This is going to be a struggle to even describe...but here goes. #I've been playing guitar, poorly, for nearly a hundred years and have developed a pic grip that works well for strumming...which is my limit of guitar competence. #Recently, I picked up the mandolin and thought that if I could learn to play the mandolin, it would help improve my guitar playing - by overcoming deep-rooted habits that seem almost impossible to shake. #It's been working great until I've come upon this one habit that now has me questioning whether it's worth the battle to change.
At the recent Bill Monroe Mandolin Workshop in Owensboro, each instructor emphasized the importance of holding the pic "just so" and they all had more, or less, the same hand position - index finger curled with pic and thumb grip centered pretty much on top of the first knuckle and the remaining fingers in a similar "loose fist" curl. #I've spent two weeks trying to force myself to make this apparently critical change. #I feel like I have absolutely no control, especially on the upstrokes, and I've gotten so frustrated that, instead of looking forward to my mandolin time, I now dread picking it up. #Until last night, I said the heck with it, went back to what I'm used to...and life is fun again. #My tremolo sounds relaxed and smooth, I can crosspick with reasonable accuracy, control the volume and just enjoy.
The question...sincere: #For those accomplished players on this chat board, what should I do? #Suck it up and struggle to make the change, assuming that it really will extend my abilities in the long run...or just accept that the way I do it is gonna be different and I'll have to suffer with whatever limitations that implies? #Yes, I know playing music is just supposed to be fun...but I'm willing to suffer awhile, if I have some confidence that I'll come out the other side a more competent musician. #I just don't want to go through all of this, if it's not going to make a hill-of-beans difference, other than that I'll look like I know what I'm doing. #Sorry for the verbose exposition.