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Bluegrass Guitar Lessons: Introduction to Picking Pattern Exercises

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We're gonna cover now,
what I consider a cornerstone of the
Flatpicking style.
And it's, it's based on a picking pattern,
and patterns are great because,
the way we think about consistent, solid,
relaxed flatpicking.
Is sort of like a machine, where the pick
as it rises and falls is sort of,
like pistons in a machine.
And the, and the more we can trust that,
and the more that we develop a sense of
rhythm, and develop a, and develop a sense
of a, of trust of that pattern
the muscle memory that comes from that, is
extremely valuable.
Especially, when you play up to, you know,
more performance tempos, or,
or in a jam session.
You know, the, the, the fact that we're
playing acoustic guitar here means,
that we want to make a consistent sound,
consistent tone.
And having a pattern to trust makes it
that much more possible,
as opposed to wondering you know, is this
a downstrokes or an upstroke.
And so a pattern helps us figure that out
every piece of music here in the, in the
site will employ this pattern.
And so basically, what we've covered up to
this point.
Is the powerful rest stroke for tone
production and how you know,
with these angles of our forearm through
the wrist [NOISE] you know, basically,
[NOISE] the, the rest stroke is, is
imperative for solid tone production.
[SOUND] And so now moving in to one note
after the other.
You know, again the,
the mechanics of flatpicking we're gonna
sort of, uncover here.
And so the pick pattern as we're gonna
call it,
is based on eighth notes in a bar.
Bar counted one, two, three, four.
Most of the time, there are bars
obviously, that are just for
waltzes in three but the, the eighth note
is a breakdown of the bar.
Where it's one and two and three and four
and, and
so, as far as what we do with our pick,
all the numbered notes,
we'll use a downstroke, and for the ands
we use an upstroke.
So, to break it down, it looks like this,
and I'll count it.
One [SOUND] And two.
[SOUND] And three [SOUND] And four.
[SOUND] And [SOUND] And so each one,
each one of those downstrokes to break it
down like this.
You wanna use that rest stroke and
the and sort of, again they sort of exist
as a subdominant move.
They setup their, the, the powerful rest
So, One.
[SOUND] And two.
[SOUND] And that's okay though.
You wanna work from your forearm.
This is not a wrist.
This is where we start really building
some good habits for
playing down the road.
So that's the important, that's the basic
pick pattern, as it is and it's important.
I've got a few exercises here that I wanna
get into, that employ that pattern and
give you a way to sort of, see how the
pattern is used but
also see how we could sort of challenge
the pattern but yet, realize.
That we don't break it.
So we'll get into that next.