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Finding out about maintaining fingerpicking

MichaelAnthony 02 Feb 02 - 02:34 PM
Amos 02 Feb 02 - 02:39 PM
MichaelAnthony 02 Feb 02 - 04:43 PM
Jeri 02 Feb 02 - 08:14 PM
Kaleea 02 Feb 02 - 11:53 PM
Mark Cohen 03 Feb 02 - 12:52 AM
jup 03 Feb 02 - 04:12 AM
53 03 Feb 02 - 08:28 PM
Oversoul 03 Feb 02 - 08:44 PM
MichaelAnthony 03 Feb 02 - 11:42 PM
WyoWoman 03 Feb 02 - 11:53 PM
khandu 04 Feb 02 - 01:15 AM
Mark Cohen 04 Feb 02 - 01:33 AM
WyoWoman 04 Feb 02 - 07:52 AM
RichM 05 Feb 02 - 07:45 AM
WyoWoman 10 Feb 02 - 10:51 AM
53 10 Feb 02 - 05:07 PM
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Subject: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: MichaelAnthony
Date: 02 Feb 02 - 02:34 PM

Been practicing. I previously put some time into fingerpicking technique a while back and almost got comfortable with it, then abandoned it for flatpicking.

Revisiting it -- finding some patterns to practice that could be a nice pay-off. Making my own up even. I hope it's all slowly coming together.

There's the issue of being nervous or cold and still being able to pull it off. And how much maintenance. Guess it would have to be a steady part of my lifestyle.

Like Rick's insistance that's it's got to be as unconscious as possible.


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: Amos
Date: 02 Feb 02 - 02:39 PM

Right. The memories of motion seep into the tissues over long cycles of repetition. Especially when first learning them. Me, i memorized the tune that a full C chord makes, and played it for hours while sitting around in my idle wasted youth, admiring sunsets, chatting with friends, thinking about women and bottles of beer, and so on.

Any fixed chord easy to maintain will serve. Em and Am are both nice.

GOD, I love this place!!

A


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: MichaelAnthony
Date: 02 Feb 02 - 04:43 PM

Yes, Am and Em are very easy on the left hand. And sound great on the guitar, and lots of room to do stuff.


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: Jeri
Date: 02 Feb 02 - 08:14 PM

MA, I mess up most often when I start thinking about what I'm doing and what chord comes next. Of course, I mess up often enough otherwise. Rick's method of watching TV while practicing really helps. It also helps me to sing the words to the song, because I can't think about picking when I do that.

I've only been doing this guitar thing for ...oh, it'll be 3 months on Feb 7th. I've gotten to the point where I can be picking a 4-finger roll and change chords pretty easily. with no noticable delay. (Plenty of other mistakes, but no delays.) The problem is, I tend to move fingers from one chord to the next before I quite finish the last note in that chord. Sometimes, it doesn't matter if I'm going to play an unfretted string.

Is this "jumping the gun" a common problem, and do I have to just make myself not do it?
Is it an easy and/or lazy remedy to just pick a string I'm not fretting?
If I absolutely have to do it the "right" way, is there hope? Not sure my hand will move that fast!


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: Kaleea
Date: 02 Feb 02 - 11:53 PM

Jeri, Yes, your hand & fingers will eventually cooperate. Remember: We shall change no chords before their time!" Sometimes, when I am fingerpicking, I allow an unfretted string to be plucked as I am instantly changing chords. Many folks often complain that it is difficult to change chords quickly. Remember when you first picked up the guitar, and how difficult it was to force your fingers to press down on the strings where they were supposed to? We often forget that it is a process, and that as we progress, we must be patient & allow some time for improvement. Every student is different, and you are your own person! As long as you keep a steady tempo, (no speeding up & slowing down whatsoever, no matter what!!) you will get the chord changes. Never play any tune or song faster than you can change the chords. Instead, concentrate on what you can do, and improve from there. God Luck!


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: Mark Cohen
Date: 03 Feb 02 - 12:52 AM

Kaleea, you beat me to it. But I'd make it even clearer, and use the principle I learned from Flip Breskin at the Puget Sound Guitar Workshop lo these many years ago: Play it as slowly as you need to in order to make it sound good. Then practice it until you have it solid at that tempo, and only then try to speed it up...and then make it sound good again. "Good" means clean, in time, with good tone...GOOD! Don't settle for "Well, that's not bad, now I'll try it faster...or try something else."

I'll be the first to admit I don't always -- or often -- follow that, but when I do, it works. And if you do, you'll become a better guitarist.

Aloha,
Mark


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: jup
Date: 03 Feb 02 - 04:12 AM

Find a song that is realy easy and that you can play without haveing to think about it. Then start the picking and play it till you can have a conversation at the same time.I used to play and watch T.V.,that works. Try playing a bar of 3/4 and then a bar of 4/4 so you can get used to it, that way you won't get mixed up so easily when you change songs. GOOD LUCK, AND I LOVE THIS PLACE TO.


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: 53
Date: 03 Feb 02 - 08:28 PM

Been working on fingerpicking myself, an I hope to be able to do it someday.


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: Oversoul
Date: 03 Feb 02 - 08:44 PM

Turn off the TV and learn to read music. Learn what all those frets are for! Play scales of all kinds and study a good chord method with movable forms.


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: MichaelAnthony
Date: 03 Feb 02 - 11:42 PM

Oversoul's suggestion is good I suppose. For me,nothing beats practice and awareness of quality of sound and how to get it efficiently and comfortably.


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: WyoWoman
Date: 03 Feb 02 - 11:53 PM

Anyone know of any instructional videos that could help me see what I need to be doing? I'm living out in the country and can't get myself to a teacher, but I would love to move beyond where I am now and think it would be helpful to have someone to watch as I try to figure out what how the hell to alternate the bass or do a 4-finger roll.

I like the advice to do it slowly until you get it down, then speed up. I'm about to sound ... liiikke... I'mmmm ... onnnnn ... Quaaluuudddes ....

ww


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: khandu
Date: 04 Feb 02 - 01:15 AM

Ditto on Mark Cohen's suggestion, play slowly over and over until you are comfortable then increase the speed slightly. And do not be afraid to experiment, for instance, while making Em, let the pinky play around trying different notes, like the G (on the high E string) and the F#. Or even the Bflat on the G string.

But, of course, the main thing is repetition. Repeat your exercises until you can carry on a conversation while playing and not miss a note. Your playing will become as normal as breathing.

Practice, practice, practice!

khandu


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: Mark Cohen
Date: 04 Feb 02 - 01:33 AM

Just one caution: be careful if the bit you're practicing leaves one or more fingers stuck in one place. In that same class at PSGW where I was learning the rudiments of fingerpicking, we were learning to play "Frere Jacques" in G over an alternating bass. I practiced, very slow and steady, over and over and over...and never took my 4th finger off the G bass note the whole time. Surprise! I developed tendonitis of that finger--temporary, but unpleasant. So do practice, but take breaks and rest/loosen your fingers, too! (Now, you might think a doctor would have been able to figure that out for himself, right? Guess again...)

Aloha,
Mark


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: WyoWoman
Date: 04 Feb 02 - 07:52 AM

I'm developing grooves in my left fingers from smashing the strings down in the same place day after day. I think this may be telling me that I need to start learning to move around on the frets, huh? I've been playing chords, and know about a dozen now, but I've not been playing scales or any such because I just don't know where to go. I know this is one of the next steps, along with learning to use a pick, but I seem to be in a bit of a rut right now.

I'm a little proud of my calluses, however, even though I can't remember how to spell them at this time in the a.m.

ww


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: RichM
Date: 05 Feb 02 - 07:45 AM

WyoWoman, Homespun Tapes has several videos about fingerpicking.

have a look at

homespuntapes

Rich McCarthy


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: WyoWoman
Date: 10 Feb 02 - 10:51 AM

Thanks, I'll check it out. Anyone know where there's a source for used videos? After someone has their chops up maybe they could offer them for sale through Mudcat. I know having discovered I could buy used books on Amazon.com has made me a familiar face down at the old post office. I wonder if there's a similar way to get previously owned instructional tapes?

ww


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Subject: RE: Finding out about maintaining fingrpckng
From: 53
Date: 10 Feb 02 - 05:07 PM

I've got grooves also on my fingers on my left hand. I've been playing for 37 years and they've always been there, course i mostly play rythm and I guess that's what it happens.


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