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18

Down picking allows one to apply more power which may be necessary for certain types of riffs. It also makes the attacks more even so they sound more like "chug - chug - chug - chug" instead of "chug - ga - chug - ga" (sorry but I don't know how to express it better). So the choice of picking technique is based on which sound you want to hear, with the ...


11

No, once you have a significant rest you don't need to alternate, and I'd still think of it as "strict alternate picking". Note: I tend to think of alternate picking as down on the beats and up on the 8th notes between beats (or the same idea with respect to 8th and 16ths); not necessarily that every string attack come from an alternate direction. If the ...


10

+ Pick Perhaps the most relevant advantage of a pick is that you can do palm mute, which is pretty useful on bass (in fact rather more useful than on guitar). IMO that's about it, though! As far as the string-plucking itself is concerned, a pick has no real advantage over good finger technique. Some points that pick-proponents tend to make include "It's ...


9

I do not believe that learning both picking and finger-style concurrently will negatively impact your progress. One of the hardest things to do when learning an instrument is to stay motivated. My advise is: grab onto whatever you can to stay excited and interested. There are so many things you can work on when you have time to practice that, especially in ...


8

When doing strict alternate picking, is it OK to play a downstroke twice in order to start a new phrase on a downstroke? Absolutely yes, if this is what you feel, this is fine. You have to play your way. If your way is zelously strict alternate-picking then feel free to do that instead, but right-hand technique is not a religious doctrine. It feels so ...


8

In general, your technique isn't going to be fundamentally different than if you are alternate picking, and general good picking technique will apply: Keep your right hand and arm relaxed Hold the pick loosely Move your hand in parallel with the strings (i.e. don't scoop) Monitor your pick strokes to ensure that there is no wasted motion Monitor the tone of ...


8

They sound different, and the sound you want is going to affect your choice. Fingers are softer than plectrums, so give a softer, warmer sound. With a plectrum you can use alternate picking to play fast patterns, but skipping strings is a bit more fiddly. With fingers you can play two strings at once (not that many conventional pop/rock bass parts need it) ...


8

The sensitivity of your playing is both more precise than whatever measuring tool you might be using and it's also the most important measurement of the usefulness of the pick. Who cares what some ruler says? If the pick is not pleasing you, toss it to most attractive person in the crowd and grab the next one! I sometimes ditch picks that haven't lost any ...


7

Generally a floating hand can be either accurate or fast. For speed you will end up using the elbow and upper arm muscles, but that loses accuracy, so it isn't best suited to fast single note picking. For accuracy you want to have an anchor to give you precise feedback. I would suggest using a floating hand for chords and for slower picking, and then ...


7

Playing faster isn't a sign of playing better. Some people, well respected players, can put a huge number of notes in a measure, yet they don't say anything with them. These are songs and players I've always kept in mind: Clapton's version of Hideway with John Mayall. He wasn't playing super fast, he was concentrating on phrasing, letting his notes breathe,...


7

It means to not rotate your hand inwards towards your inner arm. If you look up videos of Eddie van Halen playing some of his solo's, esp. when he's rapidly picking. He often curves his wrist over in a manner that is inappropriate for bass (according to C. Kaye). Here's a good negative example, with primarily rotational motion (note: I'm only trying to ...


7

A lot of alternate pickers get stuck right where you are, and it's because fast alternate picking requires a very specific technique—one that no one even understood until a few years ago. The world's foremost expert on speed picking is a guitar educator out of New York named Troy Grady. In his online video series Cracking the Code, he has made the first ...


6

It's mostly just practise. You should be able to Play a downward stroke hitting exactly the right string first, in any musical context Play a single upward stroke catching only the strings you want. By "single" I mean, you should be able to do it after concentrating on that very stroke, with time to prepare for it. Both of these strokes can be practised, ...


6

One side effect of an upwards stroke is that you'll normally only hit the highest couple of strings. This upwards stroke starts at the highest strings, and (as cyco130 said) is usually a lot weaker, which means that you'll only hit two or three strings at most. More than that will usually sound clumsy, unless you really intend to go for that particular sound....


6

A strumming pattern is a technique for playing a rhythmic pattern. Most simple rhythms are best played with the strumming pattern you describe because this is the best way to keep your rhythm accurate. As for picking patterns, it is not silly at all. It is crucial that you learn the most mechanically efficient way to execute sequences. For instance: ...


5

The short answer is, no, blues doesn't require a thumb pick. The blues is a broad class of music, played on all kinds of instruments, in all kinds of ways. The longer answer is, that it depends what sound you want. If you want the sound you get from a thumb pick, then a thumb pick is probably the best way of getting it! I suggest you don't attempt ...


5

For this, you can either go by ear by listening to the recorded song, or by feel (i.e. how do you WANT to play it?). As far as up and down strumming, a general rule of thumb is that - regardless of the actual strumming pattern - you should maintain a steady up/down rhythm. Then you will simply hit the strings when you want sound and not hit them when you ...


5

There are many websites with specific picking exercises, but you don't really need them. What you do need is to decide on a set of notes, and play along with a metronome to help you learn timing. Starting off slowly and bringing the speed up as you can pay each arpeggio exercise perfectly is the way to do this. An example exercise is this one from ultimate-...


5

Normally, you'll get all the support you need when you simply rest your wrist/forearm on the upper body of the guitar. With your full hand completely free to move, you'll find that it is much, much easier to play smoothly. This is how I was taught to play both classical and rock style guitar.


5

if you want to play faster than you currently are, you should focus on efficiency. As you play faster and faster, wasted movement becomes more and more detrimental to the final effect. Watch yourself in your mirror, and play the passage slowly. Is there wasted movement ? There almost always is. The fastest guitarist move very efficiently. Minimize ...


5

To be honest - I think you may be fine just ignoring them as you have been doing. I usually do. First let's talk a bit about music notation for guitar. In my experience, most music notation for guitar written for Rock, Classic Rock, Pop, Country, Folk (and many other types of popular music that is not strictly instrumental) is nothing more than someones ...


5

Yes, I would recommend that course of action. Your brain and muscles don't really care whether you're doing it "right", they're just going to burn it in exactly as you're doing it. So if you are not doing well it would be best to slow down, try something easier, or take a break. You can certainly do extra while you are in the zone as well, but take care not ...


5

I play at all positions from the 12th fret up to the bridge itself and while I may sometimes hit a pickup, you shouldn't hear any noise from it. Possible exceptions being very old pickups that perhaps need repotting - you could get some acoustic transfer. You shouldn't have your pickups too close to the strings anyway - you will lose tone and sustain, as ...


5

Easy strumming was probably the market reason for the creation of the so called plectrum banjo. For strumming you don't need a pick for each finger, and because of the metal strings the most natural choice is a flat pick. And, with a flat pick you can also do soloing or combine melodic lines with selectic pluking of two or more strings (a kind of guitar ...


4

My answer here may be helpful — if you change the angle of your strum or strum along a curve, you won't need to do any stopping. For something as basic as a C chord I don't think you should need to mute anything.


4

I've been playing guitar for 14 years and teaching guitar for 4+ years, and based on my personal experience there's no reason why picking with an angle is a bad or outlawed thing, maybe you could share where you've read that straight picking is the preferred stance. Making a technique-focused comparison between straight and angle picking, angle picking ...


4

In general, there are a lot of different ways to create different sounds you just have to experiment with your technique. We can just look at palm muting and pick for now and all the different ways you can change the sound you make. How much pressure you put on the strings when you palm mute will change the tone of the sound. Also where you palm mute will ...


4

While, as said by the previous answers, such meters can normally be sudivided into little chunks, it is in my experience not a good idea to let this influence strumming patterns etc. to directly: this is prone to give exactly the experience that many people associate, dislikingly, with odd meters – a "jumpy" sound, as if something is just missing or ...


4

One of my favourite guitar players - Tuck Andress, outlines all methods of picking a excellently on his site. Be sure to read through it and try it all out. He outlines each method of holding the pick, finding the angle of picking, rotation vs up-down motion, as well as thumb-only (ala Wes Montgomery) and pure old school classical fingerstyle technique and ...


4

In addition to Grey's excellent answer, there's also hybrid picking, where a pick and fingers are used. Often, the pick is held between thumb and index finger (sometimes middle as well) and the remaining fingers can be used to pick strings, usually individually. This works well when the alternative is string skipping, as the hand doesn't need to be moving up ...


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