alternate picking, help please?


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kaiba
10-19-2002, 02:09 PM
Can someone give me tips on how to alternate pick, I've been playing about 1.5 years with ONLY upstroke and it's grown into too much of a habit. Your help's really appreciated, thanks.

kaiba
10-20-2002, 11:45 PM
Come on Miele/Whatson, I know you can help me.

miele
10-21-2002, 06:56 AM
Heh, of course i can help you :)
Or at least i try.
First of all, if you have been using upstrokes for 1.5 years, it won't be easy to "de-learn" that...
I was planning a lesson on alternate picking in the future. I'll give you some pointers.

The best movement for alternate picking is wrist movement. Don't use only your fingers to move.
Another thing to remember is that distance equals time. So, try to make small and precise movements.

You first should try with single string picking exercises.
Don't start too fast! This is crucial! If you play inaccurate, you'll never learn to alternate pick like it should.
If you can, try to use a metronome. Start at 80 bpm, and gradually increase until you're at a comfortable speed.
Push yourself 2 bpm faster every time, then go back 1 bpm. Repeat this process until it's too fast. Then go back 30 bpm and repeat the whole process.

I hope you understand what i mean.

Anyway, here's a first basic exercise. (as used a lot in iron maiden songs)

e-15-0-0-0---14-0-0-0---12-0-0-0---11-0-0-0---12-0-0-0-
B---------------------------------------------------------------------
G--------------------------------------------------------------------
D-------------------------------------------------------------------
A---------------------------------------------------------------------
E---------------------------------------------------------------------

e-11-0-0-0---8-0-0-0---7-0-0-0---5-0-0-0---3-0-0-0------
B---------------------------------------------------------------------
G--------------------------------------------------------------------
D-------------------------------------------------------------------
A---------------------------------------------------------------------
E---------------------------------------------------------------------

e-2-0-0-0---3-0-0-0---0-0-0-0---------------------------------
B---------------------------------------------------------------------
G--------------------------------------------------------------------
D-------------------------------------------------------------------
A---------------------------------------------------------------------
E---------------------------------------------------------------------

Voila, this is a first exercise. I know it's a very basic one, but that's the purpose. I want to learn you the basics of alternate picking.


Make sure you keep alternating between a downstroke and an upstroke each time.
Don't do 2 upstrokes or downstrokes after each other. Keep alternating!
To fret the notes, use your indexfinger.

If you want more exercises on this, pm me.

miele
10-22-2002, 06:37 AM
Ok, the next exercise will include the use of all the fingers of your left hand. (or right hand if you're a leftie)

Remember to pay attention to the following: make small and precise movements!

The exercise is a bit dull to play, i know, but again this is good for coordination between left and right hand, and crucial to guitarplaying. Start slow!

Here it is (it's a chromatic sequence):
^ = downstroke
V = upstroke


^ V ^ V ^ V ^ V ......
e-1--2--3--4----2--3--4--5----3--4--5--6----4--5--6--7---
B------------------------------------------------------------------
G------------------------------------------------------------------
D------------------------------------------------------------------
A------------------------------------------------------------------
E------------------------------------------------------------------


e-8--9--10--11----12--11--10--9----11--10--9--8---------
B------------------------------------------------------------------
G------------------------------------------------------------------
D------------------------------------------------------------------
A------------------------------------------------------------------
E------------------------------------------------------------------

and so on...i think you get the picture...
You can also try this one on other strings.

Ok, to finish things up, i'll throw in a more interesting thingie...again on 1 string. It's been used in zillions of solos.

e-7--4--0----7--4--0----8--5--0----8--5--0----12--8--0---
B------------------------------------------------------------------
G------------------------------------------------------------------
D------------------------------------------------------------------
A------------------------------------------------------------------
E------------------------------------------------------------------

e-12--8--0----10--7--0----10--7--0----8--5--0----8--5--0
B------------------------------------------------------------------
G------------------------------------------------------------------
D------------------------------------------------------------------
A------------------------------------------------------------------
E------------------------------------------------------------------

You can repeat every "pattern" as much as u like. Don't look at the place of the notes...every note should be played as fast as the others.

Hope this helped...miele