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Finger picking panic!

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by kasuals, Aug 20, 2001.

  1. kasuals


    Jul 20, 2001
    Seattle, WA
    I'm having a few issues... and I'm not even sure if they are issues...

    Ok, just to start things off, my mid-range and treble are very low. I know if they are up high enough they will pick up noise.

    When I pick a string with my finger, I can hear my finger touching it. Kind of a dull sound. It's hard to explain the sound exactly, but I know it is the tip of my finger that is doing it.

    Is this to be expected? Or am I doing it improperly?

    If I am picking properly, will a sound gate or compressor, or anything take care of that?

    I'm just not sure if I'm doing it right, and books never really give you much info on proper technique. (At least not the ones I own)

    Anything would help :)
  2. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    I think you're ok. There's a certain amount of noise I hear when I play fingerstyle, but only when I really listen for it. When the pad of your finger strikes the string, it will make somewhat of a thud, but with any amount of volume will mask the sound. Unless of course, your fingernails are making the noise, in which case all you have to to is trim them.

    Enough practice and you'll be comfortable with your technique. If you have any serious doubts about the issue, I would talk to a music teacher or someone who gives lessons, just to give you a few tips. I think you're ok, and any of the gear you mentioned shouldn't be necessary. Good luck!
  3. kasuals


    Jul 20, 2001
    Seattle, WA
    That's the sound :D

    Thank god I'm not hearing things :)

    Yeah. I only really hear it if I pay attention to my picking when I'm feeling a bit insecure. I noticed as you said, as I crank up the volume I get more bass than anything else, so I can't really notice anything but the notes I'm playing...

    I was just having one of those days... I get insecure every two weeks or so. I think alot of it has to do with hearing some of you guys talk :) As much as I enjoy listening to you all, and taking what I can from your experience, I think I'm a bit intimidated as well.
  4. When I started out, I used to get very frustrated with finger noise. Anything that wasn't a pure clean note made me sick to my stomach. But then I started to listen to some really good players play by themselves, and I noticed that often there was a lot of extra noises. When you put that in a group context, it usually all but dissapears and if anything makes you cut through a little bit more...I remember hearing about a rocco prestia video where he demonstrates his stuff and there is a lot of finger noise. But you can't really hear any of that when you listen to T.O.P...
  5. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    Just another note: The longer you play, and the harder your callouses get, the more likely you are to hear the pad hitting the string, because it's becoming a harder surface. But, again, it's not worth worrying about because as was mentioned before, it all but disappears in a group setting.
  6. frederic b. hodshon

    frederic b. hodshon

    May 10, 2000
    Redmond, WA
    Microsoft Product Designer
    the longer i've played the fewer calluses i have.

    in fact, i no longer have ANY.

    i used to think building calluses was the key to getting better tone and knowing i was practicing enough.

    i've lightened my touch quite a bit over the years. my playing has improved dramatically, i have MUCH more stamina and MUCH more control over dynamics.


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