After getting my strings to not buzz I am back practicing my Ibanez PF5! I have a few quick questions. I am noticing that I am getting better each time I practice but I am having trouble with a few things. I can play simple intro's to songs such as Wish You Were Here (Floyd), Heaven Beside You (Alice in Chains Unplugged) and opf course everyones starting licks Smoke on the Water (Deep Purple).

The problem is that I have a REAL problem with getting strumming down. I can strum pretty well if I strum down and then upstroke the strings but the picks I use make a noise while doing it. Am I holding the pick wrong? I see a few of my buddies strum very well and I suck compared to them. How the hell do I sturm properly? I can get simple riffs and intros down pat but once it comes to strumming chords I stink. I can transfer in between chords pretty well (not the best but getting there) but I get discouraged because my strumming sounds like crap.

Another question I ahve is just about if you guys think I'm cleanign my strings properly. I have a guitar cloth that I run up and down the fret board after every time I play. Then I put it under the strings (between the fret board and strings) and run it up and down three times and then I do individual strings for the last stage of cleaning. Is this alright or is there a better way?

One last quick question......I bought this Tone Finger Ease Guitar String Lubricant. Any tips on how to apply it correctly? The directions on the can are a bit limited and I don't want to screw anything up while applying it.

Thank you to whoever helps me!

Jason S.
Practice, practice, practice, practice. Seriously that's the only answer. We all have prblems similar to this in the beginning. So like said: Practice
Even the strumming problems? Yea it's kind of discouraging to know a handful of song intro's then once trying to play the chords of the song I go to sounding like hell.
Yeah, I had the same probem with strumming when I started out. All you have to do is work at it and it will come naturally. As for your strings, it sounds to me like you're cleaning them as well as you can. I hardly ever clean mine...
But I guess I'll just keep practicing! At least I'm having fun now. I remember when I first got it I thought I would be really good at it before I even tried it and then got all disappointed when I sucked. Now that I've started practicing I can't wait to pick up my guitar again!
BTW can you use slides on acoustic. After listening to Wishlist (Pearl Jam) live on my New York bootlegs I want to learn how to slide! Eddie uses an electric. I recently saw the Bauhaus live with NIN in Saratoga and Daniel Ash used a drumstick to slide with. I'm just wondering if slides work on Acoustics.
The noise you are getting from your pick/plectrum is possibly due to what size/guage you are using. It's just a thought.
"Those who do not want to imitate anything, produce nothing."
Just practice dude....

Strumming is a pain because you think it would be so easy to do. It took me months to get a natural strum. The thing that worked best fro me was to pick a simple song that i could make the chords for (i think i chose wonderwall-oasis). Put it on your stereo and just copy it, over and over. It is a real work out for your brain, and will probably take an hour or to get it right........ But you will wake up the next day and realise you can strum along to anything, it's like it just "clicked". Well that's how it worked for me anyway.

Also use thin picks for strumming when you are starting out.

Take care

Yea I do use a thin pick. Im thinking of trying out Dava picks too. I like Oasis and have been thinking of trying to learn the chords in Wonderwall.
I don't know if this is your problem but I remember getting frustrated from strumming when I tried to hard to mimic the original songs rythm exactly.

I didn't fix the problem until i just stopped worrying about it and played it the way I felt comfortable and before I knew it the rythym I was using was the same as the songs I was playing and I never even realized it.

I think that was the best advice I ever had as a beginner, stop trying to copy the sound exactly and try and let it come naturally, to much thinking makes everything harder.
I had some trouble with strumming, too...what I did was ignore the strum pattern at first, and instead I strummed the chord in time to the music...for example, if it's in common time, strum once for each quarter note in the measure. This will help with your chord change speed and tempo, too. Then, when you get comfortable with it, try different patterns.

I bought a slide for my acoustic, but haven't learned how to use it properly yet. You can get one for under ten bucks, and it's a decent investment...it's fun to screw around with. You can use anything tubular for a slide, but if you buy one you have materials to consider.
There are three main types: ceramic, glass and metallic. Ceramic ones have a warm tone, as do glass; brass or steel have a brighter tone. It's all preference, but I think most acoustic players prefer glass. It takes a bit of practise to get used to, because you have to mute some of the strings. A slide on an acoustic sounds great, though. Listen to some Clapton, he uses a slide pretty often.
"He has a woman's name and wears makeup. How original."
--Alice Cooper, on Marilyn Manson.
For strumming make sure your wrist is loose, this may feel strange at first but you will get used to it.
In my opinion, thin picks are the easiest to use when strumming but if you think that's the problem, then try using a Fender medium pick, it's not that hard as many other medium picks i've used. Try strumming up and down. start slow, then gradually increase speed. I think that could help. let the music flow and once your into it, go for it!! Thats what i do.
The protagonist sees the dragon and moans about how hard it will be to get the princess to fall in love with him, he gets eaten. The princess is very happy, because he was a whiny fag anyway.

Quote by kanguuu
its old, good, but old lol
Thank you, I have been practicing like mad lately. Learned the opening to Otherside (RHCP) and practicing my simple chords (A,E,G)!

Thanks for all your help guys! You all rule!

This Finger Ease stuff is great too, makes transfering so much better and it helps your callouses!