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Fine-tuning efficient rest stroke picking

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  • DragonPLDragonPL Maryland✭✭ Dupont MD 50-XL (Favino), Castelluccia Tears, Gitane DG-250M and DG-250
    Posts: 125
    Not much is being said about the actual angle of the pick, I mean axis wise. I see most players like Stochello have their pick kind of parallel to the string without rotating it much. For me I get better tone that way and it's easier to do a powerful downpick, but it's harder to catch the up pick though. When I tilt the pick slightly 35~40 degrees or so I can do rest stroke pretty well, up picks and all, but it's not as loud (slightly softer) and gets a bit brushy against the string sound.....any word on this ??
  • HemertHemert Prodigy
    Posts: 264
    I have found that focusing too much on "efficiency" can hold you back actually. For me the key word is "relaxation". Everything should be done with out any tension in the hands. I've spent a lot of time discussing this with Stochelo and it is very apparent when you watch him up close (especially live): he's completely relaxed when playing the guitar, even in ultra fast tempos.

    Of course, it is not easy to play without any tension. It will take many, many hours, months, years to get there but as long as you watch your technique and always play from a relaxed state you will eventually get there.

    Two good tips to help out with staying relaxed:

    - play softly
    - keep a light grip on your pick

    Stochelo never plays loudly, he just accentuates certain notes to make them pop (phrasing). Also, his pick is angled slightly down and forward.
  • HemertHemert Prodigy
    Posts: 264
    It seems I can't edit my previous post. Just want to add that large movements can be fine (in fact Stochelo uses more arm than you would think) as long as you're relaxed doing them.
  • Christiaan hits the nail on the head RELAXED
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • ChiefbigeasyChiefbigeasy New Orleans, LA✭✭✭ Alves de Puga DR670; Dupont MDC 50; The Loar LH600
    Posts: 295
    Thanks, Hemert. From the mouth of the master to your ears to us. That's great information. Stochelo's advice and your observations make a very strong case in communicating his approach and style.

    I guess when I was writing earlier about being "efficient," I was implying, in some way, that the actual effort put forth to make the sound he does seems to be so minimal. That explains his advice regarding lack of tension, being relaxed, holding the pick lightly, and not playing very loudly.

    I believe you mentioned in some other post that Stochelo might do a new and more detailed techniques video for his site. I wonder if you have any new information on that possibility?

    I also want to make sure you– and everyone here, for that matter–understand how and enlightning even a small amount of information can be. The fact that you mentioned your conversation with Stochelo over hours about this particular topic, and you have gleaned the primary directive to "be relaxed" during playing, is an immensely powerful message. I think it will be enough to really help me progress; I hope it does the same for others.
  • BonesBones Moderator
    Posts: 3,194
    Hemert, what do you mean when you say angle the pick slightly down and forward? Thanks
  • HemertHemert Prodigy
    Posts: 264
    Bones wrote: »
    Hemert, what do you mean when you say angle the pick slightly down and forward? Thanks
    It means that his pick is not perpendicular to the guitar when it travels through the string. Instead it is titlted slightly down (so with the non-picking side of the pick towards the floor) and forward (so when you look down at the pick you can see the inside). Kind of hard to explain in words but I hope it's clear enough!

  • BonesBones Moderator
    Posts: 3,194
  • Charles MeadowsCharles Meadows WV✭✭✭ ALD Original, Dupont MD50
    Posts: 432
    What do you mean by the seeing inside of the pick ? Meaning Stochelo's Wegen pick with the holes? So the pick is tilted a little as it strokes the string?
  • HemertHemert Prodigy
    edited October 2014 Posts: 264
    Yeah, it's hard to put it into words. I mean he can see the inside EDGE of the pick. The edge closest to his wrist.
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