My mandolin mentor
Within guitar shops across America, you will find small plastic cases by the register. Stacked, arranged, jumbled. Maybe one large case instead with over a hundred choices. Pick selections may seem dizzying. Tortoise shell, multi-colored, plastic, carbon fiber, bone . . . where to start?
American Toolbox recommends Dunlop. After decades of picking, our staff still carry and use Dunlop daily. Usually two or three for a buck, you can afford to carry half a dozen to the Bluegrass Circle. Share, experiment, learn, enjoy.
Moving over to mandolin, I’ve settled on a thicker .88 pick. Swapping mid-song into a lighter .60 sometimes. My mandolin mentor smiled yesterday when he heard my new choice. A harder pick is quieter is on the strings? This choice developed because I carry a pick variety and experiment with different thicknesses.
Look for the Dunlop name. Select a dozen in different colors / gauges. At a few cents a piece, there will not be any teeth gnashing as they disappear, as picks seem to do.
Sure, a $50 carbon fiber pick produces a softer, more expressive sound. It took decades to appreciate the nuance in tone. An expensive pick for a novice. Would you teach your kid to drive in the Porsche?