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Picking Individual Strings

The Beginner's Course

Just one at a time please!

Because we will be looking at playing some scales soon, I want you to get used to picking out one string at a time.

This a very simple exercise to help get you started. It should be easy; the thing to work on is accuracy, not speed. There are better exercises to work on speed, which we will look at later, but for now just try and make sure that you only pluck one string at a time. If you've been using a thin gauge pick up to now, you might like to try a thicker one for this type of exercise.

Watch The Video Lesson


Open string picking exercise

This exercise just uses the open strings, so you can relax your fretting hand now (although you might like
to mute the open strings by lightly resting that hand on the strings.

Exercise 1 - 1 pick on each string - all down picks
Exercise 2 - 1 pick on each string - all up picks
Exercise 3 - 2 picks on each string - down then up
Exercise 4 - 4 picks on each string - down / up / down / up

It's likely that you will sometimes pick the wrong strings when you start out. That's normal. Surprise, surprise: it will take practice to get right.

Don't be worried if your little finger is touching the thinnest string when you are playing the thickest one. This is normal, even desirable!

This is really to get you warmed up for playing scales which are one of the best ways of increasing your pick accuracy, so just have a go and get warmed-up for the next stage, when we start looking at scales.


Your fingers should be well warmed up now - so lets get into playing some choonz BC-167 • Easy Songs For Stage 6

Beginner products you may like from
Justinguitar Beginner's Course DVD set
Justinguitar Beginners Songbook
Justinguitar Beginners Songbook
Beginners Course Book
Practical Music Theory

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Lesson ID: BC-166