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Techniques Used in Lesson:

Hey UUers!

It's another month, another episode of Uke Lessons, and an amazingly fun one to boot! This time, we're tackling Santana's version of "Oye Como Va" for you to sing, pick, and strum to your ukulele-playing pleasure. There are only two chords (Am and D), so this is a great one for beginners to begin strumming along to. But don't be fooled - for all you intermediate players, the rhythm and picking patterns will keep you busy for awhile, so practice hard, learn the song by heart and rock out with your friends.

As always, be sure to check out the Play-Along and play along with the song! There are a couple slight differences between the way Aldrine teaches the picking in the tutorial and the way he plays it in the Play-Along video. See if you can spot them, and choose the version you prefer better! Have fun with this & keep strummin'

-UU Staff


  1. This is one of the best lessons I’ve seen on Oye Como Va! Do you have an acoustic guitar lesson for Oye Como Va? I’m trying to get the rhythm and singing down.

  2. I am pretty thrilled this one is in the “beginner” category. Can’t wait to nail it enough to make my friends think I’m Santana-level amazing on the uke! nobody has to know otherwise 🙂

  3. How do you get the picking to sound so clear? Im having a hard time on thr first strumming patter when you go from the second fret to fourth fret and back up on the C string. The sound ends when i reach the fourth fret

    1. Hey Ana!

      When you are sliding from one fret to another, there are two key elements to the slide: 1) Stopping abruptly and precisely on the desired fret and 2) Keeping the pressure consistent along the entire slide. In the case of the C string slide from fret 2 to fret 4 and back to fret 2:

      1) First practice sliding from fret 2 to 4 and making sure you stop precisely on fret 4. Don’t overshoot or undershoot the fret. Practice this over and over again until you can consistently make your finger stop right at fret 4 effortlessly. Now practice going from 2 to 4 and back to 2 all in one motion, taking care to stop precisely on fret 2. Practice this over and over again until you can stop right on fret 2 easily, without ever going past it.

      2) Now work on keeping the pressure consistent all the way through the slide. Don’t let up on the pressure or else the note will fade away. You’ll need to experiment with just the right amount of pressure to use because too much pressure will make it hard for your finger to slide over the string and frets and too little pressure won’t allow the string to ring out. Figure out just the right amount of pressure to apply and make sure that you hold that same pressure consistently throughout the duration of the slide.

      Hope that helps – Work on your precision and pressure and you should get that slide to ring out clear!

      -UU Staff

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