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Mechanics/position of the ring finger's (a) last joint   You are logged in as Guest
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mackhomie

 

Posts: 12
Joined: May 16 2020
 

Mechanics/position of the ring finge... 

This doesn't only apply to arpeggios, but I am wondering if folks here have the last joint like normal, which is bent to pluck (like a claw) or if anyone does it the way I am beginning to conclude was likely just bad technique on my part--which is when the finger first touches the string, it begins being straightened as it presses on the string, 'unbending' the joint before the release, which is sort of through the string (instead of upward and toward the palm.)

This is the only finger of mine with this type of attack, and has been accompanied by a 'reverse ramp' on the nail, as it was the outer side of the nail making final string contact, and not the inner side. the finger is essentially jutted out and nearly straight as it plays the note.

I suspect this is just a personal workaround for a problematic nail that I've made work, but is likely 'wrong'. If anyone else does it this way or knows why this approach is subpar, I'd love to hear it. Hopefully the description made some sense.

Ive had issues at times with sharp, brittle sounding notes from that finger, and I believe this is probably the reason.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 13 2021 19:31:41
 
AndresK

Posts: 123
Joined: Jan. 4 2019
 

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to mackhomie

Hello friend!

I do not think it is so wrong to have your last joint a bit loose so it can possibly 'unbend' here and there. It is best to keep the relaxation of the right arm in mind as much as possible while playing even it is some times to relax the joints a bit more than usual. Jeronimo told me to keep the joints strong, in a way, while playing, but then while he was playing in front of me to show me how to do scales and other stuff, he kept doing the opposite of what he said, unbending the fingers, many times letting them bend the opposite direction. No need to be very strict about this. The only thing he was "strict" about (he is not a strict person at all while teaching but rather a very loving person not hesitating to hug you if he feels you did something well) was to keep the right hand REALLY relaxed , "como muerte" were his words. I am still trying to let it die every day for years now, but it keeps coming back to life. But what a wonderful feeling it is to let go sometimes..

About the brittle sound. Maybe it has more to do with nail shape. Have you tried the ramp thing that has been discussed a lot around here? Having a wider surface meeting with the string can take away brittle sounding in an instant. I have filed numerous times the nails of my classical guitar students during the lesson and it worked all the times. Just check where the nail finds the strings while playing and file away to create your ramp there. Almost as the file was your guitar string but also slightly underneath the nail.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 14 2021 9:48:23
 
Ricardo

Posts: 13063
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to mackhomie

This might help?



_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 14 2021 16:34:06
 
mackhomie

 

Posts: 12
Joined: May 16 2020
 

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to mackhomie

Thank you for the lengthy response, and thank you Ricardo for the link. watching it now. kinda funny, a bulerias of Jason's (and a couple of the old time flamenco players) were the reason I sold my electric and got into this whole thing nearly twenty years ago.
I've been seeing you guys on here for what feels like that entire time, but that could be my memory playing tricks on me.
Nice to finally interact with you, in any case.

This was an interesting response, as I'd been expecting to hear that it was entirely wrong for some reason that would seem obvious after I heard it. I have tried the ramp on both sides of this particular finger and it seems to dictate which of the two attacks will be required. at the moment, I have it shorter with a normal ramp and am keeping the joint bent, but it nearly feels just a little too long until eventually, it's too short and practicing suffers for a couple weeks.

I'll come back and edit this after I watch the video Ricardo provided, but perhaps one of you guys could answer one more question I've had for ages w/o me cluttering up the main page, which is:. why is a low string action considered so beneficial with respect to rasgueados specifically? with the thumb anchored on the low e, as it often is, couldn't it be almost anywhere since the right hand motion would be the same regardless of whether it was 1cm off the top or 1 foot?

Thanks, fellas.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2021 2:18:43
 
Ricardo

Posts: 13063
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to mackhomie

quote:

why is a low string action considered so beneficial with respect to rasgueados specifically? with the thumb anchored on the low e, as it often is, couldn't it be almost anywhere since the right hand motion would be the same regardless of whether it was 1cm off the top or 1 foot?


When it comes to flamenco guitars there are two “low or high” action set ups. One is the typical one, over the fingerboard. In this sense a guitar with low action set up over the fingerboard is more for rhythm than lead guitar playing. The strings don’t have as much room to vibrate up and down, they slap against the frets. This is good for rhythmic strumming, but not good for loud lyrical melodies. A high action facilitates a wider dynamic range, hard and soft playing will project nicely in other words, with little or no buzzing. Conversely a high action makes loud strummed chords sound like mud, lacking rhythmic definition. A Flamenco player that does solo stuff vs only accompaniment will want a nice middle of the road set up where rasgueados done strong will buzz, but lyrical single notes won’t so much. In the end it is personal how much you can play with in a 2.5-4mm range.

The other action is how the right hand feels near the bridge. When the strings are high up above soundboard (a centimeter or more) doing golpes in conjunction with striking chords is extremely uncomfortable. There can even be a delay between the attacking sounds or a flam. Very low strings on the other hand (7-8mm range) is very comfortable with the guitar responding rhythmically almost immediately with little effort on the right hand energy. So the simple concept of lowering the bridge saddle bone is tricky because if you lower the saddle to comfortable right hand level, it might affect the fingerboard set up such that is becomes too low for lyrical playing. The design set up of a flamenco vs classical guitar is therefore very concerned about the neck angle….the goldilocks target being a low bridge (7mm) but middle of the road action set up over the fingerboard (3mm at 12).

_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2021 12:20:52
 
orsonw

Posts: 1491
Joined: Jul. 4 2009
From: London

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to Ricardo

Ricardo I think you were a shredder in the day? This channel is very in depth looking at shredders right hands.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4xYcl6mKTwdnuMV76lb_vQ

It would be interesting to get one of their camera mounts and film the top flamenco players.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/troygrady/the-magnet-smartphone-camera-mount-for-guitar?ref=dt73ig



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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2021 15:24:59
 
devilhand

 

Posts: 1015
Joined: Oct. 15 2019
 

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

ORIGINAL: Ricardo

This might help?



What do you mean by collapsing your tip joint? At 3:20 you mentions you don't collapse your tip joint at all.

Btw, I thought you were going to start to play Ode to Joy by Beethoven at 6:10-6:12.

Talking about finger movements from the big knuckle, I think those, who believe that finger movements don't come from the big knuckle in picado, don't know what it feels like to play picado with totally relaxed hand and fingers. If you relax your hand and fingers, you can clearly feel and see it's the big knuckle that moves the finger. The middle and tip joint remain relaxed and the relaxed finger looks a bit curved.

Finger movements coming from the middle joint mean you haven't relaxed your hand and fingers. If someone keeps playing like this he/she'll never ever play fast picado, plus it will lead to injuries.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2021 16:09:59
 
devilhand

 

Posts: 1015
Joined: Oct. 15 2019
 

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to mackhomie

quote:

This doesn't only apply to arpeggios, but I am wondering if folks here have the last joint like normal, which is bent to pluck (like a claw) or if anyone does it the way I am beginning to conclude was likely just bad technique on my part--which is when the finger first touches the string, it begins being straightened as it presses on the string, 'unbending' the joint before the release, which is sort of through the string (instead of upward and toward the palm.)

It has to apply to arpegio only. Maybe to tremolo as well.
A straight tip joint as you press on the string indicates a rest stroke like in picado. Arpegio and tremolo require bent tip joints like a claw as you wrote.
My index finger tip joint becomes a bit straight during arpegio though (the middle and ring finger remain bent). But this happens only when I relax my fingers completely. I usually do this to get used to a lightness and total relaxation in my fingers to play fast.
I do believe once you're in a performance mode or you want to play a bit louder, your index finger tip joint becomes curved and bent, which is the normal situation.

I would suggest you not straighten your ring finger tip joint except for picado. You can do ring finger rest stroke during arpeggio to stress certain notes. Paco does that.

Here's a topic about the tip joint in arpeggio.

http://www.foroflamenco.com/tm.asp?m=324472&p=6&tmode=1&smode=1

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2021 16:24:20
 
JasonM

Posts: 1725
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to devilhand

quote:

Talking about finger movements from the big knuckle, I think those, who believe that finger movements don't come from the big knuckle in picado, don't know what it feels like to play picado with totally relaxed hand and fingers. If you relax your hand and fingers, you can clearly feel and see it's the big knuckle that moves the finger. The middle and tip joint remain relaxed and the relaxed finger looks a bit curved


Maestro, is this the secret to fast picado? Complete relaxation?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 16 2021 0:04:55
 
mackhomie

 

Posts: 12
Joined: May 16 2020
 

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to JasonM

straighten the ring finger last joint for picado? you mean if I were to play picado i-a-i-a, right? I know it's been done, but I've never met anyone who uses that finger for picado
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 16 2021 0:57:43
 
mackhomie

 

Posts: 12
Joined: May 16 2020
 

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to Ricardo

thanks for the rundown. excellent playing, btw, on that video where you were demonstrating kind of an unusual thumb + finger dragging technique that sounded a bit like alzapua from a distance.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 16 2021 1:02:08
 
Ricardo

Posts: 13063
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to devilhand

quote:

What do you mean by collapsing your tip joint? At 3:20 you mentions you don't collapse your tip joint at all.


Well if you continue watching, I’m pointing out that depending on how you cross the strings, the tip joint will EITHER stiffen to aid driving the string downward, or relax and collapse (hyperextend) if you need to cross to lower pitch string. In this case I show the awkward i finger on e string and m finger on b string such the i stays stiff and m collapses. Later I show the opposite can occur.


As relates to topic, tirando stroke doesn’t need to collapse the tip joint. Most arpegio is done that way. But we saw in the paco granainas he would use ring finger apoyando on the e string to emphasize, and the tip joint necessarily collapses. It is not as visual a hyperextension as Vicente Amigo, who also uses ring finger for arpegios that way.

Watch 3:33 to 4 minutes.


From 2:50:


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CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 16 2021 13:35:31
 
devilhand

 

Posts: 1015
Joined: Oct. 15 2019
 

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to JasonM

quote:

is this the secret to fast picado? Complete relaxation?

Yes, actually it's not a secret anymore. Everyone knows tension is a speed killer.
Complete relaxation is a prerequisite for fast picado. Also for every technique especially when it comes to playing fast. You can have optimal shaped nail, economy of movement, perfect hand position and nail angle etc. But without relaxing your hand completely none of these factors will help you, even if you plant your fingers nicely and practice staccato like crazy.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 16 2021 16:45:56
 
devilhand

 

Posts: 1015
Joined: Oct. 15 2019
 

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

Well if you continue watching, I’m pointing out that depending on how you cross the strings, the tip joint will EITHER stiffen to aid driving the string downward, or relax and collapse (hyperextend) if you need to cross to lower pitch string. In this case I show the awkward i finger on e string and m finger on b string such the i stays stiff and m collapses. Later I show the opposite can occur.

Thanks for the explanation. I really wish my index finger could collapse a bit on all the 6 strings like my middle finger during picado. The short index finger makes it impossible.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 16 2021 16:48:14
 
devilhand

 

Posts: 1015
Joined: Oct. 15 2019
 

RE: Mechanics/position of the ring f... (in reply to mackhomie

quote:

straighten the ring finger last joint for picado? you mean if I were to play picado i-a-i-a, right? I know it's been done, but I've never met anyone who uses that finger for picado

Yes. IA picado. I've seen G. Nunez doing it in his instructional video and recently Curro de Jerez in this video at 2:39.



At 4:01, Scott Tennant talks about the tip joint as well, but this is true only for classical guitar playing.



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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 16 2021 16:59:58
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