#1
ive had a little experience with legato but never really sat down to learn it and now that im doing that im running into problems. firstly, i am having trouble getting any kind of full sound out of my notes. i know the whole point of legato is to be smooth and limber so i dont want to be whacking the fretboard with my fingers, but when i just gloss over them i dont get a whole lot back. also, concerning fingering, on a lick like

D ------------9-11-13
A 9-11-13


i cant figure out if my fingers should be 1 2 4 or 1 3 4. im thinking the first one is correct but i have a hard time hitting my middle finger in the right spot on the fret when i do it, so if that is indeed correct i would have to practice it a lot.

if you guys have any other tips that helped you learn to use good legato i would appreciate any help i can get,

thanks


(oh, and i realize theres probably 2133503465 legato threads in this forum but i used searchbar and didnt really find anything helpful, sorry if thats a problem)
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#2
I had the same problem but unfortunately i've got no other advice other than, use a metronome and start slow and build it up, getting more complex all the time.

In terms of what fingering to use do it how you feel comfortable which i suggest would be 124, also make sure your doing it through an amp so you can hear it nice and clearly.
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#3
for the 124 134 problem, its all a matter of personal comfort, for me, a lick like that would be much easier played 124 as opposed to 134, but i know some people would prefer 134.

and practicing with a metronome is your best bet, and make sure your hitting the strings with enough power to produce a full sounding note, and when doing pull offs, make sure you do a little "Flick" (for lack of a better term) so the next note sounds full as well.
#4
the fingering for that lick is 1 2 4, and in regards practising i always found this lick to be helpful (adrian smith of iron maiden uses this lick to practise aswell)

E--1-2-1-3-1-4-1-3-1

and just play that for and while (you could just sit down and play that while watching tv)

and if you have any trouble stretching to hit all the frets cleanly try putting you thumb on the back of the neck so its parallel to the frets, another thing you can do is play legato lines on the higher register of the fretboard and gradually move them down towards the nut.
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#5
yeah it's 1 2 4
try working slow on easy riffs , try using h-ons and p-offs not only when you see it in a song if you can use hammer ons and pulloffs somewhere , do it!
it will strengten your fingers.

and here's a small exercise you can work on! it's all on 1 string high E
( based on the solo of Joe Satriani ' If i could fly' ) only pick the string the 1st time!!

E ----5p3p2s3h5h7~p5p3h5-p3s2h3~~

fingers ---- 4 2 1/ 1 2 4 p 2 1 2 p1/1 2

first pick the string and pull off with your pinky and then with your second finger
then when your at the 2nd fret slide your first finger to the 3rd.
hammer on with second finger on 5th fret and then with pinky on seventh fret.
pull of to the second finger, making the a note(5th fret) ring,
then to 3rd and hammer back to 5th fret.
pull of from 5th fret(2nd finger) to 3rd(1st finger)
slide from 3rd to 2nd fret and finally , hammer with 2nd finger on 3rd fret

Last edited by toine at Aug 3, 2008,
#6
this has all been really helpful, thanks, but im still confused about one thing

are you supposed to hit the fretboard hard enough to make a sound or have a technique so make a sound with a soft hit?
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#7
Quote by ratm92
this has all been really helpful, thanks, but im still confused about one thing

are you supposed to hit the fretboard hard enough to make a sound or have a technique so make a sound with a soft hit?

hit hard enough , just like a normal hammer on , pull off .
#8
Yeah, when I do legato I'm hardly touching the strings. I just have enough experience doing it
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#9
Quote by J.A.M
Yeah, when I do legato I'm hardly touching the strings. I just have enough experience doing it

exactly , the more you do it , the less effort you'll need.
#10
One thing I had to figure out on my own is that when "pulling" off, it'll ring better if you pull sort of down and off the string at the same time instead of just lifting your finger up really fast.

though you gotta be careful cause you can accidentally pull off into the the next string
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#11
yea i was wondering about pull offs. is it just natural for your finger to hit the next string (thus making it necessary simply to mute it with the index finger)? or am i just not doing it correctly?
#12
Quote by sisuphi
yea i was wondering about pull offs. is it just natural for your finger to hit the next string (thus making it necessary simply to mute it with the index finger)? or am i just not doing it correctly?

when you pûll off , you're not supposed to hit any other string
unless you want to.
try being as clean as possible
#13
^to me that seems impossible. how can you get a good flick on the string without hitting the adjacent string?
#14
Well, Steve Morse is a great help for when I need to improve my legato.

Try pushing down with your other three fingers, and hammer on and pull off with just one finger, it helps build strength and independence for each finger, which is crucial for developing good Legato
#15
I'll just add one more thing.

Try practicing with a finger exercise such as:
|-1-4-2-4-3-4-2-4-
Generally you index and middle fingers are going to be the strongest, ring finger next and then pinky the weakest. This will build up your pinky more but without compromising the others.

Edit: Don't forget to concentrate just as much on pull-offs as you do on hammer-ons.
#16
Quote by sisuphi
^to me that seems impossible. how can you get a good flick on the string without hitting the adjacent string?


You can either mute the adjacent string with your index like you said, or just rest your picking hand over the strings (not anchoring) to keep things quiet.
#17
Quote by ratm92
if you guys have any other tips that helped you learn to use good legato i would appreciate any help i can get,

thanks


Stay as relaxed as possible and breathe - no, really, breathe, and keep good body posture - don't hunch over the guitar under immense concentration, I used to do this in my early days, and it ain't good for the old hay stack....and there shouldn't be any tension in your hand and fingers (I'm not saying there is).

Keep the thumb relaxed and try silding a pattern up and down.

High e -5-h-7-h-8-p-7-p-5-s-7-h-8-h-10-p-8-p-7 (back and forth)

The great thing about sliding is that it ensures the thumb is relaxed. Really, the thumb is just there to stop your hand from falling off the neck, and ideally you should be able to release it completely when playing a lick like this:

High e -5-h-7-h-8-p-7-p-5 (repeat loads)

Edit: Sorry for the double post.