Fingerpicking patterns etc.
I've been playing guitar for a few months now, and am fairly proficient at chord changes, strum patterns and the like, but didn't try out any fingerpicking until recently. I've realised it's much harder to self-teach, and so was wondering if anyone could direct me to any good fingerpicking tutorials...preferably for folk-type music.
I'm not sure as to the exact location but I am pretty confident there will be an article on the site somewere just do a search for 'finger picking' somethings bound to come up.
Here is a GN fingerpicking lesson on "The House of The Rising Sun", and the following are links to other fingerpicking tutorials.....
Those should get you started in the right direction!
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"Don't wanna ride no shootin' star. Just wanna play on the rhythm guitar." Emmylou Harris, "Rhythm Guitar" from "The Ballad of Sally Rose"
As much time as you put into your chord changes should be about the same for how much time/focus you put into your picking hand.
Just like you map out your chord changes, you do the same for your picking. There's more than one way to do a lot of things but, it comes down to what is easiest to you. Like everything, take your time, relax and start slow. Once you get what finger goes where, slowly increase the speed.
Another thing that may or may not help, I like to look at my picking hand as if I were continuously rotating two balls in my hand. That way each finger can get out of the way for the other. If you start stabbing at the strings you'll more than likely stumble into your own fingers.
Good luck and have fun.
Thanks all. The help's appreciated.
Have you checked out the lessons on GN?
Visit the Reviews of Instructional Material, CDs and Shows forum. There are some reviews and lists of books for fingerpicking. I received a couple of books this week and Beyond Basics Fingerstyle Guitar, by Mark Hanson, is very good for beginners. It covers several basic techniques as arpeggiated chords, Travis picking, fingerpicked blues and so on.
I'm following the exercises pretty well but I already can arpeggiate chords and play some easy fingerpicked songs before to start with the book. When I finish a couple of lessons, I'll write a deeper review.
And welcome to GN! :wink:
I looked at the "Silent Night" lesson on GN: https://www.guitarnoise.com/lessons/silent-night/
And it returned to my mind a question that I've had a lot when looking at differenttabs for fingerpicking:
There just doesn't seem to be any consistent pattern to my eyes. I can see some picking patterns repeat themselves, but they're interspersed amongst lots of different picking patterns. A very quick count led me to think there were about 5 or 6 different patterns in that lesson....What I don't get it, are you just supposed to learn them all, and memorise when to change from one patter to the next? Isn't that really time consuming?
I might be missing something, but right now I just don't get it.
I didn't read that lesson but usually each chord has a way to play it (really it is based on the strings which cointain the notes, where is the root note, the voice of that chord, etc.). So, usually the "pattern" is similar between different songs and also in the same song for each chord.
In that lesson, David also includes the meloldy over the harmony defined by the arpeggiatted chords. It is also usual when you play in fingerpicking style. So, it is difficult for you to identify the patterns clearly.
Well, if it were the same all the time, the whole song would sound the same with very little variation.
The more you play it, the easier it will become. You'll even forget that you even changed patterns. Repetition, repetition, repetition. It's tough now because it's new to you.
Didn't you have the same scary feeling when you first got on a bike? That's all resolved now, right?
Thanks for the help.
One of the easiest fingerpicking songs is House of The Rising Sun and there's a lesson here on that, also Scarborough Fair and there's a lesson here on that song, too.
One of the coolest thing about fingerpicking is also one of the most frustrating - your fingers will take to almost any pattern very quickly. Sometimes surprisingly so. And then you find that you can only do one pattern!
It's important not to fall into the "what's-the-one-strumming-pattern-for-this-song?" trap, and to do so, you want to be able to switch patterns, whether strumming or picking, on a dime. It's really rare for anyone to use one pattern throughout a song. Although with digital "cut and paste" technology, we hear it more often than ever now, it's not how people normally play.
The "House of the Rising Sun" tutorial is meant to get you started. "Scarborough Fair" is meant to help you see that switching patterns can be integral to your playing and to making a song sound like music.
We've a number of other lessons here that use a lot of fingerpicking, from "Bookends" to "Julia" to "Time After Time" to many of the chord melody and Celtic pieces. In addition to mine, you'll find some by Peter Simms and Doug Sparling. They can all teach you more about fingerstyle.
But we definitely need more introductory pieces / lessons. I'll see what I can come up with.