with two chunks going down before the one going up.

You can follow Dominic at his Youtube account here:

Also, check out our full course on How to Play Parang with the Cuatro.