#1
Currently I hold my pick between forefinger and thumb and I pick with my wrist. Is this correct?
Rusty Cooley (sp?) apparently picks using his elbow and wrist, is that good technique? How would one go about learning it if so?

Finally, assuming one has proper technique, is there any way to speed up tremolo speeds? Michael Angelo Batio seems to think not (if I'm correctly interpreting what he's saying).
Gear List:
B.C. Rich NT Jr. V (With Seymour Duncan AHB-1 Blackout in bridge)
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff
Marshall MG15DFX
Jazz III picks
DR strings
Planet Waves Cables
#2
Some say the correct picking technique is using your wrist as you pick, but I've seen videos where guitarists move their entire forearm (elbow to hand, that is). Personally, I would say pick however you feel comfortable. I hold my pick with my index and middle finger against my thumb and I've always felt strange for picking that way, but it's how I feel most comfortable.

Chromatic exercises build up speed, but it takes a long time to get the speed up, obviously. Check out the Licks & Riffs with Gus G. - Lesson 1 on YouTube. Practice the exercise until you can match or exceed his speed. Learn solos from Malmsteen, Rusty Cooley, Michael Romeo, Rusty Cooley and other shredders whose speed you'd like to attain.
#3
Currently I hold my pick between forefinger and thumb and I pick with my wrist. Is this correct?


Yep.

Rusty Cooley (sp?) apparently picks using his elbow and wrist, is that good technique? How would one go about learning it if so?


The idea is simple - wrist does small movements (like picking on a single string), elbow does big movements (moving between strings and skipping). It's what everyone does to an extent but being aware of it is a great help.

Finally, assuming one has proper technique, is there any way to speed up tremolo speeds? Michael Angelo Batio seems to think not (if I'm correctly interpreting what he's saying).


Yeah, move a smaller distance with each pickstroke and eliminate as much tension as possible. I think you're confused about what MABs saying, can you link me?
#4
i think your talking about potential picking speed TS. where he says that however fast you can tremolo pick is your potential picking speed but also he says for at that moment thus you can go faster with more practice
im not sure if this is what you meant but i hope i have helped somewhat atleast
#5
Quote by Metal Society
i think your talking about potential picking speed TS. where he says that however fast you can tremolo pick is your potential picking speed but also he says for at that moment thus you can go faster with more practice
im not sure if this is what you meant but i hope i have helped somewhat atleast

Yes, that is what I meant, thanks for clarifying that.

Quote by Freepower
The idea is simple - wrist does small movements (like picking on a single string), elbow does big movements (moving between strings and skipping). It's what everyone does to an extent but being aware of it is a great help.

I suppose I've been doing that to a degree, but if I'm skipping to another string and then returning to the original string: I tend to use my wrist to make the string change. Should I be using my elbow?

Quote by punker_7970
Chromatic exercises build up speed, but it takes a long time to get the speed up, obviously. Check out the Licks & Riffs with Gus G. - Lesson 1 on YouTube. Practice the exercise until you can match or exceed his speed. Learn solos from Malmsteen, Rusty Cooley, Michael Romeo, Rusty Cooley and other shredders whose speed you'd like to attain.

I've played chromatics similar to those that Gus G. uses in that video in the past but I stopped using them as much. I'll try and develop my speed with chromatics.

Thanks for all the replies, any other suggestions/clarifications are welcome too.
Gear List:
B.C. Rich NT Jr. V (With Seymour Duncan AHB-1 Blackout in bridge)
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff
Marshall MG15DFX
Jazz III picks
DR strings
Planet Waves Cables
#7
He's ****ing nuts, if you haven't checked him out yet.

I suppose I've been doing that to a degree, but if I'm skipping to another string and then returning to the original string: I tend to use my wrist to make the string change. Should I be using my elbow?


Nope, thats fine. The elbow kind of "follows" the wrist around, moving around so that the wrist can easily attack the strings, that's the idea.
#9
chromatics are good for developing speed, but why not find quick passages from your favorite songs and practice those. by doing that you put your practice into a musical context.
#10
Quote by sisuphi
chromatics are good for developing speed, but why not find quick passages from your favorite songs and practice those. by doing that you put your practice into a musical context.

Most of the stuff I listen to is fairly fast and I've been working on learning it (especially a few of the solos) but I can't seem to break past my current "speed limit".
If I pick at my limit I feel comfortable and I've got no problem maintaining that speed or anything, but if I try to surpass it, I can't. I just simply can't move it any faster without adding a lot of tension and losing control of my picking.
The chromatics seem to be helping some though.

Also, yet another question:
I find if I angle my pick downwards, so it makes contact with the string at around a 45 degree angle, I can pick faster and with accuracy. However, I suspect this isn't good technique so I haven't been doing it. Is it bad technique to do so?
The above technique sounds good for me if I play e.g. 12, 13, 15 but it sounds terrible for tremolo on a single note (very scratchy).
Gear List:
B.C. Rich NT Jr. V (With Seymour Duncan AHB-1 Blackout in bridge)
Electro-Harmonix Metal Muff
Marshall MG15DFX
Jazz III picks
DR strings
Planet Waves Cables
#11
Quote by LeperAffinity

I find if I angle my pick downwards, so it makes contact with the string at around a 45 degree angle, I can pick faster and with accuracy. However, I suspect this isn't good technique so I haven't been doing it. Is it bad technique to do so?


It's not "bad technique." PG starts to talk about pick angling here at around 1:23 in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CpJNUGHxC3M
#12
Almost always, the real problems aren't occurring when you're trying to play fast, they are part of your slow playing as well. Look for the solutions where the problems are.

In other words, if you keep trying to play at tremolo picking speeds and are making constant adjustments there to try and fix your problems, you're probably just wasting a lot of time. You're encountering the problems well before that.
#13
It's always better to start off slow and then speed up- it's easier to fix your mistakes and understand what it is you are doing wrong.

Picking at an angle is VERY GOOD for trem picking. If your pick is flat, it's harder to go faster and your pick falls out of your hand sonetimes. However, if you pick at an angle, you can play a lot faster due to less stress(?) against the strings. Physics classes also help many understand why it does this.

If you're looking to speed up your trem technique, check out more Death Metal bands. One of them, that personally helped me over come a speed barrier, is Heaven Shall Burn. Check them out. I suggest praciticing one of their songs that's called 'Counterweight'. You basically trem pick for about 5 minutes straight with small breaks in between. Play that song- or any other fast ones- as many times as you possibly can. It helped me and now I can pick as fast as 32nd notes at 140 bpm.

Also, check out Angel Of Death by Slayer. Play it about 30 times or so with less than 5 minute breaks. That should help a lot!
Last edited by Intricacy13 at Feb 16, 2009,
#14
terrifying technique book

that's got the basis you'll need for your soloing exercises. that and variations of it = all you need

you just gotta extend it all over the fretboard, staying in major, harmonic minor scales, x scales, anything.

don't just strictly follow that

my teacher also recommened me rhythm guitar - complete guide, by the musicians institute

and it's been worthwhile.


all you should worry about increasing your speed is to play everything FLAWLESSLY.
play on clean and unplugged while playing linear scalar exercises.
sweep picking play clean and with distortion BUT ALWAYS SLOW ENOUGH TO HEAR YOUR MISTAKES.

another very important thing, is to tell yourself you aren't really ever playing anything perfectly. that will help you lots, since your brain is always going to be trying to improve your technique, no matter how your ear fools you.