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Angle of the pick 45 degrees clockwise or counterclockwise??

cantzoncantzon Jeju Do, South KoreaNew
edited July 2007 in Gypsy Picking Posts: 90
The Wegen picks are beveled slightly more on one side. I've noticed they have one for right handed players and one for left handed players. I think I hold the pick differently than most people but I'm not certain. If I look straight down on my picking hand the LEFT side is about 45% higher than the right side relative to the ground. I am right handed. Does anyone on this forum hold the pick so that the LEFT side is CLOSER to the ground?

I also hold the pick between the pad of my thumb and finger rather than some who hold it between the pad of the thumb and the side of the first finger.

The reason all of this matters is that I think I may need a left handed pick if the Wegen's were intended for people who hold the pick the other way.

Please respond to this post with a quick (left side of pick is higher or right side of pick is higher) so I can acertain where most people on this forum stand.

Thanks.
«1

Comments

  • ElliotElliot Madison, WisconsinNew
    Posts: 551
    C:

    If you hold the pick between the thumb and the side of your finger like you should, you don't have to think about which side is lower.
  • cantzoncantzon Jeju Do, South KoreaNew
    Posts: 90
    I got this gloriously informative response:

    If you hold the pick between the thumb and the side of your finger like you should, you don't have to think about which side is lower.

    My response to that response is who made you the God of technique? There is no "should" or "should not". There's no room in music for dogma. If you don't have an answer to my question simply don't answer it.

    George Benson, among others, holds the pick like I do.
  • CalebFSUCalebFSU Tallahassee, FLModerator Made in USA Dell Arte Hommage
    Posts: 557
    I think what was meant was if you are holding the pick the way most who play this style do you will answer your own questions. Now to your question I know that Robin Nolan(at least I read this a while back Robin checks this place out so maybe he can clarify) uses a left hand pick. If you are using a technique ala Benson you may require something different. I agree there shouldn't be any dogma in music but as a classical player you know how important idiosyncrecies are to certain styles. If you check out the Gypsy Picking book I think some of your questions from this post and other posts might be answered. Certainly you don't have to adopt the style but it is generaly how this music is played among those who developed it although there are some slight alteration from guys like Bireli or Dorado Schmidt. So yeah man I hope this was a little more helpfull.
    Hard work beats talent, when talent doesn't work hard.
  • Dr. HallDr. Hall Green Bay, WisconsinNew
    Posts: 65
    I switched to Wegen Twins earlier this year, the smaller shape, 3.5mm thick. I had been using 2mm standard sized Dunlop picks and wanted to try something a bit thicker. First day I used the Wegen I was sorta freaked out because the bevel was significantly different to the wear I had produced on the Dunlops. My picks were worn mostly on the opposite side from the Wegens. I considered buying the left-handed model but eventually stuck with the right-hand model. I fluctuated for about a week between the Wegen and my old pick, but eventually I made the switch to the Wegen permenently. The earlier response (flippant or not) actually makes sense to me but needs a bit of explanation. I actually adjusted my picking to the Wegen bevel over a short period of time, and I don't see this as a bad thing. I'll call it growth. I can pick a lot faster now with the Wegen, without losing control of the pick. I can hardly use my old Dunlop any more because the angle at which I hold the pick has changed and because the nice grip on the Wegen has spoiled me. If you're willing to hack away with the Wegen for a week without picking up your old pick in the meantime, the Wegen pick will sorta make you hold it a certain way. You'll have to adjust, and though it may seem weird at first, go with it. That said, I've started wearing a bit of bevel into the Wegen on the left side just from playing over the past few months. I wonder what it'll look like in a year or so. Anyway, I sympathize with you because at first I thought I had blown some significant money on picks I couldn;t get used to. I also play be-bop on archtops as much as I play gypsy jazz, lots of Wes and early Benson stuff, and I find that the Wegen actually gives a nice tone (ignoring the obvious pick noise) reminiscent of using your thumb, only louder and with more control of both down and up strokes. I love the sound Wes (and Benson because he copies Wes sometimes) get with their thumbs, but I could never master the speed they were able to play simply using my thumb, so it's a pick for me, at least on the single-note solos. Anyway, hope this helps.
    -Stefan
  • ElliotElliot Madison, WisconsinNew
    Posts: 551
    cantzon wrote:
    I got this gloriously informative response:

    If you hold the pick between the thumb and the side of your finger like you should, you don't have to think about which side is lower.

    My response to that response is who made you the God of technique? There is no "should" or "should not". There's no room in music for dogma. If you don't have an answer to my question simply don't answer it.

    George Benson, among others, holds the pick like I do.


    You didn't happen to notice that these players are playing on electric guitar, did you? You tell everyone here that it doesn't matter how you hold a pick, then ask advice on what kind of pick to buy for your incorrect approach. We are telling you that for this kind of playing IT DOES MATTER, AND YOU ARE BEING SILLY when you suggest anything else, especially advice from a metal wanker like Paul Gilbert. The foundation of this kind of ACOUSTIC guitar playing is proper right hand technique. People spend months readjusting from their former habits WHICH YOU WOULD KNOW if you spent a few minutes reading some back threads here. There is a certain amount of orthodoxy when it comes from learning any technique. Either learn it because it has been developed and used over a lengthy period of time by many people for very good reasons, or go on in your blissful idiocy, but don't expect too much advice on things that people who have taken the time and trouble TO DO THE BEST WAY POSSIBLE FOR THIS TYPE OF PLAYING TO ADDRESS AND THUS ENCOURAGE YOUR MISGUIDED NEWBIE IDIOSYNCRASIES.

    This is from the most non-conformist person you'll ever meet, trust me on that.
  • cantzoncantzon Jeju Do, South KoreaNew
    Posts: 90
    Whoever the guy who called me a newbie should probably hear me play before commenting in such a derogatory manner. I listened to Paul Gilbert way back in 1988 and like him or not he is good at what he does. Since then I've gone on to study Pierre Bensusan, Bireli Lagrene, Nikita Koshkin, Vidovic, etc. When you call Paul Gilbert a "metal wanker" you come off as a belligerent snob. What's most amusing to me about this is that this is a Gypsy Jazz site. Many in the classical realm view gypsy jazz as garbage. Of course I disagree with them and see the value in all kinds of music but I can't help but laugh when I hear someone from the gypsy jazz community trying to be a guitar snob. I expect that sort of crap from the guys in the classical realm but would have thought gypsy jazz guys were a bit more cool with regard to that.

    So to the guy that called me a newbie- When you can play Usher Waltz, J.S. Bach's Partita in Em up to tempo and then grab a pick and nail some Al Dimeola note for note cleanly, then and only then will I take you seriously.

    There are a lot of brilliant players in the world in many different styles. Unfortunately, there are five times as many know it alls who sit at home and condescend to people they haven't even met.

    This forum will be a lot cooler and helpful without your rude attitude.
  • ElliotElliot Madison, WisconsinNew
    Posts: 551
    Listen, I'm not trying to be a guitar snob. I started out on classical also. I am a newbie to this technique as well. I understand that, despite playing guitar for decades. The big difference is that you are the one who has barged in here insisting that proper technique doesn't matter. I can't understand what kind of classical player with any type of guided instruction under their belt would have this kind attitude. And now to top it off, you have to make things worse for yourself by bringing in some kind of statement to insult the entire Gypsy Jazz community, as if anyone cares what the classical players think. (But hey, we're grateful that you don't agree with them.)

    We aren't rhapsodizing on all kinds of styles, just one. Are you 16 years old or something? Did you fall off the Harmony Central Guitar Forum and somehow ended up here? I don't give anybody advice on how to play - if you can make it work for you, good luck. But I just couldn't let this thread pass without at least letting you know that there is INDEED a proper method going on here.

    Did you mention AL DIMEOLA? I'm starting to think you are a clever troll with a sense of humor.
  • cantzoncantzon Jeju Do, South KoreaNew
    Posts: 90
    I will agree that there are techniques that work and that don't work. But there are several good and effective ways of holding a pick. And the one mentioned by the guy I responded to is a perfectly viable one.

    I didn't insult the entire community. What I pointed out is that there's no end to this snobbery and it does nothing to make music better. Your saying Paul Gilbert is a wanker is no different than if some grad student somewhere at some unversity describes Angelo Debarre as a hack.

    It's just a different style. Just because you prefer one style over the other doesn't mean another style is invalid. I've taken bits and pieces from many different styles. Part of the beauty of playing the guitar is that there are so many different styles to study and learn from. I view different styles like different languages and all are interesting.

    What's your problem with Dimeola? He's very good at what he does.

    A clever troll???

    Where are you from?
  • CalebFSUCalebFSU Tallahassee, FLModerator Made in USA Dell Arte Hommage
    Posts: 557
    Funny you mention Classical players. All the classical guys I have really talked to (and there are no shortage of Classical guitarists at FSU) like Django and gypsy jazz alot. More so I would say than the Jazz guys I know. Something about its european-ness maybe.I won't speak for elliot but I know for a fact that I am annoyed (and not by you or anyone here, but by people I have met) when I meet musicians who are pretty good straight ahead Jazz guys or bluegrass players who think they can play this style instantly because it is similair to something they already do pretty well. I can instantly tell a guy plays bluegrass when I hear them improvise in a Jazz context. Now there are guys that have done their home work and their wood shedding that are great in both contexts usually those people have respect for both styles and realize the work that it takes to play convincingly in both contexts. I have also met guys who will say yeah lets play minor swing and their rhythm won't swing (or will kind of have a country swing) and there leads are all bluegrass runs and if you say something like man you need to listen to more django or give any kind of criticism the response is generally "who made you the technique god" or "Oh sorry I didn't know you were a Gypsy Jazz nazi" its like If I walked into a classical guitarists office here at FSU and played a Scarlatti piece with hybrid picking and then got upset when they said well for serious classical playing you should use your nails and use these types of fingerings and this fingerstyle technique and I got pissed and asked "who made you Andres Segovia?". Maybe I am trying to mend fences where I am not wanted but that is how I feel and Cantzon you are not the first guy or likely the last guy to get annoyed when some one says your technique while playing this music is improper. I also play other styles of music including straight ahead electric guitar jazz and my technique when playing "The Cooker" on my archtop is not the same as the technique I use playing "Noto Swing" on my Gypsy guitar. Just something to think about.
    Hard work beats talent, when talent doesn't work hard.
  • cantzoncantzon Jeju Do, South KoreaNew
    Posts: 90
    I agree most classical guys seem to like Gypsy Jazz. What I was saying is that there are a handful of people in every genre who seem to enjoy putting down other styles. I generally think people who are narrow minded in this way are only preventing themselves from enjoying the many languages that are spoken in the world of music.

    I am one of those classical guitarists who has migrated here because I enjoy what I hear. Most of the people on this forum have been really cool and welcoming save for one jackass who called me a newbie and insisted I hold the pick the way he does or else. It didn't occur to him that it might be possible to do the same task in more than one way.

    I'm still moving from the wrist and keeping all of my fingers still with relation to the pick. I pick economically and can play hard with excellent projection and tone. The only difference is that my pick hits at the reverse angle. My initial post was merely asking how others picked and weather or not they ever purchased left handed picks to compensate for the change.
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