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Part One: Gypsy Jazz About Gypsy Picking Django Reinhardt and the Gypsy Guitar Technique Part Two: Fundamentals Changing Your Technique Practice. DjangoBooks Gypsy Picking medical-site.info medical-site.info Play faster, louder, and with better tone by learning the. Gypsy Picking. Michael Horowitz. 74p. CD included. Play faster, louder, and with better tone by learning the rest-stroke picking technique used by Django.
The rest-stroke technique which was used by Django Reinhardt is explained clearly through a series of 45 examples in both standard notation and tablature. The examples were transcribed from recordings or learned directly from the playing of Gypsy guitar masters such as Django Reinhardt, Stochelo Rosenberg, and Fapy Lafertin. Detailed fingerings, picking suggestions, and photos show you how to play all those fancy Django licks just like the Gypsies do. Additionally, the included CD has recorded versions of all the examples.
A wonderfully thorough study of the right hand in Gypsy jazz guitar, this book is a fabulous resource - a 'must' for the serious student of Gypsy jazz, whether a beginner or advanced player. Bravo, Michael Horowitz! While many books have taught the arrangements and chord changes of Reinhardt oriented tunes, none have attacked the correct manner in which the style is traditionally played.
The photographic examples depicting correct posture, the way to hold the instrument, hand and plectrum placement introduce the student to the fundamentals of obtaining a correct tone and the picking exercises are the keys which unlock the door to the unique sound and style of this genre of jazz.
The best thing is that the lessons in this book are easily transferable to other methods out there. Highly Recommended. The page text includes a series of helpful musical examples that demonstrate how a guitarist can use each pattern melodically, and Horowitz plays each example on an accompanying CD. Great way to learn the right hand techniques which differentiate the genre from any other.
Provides good warmup and discipline technique to prevent bad habits from forming. Interesting side notes from great players too. This book is a great source of developing technique for the beginner, in the Gypsy jazz style.
The real genius of Horowitz' method book is the fact that the beginning half of the text is strictly dedicated to concentration on the picking hand's movement, by way of studying the rest, up, and swept stroke, using only open strings as examples.
Once the muscle memory is developed, the student is to move on to more practical examples, using both fretted notes and open strings in the fretting hand. Highly recommended! This book makes much more sense out of Django's as well as other Gypsy guitarists playing from a technical standpoint. Looking forward to checking out other technique books by the author.
This book is essential to learning the proper picking technique for gypsy jazz. Lots of great examples to get the mechanics right. Great book that pays greatly if you put the time in. Been wanting to get into this style of playing and can find it quite intimidating. This book breaks it down simply into easily digestable chunks.
Started having fun right away. I will download more from this site and MH. After 2 months with this book, I find it has had a profound influence over my playing.
I am now following the handful of basic principles and that's all there really is without thinking when I noodle around on the fretboard, and when I do run up against a new riff that demands attention, I can work out my picking very quickly. My procedure with this book was simple: Still working on velocity, but the evenness is there. Start with quasi-chromatic scale, then chromatic arpeggio, then diminished arpeggio, etc. Run through larger arpeggio figures. Link Am and G arpeggios as written with diminished "stair step" arpeggios to make impromptu etudes.
Play everything multiple times at different speeds. One desideratum: I wish MH had spent more time in the introduction describing the basic picking motion, and had sought out less ambiguous descriptions.
For example, when he say to use a 45 degree angle when picking, he does not clarify which axis of rotation. Also, although there are photos of his hand position, he does not indicate whether it is the position of rest post-picking or position of readiness immediately pre-pick. Overall, must rate this book a must have. And the quality of production, carefulness speak well of MH as method book author. Will no bout be getting one of his other method books soon.
As a jazz player for most of my life, I wanted to find a book that would introduce me to the Gypsy Jazz technique and also provide a few Django-ish lines without starting all the way back at an elementary beginner guitar level. Michael Horowitz did exactly that with this book. It's comprised of 4 main parts: While I could understand why others might consider the history section just filler material, I found it extremely interesting and educational.
I think anybody who turns to this book should know where the genre comes from. Michael also includes a short intro talking about his time with the Sinti people who still live in a gypsy culture today and have some of the best gypsy jazz guitarists in the world The Part 2 Fundamentals section was almost totally useless to me but would serve a beginner guitarist well.
Part 3 shows only the picking patterns themselves with open strings and no left hand activity. Part 4 puts the patterns to use by bringing in the left hand and assigning the picking patterns to actual musical lines.
There's also a Django style solo that uses the picking patterns and lines to show how they can be used in a real improvisational situation. I ended up going through part 3 very quickly and spending most of my time with the lines themselves.
Although it may be practical for beginners to spend time on part 3, I found this section to be a little redundant.
From the viewpoint of a practicing reader, it would make most sense to be introduced to a picking pattern and immediately put it to use through a line so that the pattern can be absorbed and practiced as a whole. Parts 3 and 4 should definitely be combined in my opinion. Overall this is a well thought through book. I liked the way the first section dealt with right hand only exercises allowing you to concentrate solely on the actual picking and how the next section then introduced the left hand to bring the whole thing to life.
Michael has done a great service for guitarists trying to understand the nuances of Gypsy Jazz. The book is easy to read,has good notation and tab. It has made me aware of the importance of the right hand technique,arpeggios,,and the "rest stroke"The CD that comes with it is a nice addition. It makes it much better to be able to hear the exercises,as well as seeing. This type of music really uses the diminished,whole-tone,and minor 6th scales,which is seldom used in other styles.
Really tests your chord-theory chops. Thanks Michael for your help. This book has been an excellent starting point for learning Gypsy Jazz and overall Jazz Guitar technique. It begins with a great overview of the Sinti culture and music. It discusses correct posture and right hand placement.
Descriptions are clear and to the point. The exercises include common Gypsy Jazz licks and are great for warming up. Also, customer service is awesome. Michael and the Djangobooks team have been great at responding to emails regarding this and all of my downloads. I am a new student, 3 mos. My interest and love of gypsy jazz drew me into studying banjo.
Gypsy Picking is exposing me to the habits I need to cultivate and practice in order to play this type of music. The introductory material is great for anyone with an interest in this style. Last week I received my plectrum and have begun on lesson 1. The picking patterns are unbelieveable, most of guitarists would play the same tones differently and maybe that is the magic. There is much more in the book but as a beginner I have to finish the book first.
downloadd on the advice of all the Djangobooks Forum users. Very well laid out with a good level of description. Accompanying CD is so useful. I'm a beginning GJ player so I appreciate all the background and insight. More advanced players will probably already know this stuff.
Michaels' books are right on the money and far exceeded my expectations. His books are a credit to Django and a great asset to anyone who would like to learn his music. I can't recommend this book highly enough.
In my first attempt at learning this style, I focused too much on learning from tab and picking whichever way seemed fastest. I hit a wall very quickly, and it wasn't until I invested in this book, began fresh, and relearned everything that I began to not only play better with a more beautiful sound, but I also had more fun. Michael has captured so much information and first hand experience with Dutch gypsies in this book.
It really helps us folks that can't make it there ourselves! If you want to play in the gypsy style and you've been taught the alternate picking method, do youself a favor and download this book. Considering all the time MH put into researching this material it's an amazing value. Without this book I would never find it a natural style to play and this is important! Having all the songs, phrases, exercises, and so forth that you're working on in one easily accessible book will ensure you'll repeat them over and over.
When you master something, move it to a different section of the book and add something new to the ones you're still working on. Every so often, you can revisit the "mastered" section to jog your memory.
Record yourself playing, then listen to it carefully. Identify your weak points and strive to improve them. Also, use a mirror while you practice or even better videotape yourself playing. Are you using the motions described in this book?
If not, sit in front of a mirror and adjust your movements accordingly. You'll be the most at ease when you perform if you've already accustomed yourself to the situation in which you'll be performing. For example, if you expect to perform without amplification, especially at festival jam sessions, then get used to playing with good projection.
Play along with a CD at a relatively high volume to simulate a barrage of rhythm guitars trying to drown you out. Or if you expect to play with musicians who play at fast tempos, work out some simple, easily executable ideas that sound good when played fast and practice them at increasingly fast tempos.
Some things just require time and practice, but if you feel like you've reached a dead end with a particular phrase or technique you should carefully analyze the problem. Here are some common problems: Body Position Most average-sized people will naturally hold the guitar in a position that is appropriate for plectrum-style playing see Figure 1.
However, there can be problems and here are a few of the most common: Make sure your right arm is relaxed. Its mere presence is enough to hold the guitar in place. In footage of Django playing he's often so loose that the guitar keeps sliding away from him, making it necessary for him to periodically nudge it back into place between phrases of his solo.
Proper Body Position 2 The guitar is sitting too low in relation to your upper body. Try using a footstool under your right foot to boost the height of your leg. This will raise the guitar up closer towards your head. A small pillow between your guitar and leg also works. In the absence of either of these devices, simply lift the heel of your right foot, or download a guitar with a bigger body. He tilts his left foot sideways and places his right foot on top of it, thereby raising the height of his right leg.
The neck should be tilted up slightly to improve access to the fret board. Never tilt the neck toward the ground. Only the top section of the guitar's back should make contact with your body. Pressing the guitar against your abdomen significantly dampens the instrument's sound production.
If you're having trouble seeing the fret board, then slightly tilt the top of the guitar towards you instead of bending your torso over the neck. Sinti musicians learn from a young age to keep their bodies entirely still while playing. Swaying your torso, excessive foot-stomping, and head-bobbing all divert your attention from your hands that are trying their best to execute the very precise motions you've trained them to do.
Don't be afraid to look boring; if you're playing well, no one will care. Plectrums Plectrums used for Gypsy jazz music are generally very stiff and thick.
Many Gypsies use large reshaped plastic or wood buttons quite effectively. Tortoise is considered by most as the ideal material and is most likely what Django used. However, you can often find tortoise on old jewellery boxes and mirrors. Check your grandmother's attic or some yard sales for such items. The French pick maker Jean-Charles Dugain fashions picks from a wide range of material including wood, bone, coconut, stone, metals, and synthetics.
Among the more common mass produced picks I've found that sound good are the Dunlop 1. They are made with both 7I've been fortunate to examine picks used by some of the top Gypsy jazz virtuous and was surprised to find that many of them used very small, thin picks.
However, even when a smaller pick is utilized the material is always very dense and rigid. The rounded version is preferable for Gypsy jazz playing. Once you master rest-stroke picking, you'll find that you can get a good tone out of nearly any type of pick as long as it is made of a dense, rigid material.
Holding the pick You want your hand to be as relaxed as possible, to the point where you are nearly dropping the pick.
To achieve this you must avoid pinching the pick because that results in excessive muscle tension. Make sure the point of the pick is perpendicular to your finger see Figure 2.
If you're doing this properly, then the top part of you thumb should extend beyond the pick see Figure 3. Figure 2: Holding the Pick Without Thumb Figure 3: Its a good sign if you drop the pick during the early stages of learning this technique since it indicates that you're not trying to pinch the pick too hard with your muscles.
Playing with the hand free of the guitar improves mobility and allows the top of the guitar to vibrate freely. It should naturally hang at about a degree angle. This will only result in unnecessary tension, lack of mobility, and deadening of sound. This is the basic position. Most players, including Django, uncurl their fingers somewhat and let them gently brush against the top of the guitar to provide a sense of positioning.
The key is gently brush against the top. Pressing hard will deaden the top of the guitar and tense up your hand. Under no circumstances should you press or plant your fingertips or palm on top of the guitar. Again, see Figure 5. With this technique, a sense of position is accomplished by gently brushing the backs of your fingers over the strings while picking.
Hand Position Frontal Figure 5: Of course, complete relaxation while playing the guitar is impossible. If you were completely relaxed, you'd be lying on the floor. The key is to learn to focus your effort by only using enough muscle tension to accomplish the required task and then quickly return to a state of relaxation. To learn this, you must make sure that after every pick stroke your right hand returns to a relaxed position.
After diligent practice at slow tempos, you will eventually be able to achieve a state of dynamic relaxation at very fast tempos. Every exercise in this book should be practiced using the play-relax technique.
Picking Patterns Picking Pattern 1: Downstrokes To play a rest-stroke with a pick, raise your hand about an inch above the low A string see Figure 6 , and then let it fall onto the A string using gravity, not your muscles. The pick should fall through the A string causing it to sound and then come to rest automatically on the D string see Figures 7 and 8. It's important to use a fairly wide motion, so be sure you start the stroke about an inch above the string. Even more critical is that you let the D string "catch" the pick, subsequently stopping the motion of your hand.
When done properly, this technique achieves accuracy and volume with very little muscle tension. Picking motion should always be generated from the wrist. Trying to pick the string using motion generated from your fingers or your entire arm will cause unnecessary tension, fatigue, and poor tone. In general, the pick should strike the string at a degree angle.
The pick angle can be adjusted to achieve different tone colorations. The more parallel the pick is to the strings, the brighter the sound is. However, the resistance is greater and therefore less efficient. A warmer sound and less resistance can be achieved when the pick is rotated so it 9 Masters such as Stochelo Rosenberg and Bireli Lagrene are so relaxed in between passages that the thumb of their right hand actually lets go of the pick entirely, allowing the pick to balance freely on the index finger.
No one else plays with the feeling that the Gypsies do. Extreme pick angles either parallel or perpendicular tend be inefficient and unmusical.
When preparing for a downstroke, your hand should always raise the pick about an inch distance of two strings above the string you intend to hit. So if you intend to hit the G string, you should start by holding the pick above the A string and then letting it fall onto the G string. When performing this technique on the top E string, it is impossible to play a rest-stroke since there is no other string to "catch" the pick.
In this case, simply let the hand follow through and return to the starting position. The movement should be quite wide, so don't be afraid to really let your hand fully follow through.
Trying to use your muscles to limit the movement will only result in unnecessary tension, fatigue, and discomfort. Figure 6: If you are having any problems, you are playing too fast.
Slow the metronome down until your playing is relaxed and accurate. When changing strings, do not "sweep" onto the next string.
Sweeping will be discussed later. At this point change strings by positioning the pick an inch above the new string and letting it fall. The following guidelines will help you determine when to use an upstroke: This applies to string changes in any direction.
Picking Pattern 2 demonstrates the simplest use of upstrokes. Make sure your downstrokes are rest-strokes. The arc of your upstrokes should be wide enough so that you're producing enough volume to equal that of your downstrokes.
So if you play an upstroke on the D string, the pick should go up above the low E string and then fall back down on the D string as a rest-stroke. Swept-Strokes A swept-stroke is a downstroke in which you start from the resting position and "push" through the string, rather than raising the hand up and letting it fall.
Picking Pattern 3 will develop your ability to play swept-strokes. Django made extensive use of this pattern.
Make sure you follow through completely on the first upstroke, so your hand is in position to fall onto the G string. Syncopated Pattern Picking Pattern 4 is a three-note syncopated pattern which was used by Django. Arpeggio Picking Picking Pattern 5 will develop your ability to play consecutive ascending and descending arpeggios. The first four eighth-notes of the example use sweep picking to move from the D string to the high E string.
The second four eighth-notes use an upstroke and the three downstrokes to move from the high E string to back to the D string. The up, down, down, down pattern is a picking pattern commonly used by Gypsy guitarists when moving to consecutive lower strings. Horizontal Arpeggio Picking Pattern 6 will allow you to play arpeggios which are fingered horizontally across the neck.
Notice that when the pattern reaches the high E string, two downstrokes are played in a row and then followed by an upstroke and a string change.
When an odd number of notes must be played on a single string and then followed by a downward string change, it is more efficient to play two downstrokes in a row so that the last pick stroke before the string change is an upstroke i.
If you didn't play two downstrokes in a row then the note before the string change would be a downstroke, a motion which becomes difficult to execute at faster tempos. At slower tempos this technique is not necessary, but when playing at faster tempos keep in mind that downward string changes are almost always easier when preceded by an upstroke. And, playing two consecutive downstrokes on one string is more efficient than two consecutive downstrokes on a downward string change.
However, there are exceptions so there is no catchall rule that applies to this technique. Use whatever technique provides the most musical solution to the technical problem you are trying to overcome. Odd String HorizontaI Arpeggio Picking Pattern 7 is a modified version of the Horizontal Picking Pattern in which an odd number of notes is played on every string either one or three notes per string. This allows for string changes to always be swept-strokes.
This movement is very efficient and, with practice, can be done at very fast tempos. The odd-string pattern is only effective when ascending. The last string has an even number of notes two eighth-notes and can either be played as two downstrokes or, at very fast tempos, as a downstroke followed by an upstroke. Triplet Pattern 1 Picking Pattern 8 is a commonly used triplet pattern.
Notice that unlike Picking Pattern 6, downward string changes are always preceded by downstrokes. This may seem inefficient but because it is a triplet pattern the phrasing works better with straight down up down picking. Triplet Pattern 2 Picking Pattern 9 is a triplet pattern played over four strings. Notice that the down up down picking pattern is maintained throughout the whole pattern.
Notice that Picking Pattern 10 is similar to Picking Pattern 6 in that two consecutive downstrokes are played on the top E string and then followed by an upstroke and a string change. Double Bass pattern Picking Pattern 11 is a pattern that is used by Gypsies for accompanying ballads or for solo guitar pieces. I've named this pattern "double bass" because consecutive bass notes fall on both the "and" of beats 2 and 4 and right on beats 1 and 3.
Double Bass Pattern Triplets Picking Pattern 12 is the double-bass pattern modified to be played as eighth-note triplets. The important thing to remember when performing this technique is that tremolos are played in time. Usually, tremolos are played as sixteenth-notes or eighth-note triplets. At very fast tempos, tremolos can be played as straight eighth-notes, and at very slow tempos as thirty-second notes.
Always practice tremolos with a metronome.
Single Note Tremolo Single-note tremolos are nothing more than very fast alternate picking. Picking Pattern 13 is a sixteenth-note tremolo. To play Picking Pattern 13 simply: Even at faster tempos make sure the motion is coming from your wrist.
Avoid locking your wrist and generating the motion from your forearm. Two String Tremolo When performing a tremolo on two or more strings you will have to abandon the rest-stroke picking technique and replace it with a very refined strumming motion. Make sure the motion is generated from your wrist and that your muscles are relaxed.
It should feel like shaking out a match. Always practice this technique with a metronome to ensure that your tremolo is in time. Picking Pattern 14 is a sixteenth-note tremolo. Two String Tremolo Triplet Picking Pattern 15 is an example of a two-string tremolo played as eighth-note triplets. Notice that Picking Pattern 15 uses a strumming pattern that has two consecutive down strokes down, up, down, down, up, down.
This allows for an accent on the beginning of each beat which creates a stronger triplet feel. At very fast tempos, this example can be played with straight alternate strumming timed as eighth-note triplets. Take note that these runs are not entirely chromatic. They use four notes per string except when ascending on the first string regardless of whether or not pure chromaticism is achieved.
This method is much easier to execute than a purely chromatic run, which requires a more complicated picking motion. Example 2. This example was transcribed from Django's fifth chorus of Dark Eyes Example 3. The British guitarist Robin Nolan frequently uses this idea in his improvisations. Nobody else plays jazz like we do. The following Ex. Fapy Lafertin uses it when performing Hungarian and Romanian music.
The picking is the same for both, but the relationship to the beat is different. They would play a song and intentionally put mistakes in it. Those of us who could hear the mistakes passed the test and got special attention from then on. It also sounds good over dominant chords.
Start the pattern on the third of the chord you want to play over.
For example, for D7 start on F. Take note that it has one additional downstroke more than the conventional arpeggio picking pattern used in Example 5. Example 5. Try using it whenever you have four measures of a minor chord to play over. It also sounds great when played without any alteration. Example 6. An odd number of pick strokes per string is achieved by adding the second-scale degree to the pattern. Example 7. This technique achieves a clever rhythmic effect by alternating between two different fingerings of the same pitch.
The timbrel differences between the two different fingerings add an interesting coloration to the sound.
Django used false fingerings often. Example 8. Example 9. Take note of the differences in picking between this and the previous example. Try using it whenever you have two or more bars of a minor chord to play over. Example Notice that the double-bass picking pattern has been modified to accommodate for bass notes on the A and D strings. Take note of irregularities in the picking pattern in m.
The tremolo is followed by an arabesque harmonic minor motif and ends with a descending chromatic run. I really had to practice and practice to be able to play this way. Django used it in his improvisations on tunes such as Minor Blues and Douce Ambiance Unisons are created by playing the same note on both an open and fretted string simultaneously. Jan Limberger. The E Major 7 b9 is actually functioning as a very dissonant substitution of an E7 chord.
It works because it resolves chromatically to the A minor 6. Take your time and study this solo carefully, one chorus at a time. Once you can play it comfortably at slow to medium tempos try adapting some of the ideas used in this solo to other songs in minor keys such as Minor Swing, Douce Ambiance, Dark Eyes, and so forth. On the accompanying CD this example is mixed with the lead guitar to the extreme right and the rhythm guitar to the extreme left.
Turn the balance control on your stereo all the way to the left if you want to practice this solo with the rhythm guitar only. Pay special attention to the following points of interest: This descending triplet pattern uses pull-offs to achieve more efficient string changes at high speeds. Notice that a pull-off is substituted for a down stroke whenever there is a string change that would normally require one to play down strokes on two consecutive strings.