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Pick rotation

opus20000opus20000
edited December 2015 in Gypsy Picking Posts: 55
When I get into the gypsy jazz pick position my grip rotates the pick as pictured in the 1st photo. I assume the pick should be perpendicular to the strings like in the 2nd photo. The 1st is more comfortable and natural to me, but I think it's the reason I get 'stuck' when doing ascending rest stroke runs. Any theories on the pick grip rotation?

Comments

  • canvascanvas GermanyNew Dupont Nomade, Geronimo Mateos Audrey
    Posts: 16
    I hold my pick with the tip to the other side as your pick shown in the 1st photo.
    Then i rotate my hand so i can see a little bit of my palm. This leads to a much smoother playabilitie.

    Dirk
  • In the second photo your pick isn't quite perpendicular. On my pick vertical makes a fuller sound and smoother picking

    Also it makes for smooth operation to have the pick vertical when I strum. I have a loose grip and if it isn't right it wants to start to rotate. Sometimes while performing I have had it go around almost 360 degrees. Blue Chips are however notoriously slippery. Wegens much less so.

    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • NylonDaveNylonDave Glasgow✭✭✭ Perez Valbuena Flamenca 1991
    Posts: 444
    You may be rotating the pick yourself as the thumb moves closer to the second index finger joint as you tense your grip.

    In reality you never need to grip the pick tightly as you think you do.

    To begin with find points where you notice that you have rotated your pick between phrases and rotate it back.

    In doing that you will notice that there is some excessive tension causing the turning moment and you will release this to turn it back. After a while you will become sensitive to the tension and get some facility in releasing it.

    When you release the tension at the end of every stroke then things will start working real well.

    You could buy a collection of increasingly expensive and odd picks but that wont stop YOU turning the pick. There are always lots of expensive ways to avoid the real issue.

    Lots of folky strummy people solve the problem with paper thin picks, but it is the same problem for them too really , too stiff and unresponsive a grip.

    D.
  • NylonDaveNylonDave Glasgow✭✭✭ Perez Valbuena Flamenca 1991
    edited December 2015 Posts: 444
    OK I'm going to take another run at that.

    When you have the pick on the string and start to apply force you don't need to grip it at all. To convince yourself of this hold the pick as normal but very very lightly and apply pressure with a finger of your left hand gradually to the pick in the direction of the stroke. You will see that the pressure of the left hand will actually secure a loosely held pick through leverage as you thumb becomes a fulcrum.

    Tension which is held and never released is pretty much always the cause of anything upsetting that happens when we play.

    But it is not something you can see in a photograph (although having just looked again in the first photo your thumb is noticeably closer to the second joint).

    D.
  • BonesBones Moderator
    edited December 2015 Posts: 2,704
    Actually, the picture on the left looks more natural to me. The one on the right looks like you are holding the pick with just the tip of the index finger (not at the joint) and the angle looks wrong. Also, I think there is too much pick sticking out. I'm not a lead player so take this for what it's worth but maybe some of the more accomplished lead guys will chime in.

    Yes as Dave says don't grip too hard. It's counter intuitive but it seems to me that if your rest stroke is correct the pick will stay pretty much in the right spot.

    I used to have the pick rotation problem but after a while it just went away by itself and I never could figure out why. Then just a couple weeks ago it was back and I realized that the harder I gripped and tried to keep it from spinning the worse it got so I tried relaxing my grip (which I know I'm supposed to do anyway) and all of a sudden the pick stayed where it was supposed to be. Weird but I guess it makes sense. Use a light touch. Take a look at vids of Stochelo's right hand. So relaxed it looks like he is really hardly gripping the pick.

    Again, I'm no lead player so maybe an expert will chime in and correct anything I have said in error.

    Good luck and keep at it using good technique and it should straighten itself out.
  • opus20000opus20000
    Posts: 55
    Thanks for the feedback. Also the problem with my regular pick hold, left picture, that the pick keeps rotating to the left in the middle of solos/rhythm. My grip is pretty light.
  • jonpowljonpowl Santa Cruz, CA✭✭✭ Dupont MD-100, Cigano GJ-10
    Posts: 540
    What kind of pick are you using? Perhaps it is too slippery? I normally use a Wegen GJ 3.5 which is indented, has ridges and never slips. I have used Dunlop PrimeTone 3.0, also indented with ridges, that are pretty stable. I am experimenting with Dunlop Gator 2.0, smooth surface without ridges or indention, are a bit smaller and consequently, more difficult to get a firm grip.
  • richter4208richter4208 ✭✭✭
    Posts: 338
    the first picture is fine. some players prefer their pick to hit at that angle. so really its a non issue unless you aren't achieving the sound you want. I intentionally hold my pick at the angle of the first pick, not so much for the gypsy style, but it works perfectly well in that style as well.
  • opus20000opus20000
    edited December 2015 Posts: 55
    I mainly use the Wegens Big City 2.2 (in the picture) or the GP 250
    jonpowl wrote: »
    What kind of pick are you using? Perhaps it is too slippery? I normally use a Wegen GJ 3.5 which is indented, has ridges and never slips. I have used Dunlop PrimeTone 3.0, also indented with ridges, that are pretty stable. I am experimenting with Dunlop Gator 2.0, smooth surface without ridges or indention, are a bit smaller and consequently, more difficult to get a firm grip.

  • I us the slipperiest pick known to mankind......most of the time it doesn't rotate. Only when I am tired and strumming at high speeds.

    It never moves playing single notes. It corresponds to a 1.5 mm pick. I used to have rotation problems and like @Bones says should go away on its own.

    Try using violin rosin a few scrapes with coarse sandpaper and pick up the dust with your fingers. Hold pick very very lightly. After a few weeks or months depending on how much shed time and you will start to forget to use it and be ok.
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
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