I just purchased your picks and I'm in the process getting
them to fit .I would like for you to recommend one of your
cd's . I have listened to some of them online and have been
very impressed. I really haven't started yet but have been
reading your web page from front to back and have found a
tremendous amount of useful info. thanks a bunch all you've
done. My son
has also been bitten by you teaching so in a day or two I'll
be ordering a cd and some more picks.
thanks for your time
The CD arrived this AM... perfect. Thank you for your
consideration and service. I do enjoy these primarily guitar-vocal
oriented disks as it is the kind and type of music I played with a trio from 1960 to 1976 (within my
semi pro days). Being a guitar showcase for finger picking just hit the memory
spot with me.
I have religiously started your learning program from
the web and have the following
1) You should have been a teacher as your understanding of
the brain's learning
operations is excellent.
2) you methodology is fantastic as it shows that you have
been through this type of
thing yourself, probably for many years.
(been there, done that)
3) I have progressed very rapidly using the 15 minute rule,
4 times a day. Mastered
patterns one through four in 10
days, all the way to 186 BPM. I have already used
the method in a group practice
(ballad). Worked great. Nice sounds. Good comments.
4) I think that being a two pick player (1
F 1 T) helped
some; however 3 or 4 seems the way.
big "Hello There"
I received the 3 CD set as well as the custom picks in
the AM mail delivery.
Your CD's are GREAT and easy to listen to.
I couldn't wait to try the custom picks as your hype said
they would work. Guess what---- They work far
better than the stock Dunlap picks. Hands down! I am a two
pick player (1 F 1 T) right now. Learned the Maybelle
Carter style in the early 60's when I was stationed down at
Maryville Tenn., near the Smokey Mountains and the Smokey
Mountain National Park. Learned right from the horses' mouth
(so to speak); those mountain people certainly know how to
play Blue Grass. Since I had brought my guitar along I was
right at home until I saw how good they played. WOW I
switched from an accomplished big band and jazz musician
(since 1952) to a rank amateur in minutes. I had never seen
any thing like it before. Enough said. I fully intend to
switch to four pick playing as soon as I can learn patterns.
I play Martin guitars and have three of them , a 1965 DH28
(recently sold), a spectacular 1976 D35 and a 2006 DC Aura.
All of them in pristine condition.
By now you should have guessed that I am no spring chicken,
70 years old this Feb. Been playing guitar for 60 years.
Semi-pro musician from 1956 till 1976. I am a Mechanical
Engineer by profession and have been retired since 1997 and
have lots of time to play.
Thanks for shipping my items and Iíll be sure to let you
know how I like your CDís and when I do you are more than
welcome to add my comments to your website. Iím 54 years
old and Iím a self taught flat pick guitar player of
country, southern rock, and some of my own songs that Iíve
wrote. Iím now learning to read music and also will be
trying to learn the finger picking style as soon as I
purchase an acoustic, currently Iím playing a Fender
Stratocaster. I plan on ordering one from Dennis Zager and
here is a link to his website. He has some great guitars and
info on his site and he is also a famous finger style
picker. Check him out I think you will like him.
for the quick response, if you get pictures send them on it
would be a great idea especially someone like myself who is
a complete rookie at this finger pick stuff.
for your e-mail and coupons for the other 2 Cd's. I think your
Dec special of all 3 CD's for $27 is the best deal, however,
and I will be ordering them in a few days. (I'm going to give
the extra "Relax & Reminisce" to a friend).
reason my order won't be for a few days is because I just
opened a Pay Pal account, and it takes 3-5 days to get an
initial deposit in there. So, If you would be so kind as to
hold the December special price for me until my deposit is
confirmed, I'd appreciate it.
decided that getting a 6-string right now is not quite in the
budget, so I'm practicing the 1st 4 picking patterns with the
12-string (I've re-tuned it to an open D per your suggestion).
It's a little difficult, but I'm making progress. Most
difficult part right now is getting my thumb & fingers to
move perpendicular to the strings, to get a nice clean sound
rather than the scratchy sound of sliding the picks at a
slight angle, but it's coming.
from the R&R disc, I think your music sounds terrific.
I'll give you some quotable reviews on all 3 after I've heard
Holidays & best regards,
Im really looking forward to listen to your cd, and
try out this method for myself, i have for a long time wanted to
play like this, it is somehow so whole and amazing to play
guitar and it sounds like two guitars or more, and sometimes
like a whole band, i would like to, one day, to sit on the stage
all by myself and play my guitars and play my song, but ill
listen to your cd and let you know what i think, and my favorite
songs and other things I think about your music, and I promise
ill be honest.
Thank you, for quick service and nice attitude, god bless
you, best regards from Iceland,
Great site BTW. I would most appreciate you
sending me the customized picks you personally adjust. Can
wait for them to arrive with your instructions and cd.
Received my picks and cd.
Have fited the picks and now would like to start picking. I
like Ribbon of Darkness. Your download shoes the cords to
the song but not the picking method. How do I get started
with Ribbon of Darkness?
I have been practicing
with the finger picks and I must tell you I am very happy
with them. I am still getting used but I feel more and more
confident with them. You
warned me so much that I thought it was going to be nearly
impossible. And it is not. It is hard, it takes time, but it is
possible. I think it is very important to have them quite tight,
so in the end you feel as if they are part of your fingers. The
first times it took me at least half an hour to reach something
vaguely similar to that feeling. And now I still need a time to
really forget about them and concentrate on the music.
the sound you get with finger picks is so good that it
encourages you to carry on practicing. I do not want to play
anymore with bare fingers!!........Thanks
a lot for your time and patience.
Dear Paul Smith,
Your site is excellent! Thank you so much. My fingerpicking skills
have increased a great amount. I can play several fingerpicking
songs now, such as Bron-Yr-Aur (Led Zeppelin), Can't You See
(Marshall Tucker Band), Hotel California (Eagles), etc. I am also
learning Early Morning Rain.
Your cd's are excellent.
appreciate the info. I am just beginning fingerpicking and you
website looks like it will be very helpful. I look forward to
your CD and the picks.
I shall take you advice on
listening to the music. I found my way to your site by a
weird road. I have been playing guitar now for about 18
months -- all self taught. I can read music and believed
that the best way to learn was the classical route but found
that to be rather dreary. I coupled the classical
exercises with chord exercises learning all the chord
progressions by key -- I have not learned them all but
these progressions are fun because I can do it idly while
watching TV or pretending to listen to my daughter. This I
have found to be really fun because in this I have begun to
understand music. In fact, learning a bit about chords
(how they are grouped, how they are built, etc.) had a funny
impact on me. I recently sat down at my piano (usually
never touched -- it was my wife's and she passed away four years
ago) and simply started to play. That had never happened
before. About a week ago I was clicking through the free
on demand stuff on my cable and visited some guitar lessons.
On one I saw this thing called Travis Fingerpicking
demonstrated. I had never heard of it before. A
light bulb for me -- much of the great finger sound comes
through practiced patterns. I googled 'Travis Finger
Picking' and found you (among other great stuff). That day
I learned your first three patterns. I thought it only
fair to send you an order. I'm laughing while writing this
because my left fingers are sore on the keyboard from so much
playing even though I have been using the guitar almost daily
for so long. So now I am jumping ahead of your advice
because I am now working chord progressions through your
patterns. Because I have learned a little about chords, I
have an idea where I need to move my right hand to start the
pick on the root. You are right too, if I focus on just my
thumb the rest takes care of itself. What I get a kick out
of is these patterns sound like sophisticated music quickly.
I won't tell my family members the secret at Christmas.
They will just think I'm good.
I am also going to follow
your advice on the finger picks -- I don't have a steel string
guitar yet but will be getting one soon. My play is
really only for my own enjoyment so the sound is not
particularly important but what the hell...I'll try to do it
right for good habit's sake.
I'll be glad to provide you
with some feedback. Oh, and one other thing I learned
today...rather than thinking about how my fingers are moving I
have been using my ears to follow the pattern...they tell me
when it is not right. I think that will help me listen to
I got the package, with the
fingerpicks and the CD. Your music
I think its very well done: the kind of guitar sound that
I would like to achieve. And also I think it is useful and
very convenient for the purpose of learning because the sound is
extremely clean and you can follow easily the patterns
(normally, I go mad trying to listen to the guitar through all
A pity you could not include
Kathyīs Song. I play it too and is one of my favorites
ever, along with For Emily (though never found a good tab of
that one). But the Lightfoot classics are really good, and
your own songs too sound great. As
for your warning, I know it is going to be hard. As soon as I
put on the finger picks I realize what you are saying. But I am
quite stubborn (as I get a basic skill I go on and on
while watching TV...) So I am going to make a try, starting from
the beginning (I am just practicing again The House of the
Rising Sun, after so many years!).
If in the end is going to sound
more or less like your CD, it is worth it!
Thanks a lot for everything, and
I will keep you posted on all this.
I am 13 and have
been playing for about a year. I just got into finger
picking a few months ago and I am glad I found your website to
assist me. I hope to become a musician when l grow up.
Thanks for the order, the finger picks arrived
and fit great Ė thanks for sending large. I listened to
Relax and Reminisce Ė very good music. Just a little about
me, I live in
and play Guitar for those individuals in assisted living homes.
It is very rewarding and I find myself, at times, feeling very sorry
for those in that type of situation. If I can bring just a
little happiness to them, through music, then I have made their day
just a little better.
to listening to the rest of the CDís, your music is great.
It has been a while since we have corresponded, but I
just wanted to send you a sample of my progress. The sample
is the first time I've ever recorded myself, so forgive the
numerous mistakes. It's
amazing what that record button does to your fingers! : )
This sample is just some runs in E7-A7-B7 capoed on the first
fret. I use a thumbpick and bare fingers. I'm pleased
with my progress at
this point (about 9 months), but please make any suggestions for
improvement. It is definitely a "work in
progress"! Again, I appreciate your help and resources
that you provide. The information you have on your website
is an excellent foundation for fingerstyle guitar.
If you have any ideas on improvement, please share
I Like the way you form the custom picks. I assume I still
have to put them in water to fit my fingers. Bought an amp
today from www.musicianfriends.com.
It's a Fenderģ Acoustasonic Jr DSP Combo Amp with Effects
I'm Steve Brown from Havre De Grace, MD. I
just ordered your CD and a set of custom finger picks. I
appreciate the time and effort you have put into your website.
I haven't been playing long... about 3 months. But, I've got many of
the major and minor chords down pretty well now and have come a long
way in a short time on hand speed and moving between the chords.
I have always loved guitar music, particularly finger picking style
guitar music. I'm 57 and have wanted to take the time to learn
guitar and finger style for many years.... Even bought a decent
Yamaha guitar 4 years ago with the best
of intentions and then let it sit in my den without hardly ever
touching it. About 3 months ago, I got off my butt and made
the time to start learning... on my own. I practice everyday
and am now spending a lot of time with it... and, having fun.
I want to learn finger picking and your site is the best of all I
researched. However, I will wait until I get the custom picks
to do much else with it.
Tx very much.
I made a big mistake today and bought metal finger picks (dunlop) for learning to use on my Acoustic Guitar.....bad move. I should
have done more research first and I would have found your website. I just
ordered 2 custom sets from you! I look forward to using them because
I want to be more versatile in playing my Instrument. I like playing
with bare fingers and also using a flat pick but these picks from you
will really help me. Thanks for the information you offer on your
First, I found your web site by looking for information
on finger picking the guitar. I have played the guitar for
over 20 years, but have just in the last year gone to finger picking
Ė and I love it. It has opened a whole new demission of
playing. I have a strong influence from John Denver, James
Taylor and Gordon Lightfoot.
Good finger picks are hard to find Ė they are just
not available in local music stores so I thought I would give
youíre a try and see how it goes. Iíll let you know.
Thanks for fill my order, looking forward to listening
to your CDís.
for your prompt response. I very much look forward to
receiving the CD and finger picks. I found your site with a
google search for "practice finger picking". Your
site was the third on the list. Its a small world at times....
interesting that you would be from right across the river.
Wife and I have been here in HDG for almost 3 years. I am a
military retiree now working as a government civilian on Aberdeeen
Proving Ground. I love guitar music, particularly finger
picking guitar music.... I am a great fan of all of the artists you
mention on your site and also of Blue Grass and some country.
I'm relatively new to the guitar only having started playing in
earnest about 3 months ago. I played abit as a youngster and
was in a rock band, but I was the singer and didn't get the chance
to play guitar much. Now, I'm 57 and have decided to make the
time to learn to play so that I can enjoy my own efforts and music.
I've made alot of progress over the 3 months with lots and lots of
practice and am now pretty comfortable with most of the major and
minor chords. Hand speed is getting better everyday and I
transition from chord to chord pretty well. Learning my way
through lots of songs.... some Dylan, Peter, Paul and Mary stuff
and Praise and Worship songs right now. I have started with
straight finger picking and have gotten fairly decent on songs like
House of the Rising Son, etc. I will spend the time necessary
to do this and do it right. I look forward to using your
products and web site to help me with that. Tx very much for
all the time and effort that you put into the site. I
appreciate it as I'm sure others do.
I will get back
to you as requested once I've listened to your music.... and, I
promise to enjoy that and the learning. Tx again.
I'm in Dubai in the United
Arab Emirates. Finally decided to learn fingerstyle.
Your site is great.
Earl L Dubai
I just got my picks today as well as the cd. I really like the cd.
Quite a cross over in music!
I think I will try another one.But right now I got to try the
I just practiced the first pattern after some growing pains with
the picks. I got one set too hot. I learned there is quite a
difference from "near boiling" to "boiling"
Being a steam engineer I should know that! I think I can salvage
them. They went a little flat when they boiled. Glad I got 2 sets!
Same as a lot of things, the first time is a practice run.
I got one question. I don't find it necessary to anchor my little
finger. In fact I find it a shore. Maybe because I have played
flat pick for so long. Is this a bad thing?
Hank Nason Canada
I just ordered your "Relax and Reminisce" CD as a
statement of gratitude for having found your sight.
Eventually, I may look into your other CDs that contain your own
material (one thing at a time).
Although I have been playing guitar, and fingerpicking, for over
35 years, I found the fingerpicking information very helpful for
First, I did learn my fingerpicking mostly in the Travis style,
and did learn a few slower picks for songs that required them, and
also for the 3/4 time songs. Hovever, I was always looking
for a way to get a less structured (more fluid) thumb, namely not
always alternationg bass. Your patterns 12-17 seem to fill
Second, I have over the years taught guitar, always for nothing
(exactly what it's worth!). I am teaching someone to
fingerpick right now, and will find this information useful to
use, with your permission, of course.
I learned to play guitar in college, where I helped run "The
Moon In Virgo Coffeehouse" at Northeastern University
(Boston) in the late ' 60s and ealy ' 70s. We all learned
from each other, and an occasional perfomer would allow us to tape
them. I am a big fan of Bill Staines. Although he
plays a regular right-handed guitar left-handed and upside down,
his picking usually sounds very much like a regular right-handed
player's. By the way, I am left-handed, but play
right-handed. I figured that I didn't know what to do with
either hand anyway, so why not. Because of this, I have a
good left hand (chording), and fingerpick fairly well with my
right hand, but can't flatpick worth a ____!.
I do use only thumb plus two fingers, and have learned to shift
position to get all three treble strings with those two
fingers. The third finger always seems to get in the
way. I can see that one advantage of "assigning"
one finger to each treble string is that you can learn the pattern
by just reading the finger numbers, and not the tablature
itself. That may make learning faster. Of course,
music teachers say never to rely in fingering alone as a
substitute for reading the actual notes.
Again, my warmest thanks.
David W. Bakken
Your first CD does just what its title says: it makes
me Relax and Reminisce. The sixties were when I first became
interested in folk music, and the seventies were when I started
trying to play it. I listened (or heard other people play) many of
the songs that are on this CD. Ironically, "Steel Rail
Blues" (I taped a friend in our folk music club playing it in
1970) was the first song where I became aware that much the melody
(or in this case, train sounds) was "in between", or
"just a shade after" the bass notes.
of all the cover songs is as I remember them, or maybe even
better. Your three original songs not only "fit in", but
also add variety to the period and styles represented by the other
songs. You are obviously a Gordon Lightfoot admirer, and
your work is a good tribute to his.
work and multi tracking are excellent, and leave me curious to see
you perform on stage. Iíll bet it would be different than
the CD, but still make one Relax and Reminisce.
I found your website, as I recall, when doing a Google
search for "fingerpicking guitar" or a very similar
term. I was immediately impressed with the online lessons, and read
through the entire fingerpicking
area, as well as downloading the sound files. Using the picks I am
currently playing with, I got through
the first lesson set, and have just this evening begun the second
(5-9). Great stuff! I hope you publish more lessons, although
I know it is a lot of work. I am really learning a lot from you,
and you have my
I will get back to you on the CD, once it gets to me
and I have the opportunity to listen and work with it.
I am not truly new to finger picking, having studied classical style
guitar for 3-4 semesters in college,
and doing a stint of fingerpicking a steel string in my late teens.
I never achieved a decent level of
comfort or proficiency though, and am seeking to rectify this at age
45, having been away from study of
the instrument for many years.
Thanks for the idea on headphones, too. Your advice
has the ring of experience to it, which I intend to
heed. I will be watching the mail like a hawk for my new
picks....can't wait to get them on my paws.
BTW- I emailed you earlier about a friend who has
REALLY large fingers, and is picking up the dobro. He needs metal
picks for the tinny sound his instrument calls for, but cannpt find
any large enough to fit. If you are, or know of, a source for XXL
metal fpicks, kindly let me know. He cannot play without
discomfort....and he has enough $$ to spend to fix the issue. It
would make a nice present for him if I could get them.
Fred from Baltimore
I love '60's folk music and never
hear any, so I performed a google search using the words "If
you like John Denver." Yours was the only web site that came
up. My wife is from Maryland and misses John Denver a great
deal. So I got her your CD from her birthday. I'll let
you know what she thinks, and you can certainly publish her
comments. I look forward to hearing your music.
Thought I would give you an update on my picking. I
started on your first picking pattern and you are right. It is
I play 15 minutes at a time. I am still having trouble
with my middle finger hitting the High "E" string
sometimes but I am working through this and figure with practice it
will pass. The Picking Patterns Slow , medium and
fast. What is the speed to set my metronome to? I can get to about
108 on the metronome without making mistakes. I use my Alverez to
pick and that has also improved my picking.
I know that I will learn to Fingerpick because I won't
Thank for all you help
You will defintely be seeing an order for all three of your CD's
once I get this picking down. I do have a paypal account.
Paul W. Guilmette
MY NAME IS MARC WATSON AND I'M REALLY INTERESTED IN LEARNIG
FINGERPICKING LIKE THE STYLE OF JAMES TAYLOR. I'VE SEARCHED ONLINE
AND I CANNOT FIND ANY HELP. I'VE BEEN PLAYING FOR ABOUT TWO MONTHS
NOW. I'VE LEARNED BASIC TYPES OF FINGERPICKING SUCH AS THE SONG
HOUSE OF THE RISEING SUN. MY GOAL IS TO BE ABLE TO PLAY FIRE AND
RAIN AND IN MY MIND IM GONETO CAROLINA.
DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR THIS TYPE OF FINGERING?
ANY HELP WOULD BE APPRECIATED !!
THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME
THANK YOU VERY MUCH PAUL FOR YOUR TIME AND FOR RESPONDING TO MY
Found you on a yahoo search looking
for "guitar finger picking". Picked my
guitar up after, oh.. some 20 years and thought I
might like to see how far off i am on the pickin'.
Liked what i saw, liked what i heard and wanted to add you,
your music, to my collection.
The personal note was a real nice
....who has some of the FATTEST fingers you ever saw.
He has taken up the dobro at the age of 45, and
purchased the largest set of picks (metal) he could find. They are STILL too
tight, even at full extension, and he said they hurt his fingers after a
session of playing. I would like to snoop out a set of big picks for him....can
you help? If necessary, I could measure his paws...but I was hoping to
suprise him with them, if possible. I will be buying a set as well, normal
sized, as I am going to work through yer online f-picking lessons, then the CDs
you are featuring. I am really starting to like finger styles....heard
Mississippi John Hurt for the first time this AM. DAMN, could that old guy
Thanks for sharing your knowledge, dude. I can't help but feel that that is how
the music world should work. Man, I would love to stop down there on my
way fishing or something to take a lesson or 2 from you. Pity you live so far
from Baltimore. (Pity for me, that is....I bet you like it just fine!)
I picked up the guitar 2 years ago when I turned 45 years old.
Why did I wait (kick self here)?
Thought fingerpicking might be cool because a lot of the blues
players used their fingers so in searching on the 'net, I found your
site. Man....BIG THANKS!
I just started learning your first pattern and I think I'm going to
do okay with it...(in time). I have writtne some of my own
funny songs (I'm a speaker/comedian/trainer), but with just
strumming, they sound kind of basic. I know if I work on what you have on the site, then it should take
my guitar playing to another level.
I just also got a book called, Beginning fingerstyle Blues...it's
tough. Just wanted to say thank you for
Love your site...and thanks for giving of your talents to show
others the way.
Just wanted to let you know I got the finger picks this
afternoon. You're right about the large picks. I'm 5'6" and
about 140 lbs with small hands and fingers and the picks fit
perfect. They aren't tight at all and they stay on without getting
loose. I think I might "size" one of the finger picks for
my third finger, its just a little bit loose but doesn't move around
or fall off, it just isn't a perfect fit like the thumb pick and the
2 other finger picks. As far as getting use to finger picks I
thought the first 5 minutes I would never be able to get use to them
but I kept picking pattern #1 very slowly and could play it after 5
or 10 minutes. I did turn the picks to the left side of my fingers
slightly as you suggest on your site and now the tongues are
striking the strings "flat." The best part is the volume.
When I was picking with the meat of my fingers there was no volume
at all. My guitar is a big Washburn jumbo, (bigger than a
dreadnought) and there was very little volume. Since my guitar is an
acoustic/electric I was practicing through a 30 watt acoustic amp,
not any more. Now I just practice unplugged since I would estimate
the picks have doubled the volume of my picking. Buying your picks
will actually save me money as I was burning through a 9 volt
battery in my guitar about once a week.
I'll leave you
alone now, I'm sure you're busy. There's not much more for me to do
except learn all the patterns and practice everyday. Thanks for
teaching me about finger picking with picks, I definitely prefer the
sound of picks over bare fingers.
I've referred several of my friends to your site in
hopes they can pick up some (if not all) of your finger picking
taken me a little over 3 months but I've pretty much mastered all
20 of your patterns, though I don't necessarily use them all
equally as much. It's allot of work as you said but many
people have commented how good my guitar sounds and wonder what
I'm doing different (better). It's weird, but every day is a
bit different and I find myself using different thumb picks on
different days and times. One thing for sure though, it sure
is loud and clear. My friends who flat pick are
amazed. I've also learned to control myself a bit more and
have developed a real good feel for the strings i.e., I have
not popped out any more bridge pins. If you develop any more
patterns, or know of something I should do to "take it to the
next level" I sure would be interested in knowing and
Your web site and e-mails provided me with the
motivation to learn this and I am most appreciative of your
lessons. Thanks Paul. Hope we get to keep in
I just wanted to let you know I have really enjoyed your
website and your material on finger picking. I also like the
picks off your website much
better than the nickel ones I started out with. Thank you for
taking the time to provide this information for people just learning
the technique. I do have a couple of questions. What
patterns do you use for slow, ballad type songs? Also, which of
these patterns would you recommend for
I have enjoyed learning this technique. I just
started playing the guitar in October of last year, and I agree with
you that this style really stands out above others. Iíve got a
Seagull S6 cedar guitar, and I will say it is perfectly suited
for this style. I love the way it blends with vocals as
well. Again, thank you for providing such a valuable resource to
those just learning this technique. You have been instrumental
(no pun intended) in adding another dimension to my guitar playing.
Thanks for the quick
service, looking forward to the picks and working with the
lessons/exercises .Appreciate your approach to instruction and
marketing, seems like a very great plan.
Very good site...just received your 3 CDs and am enjoying them very much...if you have not done so
you need to write a book on finger picking for us who want to learn a
number of songs using the various variations and other patterns that
you have on the web...CD would be good to go with the info...I WILL BE
IN LINE TO PURCHASE
AM on YOUR #5,6,7 pattern now...
Just a note from a guy in the UK to let you know how much the time and
effort you put into your finger picking section is appreciated. I've only just stared learning, but you've already been more use to me in a
few clicks than a whole load of books have been. What can I say except thank you, and the best of luck with your musical career!
I am looking forward to receiving the custom picks I
just ordered.... Thank you for putting so much time and effort into your website.. You
did a real nice job and what a great service!! I have been playing for about 45 years and just within the past 5 years started to finger pick using bare fingers. I enjoy it very much. Now it
is time to expand into using finger picks and learn a few more picking
Great job on your web site. You have motivated me to
learn to fingerpick. I pretty much have the first 4 lessons down and
am now ready to move on. The finger picks I have however...are
killing my fingers. Too tight! I want to order two sets from
you but am not sure whether to go with the customized sets or not or maybe
even one set of each. (one customized and one not) But I could use
your advice before I order. If it matters, I'm a dreadnaught sort of
guy and finger picking is brand new to me but I now love it. Sure
appreciate your advice and again, terrific job on your web site. I'm
going to learn all 20 patterns for sure.
Hello Sir Paul,
That is why I've got into your website is that I just want to
improve my finger-picking skills........I really appreciate your advice.
I can't thank you enough for the lessons. Do you mind
if I put a link to your page on my web page? I have a few free
lesson sites on there but yours is my favorite. allthingsmusic.0catch.com
Finally got the picks adjusted for my fingers.. I think.. and am
starting from the beginning with your lessons. Very well done and easy to follow.
Thank you again Paul for taking the time to put the web site together. I know from experience that there is a lot of work involved.
I look forward to receiving the picks and CD's I ordered a few days ago. In the mean time I've been learning the patterns on your web site. I been practicing patterns 1-4. I can play all of them without
mistakes at the slow and medium tempos (keep in mind I'm been playing guitar for about 2 1/2 years and I've been learning finger picking for about a month.) I can't play any of them at the fast tempo. I
just don't have the muscle memory or practice time in yet. I'm not discouraged. I know its harder to play guitar at speed and in time than it is to simply learn how to play something very slow and out of
tempo......I really prefer the sound of picks over fingers, there's just more volume and clarity. I would hate to give up playing with picks because I thought its just too hard to learn as compared with my fingers.
Thanks for everything,
I received my custom finger picks in the mail today!!
I quickly unwrapped them and marveled at the small compact size. At first I
thought that perhaps a page of instructions was missing. There was no
explanation of how to turn them on, select which picking pattern that I wanted to play or how to replace the batteries. Being a bit of an electronics nut It dawned on me that maybe they automatically turn on when they get close to metal. I quickly put them on my fingers following your easy to read instructions
and put my hand next to the stings.. Nothing. They didn't move my fingers at all. Then it occurred to me that they must be voice activated. Talking directly into my fingers I tried several different voice commands.. On...Turn on......
Begin.....Then I thought maybe louder... TURN ON....TURN ON... This was about the time my wife walked into the room. She took one look at me, muttered something that sounded very much like "idiot", turned around, left the room, packed a suitcase and left. Don't feel bad. It wasn't your finger
picks. I think it all started when I purchased my fourth, and very expensive guitar.
After exhausting every possibility I concluded that there is no missing page
of instructions, no batteries, no on and off switch or picking pattern dial.. These are manual fingerpicks.
That's ok... I have a manual flat pick that works the same way.
I started manually moving my fingers and... very cool... This is going to be
great. Awkward at first but having finger picked with bare fingers for a while
things started falling into place.. Then I remembered I was violating
rule number one... follow the lesson plan.. So, I am boiling water at the moment and warming up the computer. Going to start from the beginning on your web site. Yup,, clicking on all the
I go to show my appreciation... and purchasing your three CD's.
I'll let you know how it's going..
Thanks for writing back to me. Let me say that you're
writing back is indeed part of the motivation I have to learn to finger
pick. You asked about my motivation and it's kind of a long story
but I'll give you the Readers Digest version. I've been playing for
over 30 years. I don't consider myself to be very good but I do
enjoy the heck out of it. Got a few nice guitars to boot. Like
you, I was impressed with Blackbird and wanted to play it was able to
stumble through a close version. Same with songs like Puff the Magic
Dragon, If I had a Hammer and some Dylan things. I grew old loving
the Beatles but also was always impressed with an acoustic duo called
Aztec Two-Step. They do a Grenwich village folk style like no
other. And boy can they play the guitars. I didn't realize
until I saw them in concert up close (front row) that they were both using
fingerpicks. I always wish I could do it but had no real clue as to how,
until I ran across your site. They say there is nothing more
beautiful than the sound of a guitar, except maybe two. Seems you
captured that in allot of your stuff. Anyway,
when I read (about 4 times) your intro about finger picking, plastic
finger picks and the need to want to to it and that I would have to
practice well.....that sort of did it for me. Not to mention, your
lessons are outstanding. I just have to control not going right
to pattern # 20. I'm an anal sort so the step by step patterns work
great for me. I don't really know what else you could do to motivate
someone, but it's these combinations of things that have motivated
me. I must say, your writing back to me and offering additional
advice is very motivational as it shows you care about my progress.
I would have not clue how to motivate others except, if you have the time,
to follow up on any pick orders to check on your customers progress.
But for me, if you'd just continue writing back, and offering your insight
that would do it for me. Hope
this answers your question.
Thanks again for writing. Dennis
Good morning Paul,
Always nice to hear from you. I listened to some
of the outtakes on your web site and there is no way I can do any of that
just yet. I'm wearing through these picks pretty good and with my
re-order of picks I may be ready to buy your CD. I'm working pattern
6 and 7 but am having quite a time switching between all patterns and
keeping things smooth and more important accurate. (I 've never
fingered the "C" chord using the bass "g" note and
that may be part of my problem) At this point it seems as though I know
what I'm supposed to play but don't always hit the right notes or
transition to the correct pattern. I'm working at it though.