#1
Hello dear members of UG!! I like playing guitar and its my hobby. I practice as much as I can though I can't play every day in a week. I am nowhere close to be considered as an expert player, but I'm working to improve my playing skill. I've been having trouble with the clarity of the notes I play. Honestly I can't speed pick comfortably because my picking hand easily gets stressed after a while. But few guitar parts/pieces of songs or etudes or licks require to play fast(not very fast like Malmsteen stuffs but yet relatively fast) which I try to play as cleanly as possible. I am aware about that wrist movement should be minimum, fretting fingers should not be very far away from the strings, proper alternate picking and hand synchronization. My problem is when I try to play a bit fast, the notes don't sound very clear(which happens mostly for the high e and b string) unless I hit the string quite hard. But hitting the strings hard makes my picking hand stiff and it feels very uncomfortable. Now can anyone tell me that does harder pick attack produces better clarity in the sound of notes than softer pick attack and if it does how can I comfortably pick hard? Any constructive suggestions and your precious comments are most welcome.

[And I've checked this section of the forum regarding pick attack but couldn't find any post on it, so if this problem has already been solved in any post please don't get mad at me and kindly provide the link of the post.]
#2
What most guitar players do when they do fast picking is LIGHTLY muting the strings. It sounds MUCH cleaner.
Ayy there
#3
Harder doesn't mean cleaner. Making only that note ring is the only thing that will make it clearer. Practice is really the only answer to getting clarity in your playing and as metalhead said, try muting the other strings with your palm.

Have you tried a lighter pick? If fatigue is an issue, you should use a lighter pick and work your way up. Maybe do some warm ups with a heavy pick and then switch to a lighter one.

Change the angle of the pick, make it more perpendicular to the strings. This will make it a bit easier, but not necessarily cleaner.
#4
Quote by D_M_I
Harder doesn't mean cleaner...

I try to practice seriously as much as I can. I slightly mute the strings when I play relatively fast and also I try to minimize the unwanted string noise as much as possible while playing. But my playing sounds weak when I play a bit fast(i.e. scale run using alternate picking). I used to play with a 2.0mm pick but now I use 1.0mm pick. I'm not an expert but does placing the pick perpendicular means holding the pick more parallel to the strings like flat picking? I always angle the pick in a way where the rounded side of the pick hits the strings, which allows easy gliding across the strings.
#5
Quote by metalhead983877
What most guitar players do when they do fast picking is LIGHTLY muting the strings...

I do lightly mute the strings when I play but the point is my sound seems weak when I try to play a bit fast.
#6
Quote by stranger_23
I try to practice seriously as much as I can. I slightly mute the strings when I play relatively fast and also I try to minimize the unwanted string noise as much as possible while playing. But my playing sounds weak when I play a bit fast(i.e. scale run using alternate picking). I used to play with a 2.0mm pick but now I use 1.0mm pick. I'm not an expert but does placing the pick perpendicular means holding the pick more parallel to the strings like flat picking? I always angle the pick in a way where the rounded side of the pick hits the strings, which allows easy gliding across the strings.



Perpendicular would be holding it more up and down like you said with the rounded side. If that's not helping go with flatter more parallel. Try using more pick, putting more of it over the string instead of just the tip. It's hard to say what's happening over the internet, lol. Slowing down and getting the sound you want and then speeding up slowly is the most likely fix.
#7
Quote by D_M_I
Perpendicular would be...

Thank you very much for helping me. I know its tough to figure out the conclusive point to reach the root of the problem for this type of problem via internet. Yes I should experiment with other pick types but for the record I'm currently using Jim Dunlop Jazz iii xl series pick which I like very much although it sometimes automatically slips away while playing. I'll remember your advice.
#8
Quote by stranger_23
Hello dear members of UG!! I like playing guitar and its my hobby. I practice as much as I can though I can't play every day in a week. I am nowhere close to be considered as an expert player, but I'm working to improve my playing skill. I've been having trouble with the clarity of the notes I play. Honestly I can't speed pick comfortably because my picking hand easily gets stressed after a while. But few guitar parts/pieces of songs or etudes or licks require to play fast(not very fast like Malmsteen stuffs but yet relatively fast) which I try to play as cleanly as possible. I am aware about that wrist movement should be minimum, fretting fingers should not be very far away from the strings, proper alternate picking and hand synchronization. My problem is when I try to play a bit fast, the notes don't sound very clear(which happens mostly for the high e and b string) unless I hit the string quite hard. But hitting the strings hard makes my picking hand stiff and it feels very uncomfortable. Now can anyone tell me that does harder pick attack produces better clarity in the sound of notes than softer pick attack and if it does how can I comfortably pick hard? Any constructive suggestions and your precious comments are most welcome.

[And I've checked this section of the forum regarding pick attack but couldn't find any post on it, so if this problem has already been solved in any post please don't get mad at me and kindly provide the link of the post.]



There are many things to keep in mind actually to improve clarity and speed, here are some things to remember:

Reduce extra movement everywhere!!!

- from your pick = Use fat heavy ponted picks
- from your strings = pick a little closer to the bridge were strings move less and consider thicker strings
- from your picking hand = Dont move your wrist too much and never move your hand too far away from the strings
- from your fretting hand - keep your fingers as close to the fretboard as possible
- from your elbow - You don't need to move from here except when you glide from one string to another

Regarding clarity:

-Make sure to fret your notes right behind the fret wire not in the middle of the frets
-Make sure you have the right amount of pressure in your fretting hand
-Make sure your hands are well in sync

I hope this helps you

/Dave
#9
Quote by David Portelli
There are many things to keep in mind actually to improve clarity and speed.../Dave

Thank you so much for pointing out some important facts about proper playing technique which are very detailed and focused to the point. I need to work on fretting fingers movement as I think they move a bit more than they should from the strings. Heavy strings might be a bit difficult for me to play so I use either 10-46/9-42 string gauge(although I snapped the high e string of 9-42 several times so I prefer 10-46). I'll definitely remember what you've advised.