Hand position on the neck

Discussion in 'General Music & Guitar Learning' started by Tayport, Aug 14, 2020.

  1. Tayport

    Tayport Blues Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2012
    Messages:
    250
    Likes Received:
    172
    Reading the pinky post made me think about a problem I am having.I am trying to play this nice little progression up the neck from the Peter Green era Fleetwood Mac song called Need Your Love So Bad. It is 5/7, 8/10, 10/12, 11/13,12/14 on the first and second strings. From 10/12 on, my ring finger is muting the first string. I can't seem to get a good enough arch. I tried putting my thumb in different positions and have had it ring clear but my hand is really uncomfortable. Any tips or advice?
     
  2. dvs

    dvs Green Mountain Blues

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2011
    Messages:
    720
    Likes Received:
    1,186
    You're looking at that walk-up at the end of the solo, right? Not sure what to say about the muting, but try moving the 1st string note on the 8th fret to the 9th fret. The minor third is not what you want there. And who knows, maybe the switch from index finger to middle and back will help the other problem as well.
     
    Tayport likes this.
  3. MikeS

    MikeS Allen, TX
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2009
    Messages:
    4,738
    Likes Received:
    3,845
    Yeah, I'm not familiar with the solo and I can't really tell how you are playing it but I was going to suggest sliding your fingers to other frets instead of trying to reach something that you are having trouble with.
    Maybe if you put what you are trying to play in tab format or even just the time in the song (EG Intro from 00:00-xx:xx, someone can send you a short video?
     
  4. Tayport

    Tayport Blues Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2012
    Messages:
    250
    Likes Received:
    172
    As you can see, it isn’t complicated but all about technique to have it ring out. 93161FA3-959D-4FE2-A7ED-D1E83771E64D.jpeg
     
  5. Jalapeno

    Jalapeno Student Of The Blues

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2013
    Messages:
    1,618
    Likes Received:
    1,864
    Is your thumb pointing towards the headstock, violin style, or pointing upward? If toward the headstock try to drop your wrist a little and point the thumb a bit upwards.

    Other than a wrist/thumb adjustment, which you said is uncomfortable, are you playing sitting down? If so, are you playing with the neck horizontal or angled upward? If the neck is horizontal then try angling it up some, up to about 20-40 degrees might be plenty enough. If your are tilting the guitar body back to look at the fretboard, decrease the angle of tilt back to get the fretboard more perpendicular.

    They are the only things I can think of that might cause the issue without watching what you're doing. If you're playing standing up one of those might be an issue too, especially if you hunch over slightly to see the fretboard.

    Eric
     
    dwparker and Tayport like this.
  6. Paleo

    Paleo Theory, Solos, Licks

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2013
    Messages:
    4,035
    Likes Received:
    3,541
    I think I'm missin' something.

    Are you using your 1st and 3rd finger all the way up?

    That would be the same shape, with 1st and 3rd fingers 2 frets apart.

    What are you doing differently going from 8/10 to 10/12 that causes the 3rd finger to start muting?
     
    #6 Paleo, Aug 14, 2020
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2020
    tom ayers likes this.
  7. Tayport

    Tayport Blues Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2012
    Messages:
    250
    Likes Received:
    172
    I play sitting down so I will try with the neck tilted up. Thanks!
     
  8. Tayport

    Tayport Blues Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2012
    Messages:
    250
    Likes Received:
    172
    Yes 1st and 3rd fingers all the way. It just seems as my arm gets closer to my body my 3rd finger flattens out.
     
  9. Silicon Valley Tom

    Silicon Valley Tom It makes me happpy to play The Blues!

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Messages:
    1,974
    Likes Received:
    2,789
    Be sure to use a strap because you want to have control of the instrument. Angling the neck upward is also a good idea.

    I was taught to place the tip of the first joint of the thumb (the flat portion not the very tip - the opposite side of the thumb nail) at about the center of the back of the guitar neck. You can easily make an arch with your thumb and fingers in that position. It looks a bit like the letter C.

    Why would you want to do that? Well, your fingers will clear the guitar strings, allowing you to use the tips of the fingers to press the strings. Also, you will have a good wrist position thus reducing the possibility of wrist injury. I have been playing guitar for 68 years without injuring my wrist.



    Tom
     
    dwparker likes this.
  10. Paleo

    Paleo Theory, Solos, Licks

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2013
    Messages:
    4,035
    Likes Received:
    3,541
    Try dropping your wrist?
     
    tom ayers and Tayport like this.
  11. Paleo

    Paleo Theory, Solos, Licks

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2013
    Messages:
    4,035
    Likes Received:
    3,541
    #11 Paleo, Aug 14, 2020
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2020
  12. Tayport

    Tayport Blues Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2012
    Messages:
    250
    Likes Received:
    172
    Great point Tom, I do need to tighten my strap , it is loose sitting down..
     
  13. Tayport

    Tayport Blues Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2012
    Messages:
    250
    Likes Received:
    172
    Thanks for the video, that was very helpful.
     
  14. Tayport

    Tayport Blues Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2012
    Messages:
    250
    Likes Received:
    172
    Thank you everyone for the advice. A combination of tightening my strap so I could raise the angle of the neck along with dropping my elbow made a huge difference.