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Electric Country Guitar Lessons: Right Hand Position

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This page contains a transcription of a video lesson from Country Guitar with Guthrie Trapp. This is only a preview of what you get when you take Electric Country Guitar Lessons at ArtistWorks. The transcription is only one of the valuable tools we provide our online members. Sign up today for unlimited access to all lessons, plus submit videos to your teacher for personal feedback on your playing.

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Okay, in the last couple lessons
we talked about tuning the guitar.
And positioning the guitar, how to hold
the guitar in a comfortable manner.
And now we're gonna get
onto a right hand position.
And what we're gonna talk
about is the main thing,
in my opinion, is just to relax.
This right hand needs to be very relaxed.
And you don't wanna hit the strings
in a way that's too hard.
And that's gonna choke the instrument out.
And you can only get so
much volume out of an instrument as far as
plucking the string with the right
hand and before it chokes out.
And that's acoustic or
an electric instrument.
So when I'm sitting here
with the electric guitar
I'm very comfortably laying the meat of my
forearm right here on
the back of the guitar.
You can see where it's
worn just right here.
And then this is just going to anchor your
forearm, and your wrist, and your hand.
And the main thing I can stress
with this is just relax and
this should feel really natural to you.
So lay that there on the back of the
telecaster here, the guitar I'm playing.
And with your right hand
it's gonna be a motion of,
you don't want your forearm doing this.
So a lot of it's gonna be
coming from your wrist.
So this needs to just feel,
again, really relaxed.
And I'll give you just a little
example of what my right hand looks
like when I'm just playing
a little single note like.
So really, like I said,
this arm's not moving a whole lot.
It's just anchoring and
providing a nice bed,
if you will, for this hand to operate on.
A lot of times I'll take my pinky and
ring finger, if I'm not doing what
we're gonna get into called hybrid
picking, this'll anchor on the pick guard.
And this is an interesting
thing that happens.
When I'm anchoring this, this is also very
light, it's not hard or rigid at all.
This, kinda, just floats along here.
And it just gives you a way to where
this your hand with your pick,
and the first, and
the thumb is not flailing away and,
kinda, loose and all over the place.
You're just anchoring this
to where you can keep a nice
consistent proximity to the strings.
In this manner like.
And that's, kinda, my approach to it,
as just a really relaxed,
relaxed feel and natural feel.
And another thing about your
right hand position is the tone
changes between the front pickup area,
and the back,
and even the closer that
you get to the bridge.
So I'll give you an example
of what that sounds like.
This is up close to the front pickup,
or up to the neck,
and this gives you like a warmer,
fatter tone.
So this is what this sounds like.
And as you move back towards
the bridge you get a brighter sound.
To where back there it's really bright and
you would use that.
And if you want a nice, warm, front pickup
sound, you would play up here by this.
And then if you're playing back by
the bridge you're getting a more tighter,
brighter sound as something like this.
Something like that.
So that's a little bit
about the right hand,
the way the tone changes from
the bridge up to the neck.
And then just keeping that super
relaxed and in a way that just,
Keeps this right hand from being out of
control, and loose, and flailing around.
So you're anchoring with
the meat of your forearm.
And then my hands go right
there to the pick guard.
So it's a very natural,
relaxed position here and
your wrist is doing most of the work.
Okay, now we're gonna do this together.
We're just gonna hit a high E string and
just make sure we get a nice even
stroke on the right hand here.
So we'll do this together.
And that's pretty much it for
the right hand position.