shred pickin!


jamesplaysgitar
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jamesplaysgitar
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12/16/2007 7:21 am
ok... so i cant really pick that fast. i want to pick faster. i was just wondering, are you supposed to hold your pick parrallell to the strings? cuz ive seen some people tilt it abit so theres less friction, whats are the pros/cons for picking both ways?
# 1
ChristopherSchlegel
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ChristopherSchlegel
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12/16/2007 5:54 pm
I did a few tutorials on building speed and playing fast:
http://www.guitartricks.com/tutorial.php?input=287
http://www.guitartricks.com/tutorial.php?input=213
http://www.guitartricks.com/tutorial.php?input=419
Christopher Schlegel
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Christopher Schlegel Lesson Directory
# 2
jamesplaysgitar
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jamesplaysgitar
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12/16/2007 8:32 pm
those are helpful, but they dont really answer my question.
# 3


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12/16/2007 9:02 pm
Personnaly, I pick with an angle when picking fast runs.

I find it a little easier to pick. The problem with this technique is that it adds a slight scratching sound on the lower string. I play a lot of metal so it gets burried in the distortion but if I listen closely, I can hear the scratch.

For the past years I've worked on picking more and more parallel to the strings to get less of that scratching sound. I have to be carefull about it when play with less distortion.

Sometimes, you want that aggressive scratching tone, especially in metal.

Depending on your style, you should adjust your angle accordingly to limit scratching sound.

I've asked myself that same question many times and after researching and looking at all my guitar heroes, I found out that none of them picked exactly the same way. From what I have learned, less angle when playing acoustic or clean guitar parts gives a better sound but I can't pick as fast.
# 4
jamesplaysgitar
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jamesplaysgitar
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12/21/2007 3:28 am
thats good, thanks for the help. much appreciated.
# 5
Geeetar4Life
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Geeetar4Life
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12/23/2007 3:52 pm
I don't hold my pick completely parallel, but it definitely isn't perpendicular. It's just a little bit tilted to fit my confort. Whatever you are comfortable with, go with it. As long as your hand is relaxed and you aren't stiff, then that's fine unless you really want to get all technical about it.

When it comes to picking faster, practice reverse picking. You gain so much more speed with reverse picking rather than one way picking. When it comes to practicing reverse picking, you can just run through some pentatonic scales and go at your own speed to get comfortable with it.
Good luck!
"I suggest we learn to love ourselves before it's made illegal." - Incubus

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# 6
jamesplaysgitar
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jamesplaysgitar
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12/23/2007 4:14 pm
whats reverse picking?
# 7
Geeetar4Life
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Geeetar4Life
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12/23/2007 4:37 pm
Originally Posted by: jamesplaysgitarwhats reverse picking?

Reverse picking is where you strum down on the string and back up in a back in forth motion instead of just strumming down on the string. Hopefully that makes since. I tried looking for videos on youtube to show you but I couldn't find any...
"I suggest we learn to love ourselves before it's made illegal." - Incubus

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# 8
ren
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ren
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12/24/2007 10:29 am
that's alternate picking... and yeah - mastering that is the key to crazy pick speed. Although I find I can play faster legato than I can picking every note.

I guess I have a lazy right hand... :rolleyes:

Check out my music, video, lessons & backing tracks here![br]https://www.renhimself.com

# 9
Geeetar4Life
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Geeetar4Life
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12/24/2007 3:17 pm
Originally Posted by: renthat's alternate picking... and yeah - mastering that is the key to crazy pick speed. Although I find I can play faster legato than I can picking every note.

I guess I have a lazy right hand... :rolleyes:

Well I've heard both.
"I suggest we learn to love ourselves before it's made illegal." - Incubus

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# 10
jamesplaysgitar
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jamesplaysgitar
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12/28/2007 4:24 pm
oh well of course i alternate pick.
# 11
oib111
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oib111
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12/29/2007 10:13 pm
I think he either means alternative picking or circle picking, cuz htey both help with playing fast runs.
# 12
Superhuman
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Superhuman
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12/31/2007 2:02 pm
I pick pretty fast myself, just had a look at my technique... I hold the pick at about -1mm from teh index finger and roll the thum back a bit to expose no more than 0.5 to 1mm for shred runs - this makes adding pinched harmonics very easy, just apply a fraction of roll to the thumb and it touches the string. Also, if you consider the plectrum parallel to the string - I lift the side that is furthest from the headstonk about 10 degrees to give a slight angle. I've looked at how I pick a number of techinques: alternate, economy and sweep picking and I hold the pick exactly the same all the time - its much easier not to have to go changing how you hold a pick halfway through a phrase just because you want to sweep the last section of an alt picked run. The more pick you show the less control you have when you turn the speed dial to the max.
Easiest way to find out what works best for you is to pick as cleanly as possible and as fast as possible on one string, move the pick around then try to drop in accents on every third or fourth to get a solid rhythm, then try to drop in pinched harmonics on the accents. There's no point being able to pick fast and clean without being able to apply pinched harmonics (eg that's not going to happen if you expose half of the plectrum when picking). Next try the same over two strings, 3 picks per string, then 4 picks per string. Forget the fingering, this is only to establish the best way for you to hold the pick to shred pick as fast as possible while still retaining 100% clarity and rhythm. Whatever works for you is what you should stick with, everyones hands, fingers, wrists, dexterity, flexibility etc are different so no one person can show you the best possible way to hold a plectrum (look at Marty Friedman's claw technique for an example!). Hope that helps.
# 13
Ed91
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Ed91
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01/01/2008 9:58 pm
Hey, it's slightly off topic, but to do with the right hand and shreding so I'll post it here! I'm new to the technique, and I was wondering if anyone plants their right hand (or pinky) on the guitar for pick stability? It's probably because I've never tried it before, but when I try to pick at high speed my right hand becomes more and more inaccurate at speeds that I can easily play palm muted (on the bass strings, anyway).

Is it just a case of slowing down and practising / working on wrist strength?

Thanks, Ed
# 14
ren
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ren
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01/02/2008 9:13 am
I don't anchor on anything for picking, my hand just kinda floats above the bridge. When I used to play a hard-tailed guitar I'd rest my palm on the bridge, shifted back a little if I didn't want to mute.

Now I only play guitars with Floyds so I can't do that without pushing everything out of tune.

Loads of players do anchor somehow though - Batio hooks two of his fingers around the bottom of one of the pickups as I recall... and he's pretty fast...

Check out my music, video, lessons & backing tracks here![br]https://www.renhimself.com

# 15
light487
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light487
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01/02/2008 9:46 am
I have found that my speed has improved dramatically over the last few months. I only just noticed it the other day when I was adding some fast, emotive fills into my solo's. Rather than using the usual method of hammer-ons and pull-offs to go really fast, I picked every note instead. Even though I am technically playing slower, I am being much more accurate. This equates to a sound that actually sounds faster because you are playing precise 8th, or 16th, notes rather than a mish-mash of differently timed, chaotic notes.

Don't get me wrong though, hammer-on and pull-off stuff can be very precise.. it's just that I tended to use them as a crutch when I wanted to shred up through a scale. Using a combination of the two shredding techniques is where the real speed lies, in my opinion. But everything must be ultra precise and accurate. Then you can throw in a few slow, out of time, sloppy notes here and there and they will sound awesome.. lol.. I do it a lot now.

I find that I hold my pick differently when I know I have to shred. I hold it between only my forefinger and thumb, as compared with holding it with forefinger, index finger and thumb for playing Rhythm guitar. A little while ago I got an infection in my right hand pinky finger. This meant that I couldn't anchor my hand to anything.. and you know what?.. it actually helped my picking. I also tend to hold the pick a lot more loosely than I used to before.. There's no need to hit the strings hard when you have so much amplification and effects processing these days.

If you don't like the idea of a Metronome.. find some sort of drum-loop thingy.. there's probably something around on the net somewhere, or you may already have something that can do it.. My Zoom GX1 does it.. anyway.. what I do is a pick a particular groove and tempo and let the drums play. Then I play basic scales over it, in time with the beat. Start with something around 60 bpm in 4/4 time.. it's slow but the beauty of music is that you don't actually need to play only those 4 notes/beats per bar. You can play less or more than that.. For example, you could play 8 half-notes, or 16 quarter-notes, or 32 8th-notes etc etc.. Because the tempo is reasonably slow, hitting 8th and 16th notes is actually possible for many more people.. and when you base everything else around the common (4/4) time, playing 8th-notes here and there sounds awesome.

Speed isn't everything. Precision and Efficiency are more important.
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linkinwayne
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01/05/2008 3:05 pm
I use a Jim Dunlop Stubby Three Way Pick and have developed a peculiar spinning motion to it.

The pick has basically three edges to it, so it's shaped like a triangle of sorts. When I sweep pick, I sort of rotate the pick so it hits the strings even faster. And it actually works. Takes a hell of a long time to get it down, though.
# 17
LordThurisaz
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01/11/2008 8:47 am
Here is a shred column I do for another forum. I discuss different aspects of shred, and will be going over some basic "picking mechanics" and then put the basic mechanics into more advanced patterns. Every once and awhile I dissect solos and explain how to go about practicing them. I don't have samples so as to be more of a instructional guide, rather than a Limitation or a basis (sense we each have our own tone).
http://www.kissfaq.com/bored/viewtopic.php?t=10785

Lastly, if you don't think about playing at all, I find I play faster than if I go "okay, I want to play fast" or "okay, fast scalar run here". Just relax, and have fun.
# 18
light487
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light487
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01/11/2008 11:27 am
Lastly, if you don't think about playing at all, I find I play faster than if I go "okay, I want to play fast" or "okay, fast scalar run here". Just relax, and have fun.


Totally.. I have that happen to me all the time.. then when I hit the record button.. it's back to slow-as-a-snail again.. lol
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LordThurisaz
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LordThurisaz
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01/11/2008 4:45 pm
Originally Posted by: light487Totally.. I have that happen to me all the time.. then when I hit the record button.. it's back to slow-as-a-snail again.. lol


My suggestion is then to work on the left hand's speed and acurracy.
# 20

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