With Tremelo picking does it have to be rhythmically precise or do you just change the notes to the beat if that makes sense
Tremolo picking should be rhythmically precise, just think of it as playing 16th or 32nd notes.
Quote by Demonhunter04
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The picking must be tight and in rhythm. Usually, you will see tremolo picking in sets of 4 or 8 note sets. This IS NOT the only way. In fact, I made a riff using tremolo picking using triplets, and it still works.
The best way to think about the motion of tremolo picking is this.

1. Use the very tip of your pick. Don't let more that a millimeter of the pick drop below the surface of the strings.
tremolo can mean different things. all it really means is repeating a note. how you do this, and what effect it has is up to you. repeating each note twice creates an interesting effect that makes your ears go wut. if you played an eighth note melody but played each note as sixteenth notes, it should sound like you're hearing an echo, and it should be rhythmic. if you're trying to mimic the sound of a violin bow or someone's voice, try using triplets. it's a harder to hear rhythm when the emphasized note alternates between a down stroke and an upstroke, and this is a good thing sometimes. when the left and right hand don't match up perfectly, well, it just sounds good sometimes. the tremolo part of eruption is a good example. so to answer your question, it just depends on what you're playing and how you want to play it. metal, a more rhythmic tremolo probably makes more sense. classic rock or alternative, a more free tremolo would probably sound better.
Last edited by eddievanzant at Mar 16, 2012,
It depends on what sound you're going for. If you're tremelo picking over a single string/single note lines, you probably want to be in time. I don't really even think about timing when I do this, but it comes out sounding like it's in time. I don't know, it's really hard to count the notes out at that speed...

But then there's another application of tremelo picking in black metal and some death metal, where you're trem-picking over chords to create a "wall of distortion" sound; it almost sounds like a synth. In those cases, I don't think timing is that critical -- you just stop the technique when you need another, tighter sound perhaps.
its pretty common in post-rock to apply loads of delay and reverb, and in that case it doesnt really matter if you are not in exact timing. Minor variations can even add a little movement to the sound and keep it interesting.