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Rock_Rocket
12-11-2002, 02:58 PM
Hi there,

I recently ('bout three days ago) started fooling around with this "floating hand"-thingy. Honestly spoken it feels AWKWARD!
But since I believe this to be an improvement concerning rh-technique (once you get used to it...), I guess I'll keep on trying a bit... I also learned (thx EricV) that angling the pick causes better sound and helps to increase speed. My question is: how much should I angle the pick? Slightly? Sometimes my playing sounds kinda scratchy... do I angle the pick too much?

Thanks for your replies!

Rock_Rocket

Danster
12-11-2002, 05:35 PM
Originally posted by Rock_Rocket
I also learned (thx EricV) that angling the pick causes better sound and helps to increase speed. My question is: how much should I angle the pick? Slightly? Sometimes my playing sounds kinda scratchy... do I angle the pick too much?Hey Rock,
I also began angling my pick a few months ago due to a video of Paul Gilbert that Eric suggested, and then with further discussions with Eric. (I had always been a right hand floater though). It felt awkward to me for maybe a week, and then it became natural. I think a steeper angle is more important for fast picking, and for slower picking it doesn't matter too much. I prefer a shallower angle for slower stuff, especially if I'm slamming the strings hard, because using a steeper angle causes too much pick slippage in my hand.

I get the scratchy sound too sometimes, usually on an upstroke. For me, that seems to be due to too little "conviction" on the stroke. What I mean is, if I kinda slowly drag the pick across the string on an upstroke, I get scratchiness. That seems to be solved by a sharper pick attack (not necessarily more force) on the string.

I hope this stuff makes sense. However, I assume no responsibility for yukky playing on your part due to taking my advice. :D I am still quite a beginner.

Cheers,
Dan

RobA
12-11-2002, 08:15 PM
This is a question for you right handed floating pickers. How do you go about muting strings that aren't being used? When I don't float I mute all the other strings I'm not using, with my right hand. When I float sometimes there is unwanted noise. This is usually when I'm using a high gain setting on my amp. I'm new to letting my hand float, so that may be the problem there. It might go away as I get better at it. Does anyone else have that problem?

EricV
12-11-2002, 09:36 PM
Julian, does the pic below help ?
Itīs not really high-quality, but it is a good example of how far the pick should be slanted...

Rock_Rocket
12-14-2002, 09:00 PM
Thanks a lot, Eric. Anyway, it's pretty tough to choose an angle that works best for me. Right now, it's like "the shallower, the better" and my rh is just the opposite of being relaxed... Guess I'll have to keep on working a bit *sigh*. I hope it's worth it. I'm afraid I might make a mistake and get used to something wrong 'cause there isn't anyone around to have a look at my rh (and my playing-technique in general), therefore I'm practising in front of a mirror in order to check if my picking - at least - looks right.
Man, it's hard, but... the reward (an outlet for heart and soul (poetry, huh? ;-) )) for all the work is incredible, isn't it?

Rock_Rocket

szulc
12-14-2002, 09:07 PM
The picture is Paul Gilbert and he is using an angle that is lees than I have seen hime use in other videos. In general he is going for 45 degrees or more. One more thing this, guy is just about as fast as they come don't beat yourself up if you can't get there. It takes a lot of time and patience, and I'll bet it doesn't hurt to have a lot of fast twitch muscle fiber. The point is be better than you were yesterday don't compare your speed to PG at least not for a good long while.

EricV
12-15-2002, 12:18 PM
Hey there,

yes, itīs worth the effort. I used to spend a lot of time fixing tiny details about my left hand and right hand-technique. Once I had the best method figured out, I started increasing speed etc.
Once you find the best way for yourself, try to get used to it so you donīt have to think about it anymore.
The mirror is a good idea, I used one to make sure I really move my hand from the wrist, with no elbow-movement and the smallest amout of forearm movement.

And Danster is right: a steeper angle improves the tone and makes fast picking way easier. A shallow angle results in a ... I dunno... harsh tone and your pick might "get caught" a lot.
Who knows... maybe one of these days you drop by for another lesson, and hopefully Iīll be able to help you out with that question...

Anyway, donīt get discouraged. Sometimes itīs tough, and becomes very time-consuming, but itīs really worth the effort

Warm regards
Eric

szulc
12-15-2002, 02:26 PM
Floating RH doen't mean you can't mute with your RH it just means you can't rest your RH on the strings or bridge. If you have a floating tremelo you can't rest you hand on the bridge anyway cause it will put you out of tune. It is ok to touch the strings to mute them but use only enough pressure to accomplish this.

metallibeast
12-15-2002, 02:50 PM
If I did not remember wrongly, I believe Satriani positions his pick almost or is totally parallel to his strings when he is shredding.

-Beast

EricV
12-15-2002, 03:08 PM
Originally posted by metallibeast
If I did not remember wrongly, I believe Satriani positions his pick almost or is totally parallel to his strings when he is shredding.

-Beast

On the other hand, he uses a lot of legato-stuff, I havenīt heard a lot of really fast all alternate-picked runs from him. This is not meant to put him down !
He just has a style where he uses a lot of very fast legato stuff, often picking when changing strings. His style is considerably different from guys like Gilbert, Tafolla, Malmsteen...

BTW, for SWEEPING ( I corrected this... I accidentially wrote "shredding" before, so sorry for the confusion ! ) Iīd recommend to not angle the pick, since it makes it easier to get from string to string in time that way...

Eric

metallibeast
12-15-2002, 03:21 PM
Originally posted by Eric
BTW, for shredding Iīd recommend to not angle the pick, since it makes it easier to get from string to string in time that way...

Do you mean the pick is flat? I thought that it is always the rule of thumb to angle ur pick for playing fast and getting a good tone. Won't it be kinda hard to play fast if the pick is flat? More resistance rite?

-Beast

EricV
12-15-2002, 03:26 PM
OOOPPS

Sorry, that must be confusing. I meant for SWEEPING, not SHREDDING.
Sorry...
Eric

metallibeast
12-15-2002, 03:38 PM
hehehe
that really threw me off :confused:

Hey but than it could be the beginnning of a new picking era, instead of following everybody, we could try picking with our pick flat.

Kinda like Eddie Van Halen holding his pick with his thumb and middle finger. Steve Morse using three fingers to hold his pick.

Totally different from the other players out there!!!

-Beast

EricV
12-15-2002, 03:40 PM
LOL yeah, but on the other hand, there must be a reason why most players angle the pick :)
I tried to play with a not-angled pick, and it didnīt work for me... didnīt liek the tone of it, and it felt way more difficult...

Anyway, hope I cleared up the issue about the typo ( sweeping / shredding )... I corrected my post
Eric

Schooligo
12-21-2002, 03:16 AM
"if I'm slamming the strings hard, because using a steeper angle causes too much pick slippage in my hand."

I've had just the opposite experience, I have found that I have less chance of pick slippage if I play at an angle, because I decrease the amount of surface area my pick will come in contact with.
Also when I accent a rhythmic figure ie. a 1 beat triplet-if the music calls for accenting the 1 of the triplet I angle the pick just a little bit more on the accented note, then play with less angle as I play the other 2 notes of the triplet, then angle my pick to accent the 2 of the next triplet, etc. I have had the honor to attend a Guitar Clinique with AL Dimeola & noticed he also angled his pick during accents.

"my rh is just the opposite of being relaxed.."

It is really important to play as relaxed as possible especially if you aspire to attain fast CONTROLLED technique, as well as being comfortable while playing, and avoiding stress injuries.

"One more thing this, guy is just about as fast as they come"
P.G. is awesome, I have the instructional video Eric displayed of P.G., what is so cool about his playing is that he plays with such control, & has impeccable TIMING & RHYTHM.. Whatever he plays he can play blindingly fast, then play the same musical part at slower tempos. This is not as easy as it sounds, many musicians don't have the versatility to go from one speed to another & still exhibit Technique, Timing, Taste, etc.

Sometimes itīs tough, and becomes very time-consuming, but itīs really worth the effort

Man, it's hard, but... the reward (an outlet for heart and soul (poetry, huh? ;-) )) for all the work is incredible, isn't it?

You & Eric said it ALL!!!!

Bizarro
12-21-2002, 06:37 AM
Some picks have a beveled edge. I use these exclusively!

Picks with a *square* edge catch strings and flip out of my hands while I'm playing!:mad: Just one more reason why I always keep a pick in my wallet, coat pockets, jeans, car...

The bevel really helps me out and has stopped the slippage, too! I experimented quite a bit with different picks to find which ones had the best tone, stayed in my hands (even with sweat), and all that good stuff.

Schooligo
12-22-2002, 01:11 AM
I'm not familiar w/ picks that have a beveled edge, but hey if they work &/or minimize slippage that's the most important thing!
I know Eric Johnson will sand his picks for a more rounded tip because he likes to minimize the clicking noise, & maximize the sound of the note, chord, etc. Dimebag Darrell said he will take a dart & scratch an X in his picks to minimize slippage, and I know many guitarists will not even use the tip of the pick instead preferring to use one of the rounded edges, usually as a preference for their Tone.