Adding The 6th String

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INFO & EXPLANATION

MAKE YOUR PLAYING INTERESTING FOR THE LISTENERIn the main riff of this lesson, you're 4th finger slides one fret's distance from the 3rd to the 4th fret on the 6th string. Pluck the 3rd fret "G" note with your pick, and keeping the pressure against the string, slide up to the 4th fret "G#" note. So you're picking one note and sliding up to sound the next one. Avoid the tendancy to push down too hard with the sliding finger. If you do, you'll find it hard to execute the slide. Use just enough pressure to keep the note from blunting out. Work at this until you find that magic point where the movement is smooth.

The reason for the slide is to add character to the riff. Traditional musicians call this "phrasing." Phrasing is really a reference to the spoken word. You know how hard it is to listen to someone read a story out of a book in a monotone voice, well the way to make it more interesting is to add what my english teacher used to call "voice inflection." As a musician, you need to do the same thing with your playing. As you go through these lessons, we'll introduce other forms of "phrasing" that will help you add color to your playing.DOUBLE-STOPSBOOKS ON DOUBLE-STOPS!

Double-stop means you play 2 notes at a time, of course on two seperate strings. The term "double-stop" comes from string players like violinists and cellists. Most of the time they play one-note melodic lines. Occasionally they'll bow across 2 strings at a time, fingering both with their left hand. On the guitar a double-stop is really no big deal since we play chords all the time anyway. A chord, though, is 3 or more notes at a time so we'll refer to playing just 2 a double-stop.

Playing a double-stop most of the time is a way to add a note to the melody. Kinda like a harmony note. In the riff used in this lesson, you've got several double-stops in a row. The thing to do is position your hand so you don't have to move much in-between. Look at the chord charts and fingerings below. Notice that when playing the 4th fret notes, the 2nd fret notes are already in position so that all you have to do is lift the 3rd and 4th fingers.

 

So let the double-stops begin! Have fun with this lesson, it's a blast from the past. A late 60's sound which seems to be coming back into popularity lately. SAVING PICK STROKESMost of the time you'll play an 8th note passage with up/down alternating pick strokes. But occasionally you'll want to use all down or all up strokes. This is one of those times. To do this correctly you need to practice your right hand by itself until you get the feel of carrying your pick across the strings to play single notes. The feel of it is almost like a "broken strum." For example, start out by strumming down all the strings SLOWLY with one motion. Then strum only the 6th thru 4th strings SLOWLY with one motion bringing your pick to rest on the next string down momentarily. Then try "strumming" just the 6th and 5th strings stopping as your pick comes to rest on the 4th string. The idea is that when you strum across the strings you carry your pick directly to the string below it without stopping your pick in mid-air between the strings. Study the movement in the HANDS guide. Keep it smooth and relaxed. You probably won't "get it" right away, but if you hang in there and continue to practice this, you'll have one of those "ah ha!" moments. Just remember, "The more you learn, the easier it is to learn more!"

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