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Start playing something. I would like to show, how to hold the pick how to hold the Mandolin and where the brace you’re playing hand not your treading hand but you’re playing hand. In my case, I’m in right hand so, this hand I that I hold the pick with. Okay, so first of all hold the Mandolin.
Let’s start with that, I rest the neck of the Mandolin between these two joints with my index finger with the neck kind of rests right in there and I hope you can see that. And then my thumbs up a little bit over this side of the Mandolin. So, looks like this, now notice my thumb is in all the way up over the neck and if I were doing that the neck would be resting right here.
The reason I don’t you that is if my thumb all the way up there and the resting all the way in there for me it is hard to slide up and down and to change positions with the up and down the neck. And the other thing is, if I’m in that position I find it hard to get my fingers around to get the proper the angle unto the strings.
Okay, holding the pick if you line up the pick with the chip median a line from the tip to the top of the pick and middle of it. The thumbs come across at about 90 degrees and if you’ll notice it goes for me wrap with back to the joint and then sort of over a little bit. Obviously, this can depend on everybody’s got different size of fingers but that’s were things sort of line up for me.
And then, in the back my index finger comes down roughly into 98 degree angle to the thumb with the index just slightly bend at that joint. I use quite heavy picks, this one is 1.5 mm and for me that is the preferable sound I find I get more of the warm into the sound out of the Mandolin. Which I fairly trouble with instrument to begin with so a little more of the base response and maybe even some more of the mid response.
This is the tear drop shape pick there’s all sort of different shapes and I play with the pointed side of it, I’ve done to the different periods experimenting playing with the rounded shoulder, playing with different shape picks. If you play with the round edges, the sound is even a little warmer and a little base here but I found that to play trim low which is,
That technique it a little hard to dig in with a rounded side so I prefer to point it to the side of the pick. It’s really important for you to just try different things, try to this basic grip and then experiment around from there and see what works for you.
Okay now, bracing with the right hand get a side of a Mandolin you can see where it’s really warn right here. I had this Mandolin since 1978, and I play it a lot. How a little embarrassing how that’s look but anyhow it’s warn because that’s kind of were my arm comes across and what I do is come across between the two of piece in the up hold there.
And I lightly, very lightly brush maybe from the middle of the bridge down to the bottom with this part of the wrists and that sort of help me stay oriented to the strings,
So, I’m down there on actually just behind the bridge on the strings but again not pushing down real hard.
A story I like to tell about keeping your wrists loss is, there is a Mandolin by name is Frank Wakefield. He is probably one of the greatest ever players and when I was in the middle of 20. I had a chance to be playing the jam session with him and he was playing with phenomenally fast spends. And he was visiting out here from the East Coast and trying to get all the slay back West Coast players to play faster.
And I was trying to keep up with them the whole day and jam with somebody’s kitchen and the fast he play the loser, he was and the faster, I trying to play the tight on my wrist got and actually I injured my wrist trying to keep up with Frank on that day. And I had this sort of a thing with my wrist and I couldn’t play for quite sometimes. So, that was the really good lesson that you want try to keep that wrist very, very loss.
Learn Bluegrass Mandolin today! The proper fundamentals are explained in easy to follow step by step details by instructor Tom Bekeny, with many essential techniques and patterns for any aspiring player!