Why do some guitarist hold a cloth in their picking hand?


New member
question : why do some guitarist like malmsteen/hammett hold or tie a piece of cloth at their picking hand? Are they muting the strings with the cloth and how does it help in their playing? :?
the only thing hammet puts is a piece of tape(i think).. helps protects his hands from all that heavy chugging and palm muting.. as for malmsteen no idea..
If you're talking about a sweatband on the wrist, it's sort of a hygene thing. Notice that most people who use it put it on the part of their forearm that makes contact with their guitar. It's there mostly to stop sweat from dripping all over the guitar, esp for musisicans who sweat a lot or when you play under hot spotlights, etc. Sweat is corrosive and disgusting, especially if it gets into the bridge if you're the type of player who palm mutes a lot or anchor your palm on the bridge a lot. Ever try to clean out a bridge that has been corroded by sweat with cotton buds and sewing machine oil? Eew.
ah maybe... cuz u see, i saw this forum


the topic is on shredding and they were discussing about muting the strings that are not played. the 5th message suggests using a piece of cloth to help the guitarist to mute.

i also saw some pictures of malmsteen holding a piece of cloth while playing in the october 2005 issue of GuitarPlayer, and knowing that malmsteen is a serious shredder, i thought it was essential to mute strings that are not being played. is this true?
um..Malmsteen doesn't need a piece of cloth to play cleanly. I honestly haven't seen him nor other pro guitarists play with a cloth in hand.
oh ya... here's the pix <img src =http://www.angelfire.com/ab/andrewchoy/images/malmsteen.JPG>
I've had to play in a suit before... and having the sleeves in my picking hand was just plain irritating. If anything, it makes its harder to palm muting accurately and the sleeves have the tendency to touch (mute) the strings when you don't want to.

I mean... to the threadstater... just take a pic of cloth and hold it in your picking hand then play. If it feels good to you, great! Otherwise... well, then you know.
ac88 said:
oh ya... here's the pix <img src =http://www.angelfire.com/ab/andrewchoy/images/malmsteen.JPG>

isn't that his white shirt sleeve coming out of the black jacket? and not a piece of cloth?