Guitar Technique Tips | Fretting | Time | Tone | Guitar Chords 101 | Rick Peckham | Berklee Online


[MUSIC] I want to discuss left and right-hand technique in playing these triads and just sort of in general on the guitar. Speaking of the left-hand first or the fretting hand, [MUSIC] which is going after this triad right here. When I’m playing on the fret, I’m not just playing in the fret region. [MUSIC] I am playing right up next to the intended fret without being on top of it. If we’re using a capo on much say on the third fret, if I put the capo back here, I mean technically it’s in the region of the third fret. [MUSIC] The sound is very very murky and if I put the capo literally on the third fret, [MUSIC] it’s also very [MUSIC] vague and not the beautiful sound. If I put the capo right up next to the intended fret without being on top of it, I am getting a full tone. [MUSIC] Next to and not on top of the fret is the place where all of the great guitarists live. Charlie Christian, Django Reinhardt, Jimi Hendrix, Wes Montgomery, all of our favorite heroes get a great tone. Time and tone are not optional. When you’re going for a sound on the guitar, you’ve got to be up next to the intended fret without being on top of it to get a big fret full tone. You want to make it so that you’re really getting your message out there and there’s no way to do it without a strong tone. Switching around in my circle of force that I want to use, you have to involve some shifts. So if I’m going for example from this C major triad [MUSIC] up to this F major triad [MUSIC] there are a number of select moves that I’m involved with here. [MUSIC] I’m lightly lifting my hand up and muting the strings so that you can’t hear really a note sound. [MUSIC] It kind of goes away for a second. [MUSIC] Then, I move up to the other fret where the intended fret. So I’m down here playing with good tone, [MUSIC] thinking of the next shape where it’s going to be letting go and then while my fingers are still floating on top of the strings, but not [MUSIC] like that. This is not rockabilly at this point in time. So I’m just lifting my fingers a little bit and then moving up, getting up next to the intended fret without being on top of it. [MUSIC] Getting ready for it there. Just to show the transition two, three, four. [MUSIC] So it’s a subtle thing, it’s with the wrist of coming down a little bit in my case and the fingers coming up a little bit but not entirely off of the string. [MUSIC] It’s using them as a little guide to get you up to the other position. [MUSIC] As far as the right-hand technique goes, there sometimes I’d fall into the habit of what I usually do and that’s combining a pick. This shape pick, a teardrop-shaped pick and fingers. So [MUSIC] to get away like a pianist, playing the sound simultaneously, playing all of the notes at the same time. [MUSIC] But I can get the same effect with quick strum of the pick. [MUSIC] I should also demonstrate, another commonly used technique is to use a thumb pick. You have to look a while to find a good one but [MUSIC] the combination of using fingers and a pick [MUSIC] is very clean and clear [MUSIC] if you use a thumb pick. [MUSIC] There are pluses and minuses with the various techniques, but they can all be valid as long as you’re playing with great tone and great time. [MUSIC]

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