Question About Playing The Guitar

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by chet again, May 21, 2019.

  1. MattyK-USA

    MattyK-USA Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Having been lucky enough to watch the Rev W.G. play up front and personal like, I can say that if he does it, he doesn't do it all the time.

    I'm a frequent pinkie-rester myself.
     
  2. Nubs

    Nubs Tele-Afflicted

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    Ahhh thanks for that video @etype! Tommy is a pretty good instructor as well as an alright guitar player ;) I'll need to practice that.

    As far as playing goes, I find anchoring helps me mostly. However, I also tend to touch the upper strings when I do anchor which causes them to ring out unwanted. I am trying out the "fist" style of picking where the fingers are not extended. I'm noticing that is more difficult for me because I can't "feel" where the strings are. Anchoring gives me a point of reference.
     
  3. Larry F

    Larry F Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    In days of yore, I curled up my right hand pinky and anchored it with the first joint touching the pickguard or whatever. After ten years, though, my right wrist developed tendonitis. It was very bad and hurt like holy hell. The doc gave me a shot of cortisone, which really helped knock back the pain. I couldn't play for long periods, and realized that my life as a professional guitarist needed rethinking.

    That was some 40 years ago, and I had started playing again 12 years ago. The first order of business was to modify my right hand technique. Now, I am anchor-free and happy with it. Interestingly, during one of my EMG nerve conduction studies for CIDP, that doc administering the shocks/exam said that she could tell that I had had tendonitis all those years ago. If I alter my technique a little, I can induce the same pain I felt back then. I don't normally seek out pain, but I was curious.
     
  4. trev333

    trev333 Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Bridge palm planter here, on Teles.. it just feels so right and it means your pick/fingers are working over the bridge pu... even if I'm on the neck pu, I still pick at the back ...

    on strats I conscientiously have to remind myself to play further forward and not plant on my floating bridges... more like acoustic playing with my arm on the body edge...

    though planting on the corner of a bridge gives me a point of reference and some leverage to dig in...
     
  5. thunderbyrd

    thunderbyrd Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    I have always kept the heel of my hand right in front of the bridge, using it for control of the strings. I started doing this early on and it has inhibited my ability to strum. but the habit is very deep.
     
  6. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I prefer to play with enough volume that undamped strings start playing without being picked.
    So easily 1/3 of my effort is stopping the strings, then maybe 1/3 starting them, and 1/3 fretting them.
    Really, damping unwanted notes and noise is almost the hardest part to get right.
    I've pretty much cut out playing unplugged because that part of my technique gets weak if I'm not dealing with my preferred feedback function.
    For me that's essential to the whole point of the electric guitar.

    So some kinds of picking and muting are done with the pinkie side corner of my palm pressing on the bridge saddles, not resting.
    RH wrist stays straight, but I keep a short enough strap, no cool punk rock low slung image.

    The durn strings are like a bag o' cats scrambling to escape, especially with a fuzz pedal.
    When my RH is playing closer to the neck for a more rounded fat tone, I'm muting with my right thumb, and not really moving my hand far from the strings, since it needs to stop three or more strings when picking one or two.
    Of course the LH does a lot of muting too, but it gets busy doing other important stuff.

    I also sort of glide my RH pinkie across the guard to keep a reference of distance from the strings, so I don't dig too deep or too shallow with the pick.
    But I don't anchor it or put any pressure on it.

    I talked with a very good violinist years ago who had come to Boston to study with what he considered a great teacher. His claim was that you keep going to a teacher even after becoming a great player, but the teacher works on your pain rather than your sound.
    Seems a concert violinist keeps hurting themselves.
    I took a lot from that discussion, as I'm a wired tense person, and have to really focus on observing my tension and stress points, then learning to relax them.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
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  7. xgritzx

    xgritzx Tele-Meister

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    I either have it on, behind or hovering right above. although I do it alot less in the P&W setting im currently in since its alot of open chords. I think from being a product of the grunge/metal genres you had to be ready to mute pretty much always.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
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  8. '64 Tele

    '64 Tele Tele-Holic

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    I rest my palm on the bridge....except for when I'm pretending I'm at a hootenanny and I'm trying to wear all the finish off the front of my guitar with a pick. :rolleyes:
     
  9. Obsessed

    Obsessed Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I think it is a fabulous technique that should be part of every guitarist's toolbox. I do it a lot on both electric and acoustic, but it totally depends on what I'm playing and how I am muting. I think the palm should be very dynamic and able to be placed in a variety of positions.
     
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  10. Bartholomew3

    Bartholomew3 Friend of Leo's

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    Old Rock & Roll technique for muffling the bass strings - only way to do it right and make it sound like back then.
     
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  11. RodeoTex

    RodeoTex Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've got a ZZ Top live video that I've seen a bunch of times in the shop. Looks to me like Billy anchors on the bridge quiet a bit, but then Chris Robinson says that ZZ Top goes up there and lip-syncs every night anyway.
    So which of those 2 characters would you care to believe?
     
  12. Steve 78

    Steve 78 Tele-Afflicted

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    Always for palm muting (which I do a lot). Not often otherwise. My hand goes where it goes, I don't think about it too much.
     
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  13. verb boten

    verb boten Tele-Meister

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    A lot of it goes in the "folklore" column, not the "facts" column. :D
     
  14. Deeve

    Deeve Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Message received as intended.

    BFG is a national treasure, but not a repository of clinical "facts".
     
  15. GoldDeluxe5E3

    GoldDeluxe5E3 Tele-Holic

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    I played a Les Paul exclusively for two decades. I'm not surprised that Gibbons says he rests his palm on the bridge, because it's very natural on the LP. However, the day came that I wanted to play a Stratocaster, and knew instantly I'd need to learn a whole new right hand technique that didn't allow me to anchor my right palm. I now play a different right hand style depending upon the instrument.
     
  16. Nightclub Dwight

    Nightclub Dwight Tele-Holic

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    Yes, I anchor on the bridge sometimes. I also do it on the lip of a P90 pickup on Les Paul Juniors.

    But I don't do it all the times. Depends on what I'm playing.

    I use a flat pick, finger style and compound picking, so that also factors in. Aggressive rhythm strumming is usually free hand, but I'll quickly set down my hand to mute unwanted string vibrations.
     
  17. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yes and No. Sometimes on the bridge, muting etc. Or to enhance the mids picking near the bridge. But sometimes I just float over the neck pickup. I play mostly Strat electrics live. You need to learn to float.
     
  18. teleman1

    teleman1 Tele-Holic

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    I do whatever I can to achieve the sound I want. So OP, just do what you have to. Heck many times, my right hand is over the frets. Not tapping. Just picking there cause the sound and or I get different. It's all combinations. Then there is your tremolo /vibrato bar.
     
  19. IMadeYouReadThis

    IMadeYouReadThis Tele-Meister

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    On Gibsons (speak of the devil!) - namely my SG - I can't play without placing my hand right on the space over the saddles, between the bridge and tailpiece. That location is perfect (for me) when muting unwanted string noise, flat picking, solos, muting techniques, and just about everything that isn't strumming. It's an anchor.
     
  20. DekeDog

    DekeDog TDPRI Member

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    I was taught that palm muting from the bridge is the proper technique for playing electric with a pick, and resting the V of the palm on the bridge (saddles) while using the meat of the thumb to mute is proper form for muting bass strings. Muting well takes practice.

    I also heard that anchoring the picking hand with pinky and/or the ring finger was not proper... that anchoring only with the muting palm offered more freedom of movement.

    I was also taught that holding the pick with the index finger fully curled and the pick point protruding from around the first knuckle was the proper right hand picking method. Both of those methods are difficult to master, and I find that when I curl my index finger that much, I also want to curl my toes and hold my mouth funny.

    Then, of course, you've got left hand muting technique for the treble strings.

    A lot of great players, from George Benson to Carlos Santana, use totally different picking and anchoring methods, so I don't think it makes that much difference. But, it is probably good to learn proper technique early... if not, it makes it harder to change later if you feel the need.
     
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