#1
Hi, I've recently decided that it would be beneficial to my playing if I learned to play more stuff that requires you not to use a pick, or just to adapt to playing without one in general as I think it will give me more versatility. Basically I just have a few questions about this and how I can learn effectively in the coming months.

At first I started this because I wanted to play stuff like Simon & Garfunkel, songs like Wednesday Morning 3 A.M. and some things by Fleetwood Mac as well. But now I'm thinking of trying to adapt the metal and rock guitar stuff I learned before, and wonder if some of what I'm doing is worth it.

For one, I'm trying to play sweeping arpeggios like before, but rather than sweep with a pick I obviously have to play in the more bluegrass style of using each finger on my right hand in succession. That, I imagine, will have a lot of room for improvement in speed and precision. The other thing I've just started trying is playing some of the old warm up exercises, but these are on one string. If you're familiar with the one which goes (in both frets and fingers) 1234-2341-3412-4123, well that's what I mean. Thing is I'm now trying it with the fingers on my right hand corresponding exactly to the left hand if you get what I mean. I'm not sure about this one - I guess it may help co-ordination between hands? It's just, I'm so used to practising things in order to increase the speed! And with that one I don't know if it's particularly feasible to be playing at speed using each finger on the right, on one string, rather than alternate picking with a plectrum.

Third, even the songs I've learned using this technique, I find that the little finger on my right hand is often redundant, and in terms of picking any string it's still exceptionally weak. Imagine a song like WM3A.M. where each note in succession is on a different string and played with a different finger (and the thumb for the lowest) - would it help for me to practice that in a way where I don't use my thumb, and make it much harder by having to use the little finger?

Last of all - sorry for the essay - it's a bit embarrassing to admit that I never properly learned how to strum chords without a plectrum. Of course I can do it but I've never actually known if there's a particular technique that's best. The way I do it uses the nail of the index finger on the downstroke, so there tends to be too much emphasis on the downstroke and not much sense of a driving rhythm to it. Any way of describing how I could improve this?

Thanks, as you can probably tell, I have some severe catching up to do on this area of playing!
#2
I'm subscribing to this thread... because I am in the same boat! I am taking a classical guitar class at school to help, but my right hand is pretty retarded!
Ibanez SZ520QM - Transparent Red
-Seymour Duncan '59 in the bridge/Coil-Tapped Pearly Gates in the neck
Synsonics Strat Copy with Hotrails Pickup in the bridge
Vox AC15cc Tube Amp
Vox V847 Wah
Digitech JamMan Looper
Cusack Screamer OD Pedal
#5
Quote by Jonjy2
How do I subscribe to this?


Well... I just posted in it and now when I want to go back I do an advanced search for posts by my name!
Ibanez SZ520QM - Transparent Red
-Seymour Duncan '59 in the bridge/Coil-Tapped Pearly Gates in the neck
Synsonics Strat Copy with Hotrails Pickup in the bridge
Vox AC15cc Tube Amp
Vox V847 Wah
Digitech JamMan Looper
Cusack Screamer OD Pedal
#6
Is that the only way to subscribe to a thread or is there an actual option to do so properly?

By the way, got myself a Vintage acoustic today for £99, and learned about my problem of alternate picking on the 1234-2341 exercises from the guy at the shop. For all other wondering about alternate picking without, er, a pick, use your index and middle fingers one after the other. Always playing upstroke I think.
Last edited by wireless89 at Feb 16, 2008,
#7
i,ve been playing five years, and only started useing the pick since christmas.im a lot more fluent/faster with just fingers but i like the tone you get with a pick.
#8
If you want that sharper sound then grow your finger nails longer on those three fingers. I had trouble breaking nails. So I went to wallyworld and had fake put on just those three. They work perfect. I use a thumb pick for the low strings. So when i want a little more control on the lower strings i use it like a regular pick. Cost was only $9.00.