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Strumming like a robot

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(@purple)
Reputable Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 343
Topic starter  

I have noticed that my strumming is rather rigid and it inhibits my ability to play some of the faster strumming patterns evenly or consistently. It also sounds like I am playing like a robot. I thought about it and I am not actually sure how I am suppose to strum. I always just did it but now my left hand has outgrown my right and I really notice the weakness. Any exercises or advice on how to loosen up? Or just plain old proper technique?

It's not easy being green.... good thing I'm purple.


   
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(@michhill8)
Honorable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 420
 

Just loosen up, btw how is one hand bigger than the other?? just kidding. Seriously, I don't know how long you've been playing but I guess you're a beginner.
I just posted about strumming on the other forum and what we have come to is that once you start playing more strumming becomes like a second nature. You won't really even think about it. But maybe you're only doing downstrokes, you can alternate strokes you know. Otherwise if you still need to speed up the rhythm just keep practicing. You'll get it I know what you went through.

As for the robot, just loosen up and relax.

Thanks Dudes!
Keep on Rockin'

Pat


   
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(@jasoncolucci)
Reputable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 339
 

you're probably using your wrist instead of your forearm to strum. Or using your wrist and forearm...which is fine, but using the wrist more than the forearm.

Guitarin' isn't a job, so don't make it one.


   
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 Hook
(@hook)
Trusted Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 59
 

I have just recently started to get the hang of it. What worked for me was start using a thicker pick; went from 0.5 to 1 mm. I think i hide behind the thin picks loosiness wich compensated for my lack of control. When using a thicker pick i had to develop control if i didnt want the strings to break.


   
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(@kitsune)
Active Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 7
 

strumming like a robot can actually be pretty cool though! ya know, like the dance "the robot," but playing guitar.

I saw one guy in a Japanese band doing it once, it was pretty awesome. Actually I guess it could be described as more like a doll, with a very rigid up and down pivot from the elbow and not much else of his body moving...

Anyways the point I'm trying to make is NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE CREATIVE VALUE OF DOING THINGS DIFFERENT FROM EVERYONE ELSE.

:)


   
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(@purple)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 343
Topic starter  

Anyways the point I'm trying to make is NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE CREATIVE VALUE OF DOING THINGS DIFFERENT FROM EVERYONE ELSE.

:)
Well, I certainly never thought of it that way. I already use odd fingers to play certain things but it is what seems most natural to me. The strumming like a robot wouldn't be so bad but there are rhythms that I screw up because of it.

I have improved a bit already, I think relaxing is simply what I need to do and allowing my forearm to move. I already use about 1mm pick - 0.96mm and I also use upstrokes. I am not quite a beginner - my difficulty strumming has to do more with drum rolls.

Thanks for all of your help!

It's not easy being green.... good thing I'm purple.


   
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(@hbriem)
Honorable Member
Joined: 22 years ago
Posts: 646
 

Ummmm, a .96mm pick is extremely thick, it's even thicker than I use for an electric bass and although some people like it fine for lead playing, will be very hard to play fluid rhythm with unless you're an extremely expert player with a light touch.

I find that a .46mm or .38mm pick suits me best for rhythm. I usually use a .60 as a compromise for mixed lead and rhythm, but anything thicker is completely useless for rhythm and will lead to very robotic, choppy playing.

--
Helgi Briem
hbriem AT gmail DOT com


   
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