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Using *double stops* and chords without a pick

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by CrawlingEye, Jun 11, 2001.

  1. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    I have a question... How would it be done if you'd want to let a note ring and play others... like...
    Let an open d ring, and play on the g while it was ringing... I know you couldn't finger pick like normal... So what I do is synthesize a pick with my pointer finger and thumb, and just use downstrokes... Is this normal? If not... What else is there to do in this situation?
  2. Well, assuming that finger picking "like normal" for you is resting your thumb on the string above the one you're playing to mute it, you could simply let your thumb float freely without touching any strings. Also, when you pluck on the G string, make sure your plucking finger doesn't rest on the D string when it's done.

    About holding your index finger & thumb together to mimic a pick, that could work as well. :)

    Another idea would be for you to, in the example you give, leave your thumb on the A string, pluck your open D, then move the rest of your fingers down on to the G string, making sure that when you pluck your plucking finger doesn't rest on the D string. :)
  3. what's wrong with using a pick? the situation you mentioned is one of the only instances where i'll use a pick, and they work great (e.g. longview).
  4. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    don't plant your fingers on the strings - keep them floating until you want them to silence a note.

    i do this kind of thing all the time - pluck low notes with my thumb and use my index and middle and sometimes even ring finger to pluck higher arpeggios and chords.
  5. brewer9


    Jul 5, 2000
    I never use a pick and do "double-stops" and chords frequently in a variety of ways; all at once, individual notes, let one ring out and pluck the others, various timings, etc.

    You're gonna have to practice it. There's no magical easy way to do it. You'll have to put a lot of effort into it by practicing constantly for a long long time, and you'll get great at whatever it is you are practicing, and more.

    I'm sure there are several good ways to do it. I plant the thumb of my plucking hand on the pick-up and use my left hand to either hold the string down hard or mute it.
  6. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Actually, I can get this quite easily - it called "crosstalk" :D (Not any more really, with a scrungie on the headstock :D ).

    Seriously, one other way, in addition to what others have mentioned, is tapping.
  7. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    Nope... My fingers stay on the pickup. And generally when I pick, a string it's like this... I pick the G string and then after I hit it, my finger comes up and stops on the D string. So I can't play regular chords like that... And *free floating* my finger won't make a difference...

    And I don't use a pick because I don't like picking for faster stuff... So it's hard for me to like get rid of the pick to finish playing...

    Is my technique a decent one?
  8. [Yoda]
    Hmmm...in time you will learn.
    Plant the thumb will you no longer do.
    Float the thumb will you then do. Mmhmm.
    Good is the floating thumb, evil is the planted thumb. Hm hm...
    But seriously, I used to plant my thumb on the pick up when I started, and now my thumb follows the rest of my hand unless I want to pluck a double stop or some other chord, then my thumb stays where it can help me mute the unneeded strings, but it won't be in the way of what I need to do.

    Alternately, instead of getting rid of the pick to finish the song, why not just use a pick the whole way through? You might not like it, but it'll come in handy some time or other, might as well get used to it sooner rather than later, right? :)

    Oh yeah, and about the '*free floating* finger', try plucking in a way that your finger doesn't come to rest on the next string. It might feel a little unnatural now, and trying to play some fingerpicked guitar songs could help, but it's a rather simple solution to the problem you mentioned. :)
  9. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    Thanks for all the input. I think I'm gonna continue to do it with my pointer finger's finger nail, it seems to be quickest for me. And it gets a nice harmonic sound with double stops. (harmonic as in harmony, not like playing a harmonic.)

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