Today I’d like to chat about the style of picking used in gypsy jazz guitar, otherwise known as ‘rest stroke’ picking.
This picking technique is what allows gypsy jazz guitarists to produce such a strong sound on their instrument, and once mastered, is a real asset to your guitar playing.
To get started using this technique, it’s important to follow a few rules whenever playing lead:
- Every down-stroke should be a rest-stroke (IE after the stroke is completed, the pick should rest on the string underneath. The exception is the high ‘e’ string of course).
- Whenever you move to a new string, always begin with a downstroke.
As a good introduction to this, try the following exercises slowly to a metronome, utilising open strings. Be sure to pay attention to picking directions:
I hope you’ve found this a useful introduction to utilising gypsy jazz picking in your guitar playing.
If you’d like to learn more, please consider taking the course Lead Guitar Fundamentals, where I will take you through applying the picking to melodies, arpeggios, and etudes.
Wishing you all the best!