There are so many different techniques that can be applied when approaching the guitar. Fingerstyle happens to be one of the most requested techniques that I get from students in their music lessons. Its tradition dates back many decades and has been modernized since.
To play fingerstyle guitar you must first know the fingering letters that pertain to each finger on your right hand.
Our right hand fingers are identified as:
Thumb – Letter = (p)
Index – Letter = (i)
Middle – Letter = (m)
Ring – Letter = (a)
Pinky – Letter = (c) *Not as common but can be used*
Once you have the letters of the right hand fingerings memorized you can now take your right hand and give a thumbs up. Now say “thumb letter p”. Put your thumb down and then do the same with the index finger. Continue until you reach your pinky.
After you have done this a few times and its clear which finger pertains to which letter, you now can pickup your guitar (if you haven’t yet) and use these fingers to pluck each string in this order:
Thumb (p) plucks = 6th string (E), 5th string (A), 4th string (D)
Index (i) plucks = 3rd string (G)
Middle (m) plucks = 2nd string (B)
Ring (a) = 1st string (E)
The next step after following these exercises would be to learn different righthand fingering patterns. There are so many different types of picking patters that I could not list them all.
If you’d like to learn some picking patterns and more about fingerstyle technique, contact me for lessons at (203) 826-3447 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org .