Hey UG!

Once again I come seeking your wisdom....with hammer ons! I've read up on they sound dull, or how do I get better - I know, practice. Which has caused my question!

I've read that in order to hammer on properly ya just bring your finger down quick and hard on the string after plucking it. However, I'm noticing this is causing a habit of actually lifting up my finger so that it gets enough momentum to slam down on the string. The other side effect to this is, the pitch flutters as the finger hits down and then holds in its normal position. Pitch goes high then normal.

SO... what is this n00b missing? Is it simply a matter of finger strength that allows a master guitarist to keep their finger right above the string, yet slam it down just right to not raise the pitch but also nail the sound?

Or, am I failing in the technique of it?

I'll pause in practicing these until I learn more - would hate to find myself waving my fingers all over the place when trying to trill...hahah
As soon as your hammer finger comes down keep it where it lands - In the correct fret, with the string remaining unbent.. You'll need to practiced where you finger lands, but it will come with time. That will control you're pitch problem

It's not completely a 'slam' as such, but use the finger to fret as hard as you would if you wre playing a normal note. It is a good idea however, to come down harder and faster, but most probably not a 'slam'...

Everyone plays in their own way. Just do what's comfortable. Watch some technique vids on youtube or something. You'll see that for hammers, the fingers don't rise any more than if the note was to be fretted normally...

Hope that helps,

All the best,

Gear List;

Laney VH100R with Matching Cab
Ibanez RGT42FM
Schecter C-1+
BC Rich Neck Thru Warlock
ISP Noise Decimator
Ibanez TS9
Last edited by danastasi at Jan 18, 2009,
Its actually possible to press "too hard" on a fret causing the string to slightly bend or stretch past the fret onto the board. This is especially true on electric. I had the same prob when I started electric after playing acoustic for awhile. You'll get a feel for it. For now, just ease up on strength until you find its "just enough" to sound out the legato note.

Also I wouldn't "wind" up for a hammer-on, it'll mess up your timing. Just hammer it down from where it is.
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