#1
I have been analysing my picking in particular recently, and noticed my picking on the low E string is significantly weaker than on any other. When i pick i tend to brush my thumb or palm accross the lower strings for muting, but this is obviously not possible on the lower string. Im finding it very difficult to pick consistently as a result, since it seems the simple brushing accross the strings provides a frame of reference for the picking motion, and can easily tremolo pick 160 bpm+ (not measured it) while remaining tension free. On the lowest string i struggle to hit much beyond 80 or 90 bpm with any form of consistency and it is very difficult to remain tension free.

As a result, I decided to look in detail at various guitarists with supposed "good technique" to see what the general approach seems to be. As far as I can tell Paul Gilbert seems to palm mute the low E almost regardless in fast runs, Chris Broderick seems to use his fingers on the body as a frame of reference (not anchored), Rusty Cooley never seems to play much on the lowest string...and so forth - so my question is this - who should I be looking at as an idea of the correct way to go about this? If i continue to practice slowly will i eventually gain the control needed to play with a completely floating hand, or should i learn to brush my hand along the bridge or something similar á la Paul Gilbert - Ive never anchored when picking and I actuallly find it hard to play while doing so, and with the general consensus that it is a bad idea id like other peoples opinion on this.

(Im looking at learning more rhythmic riffs, as opposed to lead playing here, yet most guitarists I know from metal genres tend to anchor - something I find quite uncomfortable)

Any advice would be appreciated,
Thanks!
Last edited by Jackface20 at Jan 30, 2009,
#3
Just practice anchored. You will get it after a while. Me, I just rest my hand on the bridge and for the higher strings like G B and e I anchor with one or two fingers.
#4
Quote by Jackface20
I have been analysing my picking in particular recently, and noticed my picking on the low E string is significantly weaker than on any other. When i pick i tend to brush my thumb or palm accross the lower strings for muting, but this is obviously not possible on the lower string. Im finding it very difficult to pick consistently as a result, since it seems the simple brushing accross the strings provides a frame of reference for the picking motion, and can easily tremolo pick 160 bpm+ (not measured it) while remaining tension free. On the lowest string i struggle to hit much beyond 80 or 90 bpm with any form of consistency and it is very difficult to remain tension free.

As a result, I decided to look in detail at various guitarists with supposed "good technique" to see what the general approach seems to be. As far as I can tell Paul Gilbert seems to palm mute the low E almost regardless in fast runs, Chris Broderick seems to use his fingers on the body as a frame of reference (not anchored), Rusty Cooley never seems to play much on the lowest string...and so forth - so my question is this - who should I be looking at as an idea of the correct way to go about this? If i continue to practice slowly will i eventually gain the control needed to play with a completely floating hand, or should i learn to brush my hand along the bridge or something similar á la Paul Gilbert - Ive never anchored when picking and I actuallly find it hard to play while doing so, and with the general consensus that it is a bad idea id like other peoples opinion on this.

(Im looking at learning more rhythmic riffs, as opposed to lead playing here, yet most guitarists I know from metal genres tend to anchor - something I find quite uncomfortable)

Any advice would be appreciated,
Thanks!


Broderick doesn't, watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Di9UXIHUH84 At about 2:21 he starts the fast picked riff from Born which is almost exclusively on the low B and there's no contact going on there...

As for Cooley check out the video to Under the Influence and in particular the first run: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qtLUz34iofM Starts on the lower strings and is, as ever, completely unanchored.

Gilbert: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-swYsmkKBAA&feature=related The start of the Street Lethal lesson, the runs in that are played un palm-muted.

Any way, if I can do it I'm sure you can; just get back to the woodshed.
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#5
Hard to tell with broderick but I think your right, it seemed like his hands were brushing the body during licks like that but im not so sure now - seems like its completely floating, and paul gilbert definately plants his palm behind the bridge - as for rusty he doesnt seem to play on the lowest string - the lowest string is the only one im having issues with

So you say you can do it - do you play with your hand completely floating when tremelo picking the lowest string, or is part of your hand brushing against the guitar in any way (not anchored) ?
#6
Quote by Jackface20
So you say you can do it - do you play with your hand completely floating when tremelo picking the lowest string, or is part of your hand brushing against the guitar in any way (not anchored) ?


I have my hand completely floating on the low E, other strings my hand is lightly brushing for muting purposes but seeing as how the picking hand doesn't mute anything when you're playing the low E I do completely float.
R.I.P. My Signature. Lost to us in the great Signature Massacre of 2014.

Quote by Master Foo
“A man who mistakes secrets for knowledge is like a man who, seeking light, hugs a candle so closely that he smothers it and burns his hand.”


Album.
Legion.
#7
how long did it take you to feel comfortable playing like that? I assume you are picking from your wrist btw?
#8
I had this problem before. You're anchoring. Check the spot where your hand touches the guitar/strings. It only takes contact - no significant pressure needed - to mute a string.

Quote by S.Y.N.
Just practice anchored. You will get it after a while. Me, I just rest my hand on the bridge and for the higher strings like G B and e I anchor with one or two fingers.

People like this should stay out of the AT forum if this is what they're going to say. Anchoring is the worst thing you can do to yourself, technically.
Last edited by The.new.guy at Jan 31, 2009,
#9
You're anchoring. Check the spot where your hand touches the guitar/strings. It only takes contact - no significant pressure needed - to mute a string


My hand is never fixed in one location though, it brushes up and down the strings depending on which string im playing - as far as i can tell there is very little pressure on the strings

I can play fine on the low E at like 60 bpm, I just felt that after a few weeks of practice I might be seeing at least some progress but maybe Im expecting too much - you say you used to have this problem, how long did it take to overcome?
#10
Basically, I'd say your picking motion is weak and there's some tension in the forearm - unless you're using a soft pick, in which case, get a real pick.

Spend plenty of time traversing the whole fretboard and string set at low tempos, focusing on volume and precision, and this problem will smooth out and your picking improve all round.

People like this should stay out of the AT forum if this is what they're going to say. Anchoring is the worst thing you can do to yourself, technically.


Absolutely not - and this kind of statement just fuels the reaction-retards. Careful not to let caution become paranoia.
#11
Im using eric johnson jazz IIIs so i wouldnt say its a soft pick - may well be the case that i am using too soft a picking motion, its hard to know what is the correct motion to lead towards accurate and fluid technique without unnecessary force maybe im expecting too much too quickly and need to work on this for at least several months? I just expected the picking motion to feel natural after a few weeks as all other techniques have in that space of time (at low speed)
#13
its more a case of being concerned about injuring myself, as I am recently recovered from an injured shoulder and wrist (picking hand), so trying to put particular emphasis on relaxed and correct technique Thanks for the help anyway, ill give it a month or two and see how the progress is going