The song “Let That Be Enough” is from one of my favorite Switchfoot records, their second album New Way to Be Human (1999). Break out your nylon-string guitar for this one and throw away your plectrum. Let’s do some “fingerpicking,” or as we classical guitarists call it: “playing.” Actually, from what I’ve gathered from watching various videos on Youtube of Jonathan Foreman playing this song, he uses a technique called hybrid picking. That is, he uses both a pick and fingers. However, the studio recording does sound like he’s playing a classical (nylon string) guitar. With that in mind, I would fingerpick this without a pick, as I can’t bring myself to using a pick on a classical. That being said, hybrid picking can be a very useful skill to master, as it allows the player to easily switch between picking and strumming. On a steel-string acoustic, I would definitely consider using hybrid picking.
Here are a few pointers:
- If you’re finger picking, use the thumb only on the low E-string and the A string. After that, each finger gets its own string (namely, index on the D-string, middle on the G-string and ring on the B-string.). This setup will work for the entire song since the high E-string is never utilized. I think you’ll find that this feels great and is quite natural.
- For hybrid picking, just shift each finger accordingly as the index finger is now paired up with the thumb in order to hold the pick. So, use the pick on the E-string and on the A-string. The middle will play the D-string. Let the ring take both the G and B-strings (or you could try using your pinky on the B-string. Many hybrid pickers do).
- For the notes in parentheses, or the “ghosts,” these are faintly heard with a good set of headphones. For example, the open D on the second measure isn’t a full out pull-off so much, he’s just taking his finger off the string and you can slightly hear the open string ring as a result. I wouldn’t purposefully articulate that note, but you can hear it nonetheless in the recording. However, I do play the ghosts on the E and A strings throughout the song, only at a lower dynamic.