Help me regarding finger picking..

Discussion in 'Beginner's Q&A Forum' started by beatles, May 24, 2004.

  1. beatles

    beatles New Member

    Hi folks
    please help me in picking..
    for lead it necessary to pick using 3 fingers or can we pick with plectrum also?..if it is necessary to pick using all the three fingers? if so how to practice?..till now iam picking by nail of index finger and achieved some decent speed..
    please help me

    :nw: :think: :nw:
  2. 6String_assasin

    6String_assasin The Painkiller

    use thumb for the bass, and use 'all the rest' of the fingers of ur right hand to finger pick. try with some easy songs. for example, start with bryan adams' summer of 69'. finger pick the riff. it will take u 3fingers and the thumb.(listewn to the acoustic live version).
  3. guitar_gal

    guitar_gal New Member

    hey ppl! i desperately need help in finger pickin. ok, 1st things 1st.. do i need 2 use my NAILS or not? coz i dun hav very strong nails. dey break easily. cant really use em much.

    dat apart... lemme take sum chord. like Gmaj. now, i need 2 pick ALL da strings... so i read in dis site dat i cud use my thumb 2 pick da 4th, 5th n 6th strings. n my index, middle n ring 2 pick da lower 3.

    so am i supposd 2 pick da 4,5,6 strings wid da thumb on a dwnstroke n da 1,2,3 string wid da fingers on an upstroke... all at da same time?? i cant seem 2 do dat. i mean, i can only manage 2 pick da 1,2,3 n 6th strings. not da 4th n 5th. it seems impossible or sumthin. i hav a feelin mebbe im tryin it wrong.

    can sumbody gimme a detailed xplanation?
  4. Quadrophenia

    Quadrophenia New Member

    thats the best way to play it..the bass strings EAD only with your thumb and the last three strings GBe with index,midd and ring,

    Also, i think maybe u shud put up the part of the tab which is annoying u..
  5. guitar_gal

    guitar_gal New Member

    hey, im juz learnin 2 finger pick. so i aint playin ne tabs as of now. waz takin sum lessons frm dis website. in dat, da 1st lesson itself waz 2 play da Gmaj chord, da way iv mentioned. ivnt tried riffs usin finger picking. think i shud try dat out 1st? wud dat make it ne easier?? :confused:
  6. prash_rocks

    prash_rocks Over the Hills & Far Away

    hey hold on thats kinda funny! though i dont really get ur question... you really mean to 'pick' this G major or 'strum' it?

    in case u have to pick it, do as previously suggested in the form of the arpeggio u need.

    but if u have to strum it u simply join ur thumb and index finger and make it a kinda plectrum and play. on the upstrokes u use the thumbnail, for downstrokes the index nail.

    plus, i see that u are trying to pick the basses with the thumb downward... thats not how its done... the thumb goes up... u hit the bass strings with the thumbnail and make kinda small elliptical motion with the thumb towards urself upward.

    and yes, we're *supposed* to actually use the nails while fingerpicking in order to get the best tones... this is excusable on the electric; though i dont do it even on the acoustic.

    watch out:
  7. guitar_gal

    guitar_gal New Member

    o shit.. im horribly confused now.. prash, chek out dis article.. well, juz da part "kick startin ur fingers".. dwn da page. dats wer i got da lesson i waz talkin abt.

    sumbody read dat part n temme wat its abt. im TOTALLY confused.... :shock:

    prash, i understand wat u r tellin me abt da strummin.. usin da thumb n da index finger nails.. but is dat wat dis article is tryin 2 teach me?? :confused:

    n hey, like i said.. i got real weak nails. dey break very easily. wat do i do?? :(

    damn, iv neva felt dis hopeless!!!!
  8. guitar_gal

    guitar_gal New Member

    n thanx 4 da link.. chekin it out...
  9. prash_rocks

    prash_rocks Over the Hills & Far Away

    hey but u havent given the link to that article yet...

    btw i was just going thru some of the amazing forum postings on this site:

    click on the link 'picking/strumming hand' down below and u'll find most of the technical aspects of picking answered there... oh, and there's one even on strengthening the nails! (

    and if u find fingerpicking really that hard, u may stop doing for a while and improve ur pickstyle in the meanwhile...

    all in all, a great site... worth visiting for all your technical needs:
  10. guitar_gal

    guitar_gal New Member

  11. prash_rocks

    prash_rocks Over the Hills & Far Away

    ..and terribly confused too :)

    tell me frankly, have u ever tried to learn reading tablatures??

    cuz what i guess u meant was the Gmaj chord that i see in the picture...

    what he's trying to do is pick the individual strings in the chord in the order shown... starting from leftmost to rightmost and using the indicated finger to play it: T, T, T, a, m, i

    i'll suggest u revise the tab reading guide somewhere in the beginner's section on this site.. u'll then laugh at yourself for even thinking this way that u did...;)
  12. guitar_gal

    guitar_gal New Member

    ohhhhhhh.... err... ok.. :) dat waz real dumb.... ok, not dat i dun kno how 2 read tabs.. thing is.. i dunno nethin abt finger pickin n thot he waz xplainin how 2 play da chord. thot dat waz how v wer supposd 2 play it.. :p thanx 4 clearin up... :beer:
  13. rajscorps

    rajscorps Kaput

    I wouldn't advise venturing into fingerpicking all by yourself, at least if you have long term plans about playing your guitar. Learn it the right way, once, and you wouldn't regret, ever. You may need to rectify any errors in future, if you did learn it the wrong way.

    Do yourself a favour and get hold of a book - 'The Art of Contemporary Travis Picking' - by Mark Hanson. Look it up on or (Indian Site). It's the bible of fingerpicking. From Dust in the Wind to The Boxer, to Clapton's Signe, you can play every song after you've mastered the techniques listed in here. Feel free to ask for more details.

    I own this book and it's sequel.

  14. guitar_gal

    guitar_gal New Member

    hmm.. il c wat i can do abt dat, raj... wer dya liv btw?
  15. rajscorps

    rajscorps Kaput

    I am from Delhi, guitar girl.

    I suggested that book because there are very few good books on fingerpicking available, which focus on long term playing. The sites you've been to list out a couple of patterns and end it there. What next? What will you do after that?

    The best solution is to learn the various established fingerpicking patterns (Inside Out, Outside In, Pinch, Descending Arpeggios, Ring Finger variations, three finger rolls (remember the famous Hotel California roll?), melody playing etc. that allow you to play the melody/solo, of any song. Hear Hotel California - live version. The entire melody is fingerpicked. Claptons Tears in Heaven, Layla, Signe etc. are some other wonderful examples. Fingerpicking is far better (IMHO) than flatpicking. A fingerpicker can play flatpicking songs anyday, but not vice-versa. I can flatpick and fingerpick. If I had to choose between the two, I'd be a fingerpicker anyday.

    The book I suggested may set you back by 1000 INR or so, but it's a very wise investment. Whether you play for yourself, or for others, fingerpicking will sure turn heads your way.

  16. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    Tyr Travis songs.. They have amazing Finger Ficking..
  17. rajscorps

    rajscorps Kaput

    It is impossible to play and do justice to Merle Travis songs (or other Travis Picking songs) unless you have a hold of the picking patterns. Just try picking 'Dust in the Wind' - by Kansas, or 'Layla' - by EC. These are the easiest fingerpicking songs. Try playing them and you'll see where I am coming from.

    This is why I suggested 'The Art of Contemporary Travis Picking' - Mark Hanson. Don't visit websites and learn from there, not fingerpicking at least. If you have to learn something, learn it once, learn it correctly. Pure genius material is never available for free.

    If you care, read about the book here.

  18. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    The song called SIDE is easy...
  19. rajscorps

    rajscorps Kaput

    Side- by The Invisible Band?

    If that's the song you are referring to - it doesn't use fingerpicking.

  20. jayanth

    jayanth <.: : Call Quits : :.>

    Yhea i doesnt.. But i was talking about Easy Travis songs..

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