Flamenco Picao/Picado Techniques
In Picado (literally 'picked') playing, passages with single notes are played with strokes of alternating right hand fingers. The most common method is to use alternate strokes with the index and middle finger. The technique can be used to achieve brilliant speed and attack, but it can also be used for slower passages.
Right hand position for Picado: The knuckles may lie slightly more over the bass strings. The knuckles are parallel to the strings and the back of the hand is roughly parallel to the plane of the guitar. The wrist remains relaxed and there is no movements at the wrist joint.
The thumb: The thumb rests lightly on the 6th string to stabilize the hand while notes are played on any of the three treble strings
Finger movements: In fairly slow passages the fingers are relaxed. The power of the stroke comes entirely from movement at the knuckles. The alternating movement is as if you were 'walking' the fingers, each taking a swing of equal extent and equal force. The finger swings in a direction across the strings and also towards the soundboard (i.e., in towards your chest). The tip of the nail hits the string firmly and cleanly, and the finger follows through until its tip is brought to rest against the adjacent lower-pitched string. As the nail hits the string, the tip joint is bent backwards by impact. Ring and little finger stay relaxed. As one moves from treble to bass strings the whole hand moves across the strings in a straight lineparallel to the bridge.
Three basic rules of picado:
1. The fingers must always play alternately, no matter what changes of string occur. Two consecutive notes are NEVER played by the same finger.
2. The fingers move from the knuckle joints
3. The posture of the right hand and wrist in relation to whichever string is being played by the fingers is kept constant. To maintain this, the hand is moved in a straight line parallel to the bridge.
Try the included exercise. Remember to use the Capo on the 2nd fret.
"Great things can be done by great sacrifices only" - Swami Vivekananda