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Old 01-15-2013, 05:20 PM   #1
sweetdude3000
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any ex-anchorers who glad they made the switch?

Anyone who used to anchor there pinky and then made the switch to find that it was worth the effort? I would like some encouragement ... unfortunately I see I have ingrained this bad habit and it seems like it will be a lot of work to undo. Thanks
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Old 01-15-2013, 05:22 PM   #2
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Absolutely worth it, and for me it wasn't hard at all. Took a month or so, I tried anchoring the other day, it really felt horrible now.
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Old 01-15-2013, 05:59 PM   #3
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Some of the fastest alternate pickers anchor. The only thing that pisses me off alot is when I sweat it falls off my forehead onto the exact spot where Im anchored and it makes me slide all over and mess up. You could wear a headband but I dont like that at all.
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Old 01-15-2013, 06:18 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Pollow
Some of the fastest alternate pickers anchor.

Appeal to false authority. Just because they're fast doesn't mean they're right. Al di Meola and Paul Gilbert are stupidly fast alternate pickers and they don't anchor.

Anchoring is when you're actively pressing part of your hand or arm into the guitar's body to give yourself a point of reference. It's bad because it creates unnecessary tension in your wrists and arms. If you're not creating tension, it's not anchoring. If you are anchoring, you're doing something utterly unnecessary for no gain at an exceptional cost.
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Old 01-15-2013, 06:23 PM   #5
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I believe if you rest your finger in the guitar body without tension its good, many great guitarist do this and there is no problem.
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Old 01-15-2013, 07:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geldin
Appeal to false authority. Just because they're fast doesn't mean they're right. Al di Meola and Paul Gilbert are stupidly fast alternate pickers and they don't anchor.

Anchoring is when you're actively pressing part of your hand or arm into the guitar's body to give yourself a point of reference. It's bad because it creates unnecessary tension in your wrists and arms. If you're not creating tension, it's not anchoring. If you are anchoring, you're doing something utterly unnecessary for no gain at an exceptional cost.



LMAO - If you anchor the middle and ring finger tips in one place and you use a picking motion like knocking on a door combined with elbow at the same time it is very relaxed - no tension at all. I hate tension and I wouldnt tolerate tension while picking at all. You can see that is the way Michael Angelo picks in the old Speed Kills video but I cant find it right now. When I say elbow I dont mean the vertical motion that happens when you use a stiff wrist. Its a horizontal elbow movement combined with wrist oscillating.
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Old 01-15-2013, 07:36 PM   #7
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I see some ridiculously amazing players anchor and I saw Eric Johnson on Youtube the other day and his pinkie was all over the shop. Lots of awesome players don't seem to bother unlearning stuff that we go on about.

But yea, it's not the most aesthetically pleasing technique and you should strive for perfection.

I've never anchored. I think I'm lucky because it seems a horribly hard habit to break.
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Old 01-15-2013, 07:42 PM   #8
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Looking for speed kills I found the old star licks MAB. Dr. Shred.



OOPS - I was wrong - he is doing the vertical elbow thing together with knocking cuz he bends his wrist to the right a little. Now I have to try that some more tonite. I never bent the wrist like that. You can be wrong no matter how much you know.

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Old 01-17-2013, 03:17 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempoe
Absolutely worth it, and for me it wasn't hard at all. Took a month or so, I tried anchoring the other day, it really felt horrible now.


That's good to hear. Did you just focus on keeping your right hand relaxed for a month and before you knew it, you were not anchoring anymore? Did find you could play licks you had trouble with before unanchoring? Floating IS more difficult at first with dexterity, but I am sure in the long run it serves you better. It is amazing how your body adapts within time and repetition. I remember when a C chord felt awkward when I first began guitar...
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:44 PM   #10
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I don't anchor, but I float in a more or less peculiar manner. Let's say the strings are at a 45 degree angle. I'll use my wrist to pick individual strings and my arm to switch strings, using a horizontal motion - That means my hand is above the neck pick up when playing the high E and close to the bridge pick up when playing the low E. It allows for excellent muting possibilities and the switching strings is easier. It's weird at first tho.

Quote:
I remember when a C chord felt awkward when I first began guitar...


Put your axe in the opposite direction and play left handed. Now thats the definition of awkward.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:54 PM   #11
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I changed over about 5 or 6 years ago. Took a few months but very much worth it for me.

I did this thread with a poll back then and results were pretty good (only one or two people out of dozens had any problems with playing unanchored, most found it a positive change, the rest noticed no difference).

Also worth pointing out I was in England last year with Andy James and Martin Goulding and both had stopped anchoring after doing so for years, they both found it was unnecessarily restrictive.

It's a minor bad habit, but it is a bad habit.

My detailed thoughts on anchoring if anyone cares -
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:59 PM   #12
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Anchoring has never been an issue for me since I tend to curl my excess fingers under my hand. However, many jazz guitarists insist that anchoring (ala George Benson) to the pickguard of a archtop while simultaneously turn the pick to be at a 45* angle with the strings, will improve the swing feel. I still don't anchor, but I do angle my pick for a more masculine tone.
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:05 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Freepower
I changed over about 5 or 6 years ago. Took a few months but very much worth it for me.

I did this thread with a poll back then and results were pretty good (only one or two people out of dozens had any problems with playing unanchored, most found it a positive change, the rest noticed no difference).

Also worth pointing out I was in England last year with Andy James and Martin Goulding and both had stopped anchoring after doing so for years, they both found it was unnecessarily restrictive.

It's a minor bad habit, but it is a bad habit.

My detailed thoughts on anchoring if anyone cares -


Yea I saw your video.. Good stuff and it's good you did the poll! It does make me feel better that it's not a disastrous bad habit. I think hearing that other people have gotten benefits from unanchoring gives me and others confidence to unanchor.

Would proper right hand technique require you to keep the right hand as relaxed as possible and let your other fingers naturally just stay there? Or do you want to make a loose fist?
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:15 PM   #14
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It's worth it.
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:37 PM   #15
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Would proper right hand technique require you to keep the right hand as relaxed as possible and let your other fingers naturally just stay there? Or do you want to make a loose fist?


For me they're one and the same. I'd prioritise relaxation. I hybrid pick a lot so I guess I'd need my fingers kinda curled regardless.
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:03 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetdude3000
That's good to hear. Did you just focus on keeping your right hand relaxed for a month and before you knew it, you were not anchoring anymore? Did find you could play licks you had trouble with before unanchoring? Floating IS more difficult at first with dexterity, but I am sure in the long run it serves you better. It is amazing how your body adapts within time and repetition. I remember when a C chord felt awkward when I first began guitar...


Yeah, it was about when I joined UG that I even read it was bad, I think from Freepower back then. Thanks! I don't really know how, I just stopped doing it by not doing it. My hands are large so brush the body a bit, but I used to actually press a bit. When I stopped It made me feel more comfortable and free, without really effecting my speed or precision at all at first, then it soon got better faster than it would have I think. Also somehow it feels more dynamic, and better for hybrid and economy picking for sure. I still rest my palm a lot for muting, but it really wasn't too big an effort to change so I'd say to anyone -do it.

That was over 4 years ago, wonder how I'd play now if I never stopped anchoring. shit, I might've been a guitar god by now

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Old 01-17-2013, 08:50 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Tempoe
wonder how I'd play now if I never stopped anchoring. shit, I might've been a guitar god by now


Lol, everytime I discover new flaws in my playing in the category "How come I didn't think of that earlier!!??" I AWAYS have that thought in my mind

Sometimes I would like to start all over again with the knowledge I have right now, just to see how long it would take to get me where I'm now. Pretty interesting concept actually..
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:13 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Pollow
LMAO - If you anchor the middle and ring finger tips in one place and you use a picking motion like knocking on a door combined with elbow at the same time it is very relaxed - no tension at all.

Enjoy the carpal tunnel in your wrists and RSI or tennis elbow in your elbow.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:18 PM   #19
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I think it all boils down to this: using a pinkie as a guide is OK but here is the caveat : as long as you aren't putting pressure on the guitar! Why? Because when you put pressure you are basically tensing up, and we all know that tension is the no. enemy when it comes to playing fast and fluid. Most people, I suspect, and I am one of those, get that pinkie stuck out when they are tense. I can relate this to the piano as well. When people start learning to play, they get the teacup pinkie sticking out and this is because they are tense. They haven't yet developed the motor dexterity (and partly the muscles) and when they try to play faster than their nervous system allows, they subconsciously tensely up to SLOW down for accuracy. And when you are never told to practice relaxation, like so many people, it because ingrained as a bad habit. They never learn they need to relax to get to the next level and such the problem remains.

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Old 01-18-2013, 03:02 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetdude3000
I think it all boils down to this: using a pinkie as a guide is OK but here is the caveat : as long as you aren't putting pressure on the guitar! Why? Because when you put pressure you are basically tensing up, and we all know that tension is the no. enemy when it comes to playing fast and fluid. Most people, I suspect, and I am one of those, get that pinkie stuck out when they are tense. I can relate this to the piano as well. When people start learning to play, they get the teacup pinkie sticking out and this is because they are tense. They haven't yet developed the motor dexterity (and partly the muscles) and when they try to play faster than their nervous system allows, they subconsciously tensely up to SLOW down for accuracy. And when you are never told to practice relaxation, like so many people, it because ingrained as a bad habit. They never learn they need to relax to get to the next level and such the problem remains.


Yeah thats true. I dont know much about pinky anchoring but when you anchor the middle and ring fingers you need to rock them back and forth with your picking so you can move freely. Not stiff or pushing hard into the guitar. They stick to the paint and you dont really notice them much.

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