Basic Finger Picking Exercise #2

Learn How To Finger Pick With Finger Picking Guitar Lessons!

Basic Finger Picking ExerciseIn this lesson you will be learning two different examples that use a new finger picking pattern. The first example uses only one chord and is pretty simple for your picking hand. The second example changes chords and gets a little bit more difficult for your picking hand.

Let’s take a look at the finger picking pattern before we get into the two examples. Start with your thumb on the 5th string and then roll through the 4th, 3rd, and 2nd strings with your 1st, 2nd and 3rd fingers on your picking hand. Now come back down the 3rd, and 4th strings with your 2nd and 1st fingers. That is the whole picking pattern. Look at the TAB and you will see T I M A M I under the notes that you should be playing. This pattern is pretty simple and easy to remember but you should still practice it until it is smooth and even sounding.

Now that you know the finger picking pattern you need to apply it to the first variation. Place your 2nd finger on the 2nd fret of the 4th string and your 3rd finger on the 2nd fret of the 3rd string. This is the chord that you will keep in place throughout the entire first variation. Play the finger picking pattern with your thumb on the 5th string and your 1st, 2nd and 3rd fingers on the 4th, 3rd and 2nd strings. The only thing that will change throughout the rest of the first variation is the bass note on the 5th string. Keep your chord with your 2nd and 3rd fingers in place and put your 4th finger on the 3rd fret of the 5th string. Play the finger picking pattern. Take your 4th finger off of the 5th string and grab the 2nd fret of the 5th string with your 1st finger. Play the finger picking pattern again. Finally, move your 1st finger down to the 1st fret of the 5th string and play the finger picking pattern one more time. That is the entire first variation. Loop this over and over again until you have it down cold.

The second variation uses a G, C, E minor, D progression. This variation uses the same finger picking pattern but you will be changing which strings your fingers play on when you change chords. Every time you play a G or an E minor chord your thumb will play the 6th string and your 1st, 2nd and 3rd fingers will play the 4th, 3rd and 2nd strings. When you make a C chord your thumb will play the 5th string and your 1st, 2nd and 3rd fingers will play the 4th, 3rd and 2nd strings. Finally, when you make a D chord your thumb will play the 4th string and your 1st, 2nd and 3rd fingers will play the 3rd, 2nd and 1st strings. Take some time to go through the finger picking pattern with each chord. Get each one down and then put them together to play the entire example.

Remember to relax and start out slowly. Once you can change from chord to chord smoothly you can speed up your playing a bit. Take this finger picking pattern and apply it to some other chords that you already know. Before long you will be coming up with your own songs.

This Lesson Has 12 Comments

  • John says:

    Hi
    what a nice place to learn guitar !!! I am 60 years old I am living on a fixed income , Is it ok if i pick and chose from your free lessons ? Whith in a few days I will be going in the hospital
    So i will miss a few days here and there. I always In for learning something new!!

    John
    What a nice site
    keep up the good work!!!

    • RJ says:

      John,

      I am also a recent retiree. After six months of learning fingerstyle I found Nates website and have found a new passion for strumming. I highly recommend this site for newcomers.
      I see that you posted your message last year. How have you progressed since?

  • Felicitas P. Calicdan says:

    Nate i Was trying to finger pick and it is so difficult when you put your fingers on the Chords And you do picking its like the chords are muted

  • Felicitas P. Calicdan says:

    nate this fingerpicking is hard

  • waruna says:

    NATE,
    YOU are such a wonderfull teacher. all the best.

  • Austin says:

    I’ve been playing guitars here and there for 8 years now and am surprised at how difficult it is to fingerpick as accurately as you! Shows me how much more I have to learn and that there’s definitely skills I need improvement on!

  • anthea george says:

    Hi I play the guitar, I would like to know if you can send other finger picking styles for me, I really need to improve on finger picking and strumming I want to learn different ways to strum the guitar.

  • anthea george says:

    Do I have to pay for you to send any thing to me.

  • Sandra says:

    Where is this tab that you are referring to?—->”Look at the TAB and you will see T I M A M I under the notes that you should be playing.”
    I love your site, Nate! Thank you for the free lessons. They are amazing and I’ve learned so much the last few days. I haven’t picked up a guitar in more than 10 years.

  • JOel says:

    U are a genuis

  • Nick says:

    Had a mid-life crisis and decided to buy a guitar. Been learning for 12 weeks now. Loved the finger picking lessons. I sound good so quickly, although not as accomplished as you! Thanks for your video lesson Nate – very clear and simple to follow.

    • Nate Savage says:

      Hey Nick, good to hear you chose the guitar to vent out your mid-life cirsis! :) It will be a great time. Let me know what kind of guitar you end up getting.

 
 

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