Yaakov, Stochelo, and the Black Fingernail

t-birdt-bird Portland, Oregon Castelluccia Nuages, Dupont Nomade
in Technique Posts: 119
I tuned in to Yaakov Hoter's "Highway to Beautiful Improvisations" webinar yesterday and came away with a few insights, two of which seem pretty valuable.

Here are those two things-

1) When practicing new arpeggios/scales/patterns etc. DO NOT USE A METRONOME until you have the pattern down with the proper picking technique. Be absolutely certain your rest stroke picking is spot on before using a metronome at even 60 bpm (his suggested starting tempo).

2) Much like the right hand knuckles with La Pompe, the outside corner nail on your index finger should pick up black residue from brushing the string before the pick hits on the dowstroke when rest stroke picking. Yaakov talked about jamming with Stochelo at some point in his studies and after 30 minutes asking to see Stochelo's index fingernail. Sure enough, they both had a black triangle on the outer corner from brushing the strings. This led Yaakov to affirm his technique was close to one of the masters and therefore correct.

There was some good practice routine advice and a fair amount of pitching his latest lesson for sale. Overall, worth the hour of time to pick up a couple good tips.



  • DaveycDaveyc
    Posts: 30
    I missed that in the last one but that happens to me all the time but still strive to master the best technique for my style:)
  • crookedpinkycrookedpinky Glasgow✭✭✭✭ Alex Bishop D Hole, Altamira M & JWC D hole
    Posts: 922
    I used to get the black fingernail and now I don't. Does that mean I'm doing it incorrectly ?????
    always learning
  • Not only do I get black fingernail and a bit of finger, also get black edge of thumb.

    Comes from having stone Mason's hands. (Big palms shortish big fingers)
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
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