Page 13 - notes

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Bandwa gon Mu s i c S t ud i o s
2. Picking Hand.
You picking hand is the one that strikes the
strings to make them ring. When you hit the
strings with this hand it is called a pick or
picking. You can pick the strings with your
thumb, a finger or a pick. Another name for a
pick is a plectrum.
The hand that we pick with is what “handed”
guitarist you are called. Right hand pickers are
called right hand guitarists. Left hand pickers
are called left hand guitarists.
Here are some pointers on how to set up your
picking hand and arm.
Make sure that both your whole arm and
shoulder are relaxed and comfortable.
Set up your arm and shoulder so that your hand
will sit on top of the strings near the sound
hole or pick ups naturally. Your wrist should be
around the sixth string.
You shouldn’t have to stretch your hand back
up or stretch your hand down to reach the
strings.
Normally if you rest the top of your forearm on
the top of the guitar your arm will be in the
right place.
Some guitar players like to rest their little
finger on the guitar to help keep their picking
hand steady. Other guitar players feel
comfortable leaving their picking hand hanging
in mid air. You should try both ways and find
which suits you the best.
In the beginning we will use our thumb to
actually hit the strings. Later we will learn how
to use the pick.