#1
Hi! I'm having a bit of a trouble regarding alternate picking.

So my guitar book that I learn to play from, says that there is a golden rule during melody and solo-play. And that includes using both down and upstrokes, never upstrokes only. And that is what is called alternate picking, I assume.

In the book, there is a tab for the Smoke on the Water main riff. It says that I should use downstrokes, and then there are lots of other riffs in the book like Heaven's On Fire, Run To The Hills, Come As You Are, Breaking The Law etc.... But for those, it doesn't say, wheter I should use downpicking or alternate picking. So I am kind of confused.

And BTW, the wikipedia article for alternate picking says that ''Good alternate picking involves a continuous down-up or up-down motion of the picking hand, even when not picking a note (except when the gap lasts longer than one full up-down motion).'' Is this true??

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Last edited by Metal_rules666 at Dec 3, 2016,
#2
1) nearly all of the time if the riff is fast, it's alternate picking. The main exception to this rule is Metallica, who downpick a lot, even on faster tunes like Master of Puppets, because it gives a heavier tone.

2) that wikipedia article is nonsense- ignore it.

3) run to the hills, and almost all maiden "galloping" riffs are alternate picking.

4) use you ears when listening to a song and try to figure out the smartest way to approach it.
#3
reverb66 Thanks a lot, man! Really appreciate it! And also, thanks for the really fast reply!
Last edited by Metal_rules666 at Dec 3, 2016,
#4
pretty much what reverb66 said. i'd say use downpicking when it sounds better, and use alternate when it sounds better (for riffs, I mean).

also i thought smoke on the water was played with his fingers (you can kind of hear how both notes are exactly together, as opposed to when using a pick where there's a very slightly delay because the pick has to hit one string before it hits the next), so i'd be a bit suspicious of that book you're using.

EDIT : I'd also be a bit wary of anyone who says there are 3 golden rules... too reductionist, if you ask me.
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#6
that doesn't really say how to pick the notes, though.

and when i said "fingers" i meant "finger(s) and thumb" (on the picking hand). Sorry for the confusion.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#7
Alt picking should be the default unless you're playing like straight quarters or need to accent with a downstroke. The general pattern is downstrokes on the quarter beats, and upstrokes on the 8th beats. So "Smoke on the Water" could be done with all downstrokes or you can use an upstroke for the high note in the riff, because it's not on the quarter beat.