#1
So I just recently started thinking during improvising that is the way I'm handling the plucking "the right way".

Let's assume I have a few chords to play with delay and gain. I'm going start using my pick to pluck the chords similarly to Ain't talkin about love by Van Halen. Let's say I feel comfortable with playing the same stuff with many different up and down stroke mixes. I could play it using only down strokes. I could play it using a mix of up and downs as well. However, is there a some kind of general rule when to go for a mix of up and down strokes?

This might sound a bit messy.

My plucking hand naturally goes for the most comfortable picking technique but I just started thinking about this. I just started wondering is the way of plucking about one's own preference or something else.

The Van Halen example is just an example of how the plucking with a pick goes ( just guidance to what I'm trying to explain but not literally the exact same pattern)
#2
It's all about tone - downpicking has a certain tone to it, as do up strokes. There is no global rule for when to use each and it is mostly a matter of preference overall. That being said, some riffs really do require a specific approach, for example Metallica rhythms are often downstrokes only, which is a staple of Hetfields approach because it gives a very heavy tone.

Check out video clips of the players playing the riff and do your best to imitate as a beginner.
#3
Downstrokes command more authority, so they tend to be the most used when speed permits.

A great exercise as a beginner is to learn the basic bluegrass guitar rhythm riff - hitting a root note and then strumming the top part of a chord ( i.e always playing the bass note first) - practicing this really helps build up your chops as a rock player. Check out any bluegrass strumming tutorial and you'll see what I mean.
#4
Well for example take a look at Joe Satriani's Satch Boogie and Crowd Chant. I really cant seem to notice what kind of picking he uses there (most videos are bad to spot how he picks). Crowd Chant's part where he plays those chords by plucking with a pick, I just cant see how he uses his picks. Most live versions suck in terms of quality and the camera is way too far to show he uses his pick during that riff.

Just to note I have been playing for about 9 years. I just suddenly started thinking of something that has always been kind of natural.
#5
A lot of the finer details of picking are personal to the player - physically we're all different so when it comes to analysing motions we all develop little idiosyncracies that are specific to ourselves - the best way for Joe Satriani's hand to do something won't be the same as the best way for your hand to do something. Broadly knowing whether or not someone is alternate picking or economy picking something, if they angle the pick etc, that information can be useful, but beyond that there's not an awful lot to be gained from hyper-analysing every little detail.

Best thing to do is focus on the sound, if you're not happy with it then change things around a bit - just experiment with different angles and pick attack. Ultimately though, the "right" way to pick is largely the way that feels nautral to you
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#6
Billie_J there is a video of satriani teaching someone how to play satch boogie - check it out. Satch downpicks a lot because he's using artificial harmonics constantly - listen for those and it will give you a clue of when he's doing it.
#7
Quote by steven seagull
A lot of the finer details of picking are personal to the player - physically we're all different so when it comes to analysing motions we all develop little idiosyncracies that are specific to ourselves - the best way for Joe Satriani's hand to do something won't be the same as the best way for your hand to do something. Broadly knowing whether or not someone is alternate picking or economy picking something, if they angle the pick etc, that information can be useful, but beyond that there's not an awful lot to be gained from hyper-analysing every little detail.

Best thing to do is focus on the sound, if you're not happy with it then change things around a bit - just experiment with different angles and pick attack. Ultimately though, the "right" way to pick is largely the way that feels nautral to you


This is spot on .