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How hard to pick

edited September 2007 in Gypsy Picking Posts: 33
Hello. Again, I have another picking question. Just how "heavy Handed" should I pick? Meaning, I hold the pick very loosely, but should I pick the strings lightly or use force, muscular force?
Thanks.

Comments

  • MichaelHorowitzMichaelHorowitz SeattleAdministrator
    Posts: 5,973
    You should hold the pick very loosely.....but use gravity and a big motion to create a lot of force. When starting out, I think it's better to learn to play loud with relaxed, but big motions. As you progress you'll learn to get volume, tone, and speed with a mix of bigger and smaller motions. But at first, it's good to play loud and hard, but relaxed. Most people are too shy, using small motions and producing very little volume.

    Good luck!

    -Michael
  • robertsaundersrobertsaunders Brookline, MA✭✭✭✭ 2007 Gitane DB-255
    Posts: 244
    I'm reminded that the young Django developed his technique playing in the the noisy bal musette clubs of Paris un-amplified. So to be heard above the din of chatter by (and even fights between) the guests, plus his collegues' louder instruments, he had to develop the absolute loudest sound he could. Think too, of the gypsy player, not Baro Ferret, but another whose name I forget, who played so forcefully he supposedly once broke all the strings of his guitar while performing. Anybody remember his name? That oughta tell you what kind of chops we wanna be striving for.
  • CalebFSUCalebFSU Tallahassee, FLModerator Made in USA Dell Arte Hommage
    Posts: 557
    I think you are thinking of Bousquet.
    Hard work beats talent, when talent doesn't work hard.
  • robertsaundersrobertsaunders Brookline, MA✭✭✭✭ 2007 Gitane DB-255
    Posts: 244
    CalebFSU wrote:
    I think you are thinking of Bousquet.

    That's the guy: Etienne "Patotte" Bousqet. With one stroke of his pick he reputedly broke all six strings. I'd have to see it to believe it though. Thanks.
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