Dire Straits songs

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RockerRocker Frets: 3716
/Rant

I cannot abide the sensation of playing 6 string guitars with my fingers. Yeuch!  No problem playing finger style bass though.

Every or almost every instruction video on playing Dire Straits songs assumes using finger style as per Mark Knopfler.  A reasonably close approximation can be achieved using a plectrum.  Close enough for ordinary punters even if not for confirmed Dire Straits diehards.

The Sultans of Swing chord progression sounds good and a passable Money for Nothing can be played with a plectrum so why the obsession with finger and thumb picking?

/Rant over
Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. [Albert Einstein]

Nil Satis Nisi Optimum

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Comments

  • Danny1969Danny1969 Frets: 4647
    You can't play money for nothing with a pick as the riff has the thumb constantly picking the G note underneath the riff motiff ... a lot of people don't realize that's whats going on and that's why most people can't get it to sound right

    It's a different sound playing with fingers ... yeah I can play Sultans with a pick but is sounds much more like Mark if I do it with my fingers ... just a different sound really

    Try Hybrid picking, just using one finger occasionally along with a pick ... it's the best of both worlds and really sped up my playing  
    www.2020studios.co.uk 
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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 5886
    Rocker said:
    why the obsession with finger and thumb picking?
    The attack transient on the notes is different. The timing of them will be different too.

    By definition, the notes within a chord, triggered with a plectrum, will begin slightly out of synch with each other and in pitch order.

    Danny1969 said:
    Hybrid picking, just using one finger occasionally along with a pick ... it's the best of both worlds and really sped up my playing  
    Hybrid and finger style picking allow chordal notes to occur in perfect synch. Alternate picking makes possible some of the Country-inspired licks that MK employs.

    Similarly, a lot of what Jeff Beck squeezes out of a Stratocaster is only possible with fingers and thumb.

    Danny1969 said:
    You can't play money for nothing with a pick as the riff has the thumb constantly picking the G note underneath the riff motiff ... a lot of people don't realize that's whats going on and that's why most people can't get it to sound right
    Thumb and finger style technique imparts a sort of "bounce" to the music that is an integral part of the genres where it is prominent. MK borrowed heavily from Chet Atkins. 


    Be seeing you.
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  • HaychHaych Frets: 1313

    Knopfler was the reason I picked up a guitar in the first place so I learned early on to play using my thumb/fingers, it's definately a very different and much more tactile way of playing than a pick and allows you to do a lot of different stuff than with a pick. 

    I now mostly play with a pick but learning to play with fingers has many advantages.  The band I'm in play Superstition (which covers band doesn't <insert eyeroll>) but I can't play the main riff very well at all with a pick - I find it much easier and get a better 'feel' for the riff using my thumb/fingers and can induce a much more percussive feel that way.

    I also learned to play a pinched harmonic without a pick too, I've never ever needed it, mind.

    Where are we going, and why are we in this handbasket?

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  • DulcetJonesDulcetJones Frets: 475
    I played Sultans, Money for Nothing, Walk of Life and I can't remember what other Dire Straits songs in two different bar bands in the late 80's, all with a pick and either a Les Paul or an SG and no one ever called me on it.  I am proficient with playing fingerstyle but only use it when it makes the song sound good.  Using a pick for these Dire Straits song allowed me to make them sound better than they would if I played them without a pick.  Remember, the vast majority of most audiences just want to hear music, they largely don't care how you achieve it.

    Turns out “you’re so beautiful when you’re sleeping” is only considered a compliment if she knows who you are.



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  • GassageGassage Frets: 23455
    Tone and attack?

    Donald Trump has spoken movingly about 7-Eleven. It reminded him, he said, of the way Americans came together in 1941 after Pearl Necklace.

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  • Danny1969Danny1969 Frets: 4647
    Just found this on Youtube, see what I mean about the thumb... you can't really play it with just a pick

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l9XFFkHzjYA
    www.2020studios.co.uk 
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  • I saw a video a couple of weeks ago where he discussed and demonstrated the progression of how he learned to play. He made it look annoyingly easy.
    I've got more ashes than Wednesday, you know I can brew my tea
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  • axisusaxisus Frets: 14958
    so you want an instructional video for a song that doesn't play it the way it is played? er .... yeah, that sounds popular ..... 
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  • EricTheWearyEricTheWeary Frets: 9526
    Danny1969 said:
    You can't play money for nothing with a pick as the riff has the thumb constantly picking the G note underneath the riff motiff ... a lot of people don't realize that's whats going on and that's why most people can't get it to sound right


    I did learn that riff years ago but didn't do that G and yes it didn't sound right! 


    Sleep. That’s where I’m a Viking. 
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  • RockerRocker Frets: 3716
    My thumb is the problem. The sensation of it plucking a guitar string makes me slightly queasy and uncomfortable. Technically it is ‘more right’ for Dire Straits than a plectrum but I cannot get myself to ignore the unpleasant feeling of flesh against strings. 

    So plectrum it must be. So far, playing with my friends and family members, I can get away with it. 
    Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. [Albert Einstein]

    Nil Satis Nisi Optimum

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  • BrizeBrize Frets: 3502
    It depends on whether you're trying to achieve a facsimile of the original or an interpretation with your own slant on things. I always play Dire Straits songs with a pick.
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  • Winny_PoohWinny_Pooh Frets: 4262
    "I cannot abide the sensation of playing 6 string guitars with my fingers."

    You should get referred to a specialist to get treatment for your condition. 


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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 5886
    edited January 9
    Rocker said:
    My thumb is the problem. The sensation of it plucking a guitar string makes me slightly queasy and uncomfortable. 
    Grow a nail.

    Alternatively, play with the side of your thumb for long enough and a callus will develop.
    Be seeing you.
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  • HaychHaych Frets: 1313
    Grow a nail.
    When I started playing I couldn’t stand using my fingers without using my nails. Now I hate my nails and keep them as short as possible. Can’t stand having any length of nails at all even when not playing. My finger picking is better too. 

    I can understand not liking the feel of stings with fingers of the picking hand, must be a bit like velvet under the nails aaaaaaaaaaaaaargh!

    Where are we going, and why are we in this handbasket?

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  • vizviz Frets: 6124
    Danny1969 said:
    You can't play money for nothing with a pick as the riff has the thumb constantly picking the G note underneath the riff motiff ... a lot of people don't realize that's whats going on and that's why most people can't get it to sound right

    It's a different sound playing with fingers ... yeah I can play Sultans with a pick but is sounds much more like Mark if I do it with my fingers ... just a different sound really

    Try Hybrid picking, just using one finger occasionally along with a pick ... it's the best of both worlds and really sped up my playing  
    Agreed, hybrid’s the answer
    Change your search engine from google to www.ecosia.org - they plant trees when you search. Honestly, it's awesome.
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  • brokenstringbrokenstring Frets: 45
    edited January 24
    With Knopfler, it's also that percussive-style beat that he keeps with his thumb and first two fingers - the latter are sometimes used as a down stroke, using his nails. I've watched scores of lessons on Youtube and, IMHO, this guy gets it as good as any:

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