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> Fast Picking Issues, Short Youtube clip
Cosmin Lupu
post Nov 21 2013, 08:18 AM
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Hey mate!

In addition to Todd and Darius' advice, I would add the following idea: Imagine that your wrist is resting on the bridge as we have discussed and the wrist is pivoting around an axis which is perpendicular on the guitar body. Just like someone would stick a pencil in your hand and pin it down on the body of the guitar - you wouldn't be able to pick from your elbow but only from your wrist. I will make a short movie for ya to illustrate the idea better.


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Anders Karlsson
post Nov 21 2013, 09:45 AM
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QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Nov 21 2013, 08:18 AM) *
Hey mate!

In addition to Todd and Darius' advice, I would add the following idea: Imagine that your wrist is resting on the bridge as we have discussed and the wrist is pivoting around an axis which is perpendicular on the guitar body. Just like someone would stick a pencil in your hand and pin it down on the body of the guitar - you wouldn't be able to pick from your elbow but only from your wrist. I will make a short movie for ya to illustrate the idea better.


Hi again, well i think ill understand but i cant see how i am going to make it a fast movement, mayby it will come in time. Yeah if you have time ill appreciate an illustration:)

This post has been edited by Anders Karlsson: Nov 21 2013, 10:20 AM
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Darius Wave
post Nov 21 2013, 11:03 AM
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QUOTE (Anders Karlsson @ Nov 20 2013, 11:55 PM) *
Hehe, it looks like i have to go back to basic:) i really appreciate your effort of helping me. I will study the videos and reply with a new clip if i can handle the basic technique and I'm sure i have some more questions. Todd i must say, you have very good advises and i will try to have them in my head when practicing.



Fast smile.gif impresive. If i understand this, you are only "hitting" the string and on the upstroke you are using fingers to drag the pick back or are you just using your finger on the downstroke as well if you understand what i mean?

I can see in the demonstration in 1.35 that you are "only" using fingers, but when u speed up i cant exactly see how you are doing, but i guess its "only" fingers, or does it more become as a shaking movement?



There's no rule for this. Most of the time I add my fingers movement only while playing fast. But it depends of type of lick and strings skipping variation. It's like having two weapons and using one of them or both for the particular target. I do use regular upstroke as well as only fingers movement for getting the pick back to starting position. I usually don't use circle picking in middle tempo.



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Anders Karlsson
post Nov 21 2013, 11:30 AM
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Well, is this better?

I dont know if this is a circulating movement, but i am focusing on a steady forearm and only wristmotion.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gaG0568yd0Q...eature=youtu.be

Damn it sounds awful:)

QUOTE (Darius Wave @ Nov 21 2013, 11:03 AM) *
There's no rule for this. Most of the time I add my fingers movement only while playing fast. But it depends of type of lick and strings skipping variation. It's like having two weapons and using one of them or both for the particular target. I do use regular upstroke as well as only fingers movement for getting the pick back to starting position. I usually don't use circle picking in middle tempo.


As i can see in 1:15 you are using fingermovement and "shaking movement" for a lightning speed?

This post has been edited by Anders Karlsson: Nov 21 2013, 11:32 AM
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Ben Higgins
post Nov 21 2013, 11:56 AM
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Hi Anders. If you can already gain speed without using finger/thumb movement then I would not change everything just to try and learn it using finger / thumb movement. I do think that people who are able to circle pick with finger and thumb (like Darius) are in the minority. I don't know how they do it, their motor movements are exceptional biggrin.gif But it is rarer than people picking with an unmoving finger/thumb position.

The speed has to come from somewhere.. and it is initiated from the wrist. However, I think people worry too much when they see a little forearm movement. Just because the forearm is moving does not mean that the movement originates there. Moving the wrist rapidly can cause the arm to move anyway. Don't forget that the wrist is not separate from the arm.... look at the muscles.

Attached Image

Todd is right to be concerned at the idea of picking with tense elbows. However, by looking at your picking and years of studying others and myself, I do think that your wrist is the prime mover but the forearm is just moving a bit along with it. That's pretty much how I pick.

When you look at most people picking, they can move only the wrist at low speeds but as soon as it speeds up, your muscles have to work harder to stabilise your hand whilst your wrist moves at a quicker rate. Andy James has some thoughts which kind of back up where I'm coming from where he talks about tension / muscle use.



If you are forcing it all from the elbow, and if it feels like that's where the main power is coming from, then you might want to avoid it as it can (and probably will) lead to RSI but I really do think that you're leading mostly with the wrist with just a bit of added arm movement due to the arm working to stabilise the wrist.

I would be hesitant to advise you to try and change your picking to copy any of us guys because you can obviously reach a good speed already. I think you just need minor adjustments to be able to pick each string consistently. If you abandon your natural picking approach you may spend months or years trying to chase your tail with this and then forget how you used to pick anyway.. and it could lead to years of frustration. So I really do think you shouldn't just cast aside your progress and try and copy someone else's hand position. But that's just me. I know what it feels like to be lost in the wilderness and I wouldn't want to see it happen to anybody else. smile.gif

Between us all, we'll help you get there but I think you can work with the technique you've already got.



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Anders Karlsson
post Nov 21 2013, 12:37 PM
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QUOTE (Ben Higgins @ Nov 21 2013, 11:56 AM) *
Hi Anders. If you can already gain speed without using finger/thumb movement then I would not change everything just to try and learn it using finger / thumb movement. I do think that people who are able to circle pick with finger and thumb (like Darius) are in the minority. I don't know how they do it, their motor movements are exceptional biggrin.gif But it is rarer than people picking with an unmoving finger/thumb position.

The speed has to come from somewhere.. and it is initiated from the wrist. However, I think people worry too much when they see a little forearm movement. Just because the forearm is moving does not mean that the movement originates there. Moving the wrist rapidly can cause the arm to move anyway. Don't forget that the wrist is not separate from the arm.... look at the muscles.

Attached Image

Todd is right to be concerned at the idea of picking with tense elbows. However, by looking at your picking and years of studying others and myself, I do think that your wrist is the prime mover but the forearm is just moving a bit along with it. That's pretty much how I pick.

When you look at most people picking, they can move only the wrist at low speeds but as soon as it speeds up, your muscles have to work harder to stabilise your hand whilst your wrist moves at a quicker rate. Andy James has some thoughts which kind of back up where I'm coming from where he talks about tension / muscle use.



If you are forcing it all from the elbow, and if it feels like that's where the main power is coming from, then you might want to avoid it as it can (and probably will) lead to RSI but I really do think that you're leading mostly with the wrist with just a bit of added arm movement due to the arm working to stabilise the wrist.

I would be hesitant to advise you to try and change your picking to copy any of us guys because you can obviously reach a good speed already. I think you just need minor adjustments to be able to pick each string consistently. If you abandon your natural picking approach you may spend months or years trying to chase your tail with this and then forget how you used to pick anyway.. and it could lead to years of frustration. So I really do think you shouldn't just cast aside your progress and try and copy someone else's hand position. But that's just me. I know what it feels like to be lost in the wilderness and I wouldn't want to see it happen to anybody else. smile.gif

Between us all, we'll help you get there but I think you can work with the technique you've already got.


Yeah, i have studied your motion and as you say, i have more similarities with your movements, more "shaking". I think i have to focus on a decent wristmotion and try to add some circulating picking but i think the speed is sufficient, my left hand must also coordinated the right hand speed . I will check out the video, thanks for helping smile.gif

This post has been edited by Anders Karlsson: Nov 21 2013, 12:40 PM
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Darius Wave
post Nov 21 2013, 01:01 PM
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Tips like those are always worth trying. If You You really want to try exactly what we (Me and Ben) do You should also angle Your wrist. Now Your pick is perpendicular to the strings while me and Ben have it directed with the tip up to the topso the wrist is angled and hand is resting on the pinky side of the palm.

When I was changing my pick grab (about 15 years ago) I was not able to play half of the stuff I could with old method but...after a 6 months I was able to play much more...I would never know this I I would not give it a shott smile.gif



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Anders Karlsson
post Nov 21 2013, 01:43 PM
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QUOTE (Darius Wave @ Nov 21 2013, 01:01 PM) *
Tips like those are always worth trying. If You You really want to try exactly what we (Me and Ben) do You should also angle Your wrist. Now Your pick is perpendicular to the strings while me and Ben have it directed with the tip up to the topso the wrist is angled and hand is resting on the pinky side of the palm.

When I was changing my pick grab (about 15 years ago) I was not able to play half of the stuff I could with old method but...after a 6 months I was able to play much more...I would never know this I I would not give it a shott smile.gif


yeah of course. I will give it a shot:)
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Azzaboi
post Nov 21 2013, 04:50 PM
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Looking pretty good if you ask me...

It's not really a fault as such, rather your hands are just a bit out of sync, this happens to us all the time at speeds. One hand develops more than the other (and the other therefore has a hard time / chokes when trying to keep up). It's a good but bad thing for us guitarists - good new a hand has improved majorly, bad new the other needs to develop now in order to keep up and is freaking out about it. It's best to practice focusing on only one at a time (other doing almost nothing) then sync them slowly (slow down and follow a metronome - practice with bursts of speed / slow / normal / burst / normal / fast / burst / repeat back to slow). Ignore the metronome at bursts - it's just to get the feeling of speed with more control. As soon as you make too many mistakes on the fast picking speeds, stop, shake it out, and chill... relax, forget about focusing strongly on the hands and simply zone out instead - the idea here is to learn it from natural muscle with little resistance and effort.

Speed is NOT all about just going faster, rather reducing movement distances and resistances which in turn can slow it down or cause it to trip.

A few things to check:

Picking hand first -
1) Choke up and only use the tip of a pointed sharp pick.
2) Don't angle the pick up or down, as this causes more movement or resistance when striking the other direction.
3) You can however rotate the pick so the thumb is pointing more down (or up if preferred) so your only use the edge and getting a sharper, less resistances of the attack.
4) Lock up the pick thumb at speeds, only flex this when slowly playing with more emotion as it causes digging of the strings - more resistances.
5) Glide the pick over the string, not lifting or digging too much, some people develop a circle movement, others just graze the tops of the strings. When picking, practice picking only one string without it leaving that string - in other words, alternative over the string with the pick always touching it on each side. No lift or dig = way less resistances + less movement = lightning natural speed.
6) Rotate from the wrist, rather than the arm when picking. Less movement.

Fretboard hand -
1) Practice hammer-ons and pull-offs per each finger. Finger independences (make sure the other fingers don't lift too much with the others or glue together).
2) Try to keep the fingers not used yet floating just above their corresponding fret. Not flicking away too far or hugging other fingers.
3) Keep the thumb more closer to the middle of the neck if possible. Rotate just with the wrist to reach all strings without having to reposition your hand. Less movement.
4) Keep the same speed timing of the picking hand (just forget about it) and sync the fretted notes in time. Slow down / Speed up / Then burst / Slow back down. You want to find your perfect playing point and always return to that, always finish your practice on that as well. Just burst up more faster but return back. The idea is to practice accuracy rather than speed. Let the speed come naturally from corrections over time.

All the best! Most importantly, have fun and relax - don't over stress it. Focus strongly on one hand then the other - correct bad habits / mistakes at slow speeds, but then ignore it all. Zone out and watch TV or something while playing relaxed. Tensing, trying to hard with force and overthinking can actually slow you down too and you want it to be natural and easy instead.

This post has been edited by Azzaboi: Nov 21 2013, 04:55 PM
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Anders Karlsson
post Nov 21 2013, 05:35 PM
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QUOTE (Azzaboi @ Nov 21 2013, 04:50 PM) *
Looking pretty good if you ask me...

It's not really a fault as such, rather your hands are just a bit out of sync, this happens to us all the time at speeds. One hand develops more than the other (and the other therefore has a hard time / chokes when trying to keep up). It's a good but bad thing for us guitarists - good new a hand has improved majorly, bad new the other needs to develop now in order to keep up and is freaking out about it. It's best to practice focusing on only one at a time (other doing almost nothing) then sync them slowly (slow down and follow a metronome - practice with bursts of speed / slow / normal / burst / normal / fast / burst / repeat back to slow). Ignore the metronome at bursts - it's just to get the feeling of speed with more control. As soon as you make too many mistakes on the fast picking speeds, stop, shake it out, and chill... relax, forget about focusing strongly on the hands and simply zone out instead - the idea here is to learn it from natural muscle with little resistance and effort.

Speed is NOT all about just going faster, rather reducing movement distances and resistances which in turn can slow it down or cause it to trip.

A few things to check:

Picking hand first -
1) Choke up and only use the tip of a pointed sharp pick.
2) Don't angle the pick up or down, as this causes more movement or resistance when striking the other direction.
3) You can however rotate the pick so the thumb is pointing more down (or up if preferred) so your only use the edge and getting a sharper, less resistances of the attack.

4) Lock up the pick thumb at speeds, only flex this when slowly playing with more emotion as it causes digging of the strings - more resistances.
5) Glide the pick over the string, not lifting or digging too much, some people develop a circle movement, others just graze the tops of the strings. When picking, practice picking only one string without it leaving that string - in other words, alternative over the string with the pick always touching it on each side. No lift or dig = way less resistances + less movement = lightning natural speed.
6) Rotate from the wrist, rather than the arm when picking. Less movement.

Fretboard hand -
1) Practice hammer-ons and pull-offs per each finger. Finger independences (make sure the other fingers don't lift too much with the others or glue together).
2) Try to keep the fingers not used yet floating just above their corresponding fret. Not flicking away too far or hugging other fingers.
3) Keep the thumb more closer to the middle of the neck if possible. Rotate just with the wrist to reach all strings without having to reposition your hand. Less movement.
4) Keep the same speed timing of the picking hand (just forget about it) and sync the fretted notes in time. Slow down / Speed up / Then burst / Slow back down. You want to find your perfect playing point and always return to that, always finish your practice on that as well. Just burst up more faster but return back. The idea is to practice accuracy rather than speed. Let the speed come naturally from corrections over time.

All the best! Most importantly, have fun and relax - don't over stress it. Focus strongly on one hand then the other - correct bad habits / mistakes at slow speeds, but then ignore it all. Zone out and watch TV or something while playing relaxed. Tensing, trying to hard with force and overthinking can actually slow you down too and you want it to be natural and easy instead.

Great advice, the fat-marked lines is the ones that i really have to work with and the circulating if i can manage that. I think this topic can be a pasted topic for all who have issues with their picking technique. Very great advice, thank you:)

This post has been edited by Anders Karlsson: Nov 21 2013, 08:23 PM
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Cosmin Lupu
post Nov 21 2013, 11:56 PM
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Here ya go mate:



The stuff that we talked about - pivoting around an axis smile.gif


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Anders Karlsson
post Nov 22 2013, 12:16 AM
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QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Nov 21 2013, 11:56 PM) *
Here ya go mate:



The stuff that we talked about - pivoting around an axis smile.gif


Yes, that view said a lot. As u say, my forearm is moving, but im working on to have it tight to the guitar and just the wrist should be moving. Now i understand what u meant "with the pencil" smile.gif I will work on the wrist and i also changed my grip of the pick. I had another grip in the first clip and i will try to work it away. Takes time to work old habits away smile.gif

Thanks for your effort, very kind, i appreciate it.

This post has been edited by Anders Karlsson: Nov 22 2013, 12:18 AM
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Cosmin Lupu
post Nov 22 2013, 09:49 AM
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QUOTE (Anders Karlsson @ Nov 21 2013, 11:16 PM) *
Yes, that view said a lot. As u say, my forearm is moving, but im working on to have it tight to the guitar and just the wrist should be moving. Now i understand what u meant "with the pencil" smile.gif I will work on the wrist and i also changed my grip of the pick. I had another grip in the first clip and i will try to work it away. Takes time to work old habits away smile.gif

Thanks for your effort, very kind, i appreciate it.


Hey mate! Glad to help out smile.gif Always a pleasure and I think that the questions you asked in the chat session last evening helped you a lot as well. Now, it's a matter of discipline and hard work - just get to doing things without thinking of the road ahead wink.gif Enjoy your progress even if it will occur with baby steps - it's just like in life - walk slowly so that you will be aware of your surroundings. In that way, you won't trip and fall smile.gif


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Anders Karlsson
post Nov 22 2013, 11:38 AM
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QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Nov 22 2013, 09:49 AM) *
Hey mate! Glad to help out smile.gif Always a pleasure and I think that the questions you asked in the chat session last evening helped you a lot as well. Now, it's a matter of discipline and hard work - just get to doing things without thinking of the road ahead wink.gif Enjoy your progress even if it will occur with baby steps - it's just like in life - walk slowly so that you will be aware of your surroundings. In that way, you won't trip and fall smile.gif


Yes, i will have that in mind, the lesson gave a lot information. Just for the moment a big issue for me is to learn the "right way" of holding the pick.

i ll stay in touch smile.gif

This post has been edited by Anders Karlsson: Nov 22 2013, 11:42 AM
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jstcrsn
post Nov 22 2013, 01:33 PM
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also, what helps me clean up a phrase is play the first note (perfectly)- then playing the first 2 notes, then 3 and so on, so it is so ingrained in your brain that u can play as many notes or as little in the riff. This will also help when you start improvising using this riff - you will more easily be able to fit it in where you want to
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Todd Simpson
post Nov 22 2013, 10:20 PM
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AZA!!! GREAT POST!!! Great to see this coming from a student wink.gif Really good advice and I couldn't have said it better!!

QUOTE (Azzaboi @ Nov 21 2013, 10:50 AM) *
Looking pretty good if you ask me...

.....
Speed is NOT all about just going faster, rather reducing movement distances and resistances which in turn can slow it down or cause it to trip.

A few things to check:



BINGO!!!! PERFECT!!!!

This is a KILLER demonstration of the technique. As BEN mentioned, try to hold on to the technique you've got and use it where it works. But try to use the technique that we are talking about and that this video shows as a new addition to your bag of tricks. smile.gif

Todd



QUOTE (Cosmin Lupu @ Nov 21 2013, 05:56 PM) *
Here ya go mate:



The stuff that we talked about - pivoting around an axis smile.gif


This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Nov 22 2013, 10:20 PM


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fkalich
post Nov 23 2013, 01:04 AM
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Thanks Ben. You really helped me figure out how to go from here, to minimize my chances of developing physical issues associated with fast playing. It really made sense to me.

QUOTE (Ben Higgins @ Nov 21 2013, 05:56 AM) *
Hi Anders. If you can already gain speed without using finger/thumb movement then I would not change everything just to try and learn it using finger / thumb movement. I do think that people who are able to circle pick with finger and thumb (like Darius) are in the minority. I don't know how they do it, their motor movements are exceptional biggrin.gif But it is rarer than people picking with an unmoving finger/thumb position.

The speed has to come from somewhere.. and it is initiated from the wrist. However, I think people worry too much when they see a little forearm movement. Just because the forearm is moving does not mean that the movement originates there. Moving the wrist rapidly can cause the arm to move anyway. Don't forget that the wrist is not separate from the arm.... look at the muscles.

Attached Image

Todd is right to be concerned at the idea of picking with tense elbows. However, by looking at your picking and years of studying others and myself, I do think that your wrist is the prime mover but the forearm is just moving a bit along with it. That's pretty much how I pick.

When you look at most people picking, they can move only the wrist at low speeds but as soon as it speeds up, your muscles have to work harder to stabilise your hand whilst your wrist moves at a quicker rate. Andy James has some thoughts which kind of back up where I'm coming from where he talks about tension / muscle use.



If you are forcing it all from the elbow, and if it feels like that's where the main power is coming from, then you might want to avoid it as it can (and probably will) lead to RSI but I really do think that you're leading mostly with the wrist with just a bit of added arm movement due to the arm working to stabilise the wrist.

I would be hesitant to advise you to try and change your picking to copy any of us guys because you can obviously reach a good speed already. I think you just need minor adjustments to be able to pick each string consistently. If you abandon your natural picking approach you may spend months or years trying to chase your tail with this and then forget how you used to pick anyway.. and it could lead to years of frustration. So I really do think you shouldn't just cast aside your progress and try and copy someone else's hand position. But that's just me. I know what it feels like to be lost in the wilderness and I wouldn't want to see it happen to anybody else. smile.gif

Between us all, we'll help you get there but I think you can work with the technique you've already got.

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Ben Higgins
post Nov 23 2013, 09:57 AM
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QUOTE (fkalich @ Nov 23 2013, 12:04 AM) *
Thanks Ben. You really helped me figure out how to go from here, to minimize my chances of developing physical issues associated with fast playing. It really made sense to me.


That's great to hear - really pleased !


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Cosmin Lupu
post Nov 23 2013, 07:54 PM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Nov 22 2013, 09:20 PM) *
AZA!!! GREAT POST!!! Great to see this coming from a student wink.gif Really good advice and I couldn't have said it better!!
BINGO!!!! PERFECT!!!!

This is a KILLER demonstration of the technique. As BEN mentioned, try to hold on to the technique you've got and use it where it works. But try to use the technique that we are talking about and that this video shows as a new addition to your bag of tricks. smile.gif

Todd


Thank you Todd! I guessed it would be useful to show a perspective that we all get to see when looking from above. I used to have a mirror in my old room when I was living in my mom and dad's apartment. But I got so attached to it that I was desperately searching for reflecting surfaces onstage, in hope that I could see my hands and know that i was doing alright smile.gif


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Darius Wave
post Nov 24 2013, 01:23 PM
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Ha ha smile.gif Yeah...I used a mirror to when trying to learn from some killer players smile.gif Very good way of Your hand work observation smile.gif


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