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rhythm playing-pick size



  • NylonDaveNylonDave Glasgow✭✭✭ Perez Valbuena Flamenca 1991
    Posts: 444
    I know what you mean, I've never had a lesson from a jazz guitarist.

    In spite of my clumsy pomposity I am lucky if I achieve the 1percent goal I set my pupils.
  • steffosteffo New
    Posts: 15
    Jazzaferri wrote: »
    watch yourself in a mirror and make sure your stroke is perpendicular to the strings. Watch the way your pick contacts the strings

    I‘m not an expert, but I don‘t think anybody is playing with an perpendicular angle (in any of the three dimensions) — PS: Except maybe Oud Players (?)
  • steffosteffo New
    edited November 2017 Posts: 15
    steffo wrote: »
    NylonDave wrote: »
    I note with dismay that after nearly thirty years of teaching I see almost no one practice properly unsupervised as much as one percent of the time.

    Maybe try to teach better?

    Maybe they don‘t practice properly, but maybe they are _fantastic_ players, improvisers, musicians. Cheers!
  • NylonDaveNylonDave Glasgow✭✭✭ Perez Valbuena Flamenca 1991
    edited November 2017 Posts: 444

    I am aware of the unfortunate effect of David's bandana, for those of you afflicted with itchy fingers.

    I also seriously doubt that Mr Wallace would be comforted by the move from sceptical to comforting in contemporary comedy. In his actual writing the circular nature of arguments depending on irony is more important.

    So rather than go on for ever maybe just focus on Bones' simply advice which would serve us all well, when in doubt go slow.

  • dennisdennis Montreal, QuebecModerator
    edited November 2017 Posts: 2,111
    NylonDave wrote:

    "I note with dismay that after nearly thirty years of teaching I see almost no one practice properly unsupervised as much as one percent of the time."

    There is a bit of truth to this statement. Some people struggle with practicing properly even if they're told exactly how to do it. It requires something extra on their part to ever get them to practice properly (if they ever will).

    I have a homestay program where people have been coming to live with me. The people, who have the most difficulties progressing, are struggling because I will tell them to practice a very very very specific way, and then I would hear them practice in their room the opposite way! So I would knock on their doors and constantly remind them, and it goes on like this for days. I try many ways to remind them and explain to them the importance of practicing correctly. They do it for 10 seconds, and suddenly it's back to the old way of practicing. It's a problem that I'm still trying to solve with people who have that problem! After a week of daily , hourly reminders, it slowly starts to sink in, but I just worry that when they go back home they go back to the old habits! These are the people who have all the method books, the DVDs, go to all the workshops around the world. Obviously, none of these things will help unless you look into yourself and start getting realistic and honest about what you have to do.

    The main culprit is that they are going way too fast when they practice. When you have bad technical habits and you practice too fast (in other words, you repeat the same bad habits), your brain can't process the information and therefore can't make the corrections.

    It generally takes one year to correct bad technical habits, but many people would prefer to play for 50 years without ever trying to correct the habits.

    Of course, no one is ever flawless, and sometimes imperfections are what make an artist interesting, but the kind of flaws i'm talking about are the kinds of flaws that prevent people from being able to perform a decent concert (playing in time, decent sound, not getting lost in the songs, etc)
  • NylonDaveNylonDave Glasgow✭✭✭ Perez Valbuena Flamenca 1991
    edited November 2017 Posts: 444
    I agree with most of that Dennis

    It is actually upsetting for the teacher because very often the pupil gets angry with you for trying to help them regain the control that their way of working has robbed them of.

    It is like a child hitting themselves in the head who feels they are being bullied when you hold their hand.

    In a room full of children that can be stressful. As I know from experience in real life and online. And of course there are always a few in the group who know better than the teacher how things should be done, usually as a consequence of some marketing they mistook for wisdom.

    The solution for most teachers is not to care. It is what often passes as professionalism and being a nice guy.

  • NylonDaveNylonDave Glasgow✭✭✭ Perez Valbuena Flamenca 1991
    edited November 2017 Posts: 444
    dennis wrote: »
    NylonDave wrote:

    It requires something extra on their part to ever get them to practice properly (if they ever will).

    I think I know what that thing is Dennis.Genuine interest in exploring options other than the ones that they were prepared to consider before hitting the brick wall of habit. For example the OP included in the title the options he was prepared to consider, ie pick size and technique. And that should be no surprise here.

    I took the time to explain why these assumptions were his real problem and I offered a genuine alternative. The advice was of course ignored but I hope that out there somewhere is someone silently keeping an open mind and trying genuinely new things.

    I see almost no interest here or elsewhere in challenging preconceptions. In fact what I see are hacky jokes and total dismissal. Maybe what I said is not the solution for everyone but if someone worked the way I suggested for a week, not a year, then they would be able to evaluate whether or not it might work for them.

    This is the hurdle that is skirted, try new things. It's easy to get out of habits, just stop using them. The only way to defy habit is to profoundly change your way of working. Not tinkering around the edges.

    It might be hacky to repeat this often glib truism but one definition of insanity is doing things in the same way and expecting different results. Yet people insist on it.... smugly.

  • @dennis corrected my somewhat slanted across the strings rhythm stroke a few months back. In stead of going pretty much straight across I was slanting at about a 15-20 degree angle. Not talking about the way the pick is held. That and tucking my fingers.

    It was a small but major correction and only now feeling comfortable with it. I spend some time every day with it. It does make for a better balanced sound and quicker stroke.
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • BonesBones Moderator
    edited November 2017 Posts: 2,882
    ND, I'm sure I have TERRIBLE practice discipline and I am constantly telling myself to play slower. My rush to play faster despite my poor technical abilities. I'm also sure many others are guilty of this. Also guilty of 'noodling' along with the Youtube vids when I should be practicing my exercises or arps or whatever. Oh well. Still having fun!

    And yes that truism of doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is VERY true of many of us. I think that is credited as Einstein's definition of insanity.
  • NylonDaveNylonDave Glasgow✭✭✭ Perez Valbuena Flamenca 1991
    Posts: 444
    Man I am the worst hypocrite ever no ? I've got a gig Thursday and avoided preparing by howling into the abyss, again.
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