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pick slipping sideways

edited November 2016 in Technique Posts: 1
Helloo guys,

i'v been practicing gypsy jazz for about 6 months coming from a blues/jazz background , i'm having issues with keeping the pick fixed between my thumb and index finger while playing La pompe, it slips sideways even when i apply some tension to keep it fixed but i dont know if you encountered this issue, i'm sure i myself is doing something wrong, mostly used to alt picking position before starting this new technique.

using a Vladimir Muzic Three-ator pick



  • that guy is using some kind a pick and apparantly stochelo use that kind a stuff
  • powdered violin roesin
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • jonpowljonpowl Hercules, CA✭✭✭ Dupont MD-100, Altamira M01F
    Posts: 614
    I find myself playing rhythm guitar with the side of the pick, more often than not.
    Andrew Ulle
  • BonesBones Moderator
    Posts: 3,069
    Yeah and wait until you start trying the manouche style bossa rhythm :-).

    I wish I had a definite answer for you because it used to happen to me and then it just stopped and not sure why. Lots of practice I guess. Check out all the technique vids from the pros. Always use proper technique and it will work itself out I believe. Don't need any rosin or fancy picks etc.
  • BonesBones Moderator
    Posts: 3,069
    Yeah for sure what Stuart says about playing too hard. Plus if you watch the pros they are very relaxed. You can't squeeze the pick 'until the eagle grins' as they say. Everything has to be relaxed or you will tense up all your muscles and you won't be able to play fast and you will tire quickly. Less is more plus if you are hammering the rhythm you will probably be burying your lead guitarist and piss everyone off :-). It isn't an iron grip thing it almost certainly is all technique. I remember when it used to happen for me I would be trying harder and harder to grip the pick and the tighter I got the worse it got. Now I don't really even think about gripping the pick at all. Just keep after it and ALWAYS use good technique. If it doesn't feel relaxed SLOW DOWN the tempo and keep it there until you can play a bit faster and still feel relaxed. If you play beyond your comfort zone speed wise you will just be reinforcing bad technique and wasting your time.

    Good luck and be patient and enjoy the process!!! You will get there.
  • Posts: 3,199
    What @Bones said.
    Hold the pick just a touch tighter than what's needed so it doesn't fly out of your fingers.
    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
  • BluesBop HarryBluesBop Harry Mexico city, MexicoVirtuoso
    Posts: 1,379
    It's very normal at the beginning... You just have to find the correct amount of pressure to keep it in place without going too far and tensing up.
    You can also try scratching the surface of your pick with a knife or something to make it rougher or glue a small piece of sandpaper on it to improve it's grip
  • bohemewarblerbohemewarbler St. Louis, MO✭✭✭✭ Jordan Wencek No.16, Altamira M01
    Posts: 218
    For most people, there's probably a lot of evolution that goes on in getting the right guitar pick technique for this genre, and there may be no shortcuts. But regarding pick slippage, there's something that I did that fundamentally changed the whole slipping out of alignment business.

    Two Festival Django Reinhardt's ago at Samois, Max Baggerman (rhythm player for the Thomas Baggerman trio) showed me how he had reshaped his pick that coincidentally happened to be the same pick I use: Wegen Big City. He reshaped it so that the pick was circular rather than shaped like a teardrop. So you just cut off the pointed end and round it out with sandpaper so that the distance from the outer edge is the same all around, as the rounded edge is originally (so that end doesn't change).

    It took me more than a year before I finally got around to do this myself, and what a difference it made! The pick simply never slips anymore!

    I prefer the 1.8, but the Wegen Big City comes in two other sizes that work too (2.2 and 1.4). It's a matter of personal preference. I'm certain that the seven holes in the pick also help the pick hold its place. But the big difference came when it was reshaped to be circular.

    One caveat, however. I can't really comment on how this would work for solo playing, because I don't do single note solos. But I've seen solo players who use the side of the pick when playing, and for those folks, I see no reason why this shouldn't work.

    But as previously noted, there are a lot of other things that go into right hand technique that could affect the outcome of what happens to the pick while playing, but you really should give this a try. It might possibly end all your frustration with pick slippage.
  • BonesBones Moderator
    Posts: 3,069
    Hey Bohem, if the pick is circular how do you know if it has rotated?
  • bohemewarblerbohemewarbler St. Louis, MO✭✭✭✭ Jordan Wencek No.16, Altamira M01
    edited December 2016 Posts: 218
    That's part of the trick, I suppose.

    Even so, the amount of pick between my fingers and the strings does not change. In other words, I have the same amount of pick space revealed between my thumb and forefinger and the strings. If the pick does rotate, it doesn't seem to rotate away from the strings or toward the strings. It appears to remain stationary.
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