In This Issue:
1) Paul’s Notes And News: Improving Your Chord Changes
2) Feature Article: The Basics of Finger Picking
3) Q&A: Fret Buzz Solution?
lessons as part of their complementary “Starter Guitar” series.
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1) Paul’s Notes And News
a few days you’ll get an email from me that’s going to change the
way you look at the guitar. There’s nothing to buy. Just read and
discover the secrets of improving your chord changes – for free.Stay tuned – you won’t want to miss this!
2) The Basics of Finger Picking
If you are able to comfortably transfer from one chord to another,
then it’s time to start learning about finger picking.
Finger picking is a whole lot different than strumming because each
and every string is being emphasized, thus making a more distinct,
and unique rhythm and melody which is mostly used in blues, and
In this article, I’m going to teach you a very basic finger picking
pattern which you can use in most songs, and start impressing your
friends and family with this whole new guitar trick.
At this point, we are going to set aside the fretting hand, and
focus more on the strumming hand, or usually the right hand. One
important thing to remember is the position of your fingers because
each finger has a designated string for you to pick.
Since we will be practicing finger picking, we need to have a chord
pattern. For this exercise, we will be using the chord pattern G -
C – G – C and so forth. The next step that we need is to correctly
position our fingers. You need to have your thumb resting on the A
string, or on the 5th string. Rest your index finger on the 3rd
string, the middle on the 2nd string and the ring finger on the 1st
string. You can have your pinky finger just freely hanging.
I’m going to break it into a step by step process to make it easier
and simpler for you to get.
1. Simultaneously pluck the 5th string and the 2nd together.
2. Drop your thumb down to the 4th string and pluck it.
3. Pluck the 3rd string using your index finger.
4. Pluck the 1st string using your ring finger.
5. Pluck the 2nd string using your middle finger.
6. Pluck the 3rd string again using your index finger.
7. Repeat the whole process.
As you can see, the way we positioned our fingers corresponds to
the strings that it’s going to pluck which is why finger
positioning is very important. After two sets of the pattern using
the G chord, you can then switch to the C chord, do the same
strumming pattern and then back to G. Notice the distinct sound and
melody as each string is being plucked. If there is a muted string
somewhere, check your fretting hand.
I understand that it could be a little too much to take in at this
point, but just keep on practicing this very basic strumming
pattern until you get the hang of it. Once you are comfortable, you
can apply this pattern to almost any mellow song that you like.
You just have to practice and understand that difficulty at this
stage is normal and should be kind of expected. So, if you are
having a hard time, that’s totally cool. Just continue practicing
and soon enough, you’ll even be able to come up with your very own
finger picking pattern which you can apply to the various songs
that you like.
3) Q&A: Fret Buzz Solution?
————————————————————Q: So my guitar buzzes and sounds like I’m hitting dead notes on both
E strings around the 17-20 frets. How do I fix this? It only
happens on those two strings. The guitar is a les Paul standardA: Fret buzz occurs when the part of one or more strings
physically strikes the frets that are higher than the fretted note
(or open note). This causes a “buzzing” sound on the guitar that
can range from a small annoyance, to severe enough to dampen the
note and greatly reduce sustain. Sometimes, fret buzz can be so
minute that there is only a small change in the tone (timbre) of
the note, without any noticeable buzzing.
The first thing I would do, is try and raise your action a little bit.
Generally you can just use a screw driver to this.
If you are still getting buzz after that, you might have a few high
frets that need to be leveled down a bit.
It might also be worth taking your guitar into your local music
store and have them take a look at it. Chances are they’ll be able
to help you fix it quickly, and relatively cheap.
If you have any questions at all about this newsletter, or about
playing the guitar, please feel free to email me at
firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll be glad to help you in any
way that I can.