I Like to Play in A 6/8 Time (America)

How many of you know the song, “America” from “West Side Story”?

That song is in 6/8 time, which means that instead of counting to 4 as in many popular songs, you will be counting to six!
1,2,3,4,5,6,1,2,3,4,5,6, etc.

That first line of the song sets the rhythm: “I like to live in A-mer-i-ca…”

Download and print out the attached worksheet
AMERICA 6:8 rhythm worksheet
and watch the video to learn how to play this fun rhythm.

3 Responses to “I Like to Play in A 6/8 Time (America)”

  1. Gilbert Says:

    Hi Rhan,

    Happy to hear that you were in France .

    I discovered your blog as I was wandering on the net and having

    clicked on the link under the video : a really good place to go.

    Thanks for your advice.


  2. Gilbert Says:

    Hi Rhan,

    I live in France and very happy with your lessons about rythm .

    I am a total beginner uke player and very bad at rthyms ,so you’re

    very helful.

    Are you going to post a full tutorial for the song “America”.

    Thank’s again.


    • Rhan Wilson Says:

      Hello Gilbert,
      I enjoy having a reader in France – how did you discover my blog?
      You didn’t ask for this advice, but I’d like to give it anyway: you say you’re ” very bad at rhythm”…. how about if you changed that slightly to say, “I’m getting better at rhythm”, or even “I am working on my rhythm”.
      It’s a very subtle change, but I believe it “opens the door” to learning – it’s better than repeating something you don’t really want to be true.

      That being said – “America” is a rather hard song. I am teaching it in my class, and it moves along quickly, and there are some tricky areas. I hadn’t planned on doing a tutorial on the whole song until I thought that everyone got the hang of the rhythm…

      That being said – perhaps at some time I can delve into it a bit more for those like you who wish to challenge themselves.

      Have a great day over there in France.
      By the way, I was over there in 1981 – I went to Paris and the Eiffel Tower, of course, and rode the subway around. It was my first time away from home.


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