Finger Picking

Finger picking has always been an alternative style of playing the guitar that has interested me. If you’ve mastered it, you can  sound great no matter if your playing in front of a packed crowd or practicing on your 15 watt amp at home. However, if you haven’t quite got it down, you can find yourself stumbling around and sounding painfully repetitive. To this point in my “career” my greatest successes in finger picking have come from learning songs that required me to finger pick and then trying to add my own style to the patterns I learned. A couple of the songs that I learned to help me acquire at least some skill. Specifically, the two songs I learned growing up that have helped me to play and write in a finger picking style are “Tears In Heaven” and “Dust In The Wind”. However, I still don’t pretend to have mastered playing in this way. When James Taylor described how he tried to play, he said he tried to play a guitar like he would a piano with his thumb being the left hand and the rest of his fingers being the right. This particular tip however, didn’t really make playing much easier for me. Does anybody out there have any advice for what to play or what to study to advance in finger picking?



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