#1
Hi, I've been playing acoustic for 4 years and recently started playing electric, self taught all the way through, but one element of technique has always confused me.... how do you *not* hit certain strings in a chord? I see this all the time, so it can't be that hard...but let's say you have a chord that's something like this:

4
5
4
x
x
4

(not sure if that would sound any good, but that's not the point)...so what I would do here, which I'm sure is me taking the easy way out, and since I'm more into fingerstyle songs so I usually play without a pick, is I would take my 'strumming hand' and just position my thumb on the low E, index finger on the G string, middle finger on the B string, ring finger on the high E, and avoid the 2 strings I'm not supposed to hit that way.

But let's say you have this...

3
0
0
0
x
3

I suppose I could use all five of my fingers and avoid the A string, but something tells me that's not the "proper" way to go about it... and I occasionally come across chords like this in songs that don't seem to be played fingerstyle, so there must be a way to play that with a pick, right? But somehow for the life of me I can't figure it out, so I turn to UG's resident musical geniuses with a question that probably seems pretty basic to you all, but how do you strum that without the A string ringing?

I've tried lightly resting a finger on the string that isn't supposed to sound as a kind of muting attempt but I still hear a dull sound of that string...that can't be the proper way either... someone set me straight here! Thanks for your help!
All at once,
The world can overwhelm me
There's almost nothin' that you could tell me
That could ease my mind.
Last edited by emmadia at Feb 14, 2012,
#2
Hmm, okay. I guess that just means I need to get better at that, then... good to know, though! Now I have an idea of what to practice, thanks!
All at once,
The world can overwhelm me
There's almost nothin' that you could tell me
That could ease my mind.
#3
In the first example, I'd probably use my thumb on the E string, lightly blocking the A string, and use whatever finger I put on the G string to block the D string.

In the second example, my index finger would play the E string and block the A string.

You're not meant to not strum the notes. You're meant to mute them with your fretting hand.
#4
Mute them with the fingers on your fretting hand.

Takes a bit of getting used to but im sure you'll soon nail it