#1
When playing legato over multiple strings, should i be picking the first note of each string or just hammering onto each string to start the next line?

For example, if I start with 6-7-9 on the G string, and pick the first note, then head to 6-7-9 on the B string, should i be picking the 6th fret on the b string or just hammering onto it to get the line started?

I feel like i should just be hammering on and not picking but sometimes i can't get the legato started and the notes fade. i also play relatively clean bc i'm not a huge fan of distortion, which i guess could be the problem?
#2
It all comes down to the sound you're after.
Picking every new string will give you a sharp attack at the start of each grouping of notes, whereas a hammer-on "from nowhere" will give you a more fluid sound.

Use what you feel sounds best, not what is easiest to you right now...because that route leads to becoming a very limited guitar player.

Personally I'd strongly advise you to learn both ways, though.

The reason the notes fade is because of a technique issue (could be a guitar setup thing too, but it's more likely technique).
Practice slowly and make sure you get an even volume from each finger. Make sure you're hammering on with the tips of your fingers.
Once you can get a consistent volume across all fingers you can increase the tempo gradually.

It can help to turn up the gain slightly, but it's definitely not needed.
Things with strings:
Ibanez J.Custom, Prestiges, RG8, SR5 bass etc
LP's, Strat, Tele
Noiseboxes:
ENGL Retro Tube 50
5150 III 50W
Orange Terror Bass
#3
So I should be able to keep clean legato lines going indefinitely, even on a clean setting?
#4
Yes
Things with strings:
Ibanez J.Custom, Prestiges, RG8, SR5 bass etc
LP's, Strat, Tele
Noiseboxes:
ENGL Retro Tube 50
5150 III 50W
Orange Terror Bass
#5
Quote by Shor

Picking every new string will give you a sharp attack at the start of each grouping of notes, .


Very rarely will it sound good if you do it that way. A sharp attack on random notes is pretty much what kills the legato effect. You should learn to make the picked notes sound as even as possible.

Standard would be picking ascending string changes, there are of course other methods.
#6
Quote by RyanMW2010
When playing legato over multiple strings, should i be picking the first note of each string or just hammering onto each string to start the next line?

For example, if I start with 6-7-9 on the G string, and pick the first note, then head to 6-7-9 on the B string, should i be picking the 6th fret on the b string or just hammering onto it to get the line started?

I feel like i should just be hammering on and not picking but sometimes i can't get the legato started and the notes fade. i also play relatively clean bc i'm not a huge fan of distortion, which i guess could be the problem?


As been said hammer ons from nowhere is the best solution if done right,play your diatonic scales without picking anything and pretty soon you will have a very fluid and strong left hand ...however dont forget the middle or the third finger of your picking hand.Some players use the fleshy part of the middle or the ring finger when changing strings cause its much duller than the sharp pick attack and if you vary the pressure a bit you can make it sound very smooth.
#7
Quote by Facecut
Very rarely will it sound good if you do it that way. A sharp attack on random notes is pretty much what kills the legato effect. You should learn to make the picked notes sound as even as possible.

Standard would be picking ascending string changes, there are of course other methods.

I'd say very rarely is it *not* attacked on each new string. I'd even say that 99% of the time that's how people play it.

edit: I think you should re-read my post. I was explaining the difference in sound with picked vs not picked. A picked note WILL have a sharper attack in contrast to a non picked note.
What you are mention is a basic picking technique thing (picking dynamics) which is a separate issue from this
Things with strings:
Ibanez J.Custom, Prestiges, RG8, SR5 bass etc
LP's, Strat, Tele
Noiseboxes:
ENGL Retro Tube 50
5150 III 50W
Orange Terror Bass
Last edited by Shor at Sep 19, 2013,
#8
Quote by Shor
I'd say very rarely is it *not* attacked on each new string. I'd even say that 99% of the time that's how people play it.


Don't get me started
#9
^ Read my edit, and read my first post again :p
Things with strings:
Ibanez J.Custom, Prestiges, RG8, SR5 bass etc
LP's, Strat, Tele
Noiseboxes:
ENGL Retro Tube 50
5150 III 50W
Orange Terror Bass
#10
I got it the first time, thx for making sure. If you are doing a legato run and can hear the string changes stick out "as a sharp attack" you need to work on that, no matter if picking when ascending, picking with finger or hammering or whatever you do. It is possible to do decently with all these methods.
#11
Quote by Facecut
I got it the first time, thx for making sure. If you are doing a legato run and can hear the string changes stick out "as a sharp attack" you need to work on that, no matter if picking when ascending, picking with finger or hammering or whatever you do. It is possible to do decently with all these methods.

Actually...you didn't.
Read my first post again just to make sure.
If you can't hear picked legato runs compared to hammer-ons from nowhere, you should work on that.
Things with strings:
Ibanez J.Custom, Prestiges, RG8, SR5 bass etc
LP's, Strat, Tele
Noiseboxes:
ENGL Retro Tube 50
5150 III 50W
Orange Terror Bass
#12
Your initial point was that a legato technique with a picking at ascending string changes gives you a different sound than all hammers.

I never disagreed.

I disagreed about the point that you get a "sharp attack" when using the picking method because in that case you are doing it wrong. You made it look like you have the choice between picking and making random accents in your run or hammering and souning fluid. You can get it very close to an even sound from every note with picking.
Last edited by Facecut at Sep 19, 2013,
#13
Ok this is just dumb...
I will repeat once more... a picked note HAS A SHARPER ATTACK THAN A HAMMERED-ON NOTE.
This is the point I am making here.

Ok in case you are still confused, when you pick..you can pick in many different ways, varying dynamics, pick angle, type of pick...you can pick with your fingers...picking with your fingers you can snap the string if you like for another type of sound.
Should I keep going through more ways of attacking a string, or is this enough to get you to stop reading into things?

Picking each new string...WILL GIVE YOU A SHARPER attack than hammering on from nowhere.

Holy shit dude..
Things with strings:
Ibanez J.Custom, Prestiges, RG8, SR5 bass etc
LP's, Strat, Tele
Noiseboxes:
ENGL Retro Tube 50
5150 III 50W
Orange Terror Bass
#14
Easy now, you are almost being emotional about this. It's just guitar techniques we are discussing here.

Going from your initial phrasing "sharp attack" to "sharper than not sharp at all" is like the difference between sounding like shit and sounding decent.
Last edited by Facecut at Sep 19, 2013,
#15
As I said again.. I was comparing the different sounds you will get picking each new string compared to not attacking it again.

You are reading into the word "sharp" *way* too much here. My explanation was simple so you could get an idea of the differences right away.
I am very sure people can figure out that you can vary pick attack to get different sounds.
All you've done here is confuse OP if anything.
As for your opinion on what sounds shit and not...well that's all it is...your opinion. There are places where a SHARP (read this the way you first read it now btw) has its place in a phrase.
Other places call for a more fluid sound, and you can get that any way you may see fit.
Things with strings:
Ibanez J.Custom, Prestiges, RG8, SR5 bass etc
LP's, Strat, Tele
Noiseboxes:
ENGL Retro Tube 50
5150 III 50W
Orange Terror Bass
#16
Quote by Shor
There are places where a SHARP (read this the way you first read it now btw) has its place in a phrase.


Obviously, but I think we can agree that the place should not be dictated by poor legato technique and string changes.
#17
You can do it with picking the first note on each string or by hammering it. The "standard" way to do it is to pick the first note on each string, it takes a lot of strength and co-ordination to properly move over strings with pure hammers.