#1
I just can't get it I can do the actual picking part but I can't get the notes I want when playing. I'm trying to learn thunderstruck and the intro is pissing me off big time. I can't get the notes clean it mutes because I can't time the alternate picking and my left hand together properly. I know everyone se going to say practice but are there actually some helpful tips for doing this.
#2
Take a deep breath and just slow down. You're letting is upset you because you're not getting it, it doesn't work that way. You need to relax and slow it down, play it at a speed you can play and don't let it get the better of you if you're making some mistakes. I admit sometimes it still gets to me too. Last night I was playing and every note I played wrong or didn't ring out properly crawled under my skin. Just slow things down, find your groove and get back into your relax mode.

Slow down the piece, play it really slow but perfect. Once you can do that play it slightly faster but still perfect. Then only go faster once it's second nature while slowed down. Keep doing this until you can play it quickly. Keep at it!
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#3
Slow it down until you can do it and get it right and comfortable there before you do anything else. Make sure you know it really well at that speed before you try and speed it up at all.

The reason you can't do it is because you're trying to play it at a pace where you can't control what you're doing and you don't have the muscle memory to actually play it up to speed, so you need to slow it down to the point at which you can control what you're doing and learn it before trying to get up to speed.
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#4
You don't need to alternate pick that riff, and I'm pretty sure Angus Young didn't alternate pick it.

You can simply play the first note and the second note is hammered-on, then pick the third note and hammer-on the fourth note. Hell, you don't even need to pick at all if your legato technique is up to snuff (except for picking the first note). But I'm pretty sure, originally, that he is picking only the first and third notes of the pattern, and legato for the rest.

Anyway, it sounds pretty similar regardless of which variation you use.
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#5
Quote by KailM
You don't need to alternate pick that riff, and I'm pretty sure Angus Young didn't alternate pick it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWJ9AID37z0

Alternate picked. Starts playing the part at around 2:18.
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#6
Slow it down. Literally will get you through anything you want to learn.
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#7
Quote by Zaphod_Beeblebr
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWJ9AID37z0

Alternate picked. Starts playing the part at around 2:18.


I stand corrected. I maintain, though, that it can be played with legato and/or a mix of legato and downpicking. In the end, it's whatever you're most comfortable with. But watching that video, yeah, I can tell he's alt picking just by the sound of it.
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#8
Quote by KailM
I stand corrected. I maintain, though, that it can be played with legato and/or a mix of legato and downpicking. In the end, it's whatever you're most comfortable with. But watching that video, yeah, I can tell he's alt picking just by the sound of it.

Well yeah, but that's inherently true of anything If we're going to bring in things like that there's not much point talking about the specifics of any part at all
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#9
I can get it a lot better down picking the fretted notes and pulling off so all downstrokes. Might go for that and add alternate picking at a later time when I've improved my playing. It still sounds good with half the picking going on. And less chance of screwing it up if you play it like that.
#10
Try and imagine yourself playing it perfectly it helps me.
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#11
Believe me I do imagine myself playing perfectly and it don't help haha. I am happy doing just picking the fretted notes and pulling off sounds good still as the fretted notes sound more aggressive on the track anyway so pulling off to open sounds good.

It's like other song though I got pretty close to playing snow by rhcp at about 3/4 of the speed and since then it's like I've started all over again.
#13
The key to mastering anything in guitar (and a lot of other things in life) is to slow it down. Not just 60BPM, it has to be SO SLOW that there's no longer tempo involved. Focus on making ONE PERFECT PICKSTROKE. Just ONE!! Focus on THAT PICKSTROKE RIGHT THERE! THAT ONE! NOT THE ONE COMING UP NEXT! Make sure you apply as little pressure as physically possible while still making it ring loud enough. Make sure you're only moving your wrist or arm (very very few talented players allow their thumb and finger to move when playing, but that's ultimately up to you). Make sure you're not allowing your pick to move further than a miniscule amount away from the string after the pickstroke.

Got all that? Good, now put it behind you and focus on THIS NEXT pickstroke. Only that one! Not the next one! NO TEMPO! Just ONE SINGLE 100% PERFECT PICKSTROKE at a time.

After a few weeks of this (or less), you'll be absolutely amazed at the progress you make. Then you can start working it into tempo'd practice. Before long, you'll be playing fairly consistently PERFECT pickstrokes at much higher tempos!
#14
I think that alternate picking is one of the most basic, yet most important and hard to master, techniques in guitar playing.

The thing, as already said, is to slow down and go for it. Really concentrate on what you are doing, and try to master it at a slow tempo. Then you can increase it.

I'm having the same issues with Wasted Years, but this kind of studying is helping me improve.
#15
I can do it fine all hammer ins and pulloffs it's just getting my hands in sync I keep hitting the open before my finger has come off properly therefore muting. Slowed it down beyond recognisable and gonna speed it up once a day. Find it hard to get both hands working at the same speed. Still tapping it sounds cool until I get there.
#16
2 years ago, I was struggling to do alternate picking on my guitar. Day by day, it frustrated me so much and I was ready to quit playing and sell my guitar.

Unfortunately, there's one thing that I knew and that was minor pentatonic scale. I played that scale on alternate picking with no metronome involved. I took a deep breath and realised that you have to learn really slow as a snail. I got better few days after that. It was a great breakthrough for me.

My advice is take a deep breath and try to find a simple scale or a lick, then try to play it on alternate picking really slowly. I can promise you that you will get better on that.
#17
Practice tremolo picking on one string. It really helps your picking technique.

You need to be able to keep a steady picking rhythm without thinking about it.

As everybody says, you benefit from going at a controlled pace with good form. Don't practice making mistakes.
"When I do good, I feel good. When I do bad, I feel bad. This is my religion." -- Abraham Lincoln
Last edited by Virgman at May 7, 2015,
#18
Quote by Virgman
Practice tremolo picking on one string. It really helps your picking technique.

Not helpful, it's the coordination that's causing TS to have issues and nothing else.
R.I.P. My Signature. Lost to us in the great Signature Massacre of 2014.

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“A man who mistakes secrets for knowledge is like a man who, seeking light, hugs a candle so closely that he smothers it and burns his hand.”


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#19
Quote by Zaphod_Beeblebr
Not helpful, it's the coordination that's causing TS to have issues and nothing else.


Beeblebr,

Did anyone ever tell you how annoying you are with your constant criticism of other people's comments? It's a habit you should try to rectify.

Read "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie.
"When I do good, I feel good. When I do bad, I feel bad. This is my religion." -- Abraham Lincoln
#20
No need for arguing! I can't time right fretting the notes.

Also I know it's off subject when I one hand tap it isn't very loud do I need to fiddle with settings or is that a technique too. Even when I exaggerate the pull off more than needed the open notes are too quiet. And it isn't hand weakness I used to do hammer pull off things on bass.
#21
do you know how to do trills? this is basically doing hammer ons and pull offs with your fingers without anchoring. in other words just using individaul fingers no picking needed. at the beginning of the playing part on that AC/DC vid he does that.
#22
Quote by BassBen93
No need for arguing! I can't time right fretting the notes.

Also I know it's off subject when I one hand tap it isn't very loud do I need to fiddle with settings or is that a technique too. Even when I exaggerate the pull off more than needed the open notes are too quiet. And it isn't hand weakness I used to do hammer pull off things on bass.


I suggest using a bit more gain with your amp or whatever you are using.

I use an overdrive pedal in front of my distortion pedal. I can kick on the overdrive pedal to give a little extra boost for legato playing if needed.

A lot depends on your guitar and how it sustains.
"When I do good, I feel good. When I do bad, I feel bad. This is my religion." -- Abraham Lincoln
#23
Here is what works for me.

Start the metronome at 80 bpm.

Play the lick you like until it becomes a natural habit.

Speed up 5 bpm and repeat from the top sentence.

Now your hands needs to be in sync to get the proper use of alternate picking and learning legato first then picking will make it work for you. Paul Gilbert did and I did.

The best lessons is in Speed Mechanics book by Troy Stetina as it will tell you all you need to know in order to master the mechanics of alternate picking.

If you don't you will find your hands to go stiff at some point unable to get it right.
#24
Quote by BassBen93
I just can't get it I can do the actual picking part but I can't get the notes I want when playing. I'm trying to learn thunderstruck and the intro is pissing me off big time. I can't get the notes clean it mutes because I can't time the alternate picking and my left hand together properly. I know everyone se going to say practice but are there actually some helpful tips for doing this.



No ones really going to actually get down to the issue unless you post a video showing your playing, but what I can take from the post is that your hands aren't in sync properly, and that you don't know how to properly mute. Hence the reason why you're not able to allow the notes you want to sustain ring out properly. There might be a lot of issues here that need to be fixed, but like I said, I can only assume. There could be many other technical issues that you don't even know is affecting your ability to play. We need a video ASAP to really determine your issues.


EDIT- Here's a video on how to mute properly while fretting notes.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oe8J-rcYf0c
^


EDIT- Here's a video talking about how important it is to practice things slowly. This is pretty much a solution to solving your out of sync hands BTW.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DtaRQoXtIOs
^ VIDEO


EDIT- Also my advice to you would be for you to go through Justin's beginners course. It's all too common for people when first learning to walk before they can crawl. By doing this they're missing what's really important to everyone's progress which is to build a solid foundation. You can't make any progress with the guitar if you don't have a solid foundation built which is the basics. You'll have a hard time understanding a plethora of things if you haven't mastered the basics. Doing The advance things on the guitar is just doing the basics really well..

In addition it doesn't matter if you've been playing for years. There's a lot of peeps out there that have been playing for years that are still considered beginners because of their habits, and tendencies when it comes to their knowledge, and playing.


You just can't go far in this journey if you don't have a firm understanding of the basics. Do you even understand what's going on rhythmically when playing along with the record or are you just a parrot mimicking the notes? Could you turn off the record, and play the notes in perfect time? Can you break down the first bar of music, and count it out? These are all important things to know. and if you lack the basics you'll never really understand it.


Link for the beginners course.


http://www.justinguitar.com/en/BC-000-BeginnersCourse.php

^


EDIT- I'll be posting more videos, but here's another good for one developing your picking. This is a complete beginner exercise.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1ETtvhPqdQ
^


I'll post another video which includes Pebbler browns alternative picking exercise which is nearly the same thing, but you're practicing each individual picking stroke for a bar each then you transition to another string. It also includes string skipping.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sdoz16LRz9Q


Pebbler Brown picking video.
^


Another good video here. Flying syndrome is a common things with new guitarist or just guitarist in general. It's something that can really defeat the purpose of string muting properly. In order to develop really good fingering technique your fingers need to have as much minimum movements as possible.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Ok8lj6eJ78
^ (Video for minimum movement, for the fretting hand).


Same thing with picking you need to have small movements when picking, and you also need to pick from the wrist. I could go on for a days about how explaining these certain things is important, but like I said we still need a video to fully help you out!
Last edited by Black_devils at May 9, 2015,
#25
Thanks guys and I think it's just the song I can play the bass intro riff to hysteria by muse on guitar and that's alternate picking. I think it's just more practice. Maybe relax more. Also I did do Justin's beginner course and got quite a way but after a while I just learnt stuff I wanted to and then learnt new chords / techniques when needed. Needed to or if of got bored of it.
#26
Quote by Sample246
The key to mastering anything in guitar (and a lot of other things in life) is to slow it down. Not just 60BPM, it has to be SO SLOW that there's no longer tempo involved. Focus on making ONE PERFECT PICKSTROKE. Just ONE!! Focus on THAT PICKSTROKE RIGHT THERE! THAT ONE! NOT THE ONE COMING UP NEXT! Make sure you apply as little pressure as physically possible while still making it ring loud enough. Make sure you're only moving your wrist or arm (very very few talented players allow their thumb and finger to move when playing, but that's ultimately up to you). Make sure you're not allowing your pick to move further than a miniscule amount away from the string after the pickstroke.

Got all that? Good, now put it behind you and focus on THIS NEXT pickstroke. Only that one! Not the next one! NO TEMPO! Just ONE SINGLE 100% PERFECT PICKSTROKE at a time.

After a few weeks of this (or less), you'll be absolutely amazed at the progress you make. Then you can start working it into tempo'd practice. Before long, you'll be playing fairly consistently PERFECT pickstrokes at much higher tempos!


I actually find tempo important, even at super slow speeds. As you practice and create muscle memory, you want to do so with rhythm. I find it needs to be slow enough that I can play it in time (even if it's super slow). Then slowly build the speed up. At first, knowing what note and position is next is what tends to slow you down. Having a slow enough tempo that your brain can keep up is the key.

Saying that, I need to practice more with a metronome.
#27
Quote by gweddle.nz
I actually find tempo important, even at super slow speeds. As you practice and create muscle memory, you want to do so with rhythm. I find it needs to be slow enough that I can play it in time (even if it's super slow). Then slowly build the speed up. At first, knowing what note and position is next is what tends to slow you down. Having a slow enough tempo that your brain can keep up is the key.

Saying that, I need to practice more with a metronome.


My post is about developing proper technique. Once you have mastered being able to play perfect notes consistently without worrying about tempo, you should start to use a metronome at slow speeds.
#28
Like others said, you need to slow it down until you got it, and ramp it up. The down side, is that's when you realize actually how much you suck, and that it's a lot more than you thought, lol.

I also find that there are little exercises to help you, that you can figure out. You need to find why you can't, and do exercises to solve that specific thing.

You are saying it is a timing thing, but a timing thing is often just a dexterity thing. At least one of your hands is not good enough at what it is trying to do, so it is lagging.