what are some good things to practice to increase my guitar playing speed? thanks
A well balanced diet of small urban animals, and chromatics.

Keep in mind the chromatics must be done properly to develop good finger independence or all your notes will blur together into slop.
both the links in my sig are full of speed increasing fun, seriously

edit: practice for accuracy and cleanliness in your playing not for speed, if you do this your speed will increase naturally

find the spider licks of doom(first link in my sig)
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Last edited by justinb904 at Dec 30, 2008,
Chromatic Scales
and various note per string scales

play them clean/slow first to get good technique/tone then use a metronome or Guitar pro to practice to and increase the speed unitl you Kill yourself then go back to a previous speed and play to that
Read the sticky called "read this ***ing sticky". Tons of good advice there, that will help a lot.
Go out and buy the John Petrucci Rock Discipline DVD.
Besides being a guitar player, I'm a big fan of the guitar. I love that damn instrument. Steve Vai

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By your self intense rock 1 and 2 and practice with a METRANOME!!!! its essential if you want to build up speed.
Bugger everything everybody else has said in this thread, and play guitar well. There aren't any exercises that show you how to play guitar faster (that work). Keep relaxed, and focus on getting a good tone out of the strings. Speed will come in time.
Call me Batman.
^thats the worst idea ever(in my honest opinion!!!!), no discipline=sloppy techniques IMHO!

Focus on getting the technique right then the tone can come later!

oh and for speed, a thick,pointy pick works best in my opinion
Last edited by bass wizard at Jan 1, 2009,
Quote by bass wizard
^thats the worst idea ever(in my honest opinion!!!!), no discipline=sloppy techniques IMHO!

Focus on getting the technique right then the tone can come later!

oh and for speed, a thick,pointy pick works best in my opinion

I think you're taking it the wrong way.

J.A.M was simply suggesting that you should not concentrate on speed but concentrate on playing well; accuracy and good playing first, speed will come if you stick to those anyway.
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Thick picks all the way =D

and also those two videos (Petrucci and Gilbert's vids) are pretty valuable i think, they go over some great exercises, (gilberts licks are great for the practicing as they apply real musical applications to the techniques your learning, same w/ petrucci) and watching them play also helps with understanding the exercises.
^thats the worst idea ever(in my honest opinion!!!!), no discipline=sloppy techniques IMHO!

Focus on getting the technique right then the tone can come later!

Zaphod's right, you misunderstood me BE disciplined, and work on that technique. But you don't have to sit and play exercises to work on technique. Why not play parts of songs?

Oh, and I disagree on the tone thing. If you have bad technique, you'll have bad tone. Call yourself a PG Fanatic? Then you'll have seen those videos on Youtube where Paul talks about getting a good tone first rather than playing fast right? PG's a hard man to argue with when he plays so damn well.
Call me Batman.
i think that simply working on becoming a good player is necessary to reach a certain speed level, because you have to get very comfortable with your instrument and various playing techniques before you can accelerate speed-wise. However, after you reach a certain point, simply being a good player won't increase your speed anymore. It's then that you HAVE to sit down and do countless exercises with a metronome, or you'll be stuck at your current speed.
I have found the best way for me to gain speed is to make like a previous post mentioned 4 note per string runs. Alternating patterns with both hands. On the fretting hand start on the low E string at the first fret and play a pattern like 1234, 1 being the first fret and 2 being the second fret, 3 being the third, and the 4 being the fourth fret. This is chromatic to a certain extent. If you add an open on the EADB and E it is every note within the chromatic scale. Repeat the same pattern on the A string and so forth. You can also use different patterns such as (1423, 1324,4132, 4231, 1243,2134, just as a few). As you get your hands "Trained" to play notes in different successions like this it trains your ears as well as your hands. After learning the basic patterns you can then move on to stretching your hand with patterns like 1245 1345 1524 and so forth. You can be really creative with the patterns. This will really give you a "spider" hand.

As with your picking hand try to play clean as always. Starting with just down picking. As you gain speed with your left your right will gain. With this technique both hands will come into synchronization with each other. After you feel comfortable with just down picking try alternate picking [up down up down and down up down up]. At faster alternate picking speeds try not to tense up. Especially in the wrist or elbow. As this after prolonged stress can cause real problems. I find it is almost like you are shaking water off thermometer or even better example if you had bad shakes while smoking a doobie. Really loose in the wrist. When you get comfortable with Alternate picking try Hybrid picking [ up down down up down down up down ] and string skipping techniques. The great thing about this exercise is you gain as much as you want to. There is something that can be applied from every level of expertise to these basic patterns.

Chromatic Scale Run
IMRP IMRP etc. ( index, middle, ring, pinky )
IMRPIMRP etc. ( index, middle, ring, pinky )

Whew. I hope this helps someone out there it sure has helped me a whole lot. Oh yeah lol. When you play 1234 Make sure you are playing each note with a different finger ie 1 with the index, 2 being the middle, 3 being your ring finger, and 4 being your pinky. These are the stepping stones to the promise land lol. Walk the path.
Last edited by joseywaileskc at Jan 26, 2009,