Course: Learn to Play Parang with the cuatro

Picture of TuCuatro


The First Parang genre we will learn is the one that is similar to the Aguinaldo. The Aguinaldo rhythm is a 6/8 strum where the last strum is empty or silence. This rhythm is used mostly for Christmas carols and to give serenades outside people’s houses. People rejoice with this rhythm and all join in with the festivities whenever it is played.

The measure of an Aguinaldo is composed of 6 strums where 5 of these are played with the cuatro and the last one is muted.  The Aguinaldo would seem like the following when demonstrated in an arrow diagram:

Rhythm of Aguinaldo

As you can see, the aguinaldo is done by playing 5 strums where our right hand will do:

  1. Frenado down
  2. Strum up
  3. Strum down
  4. Frenado up
  5. Strum down
  6. Silence

Don’t worry if you are not able to do a frenado up, you could still do a strum up instead and the rhythm would maintain its form.

We’re going to use the following chords on this video:

D =
G =
A7 =
D7 =

And repeat them in a Progression that goes like this :

D G A7 D D7 | G % D % A7 % D

You can also try a more sophisticated progression by using the following variation:

D G A7 D D7 | G Gm D B7 Em A7 D

In the second part of this video, we show the rhythm at half speed so you can easily count and detect each movement of the right hand. There is a time limit on this lesson!

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