The Joropo Llanero is the most popular Rhythm on the Venezuelan Cuatro. Typically played with the Harp, Maracas and the Cuatro, the Joropo Llanero is a phenomenal genre which is played at a high pace and with passion! Notice the speed which with this genre is being played, it is at about 100 BPM which is for this reason that the strumming technique must be mastered before trying to play the Joropo Llanero. If you are just starting off with the Cuatro and want to dive right into the Joropo Llanero, the recommendation is to first command the frenado strums (both ascending and descending) along with then practicing the rhythm with some basic chords. Typically the progression of I – V – IV is made use of. The example provided above is a Joropo Llanero demonstration in D Major which uses the following progression of chords:
There are some variations similar to that of a Periquera which will be explored in more detail later on in this course. What is important to be aware of is the tempo of the rhythm and to always maintain the 1 count which can be challenging especially with bearing in mind the frenados and the additional accents.