#1
I've been playing for about 4 years, and I don't practice that often. So the information in here regarding keeping unwanted noise muted--I have seen all that, tried to incorporate it as much as possible, but never spent like a month or anything working on it at any given speed.

So basically I haven't taken to time to make this 'good technique' stick, but as time goes on with me "just playing," I'm noticing i'm gaining the ability to make things sound how i want it, without thinking too hard about it--in fact, if i START thinking about HOW i should put my hand on the strings to produce a certain sound (or to mute a certain string) instead of just "doing it," it's usually way worse.

So anyway, on to my question: i want to make sure that this self-learned betterness isn't actually wrong technique... you see, when my playing sounds the best, I actually end up muting a bunch of noise with the side of my thumb on my picking hand, as i go down to pluck a note. My palm is involved a little bit too, but it's a lot of the thumb. Not so much my fretting hand either, although i keep that one on the strings as much as possible, when possible.

It is okay to use one's thumb in this way?

I think I picked it up while trying to learn pinch-harmonics...

And my second question:

in this lick:
e|-------------------------------------|
B|-------------------------------------|
G|-------------------------------------|
D|-------------------------------------|
A|-2---1-2---1-----1-2-----2-1-----1-2-|
E|-3-0-2-3-0-2-0-0-2-3-0-0-3-2-0-0-2-3-|
     *     *   * *     * *     * * 

how do you go about muting the 4 top strings? My fretting hand has to be positioned in such a way as to let the A string ring out, which means i can't get any contact on those strings, and obviously since they're the high strings, my picking hand is out of position.
#2
in answer to your second question, I'd keep my little/ring finger layed across the top four strings, or, failing that, angle my picking hand in such a way that it rests on top of those strings and not the bottom two, probably with the side of my palm somewhere between being parallel with the strings and 45 degrees.
#3
1) i don't think theres any problem with this unless you feel unneccesary tension while doing it....

2) your could always just fret the notes with your middle and ring fingers and use your index finger to lay across the other strings....or you can take the three open fingers on your picking hand and rest them on the strings while you play, the only big problem witht this is you will not be able to reach the same speeds as you would with a free-er hand...
Quote by Dirk Gently
Some pieces are only meant to be played by people with six fingers on their fretting hand. Sorry.
#5
Thanks all for the feedback, guys. I spent some more time this weekend trying to put Holy Wars together.

I'm glad to hear that using my thumb is okay... now it does appear it's just a matter of getting it to flow with my palm and working on my fret-hand muting.

Re: my second question, seems like the consensus is using my index finger, which i was previously using to press down a string, along with my middle finger. So i should change this up to middle and ring-fingers on the strings, index laying across the top notes?
Last edited by Chockomonkey at Mar 28, 2011,
#6
^ no, you still use your index finger as normal for fretting, it just lays flat to mute other strings as well. The other fingers should be coming straight down on their tips, the index can be more towards the pad.

Personally, I'd play that riff with fingers 1 + 2 as well.
#7
How do you mute the strings when doing sweep picking without using your right hand at all? I have some excercises taken from Guthrie Govan´s book but I´m not sure if the muting device comes from the right hand or the left hand?somebody help me please and I´m new here!
#9
Quote by Lady P
How do you mute the strings when doing sweep picking without using your right hand at all? I have some excercises taken from Guthrie Govan´s book but I´m not sure if the muting device comes from the right hand or the left hand?somebody help me please and I´m new here!


As Guthrie himself says: all the time you should be muting with any spare piece of flesh you have.
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