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three-finger style with mizrabs 

Posted 3/15/2016 12:19:40 PM

I use these wire sitar picks (mizrabs) to play a banjo style that combines Scruggs and Keith style 3-finger picking with Pete Seeger style clawhammer-ish rhythm playing. I find it very useful to be able to switch from melodic style to clawhammer within the same tune or the same lick. If you're going to try these picks, make sure to get good ones, and make sure they fit tight on or just above your first knuckle. Yep, they hurt. You'll get used to it. I wore mine every chance I could for a year whether I was playing or not and I built up a thick callous, which helps the picks fit tighter. They cost a few bucks each, but they're all a little different so order more than you need because they really do need to fit just right to be of any use. Also they need to be made of very rigid metal or they will get bent out of shape. Ebay abounds with such crappy mizrabs. I get mine exclusively from Lars Jacobsen at www.sitar-tabla.com - you can take a measurement of your finger and send it to him, and he'll find ones that will fit you perfectly. I don't know of anyone else who will do that. They would be easy enough to make if you had the gumption, I hear that piano strings are the best type of wire to use. Hit me up for a lesson if you want to know more about how to apply these to banjo (they work great on nylon-string guitar too). I've never given a skype lesson before, but I'd do it for the mizrabs.

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