First time poster here. I’ve been deep in all the instructional materials after stumbling across Troy’s stuff a few weeks ago. Troy, your lessons and videos are fabulous, nobody else out there is covering this stuff!
Anyways … my musical interest is bluegrass and old time / roots style flatpicking. So I’ve been binge watching (and re-watching) all of Troy’s lessons on cross picking as well as interviews with Andy Wood, Molly Tuttle, David Grier, and Carl Miner. It’s great to understand what they are doing.
I’ve been trying to get comfortable with one of Andy’s 9-0-2 or Molly’s 10-0-3 technique. Unfortunately none of them are yet sticking. I’ve come to realize that my self-learned strumming and picking style so far seems to have a bit of wrist rotation in it, and so trying to play with just wrist deviation-type and wrist flex type movements is not feeling particularly natural.
In a bit of frustration I started looking for videos of other players to see what else is out there. And I found a very interesting instructional video from flatpicking legend Norm Blake. The video is available as a paid download or stream on the Homespun.com website, it’s called “Norm Blake’s Guitar Techniques Vol. 1.” It costs $25 to access the video, fair warning in advance.
Most of the video is more focused topics that will be less interesting to people on this forum (but certainly interesting if bluegrass is your thing, including some less-common roll patterns that I immediately found easier to play than the standard 3-3-2 syncopated role). However … there is one potential nugget which is a track in the middle called “Right Hand Technique.” Norm talks for a couple of minutes and demonstrates his right hand technique. Unfortunately he doesn’t have Troy’s super up close cam, but still the video is pretty good. Guess what … it’s completely different from Andy’s 9-0-2 or Molly’s 10-0-3 technique. In fact, he’s doing a combination of wrist rotation and something else. So what is he doing? Anybody know?
He seems to be able to use his technique to easily cross in the 200-240 bpm (eighth note) range, though I don’t know if he can push it as fast as David’s or Molly’s 300 bpm eighth note pace.
I know Troy has a video of another player (Michael Herring?) doing a wrist rotation based technique. But that video doesn’t look to me like what Norm is doing in the video. Michael Herring’s technique has a very distinctive “wobble” look to it. Norm’s technique doesn’t seem to have that same “wobble” look.
Anyways … I searched the forum and found pretty much no discussion of Norm Blake. One of the greatest flatpickers ever … what’s he doing and how is he doing it? Looking for help (and hoping that maybe it’s a better fit for me than the 9-0-2 or 10-0-3 techniques).