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Strumming, how do *you* do it?

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takamineprincess
(@takamineprincess)
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Joined: 13 years ago
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Topic starter  

I'm curious? Do you use a pick or your fingers?

I think I learned wrong. I have never used a pick until recently, its just something that I never had around. So when I strum, I strum with my thumb.... everyone i ask doesn't do it that way. (They either use a pick or strum as if they were holding a pick but w/o one) I'm thinking that maybe thats why I'm having trouble grasping the palm muting.


   
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TwistedFingers
(@twistedfingers)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 596
 

I use both pick and fingers. Depending on the song I'm playing or what I'm trying to do.

I think you may have your answer to the palm muting there. Generally, when I'm palm muting I'm using a pick.

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takamineprincess
(@takamineprincess)
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Joined: 13 years ago
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Topic starter  

thanks for responding, yeah i've noticed that when I am normally strumming I don't keep any part of my hand (palm or side or whatever you are suppose to use) close to the guitar. So when I try it w/or w/o the pick It's super hard to do. :twisted: :roll: One day i'll get it!


   
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Ricochet
(@ricochet)
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I can strum with my thumb for a while, but if I get energetic with it I'm going to get a blister.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


   
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tinsmith
(@tinsmith)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 830
 

Both, without pick.....sometimes I fan the strings,
sometimes I beat the crap out of a loose fore finger, sometimes the thumb, when I'm playing notes then use a backstrum.
When I use a pick, usually I turn it slightly sideways & slice the strings....
(no laughing please. I've been doing it since "Question of Balance" came out)

of course you need to have a guitar also.


   
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JoeHempel
(@joehempel)
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I use both depending on the song.

I play alot of fingerstyle so lean towards my fingers, but when I play country or pop, I'll use both my fingers and pick.

Oh, and you didn't learn wrong, I hadn't picked up a pick until about a year into my learning.

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dogbite
(@dogbite)
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I use a hybred style. pick is held between thumb and index, as the norm, AND I use my middle finger to grab another string(s).
I learned using a pick, but then I began using the middle finger to copy the fingerpicking sound. now I play this way in all styles.

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Rahul
(@rahul)
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Fingers entirely on the classical guitar. I form a sort of a pick with my fingers and use it to strum.

On the steel string, it is mostly using pick.

P.S. - I would like to start using a thumbpick on the classical.


   
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rparker
(@rparker)
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I finger pick on one song. Everything else is with the almighty plectrum.

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


   
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Minotaur
(@minotaur)
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Pick, unless I'm trying something new and am being shy about sounding like a total tool. Then I use my thumb to quiet it.

It is difficult to answer when one does not understand the question.


   
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cnev
 cnev
(@cnev)
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I use a pick pretty much exclusively. There are some songs where I have to pick a string with the pick and play one or more of the others with my fingers but only a handful of those.

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Coolnama
(@coolnama)
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Well I know normal picking ( I think Flatpicking its called or is that another technique altogether ?), know the theory behind sweep picking :P but can't do it yet, I fingerpick, I hybrid pick, the hybrid picking I just learned recently so my pinkie is still getting up to speed, and I also pick with two fingers ( like bassists and classical guitarrists do ) whatever that is called.

When I'm strumming without a pick I form a pick with my hand unless I'm playing a song that calls for the thumb "raking".

A question for dogbite: Do you use hybrid picking for solos ? I mean when I am playing like that and do a solo I put my pinkie back in the body of the guitar. But do you like leave all the fingers up in the air and alternate pick without using your pinkie as an anchor ? Also, do you actually use hybrid picking ( like using the non pick fingers ) for solos? If so, how ?

Sorry for all the questions, I just like to ask alot.

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MusicIsMyLife
(@musicismylife)
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With a pick, held with my thumb and my index and middle as that is the way it is most comfortable for me to do so and it sounds better to me to strum with a pick instead of my fingers alone. However I am just beginning. Perhaps I will switch to something else later on..


   
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Vic Lewis VL
(@vic-lewis-vl)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 10264
 

I don't use picks. I kind of hold my index finger and thumb together, as if I was holding a pick, and then strum.

(Video clip.....

) - that particular song uses arpeggios, finger-picking and strumming. That'd be difficult with a pick! Sorry for the shameless self-promotion, but it's just to show you that you CAN do without picks!

(Aside - so many people on this site will say "oh yeah!" to the mantra, "tone is in your fingers!" - yet they still use a pick..? Discuss.....)

Actually, I will use a pick very occasionally - if the song calls for fast arpeggios strummed close to the bridge. Anything else, fingers all the way.

Oh, and occasionally, that index fingernail will break - I'll use a pick for strumming then. I do try to keep it filed down to a sensible length, though, these days, to try and make sure it doesn't break!

:D :D :D

Vic

"Sometimes the beauty of music can help us all find strength to deal with all the curves life can throw us." (D. Hodge.)


   
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rparker
(@rparker)
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(Aside - so many people on this site will say "oh yeah!" to the mantra, "tone is in your fingers!" - yet they still use a pick..? Discuss.....)
I always thought it simply meant how you played, not what instrument or effects or amp you played. Kopfler uses them sometimes and msot of the times not. It's still his tone coming from his hands and fingers either way. Is kind of a confusing statement though, eh?

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


   
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