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Having trouble with pinch harmonics.


MetalMessiah

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This has been giving me a lot of trouble, so I would like to thank whoever can help me. My problem is not the basic idea; I know how to do it and I can do it, but I just have trouble doing it from a normal picking position. From all of the videos that I've watched, you have to have the pick barely sticking out from between your index finger and thumb, but I naturally hold it in a way that leaves about half of the pick sticking out. It feels uncomfortable to hold it the way that the videos suggest, and it is difficult for me to switch between my natural grip and the grip for harmonics when I'm in the middle of a riff. I would just use the alternate artificial harmonics method with a tremolo bar, but my current guitar doesn't have a bar on it and I don't have the money to get one added on. So, like I said, any help would be appreciated.

"He is the man

Armageddon

Walking through fire, Metal Messiah

He is the one

The father, the son

Creator, destroyer

Metal Messiah"

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I could never do them the traditional way either. Well, I can, but not reliably, and it feels awkward to adjust my grip.

 

I do mine with the side of my picking hand. I just move a little further up the strings (meaning, towards the neck) and pick with an upstroke. You just have to make sure the pick and the side of your hand leave the string at the same time. It's not difficult to do, it's more complicated to explain than to actually do it. And no adjustments to how you're holding the pick.

 

Once you get it down, muscle memory will determine how far you need to move your hand.

 

Edit: EVH does this from time to time, only he will typically slide his picking hand up and down the strings while his fretting hand is hammering on and pulling off rapidly. Same thing, except you just use an upstroke w/the pick.

My ears are haunted.
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I could never do them the traditional way either. Well, I can, but not reliably, and it feels awkward to adjust my grip.

 

I do mine with the side of my picking hand. I just move a little further up the strings (meaning, towards the neck) and pick with an upstroke. You just have to make sure the pick and the side of your hand leave the string at the same time. It's not difficult to do, it's more complicated to explain than to actually do it. And no adjustments to how you're holding the pick.

 

Once you get it down, muscle memory will determine how far you need to move your hand.

 

Edit: EVH does this from time to time, only he will typically slide his picking hand up and down the strings while his fretting hand is hammering on and pulling off rapidly. Same thing, except you just use an upstroke w/the pick.

 

Good call, Russ.

 

You might try upstrokes with the i index or m middle finger hitting the string on follow-through; or, let the tip of your picking-hand's c little-finger stick out, hanging down, and touch the string. Sort of the reverse of the way Classical Guitarists execute artificial-harmonics. Works for me! :)

 

I also use the edge of my p thumb, that ridge along the side of the nail, while plucking with my fingers; this way, I can even get two or three strings, such as the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd or 2nd, 3rd, and 4th, for ringing Major Triad harmonics (for the first group, play a "D" chord-shape and, touching the strings an octave up or whatever interval you choose, tilt the thumb so that it somewhat conforms to the 'triangle'. :cool: )

 

If I can get 'em even though I don't even use a pick at all, with practice, I'm sure you can with your pick, too! (Meant in an encouraging way. :) )

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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This has been giving me a lot of trouble, so I would like to thank whoever can help me. My problem is not the basic idea; I know how to do it and I can do it, but I just have trouble doing it from a normal picking position. From all of the videos that I've watched, you have to have the pick barely sticking out from between your index finger and thumb, but I naturally hold it in a way that leaves about half of the pick sticking out. It feels uncomfortable to hold it the way that the videos suggest, and it is difficult for me to switch between my natural grip and the grip for harmonics when I'm in the middle of a riff. I would just use the alternate artificial harmonics method with a tremolo bar, but my current guitar doesn't have a bar on it and I don't have the money to get one added on. So, like I said, any help would be appreciated.

 

hey there, you can't be the Metal Messiah until you master pinch harmonics, so for now you shall be Metal Disciple. ;) Ok

now that we have that out of the way..

 

well seeing you know how to do it there is no problem there.

 

choking up on the pick may seem awkward at first but you will find persistence will pay off.

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I pull the pick back with my index finger until the tip is pretty much even with the edge of my thumb. I've gotten to where I can pull it back and push it forward. It's been a long time since I learned how to do it, but I don't recall it being very hard to get together.

 

Maybe you could change the place on the string where you pick it. If you pick closer to the bridge, the nodes where the harmonics are lay much closer together than further back toward the neck. Another thing you might try is using the rounded side of the pick instead of the pointed edge. There is more chance for the thumb to contact the string if the picking edge is wider. Last thing I can think of is volume. Like many other techniques, it's easier to cause the harmonic to sound if you have a bit of gain coming out of the speakers.

 

Good luck with it!

Always remember that you�re unique. Just like everyone else.

 

 

 

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Of course, I should add, that is different from how I'd do it when the guitar has distortion. Using my fingers is how I do it on acoustic. With distortion, it's a lot easier to get the sound to play using the traditional method. If you are having trouble, try increasing your distortion until it's easier. Once you get it, start backing off the distortion practising with less and less until you are back where you want to be.
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like others have said, it's easier to do them using upstrokes. :)

 

I do them on downstrokes because I use my index fingernail as a pick & the side of my thumb to slightly mute the fundamental. So I have to go in the downstroke direction to make that work. Again, fingerpicking, no pick.

Scott Fraser
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