Rhythm or plucking problem

So I am, or at least I thought that I am, a rhythmic person. To log some progress I recently recorded myself doing some of the lessons and noticed that I am way off the beat sometimes and I do not notice that during playing myself.

Then I took a lot more care during play and I noticed that it might be a plucking technique problem? I tend to put the finger on the string first and then pluck it, which can lead to a delayed pluck. I also notice that this way I am often “stuck” on the string with my finger, if that makes sense. But I am also not sure if the plucking is the problem, or maybe I am just out of practice with rhytm… :frowning:


Hm, what if you go back to a very basic approach again and see what happens there!? For example, use a metronome or a very simple drum beat and play quarter and/or eighth notes over it… wouldn’t that give you a better idea on whether it is your “internal” clock or some technical issue with the plucking??

I find it is always best to simplify to get to the core of a problem, where several issues could be the cause!


I might need to do that I guess. I was feeling like I made some progress, but better to go back now it seems…


I thought a bit more about what you wrote about your plucking “style”. I haven’t really thought about it before, but for me, the finger approaches the string and then plucks by moving through the string without slowing down or even stopping first on the string. Of course, you need to economize with respect to from how far away you start the movement, but there certainly shouldn’t be any “putting the finger on the string first”. This would be a bit like trying to punch through a piece of wood (in karate, for example) when the fists starts already sitting on the wood.


Thanks for the follow-up :slight_smile: This forum and the people are just so great!
I will try to keep that in mind and see if that helps me, the karate example is very good :sunglasses:


This is a great exercise @StefanK. Recording (both audio and video) yourself and then playing it all back will really be an eye (and ear) opener. Don’t be discouraged though because most of us have all pretty much gone through the same experiences when first recording ourselves - I know I certainly did!

Identifying that you may be off beat is the first step. Knowing that you are off should help you focus more and “Lock In” to to music. Most times when we play we have a tendency to overthink our next move instead of really concentrating (Locking In) on the drum beat (or what ever).

What @joergkutter suggests, is a great approach to helping identify what’s going on.


For sure, just the fact that you recorded yourself and noticed this is terrific. You’ll probably start to self correct now that you know what’s going on. And some of the Ultimate groove workout stuff from Mod 14 of B2B can help too, if it’s more a timing thing.


One thing to watch out for - if you were playing into an audio interface to record yourself, and also listening to the computer through the audio interface, your timing may not actually be off and it may just be audio interface latency.


This forum rules. I like everything that folks have said here.

The only thing I’d add is - if you can take a video and post it here (or post it to YouTube and link it here) we can get into more specifics and really try and focus on what the problem might be.

Good luck.


So I did make two videos gulp :cold_sweat:
Feel free to point out everything noteworthy, thanks :slight_smile: I used two lessons I had the must fun with but were also really difficult for me so far. Especially the Deep Purple track was giving me some troubles timing and fretting wise.

Please excuse the terrible quality, it’s from a laptop cam. The sound is also not really good as it’s just the laptop mic - I might get a real camera soon for easier recording :smiley:


I’m no expert, but it all looks good to me. You have hands made for bass playing too. Mine are about half that size. :upside_down_face:


@StefanK - You’re doing DYNAMITE dude!! Keep doing what you’re doing. At this point in the lessons, you’re pretty damn much “Spot-On”… Keep it up!!


Those both looked really good bud! You were not off beat on those videos that I can see.

One tip I can give you (and I struggled with this for a year) is muting strings that are not in use as I did notice your A string ringing out when you played your E string. The tip is use your fretting hand fingers and lay them across the strings you are not playing, especially if you are playing on the E or A string. This will help mute those pesky buggers!

And if playing D or G I use the thumb of my plucking hand by just having it lay on the E or A string to mute them. So say you are anchoring your thumb on the A string… let your thumb in between the first and second knuckle mute the E string. Hope that made sense…a lot easier to show vs. describe.

Keep it up bud! Took me almost a year to figure out how to mute (most of the time) strings that I was not playing! And as @JT said…damn I wish I had your hands… you may even rival Josh with the “Alien Fingers” :slight_smile:


Thank you!
And yes I did notice the ringing A string but I was not able to mute it consistently so far, I just managed it one time in the video I think - busy enough with fretting and plucking ^^

And yeah those fingers… it actually comes from a condition but I get that a lot, I am used to it :wink:

Again thanks for the feedback :slight_smile:


Looks good to me - finger going “through” the string and no placing on the string before the pluck. So, if you still feel you get timing issues, perhaps it has to do with interface latency, as @howard mentioned earlier… Have you checked that yet?


Thanks! I don’t use any device or anything so it has to be my plucking I guess :slight_smile:

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The muting will come with time. I am SLOWLY getting better at it…and Josh’s tips in his videos are teaching me a lot and helping me see where and how to mute.

Keep on Keep’in on and we will both sound good in short order!


@StefanK If you’re worried about your timing, look out for the “Ultimate Groove Workout” later in the course. Looks like you’re doing great though.