Prefer the Upstroke?


EPISODER
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Joined: 03/08/07
Posts: 96
EPISODER
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Posts: 96
02/08/2009 11:22 pm
Hey, I've been playing guitar for about 3 years now, and I'm always looking to improve my playing. I noticed the other day that the way I hold my pick, makes me prefer to start out on upstrokes rather than downstrokes. I actually flat-pick with all upstrokes.

Is this a bad thing? I am a lefty who plays a right-handed Epiphone SG. (If that matters, lol)

Anyway... Most of my buddies (and pretty much everyone else I see play) play with downstrokes.

Is there an advantage to this, or is it just different?

Thanks in advance!



-Andrew
[FONT=Fixedsys]A tout le monde, A tout mes amis, Je vous aime, Je dois partir. These are the last words I'll ever speak, and they'll set me free![/FONT] ;)
# 1
ChristopherSchlegel
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Posts: 8,337
ChristopherSchlegel
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Posts: 8,337
02/09/2009 2:33 pm
Originally Posted by: EPISODERI noticed the other day that the way I hold my pick, makes me prefer to start out on upstrokes rather than downstrokes.

Exactly how do you hold your pick? How would you say it is different than your buddies that play with downstrokes?

Using all upstrokes or all downstrokes is inefficient. It can be useful if you are trying to achieve a certain sound, but in the long run it is best to learn alternate picking (alternating up and down strokes). You can still use upstrokes when you desire that particular effect or when the music is moving slow enough that you can get from one note or chord to the next in time. But if you are serious about improving your skill you will need to practice and achieve a certain competence at alternate picking.

Hope this helps. Happy learning and playing. :)
Christopher Schlegel
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# 2
EPISODER
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Posts: 96
EPISODER
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02/09/2009 4:19 pm
I hold my pick out at about a 45 degree angle (towards the neck of the guitar)

I realize now that pretty much everyone holds their pick perpundicular to their thumb.

Thumb
_____
|
|______ (Everyone else)
\__/

Pick



Thumb
_______
|
|______ (Me)
/__/

Pick.




If that makes sense! lol

I'll take pictures later.

-Andrew
[FONT=Fixedsys]A tout le monde, A tout mes amis, Je vous aime, Je dois partir. These are the last words I'll ever speak, and they'll set me free![/FONT] ;)
# 3
Kevin Taylor
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Kevin Taylor
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Posts: 4,722
02/09/2009 4:42 pm
If you mean you're doing alternate stroking but starting with an upstroke instead of a downstroke... it is kinda backward. Usually the first note of a bar is a downstroke so if you're trying to learn a song you'll be doing it backwards from the way it was written. Downstrokes and upstrokes also have a sound of their own (when you've been playing a few years you can hear whether it's a downstroke or upstroke by ear).

I guess in the big picture of things, you could get by doing it that way.... but if you can learn the proper way and start with a downstroke, you'll find learning to be a lot easier in the long run. (you're already making it more difficult by playing left handed so this just adds to the difficulty :)

I feel your pain tho. I know most drummers start playing rolls with their right hands but I have to start with my left. And piano's are backwards to me so I get how ya feel.
# 4
EPISODER
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Posts: 96
EPISODER
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Posts: 96
02/09/2009 4:49 pm
Allright, I'll try it!

"Rep" for you! lol


Thanks man.

-Andrew
[FONT=Fixedsys]A tout le monde, A tout mes amis, Je vous aime, Je dois partir. These are the last words I'll ever speak, and they'll set me free![/FONT] ;)
# 5
JeffS65
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JeffS65
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02/10/2009 12:17 am
It's an Eric Johnson Technique...Could do worse as a comparison ;)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ACH5Z_YPmVg

...and watching Eric just makes me want to cry....
# 6
EPISODER
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Joined: 03/08/07
Posts: 96
EPISODER
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Posts: 96
02/10/2009 1:29 am
Yeah that's exactly how I play!

I like it, it's how I've always played. I will add the "standard" picking pick-position to my "arsenal" of guitar techniques though. Could come in handy! lol



-Andrew
[FONT=Fixedsys]A tout le monde, A tout mes amis, Je vous aime, Je dois partir. These are the last words I'll ever speak, and they'll set me free![/FONT] ;)
# 7

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