Hey guys!

So I just recently changed my picks from the standard jim dunlop tortex 1.14 to the tortex jazz master 3's from jim dunlop....man those things are life changers.

But the problem is, is that I have a gig on May 11th with this new band i just joined. they are HARD CORE. I mean that lead guitarist can full of shred up the neck. and i'm playing rhythm for them. I can play all of there songs, but i have to cheat sixteenth notes and galloping for eighth notes because of my picking hand tension. BORING.

With so limited time left, I fixed most of my picking problems just by switching my pick! but now I still have a problem. Naturally, I still have tension, I didn't just become a shredder for switching picks. But I noticed now that the pick STILL bounces when I tremolo on the low E (or D since it's drop D always) and i've tried slowing WAY down, like, I can't pick past 120ish bpm without the pick bouncing over the strings and halting me from progressing. I really don't think i'll be able to fix this in time for the show, and it would suck to cheat the songs.....i'm playing on a les paul if that makes any difference....any advice??? I just gotta get faster.

And when I mean bouncing, even when I play some Rythm parts for them, my pick physically bounces up away from the string, and then back down again....and idk how to fix this....
Hey McZaxon

What picking style do you use. Palm mute or thumb mute (for muting string noise) ?
If you post a picture or video I can help more in identifying the true cause of the problem.

I sure know how frustration picking hand problems can be. What I found was that in practice the picking hand usually only get 1% of the attention. So if I where you I would focus on the picking hand in isolation and focus on these things:

Are you tensed in the shoulder, arm, hand?
Could you relax between the notes so you stop the momentum of tension?
Are you using unnecessary motions? Could your picking be more efficient?

For your speed, an efficient secret to playing faster downstrokes is to practice doing a lot of upstrokes ( because then you make the "recharge" motion faster)

In addition I HIGHLY recommend the thumb muting technique. Look it up, it will keep the pick closer to the strings.

Hope this helps
First thing you need to do is relax man. A little anxiety is good, but if you are too tense, it is going to affect your playing. To increase speed practice at your limit as much as possible. You already said 120bpm, so practice the hell out of it until you are comfortable at that speed, then speed up gradually. Also, don't overdue it in case you injure you hand or some shit, so take breaks or strum chords for a few minutes, then jump back in.
you're never as free as when you are lost