Hi everyone,

First of all, plz dont kill me for my english grammar and stuff, im dutch

I just got a small question.. When I play riff with an uneven amount of notes in it, I always get problems with my right hand. My pick than touches the wrong string, and im not sure if thats cause of my technique (I use alternate picking) or just the fact that i need soms more practice, cause with other riffs with an even amount of notes i dont have these problems..
Umm maybe ur thinking wtf is this guy talking about even and uneven notes.. Lets take this free bird riff:


3 notes 3 different strings. When I hit the first note on the e-string I hit it down, the second note up, 3rd note down, second time I play it I start up, than down and than again up.. Is this wrong? I mean in those fast licks, should I just play all the notes down? In fast licks with 4 notes I never get problems, just up-down-up-down-up-down etc just the whole time...

I know this maybe sounds a bit vague, but does someone know what I mean?

Tnx for reading anyway
You shouldn't force alternate picking into things that don't require them. While alternate picking is good and helps your speed, sometimes it just isn't necessary.

For the above lick, I would either pick all three of those strings up or pick the first one down and the other two up. The other possibility I would see would be to pick the first two notes up and the third down so it works into the motion of getting back to the top strings. (since you said it's from freebird I assume it repeats a ton). To know for sure, I'd have to play around with it a bit to find which is the most comfortable.

Anyway, alternate picking is good, but you should add in economy picking. Economy picking is essentially alternate picking, but when you change strings, you make use of the last motion to move to the next string, such as picking up so that you naturally move from the e string to the b string.

Do whatever is comfortable, just don't get locked into the mentality that you have to go up down, up down or on every single note because it's going to limit you.
Do whatever is most comfortable, although technically picking all of those strings up (except the first if the note before the first is on a lower string) will take the least effort.
Tnx for the fast replies guys!

Ok that just what I needed I always thought I had to play everything alternate cause they told me that was the fastest..

Ill try economy picking im sure that will work for me.
that's a very similar lick to Paul Gilberts. I'd play it starting with an up stroke and then 2 down strokes. It's wierd at first but has a really smooth picking motion.