#1
I've been having this issue for about a month now, and I'm getting really worried. I'll play a fast track like Battery by Metallica or pretty much any thrashy song, and I can't even get four
bars in because my pick keeps slipping to the point that my fingers jam into the strings.

I can be holding the pick so tight that it hurts to grab another finger that tight and it will start to slip. And by the way I'm using a carbon fiber max grip jazz III Any suggestions? I'm really worried that this could prevent me from ever playing any stuff I like in its entirety.
#2
I have less problems dropping picks if I hold them looser. Then again I've been playing over 50 years and got accustomed to it many moons ago, I don't drop picks often. I try to keep my picking hand fairly relaxed, I use a heavy pick and hold it loose so it can move for rhythtm parts, and a lot of the time tighter for leads. I guess it helps that my hands don't sweat. I use Dunlop Tortex picks, usually the green or yellow thick ones. I like the clear amber Ultex picks too, but the tend to be harder to find when they do get dropped.

I also use thinner ones for acoustic, and have to swap between pick and finger picking onstage, so I do end up with quite a few on the floor, but more because I throw them down than dropping them.

Try to relax your picking fingers, try different picks, I've used everything from the flimsiest picks I can find to the really thick blue Tortex ones and some Ultex up to 1mm. Thick, heavy duty things, but I hold them fairly light so they can flop back and forth as I play. Dunlop also makes a Tortex with a hole in the middle you might try, our other guitar player likes them, I can't stand the things. I've also seen picks with a layer of cork for a grip, not sure if those are still made, but they might be worth a try if you can find them. I got some many years ago, didn't like them all that well and went back to standard picks. When Tortex came out I was hooked...I hate the Fender picks, damn things don't last 15 minutes...I have Tortex picks right now I used 30 years ago...worn so bad you can't tell where the original tip was and still usable...
Hmmm...I wonder what this button does...
#3
Quote by Paleo Pete
I have less problems dropping picks if I hold them looser.

This is actually a pretty good point: it's like how buildings are built: they flex in the wind because if they didn't they'd break and fall down, and modern buildings in earthquake zones are the same: the foundations and structures move when the earth does because too much rigidity leads to catastrophe.

The same principle can be applied here: you need to give the pick room to flex and move because if you don't the same kind of thing will happen, the forces at work make it such that the pick has to move that way because it has to move somewhere.
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#4
I know it different for everyone but I agree with holding it with less pressure helps. I rarely drop a pick and I'm using regular 351 Fender picks both thin and medium. If I drop a pick it's usually because I am tensing up and trying to hard to get through a lead. I rarely drop a pick when I am at home practicing or just playing for fun. It only happens when I am playing a gig.
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#5
I instead have a problem with pick spinning. Tremolo picking single notes is fine but when it comes to tremolo picking chords the pick slowly spins until I am almost picking either flat edge or finger nail. Couple of times practicing a black metal song I have to slow down and fix the pick angle. :/

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#6
I have extremely sweaty hands and the only picks that don't slip for me are the Tortex and Ultex picks. I can hold nylons pretty well too, but I don't like how they feel. I can't use celluloid picks because they are too slippery and also because they wear out too fast.

As mentioned above, try different picks and try holding them in different ways. I use Tortex .88mm (the green ones) btw.
#8
I also had this issue, and it only stopped when I realized I was holding the pick in the wrong way.

You actually don't have to hold it too tight, but you must have a firm grip. I used to only hold my pick between my thumb and the tip of the index finger, with a lot of the pick out of my fingers, giving it space to rotate.

The problem was solved when I started holding it firmly between my thumb and the first knuckle of the index. The tip of the index finger gives support to the pick, so it won't rotate. Now I only leave a few mm of pick out to play. My picking is much more precise and the pick is now fixed.

Maybe you have a similar situation.

I hope I have helped.

Best,
#9
Quote by Arby911


I was actually considering buying some skateboard grip tape and using strips of that for something similar, but this looks good. Is it at all uncomfortable to play with? And did you notice a major difference when you started using them? Thanks

Quote by YellowCat
I also had this issue, and it only stopped when I realized I was holding the pick in the wrong way.

You actually don't have to hold it too tight, but you must have a firm grip. I used to only hold my pick between my thumb and the tip of the index finger, with a lot of the pick out of my fingers, giving it space to rotate.

The problem was solved when I started holding it firmly between my thumb and the first knuckle of the index. The tip of the index finger gives support to the pick, so it won't rotate. Now I only leave a few mm of pick out to play. My picking is much more precise and the pick is now fixed.

Maybe you have a similar situation.

I hope I have helped.

Best,


You and everyone else that mentioned holding the pick more loosely were right, I usually don't hold it in a death grip, but It definitely stays in my hand longer when I hold it in a firm but relaxed grip.

I also really liked the way you mentioned holding the pick, it was actually surprisingly comfortable I felt like I had a more sturdy grip on it. Unfortunately it does still slip from my grip. I'm gonna order some of those picks that Arby linked to, and if that doesn't work I might be screwed.
#10
i don't hold it tight and actually use only a very little of the pick when playing fast passages. also when i pick i use economy of motion and the pick barely gets past the string before i get to the next note being played. i've found that most often that beginners are using to much of the pick and using more motion than needed to play. both are easy fixes with some time in.
#11
Yellowcat made me think about how I hold my pick. I can't remember ever analyzing it but after 40 years of playing he made me actually take a look at how I hold it. Just for the record, I also hold it between my thumb and knuckle of my index finger. Thanks Yellowcat.
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#12
Quote by Cheeseshark
I've been having this issue for about a month now, and I'm getting really worried. I'll play a fast track like Battery by Metallica or pretty much any thrashy song, and I can't even get four
bars in because my pick keeps slipping to the point that my fingers jam into the strings.

I can be holding the pick so tight that it hurts to grab another finger that tight and it will start to slip. And by the way I'm using a carbon fiber max grip jazz III Any suggestions? I'm really worried that this could prevent me from ever playing any stuff I like in its entirety.


Can you provide a photo of how you're holding the pick? If you're using the thumb tip and finger tip, you'll most likely have a problem.

cheers, Jerry
#13
I use those turtle jazz picks myself. They're nearly indestructible and take forever to wear down. Never had an issue with them slipping out my hand either. I hold my picks between thumb and index finger. Sometimes when I'm sweeping I hold it more on the side of my index finger to give it more wiggle room.
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#14
Quote by jerrykramskoy
Can you provide a photo of how you're holding the pick? If you're using the thumb tip and finger tip, you'll most likely have a problem.

cheers, Jerry

Here ya go. Not exactly the tip of my finger, more like just below the joint.


Quote by Xerosnake90
I use those turtle jazz picks myself. They're nearly indestructible and take forever to wear down. Never had an issue with them slipping out my hand either. I hold my picks between thumb and index finger. Sometimes when I'm sweeping I hold it more on the side of my index finger to give it more wiggle room.

I was thinking of getting some of those as well. I love the feel of tortex picks but It feels weird to play fast sections of songs with a round edged pick.
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#15
Quote by Cheeseshark


I was thinking of getting some of those as well. I love the feel of tortex picks but It feels weird to play fast sections of songs with a round edged pick.


I had to get used to it. But once I picked up a tortex I never went back. Regular picks now feel weird and oversized to me. The slight smooth compensates for how hard the pick is, that way it doesn't get caught up on the string. Though once they start wearing down it gets too smooth. Good thing that takes a while!
My gear
Ibanez RGA42E (6-string), Ibanez RG7421 (7-string w/Dimarzio Evo 7 and Ionizer), ESP LTD MH-50 w/floyd rose
Flashback Delay, Digitech RP1000
Marshall JCM2000 Dsl 100
Marshall 1960a W/ Eminence Governors and Patriot Red White Blues
#16
I'm not sure how well you can see it, I don't have any close ups. I hold my pick with thumb and pad of index finger, not the tip or knuckle. I use the green, blue and yellow tortex, and up to 1mm Ultex.

harmony4 by Paleo Pete, on Flickr

tele_2 by Paleo Pete, on Flickr
Hmmm...I wonder what this button does...
#17
My pick will slip some too. I never drop it, but I catch myself having to adjust it ever so slightly sometimes. IMO, its prolly normal to have it slip a little, but it definitely shouldn't slip to the point you drop it or become unable to play it. Over the years I've developed a lighter and lighter touch and IMO this has helped this particular problem drastically. A heavy touch will cause more friction and this can't be good for slippage issues.