7 Guitar Picking Styles To Learn
The world of guitar is fascinating and so is the various techniques that come with it. Why focus only on left hand techniques when there are a bunch a right hand techniques waiting to be mastered. Various playing styles required different right hand techniques also, and therefore, the style of picking evolved in different styles.
Whatever it may be, learning is always fun. Take a look at these picking styles and decide which one you like the most or would like to learn next.
1. Flat Picking
This is the type of guitar picking every beginner starts with. Playing guitar with the pick between the thumb and index finger. But you can’t underestimate the importance of flat picking. Flat picking was developed in American music when guitarists started arranging old time fiddle tune on guitar. This style is most profoundly used in Bluegrass.
2. Alternate Picking
This style also uses a plectrum. It can be defined as picking the strings with upward and downward strokes in a continuous run. Player needs o maintain the up down motion throughout, even when not picking a note (therefore the last strung notes rings for a little longer).
3. Tremolo Picking
It can be seen as another form of Alternate Picking where the player strikes a single string repeatedly with up down motion. The motive here is to maintain the fastest rhythm one can maintain.
4. Finger Picking
The technique of playing the guitar with bare fingers instead of using pick is known as Finger picking. Finger picking is a little different than playing Fingerstyle. Finger picking is more pattern oriented and is fancy and rhythmical way of playing arpeggios. More prominent in steel string acoustic guitars than electric guitars.
5. Travis Picking
Travis picking is a common type of finger picking. The name comes from the name of the country performer Merle Robert Travis. The thumb of the player alternates between two bass strings while the fingers play between two treble strings. Playing the bass notes alternatively creates a steady, rhythmic, bass heavy back-drop in contrast to the higher strings which fill the harmony and melody.
6. Hybrid Picking
It is a combination of both finger picking and flat picking. The player holds the pick and uses his middle and ring finger simultaneously or alternately to hit the strings. This technique is not widespread most genres but is most often employed in Bluegrass, Country and Rockabilly.
7. Sweep Picking
Sweep picking is a style that uses coordinated movements of both the hands to get the desired effect. The right hands strikes all the strings in a sweeping motion and the left frets the required notes with a fast and fluid motion. This allows the player to play arpeggios at very high speed. The player also hammer ons and pull offs whenever two notes are required to be played on the same string.
Courtesy of guitarisbliss.wordpress.com