#1
When doing either arpeggios OR scales, which of the following would be the proper way to hold a pick for executing the technique effectively?



I get the impression from certain videos that the parallel (right img) is the best for arpeggios, and the middle one is decent enough for shredding a scale or pentatonic

In your experience, what will give me the most accurate/fluent/best technique that wont give me carpal tunnel in a few years?

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I am not looking for the following answers
  • Dude do it however you want
  • Man, just do what feels comfortable
  • Look son, it doesn't matter, just do w/e
  • Any way works

... of course unless you're some shred god of arpeggios and scales (videos please?) then I take that back

Why would I say that?
For those of you in science, think of a protein conformation... if it folds a certain way, it can get stuck in an area that it cant progress because it is locked up in one method, likewise, what if I practiced muting with such a terrible angle for years, only to find out it's totally wrong? Why not strive for the best technique first?
Also, I did take the advice of "do whatever feels comfortable", and 2 years later I still 50/50 between making a really quick sweep sound clean and messy.

Yes, I will do the 21 day challenge 100x if I have to... to get clean arpeggios-- but the proper technique is clearly important.

Any vids are highly welcome. Thanks.
#4
for sweeps(i can do 5 string sweeps somewhat cleanly sometimes and 3 string sweeps perfect most of the time btw) i hold it perfectly parallel to the strings


for everything else i hold it like the middle but i rotate it the opposite way

i think that distance between the top of the guitar and the strings actually might affect this when playing sitting down. when i play my razorback(barely any room between the top of the guitar and the e string) i rotate it slightly less than when i play my ibanez(more distance between the top of the guitar and the e string)
#6
The angle you choose depends on the tone you want, that's something you have to experiment with. The more you angle it, the easier the pick will pass over the strings but the scratchier your tone will become.
Personally, I use the angle shown in the middle diagram for both alternate picking and sweeping (which is what I assume you meant when you said arpeggios, though it's worth noting that arpeggios can be played with any technique and that not all sweeps are arpeggios).
Speed is a by-product of shut the fuck up.
#10
Quote by slayerfrk
do you not know the string names? that would be a good start...

Are you retarded? Look at the font, I couldn't fit all the letters in that space without making the font unreadable.
Hell judging by your post, if I wrote EADG E as the space allowed, you'd probably start saying "don't know you all your chords dumbass? You're missing a B"

Quote by Freepower
Pick angle is mostly about tone - most people angle in the opposite direction to what you're drawn though.

Thank you (and everyone else!) for the post

1) Does that mean theoretically someone could sweep at a 45 degree angle and still sound clean?

2) Assuming the above is right handed, how do they hyperextend their wrist? I can only do the stuff i wrote above without hyperextension.
#11
Quote by TheChosen1One
Why would I say that?
For those of you in science, think of a protein conformation... if it folds a certain way, it can get stuck in an area that it cant progress because it is locked up in one method, likewise, what if I practiced muting with such a terrible angle for years, only to find out it's totally wrong? Why not strive for the best technique first?.


I'm a computer scientist, not a silly biologist; your analogy means nothing to me.

But seriously, from what I know (translation: what I've heard Paul Gilbert say/demonstrate in videos) it's mostly a tonal and attack thing. Experiment to figure out what angle makes the best sound to your ears. I use something close to the middle, except flipped (like, if the left side of the image is towards the neck and the right side is towards the bridge, I'd have the opposite side of the pick angled downwards towards the floor) since it feels comfortable and produces nice enough tone from me. Too harshly angled and too parallel both feel kind of awkward to me. That said I'm not much of a sweeper, so maybe parallel to the strings has some benefit I'm unaware of.
Last edited by Apejack Cuba at Jul 26, 2010,
#12
1) Does that mean theoretically someone could sweep at a 45 degree angle and still sound clean?


Sure, if perhaps a little scratchy. Sounding clean when sweeping is mostly down to muting.

2) Assuming the above is right handed, how do they hyperextend their wrist? I can only do the stuff i wrote above without hyperextension.


Most people who angle the pick as you've drawn do it by bending the thumb backwards. The picking wrist should almost always be in a fairly neutral position. Hence why unless you've got huge hands, the primary engine for sweeping across all the strings is the elbow.
#13
Quote by Freepower
Pick angle is mostly about tone - most people angle in the opposite direction to what you're drawn though.


+1

Paul Gilbert angles his pick slightly because, "it gives [his] guitar a cool cello sound."