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Guitar lesson 4 Picking exercises

Before we write our first original song, we need for our picking hand to get the fretting hand in shape. To make things easier to understand each fretting finger will have a number assigned to it.

1  =  Index finger
2  =  Middle finger
3  =  Ring finger
4  =  Pinkie
T  = Thumb

Look above and check out each number and the finger that it represents. Hold your hand out in front of you and count out each finger. This is one of the most important things to learn. You will use these numbers to play scales, leads and chords. 

In our last lesson we worked on some picking exercises with only the picking hand. Now we need to put the fretting hand to work with the picking hand. These exercises will prepare you for the scales ahead.

1  =  Index finger
2  =  Middle finger
3  =  Ring finger
4  =  Pinkie
T  = Thumb

Look at the image above and notice the numbers on the Low E string. Then look at the image above to the right and see what finger the number represents. In this exercise you will be picking one note at a time. The first note is picked on the Low E string with your 1 finger at the 5th fret. The next note is played with your 2 finger Low E string 6th fret. Then the 3 finger 7th fret and finally the 4th finger 8th fret .

The tablature for the example above have been illustrated below.

----------------------------------------------------------5-6-7-8----
----------------------------------------------5-6-7-8----------------
------------------------------------5-6-7-8--------------------------
------------------------5-6-7-8--------------------------------------
-------------5-6-7-8-------------------------------------------------
-5-6-7-8-------------------------------------------------------------

In our last lesson we learned how to alternate the picking hand. You will now alternate the picking down then up while playing each of these 4 notes one at a time.

1  =  Index finger
2  =  Middle finger
3  =  Ring finger
4  =  Pinkie
T  = Thumb

Look at the next illustration above and now you are picking the notes on the A string. Remember to alternate your pick. Continue this exercise with all the strings in the same fashion. When you become comfortable playing this exercise, start with the High E string and work your way back up, illustrated below. Start with your 4 finger on the 8th fret and work back up towards the Low E string.

--8-7-6-5-------------------------------------------------------------
-------------8-7-6-5--------------------------------------------------
------------------------8-7-6-5---------------------------------------
------------------------------------8-7-6-5---------------------------
-------------------------------------------------8-7-6-5--------------
-------------------------------------------------------------8-7-6-5--

When you get real comfortable, start at different frets all over the fretboard. Have your illustrations with your notes filled out in front of you and check out the notes you're actually playing.

Once you finish this exercise, you can check out some others in the exercise chapter.

Assignment:

Good Luck

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