Soundminer wrote: ↑
Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:46 am
Yisrael van Handel wrote: ↑
Tue Jul 11, 2017 8:02 pm
- Plant finger on string.
- Press DOWN (and no other direction) to compress the flesh slightly.
- Press until the string just touches the nail in the middle or slightly to the left of the middle line of the nail.
- Flex the finger from the metacarpophalangeal joint as if making a fist.
Do this in very slow motion until you produce a substantial, round tone with no nail noise. First practice at 45° to the string. Notice that I did not say anything about nail shape. There are three reasons for that.
- Technique is more important than nail shape, as long as the nail surface is polished and smooth.
- The optimal nail shape is different for each finger.
- Once you have the right technique, you should experiment with nail shapes to see which works. Try slight slope downward to the left; and try downward to the right.
The important part is to find the correction point of contact between the fingertip and the string, so that you just release the string at the exact moment that the nail touches the string. Nails should be short and filed with only very slight curvature (that is, nearly straight).
If all else fails, get a copy of Classical Guitar Technique from Foundation to Virtuosity
by Stanley Yates, and study Part 1, Lesson 2, "Fingernails."
Can you maybe elaborate on or rephrase the last part of your reply ? Correction point and exact moment is still a bit fuzzy to my ears. I mean, one could pause at the moment of the nail touching and just keep the finger there...maybe a good exercise even.
Thank you for your kind words. Does this mean that I have to refrain from didactic and long-winded posts from now on? I am not sure how long I will manage to refrain.
To the point: Step 3 requires working backwards. At the moment that you wish to making the flexing impulse (Käppel's term, not mine), the nail must have just contacted the string. and contact with the string should be at the midpoint or slightly to the left of the midpoint of the nail. It requires practice and extremely careful listening to get the initial contact point between the flesh of the fingertip and the string correct so that you reach the desired position at the end of planting, when the string is pressed down and you wish to flex (in other words, step 3 above).
Keep in mind that how much you press down (and compress the flesh of your fingertip) determines the volume of the stroke, so that you will have to be constantly making micro-, nano-, and pico-adjustments of the first point of contact to achieve the exact configuration of step 3.
I just have the nagging feelilng that this explanation helps no more than the previous one. It goes without saying that you have to perform step 1, step 2, and step 3 separately, pausing after each one until you have a very good feel for the whole procedure. You should definitely learn these as 3 separate steps. Only when it comes naturally, try to play a scale or something even simpler using this method. I hope that once you hear the results, you will sold on old-fashioned planting (at least as a psychological construct) as the correct method of playing the guitar.
[You see, long-winded and didactic. I told you that was going to happen!]