#1
Hi,

My first post here!

I am 27 of age and played guitar for 14 years now and consider myself a fairly advanced player (big ego ). The last years I've wanted to take the step further and develop my technical skill to the point where i can play songs "flawlessly". The more i dug into my technique the more i started to realize that my technique is utter sh*t.

I've been playing economy-picking for a long time and i see now that i have major issues playing in time, its "in time" enough for slower stuff but its not consistent enough when i push the metronome. I also see that there is some synchronization issues with left and right hand.

So to the point; I've tried to fix these issues before and after like an hour of very focused practice on lets say left - right hand synchronization i feel like i sometimes get really good progress and can play for the rest of the practice session with a much improved technique but it doesn't happen every time. I just feel like my bad technique/habits are so ingrained in my playing after all these years so i find it really hard to change them. I think i maybe have to break it down totally and practice fundamentals reeeeal slow for like a few months without the temptation to play songs or practice at higher tempos. 

Are there any other guitarists here that have had similar issues and have overcome them? And if you guys have any idea of how long this relearning process should take it would be much appreciated!
#2
How long will it take?  How long is a piece of string.  There is no way anyone can possibly know that, sadly.

As for what to do... you're doing the right thing.  Slow down, make sure you're getting it right, practice the heck out of it.  Unfortunately it's infinitely harder to break bad habits than it is to form them, so it's going to be a lot of work.  You will get there if you keep up the practice though, so don't give up!
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#3
Yeah i guess. I just wonder how others have done it and their thoughts on the subject. I feel like i need to completely stay away from the material i have been playing before because i so easily slip into the bad habits i have when i learned the pieces.
#4
I know this isn't guitar based, but it is a habit that lasted from learning to write, until around about 2 years ago, so from the ages of say 4-25. 

I used to hold a pen very awkwardly, and my handwriting was bad due to this. I decided I wanted to improve my handwriting, and part of this obviously involved holding a pen correctly, and slowing down my writing. 

Consciously I had to pay attention to this each time I picked a pen up for around a month or so. Now, I hold a pen just like anyone else and my writing is acceptable, without thinking about it.

Just to give an idea how long it took me to break a bad habit I had learnt that had been there for many years. 

Stay slow, and consciously make yourself use correct technique. Hopefully soon enough the correct way will become habit
#5
Warrior2014 Cool stuff! I just need to bunker down and be hard on my self for a months time and see how it treats my technique. If it doesn't work at least I've tried it and can move onto something else. 
#6
2Mass I suggest you work on each hand individually, and check for timing issues there.  Is the picking consistent?  Any strings getting missed when you change strings?  Are your fretting fingers in time.

You probably want to go back to basics for 2 -4 weeks (I doubt it'll need much more so long as you focus when practicing).

Make up some one string finger patterns for fretting hand (e.g. 5, 7, 8 repeated.  5, 6, 8 repeated. 5, 7, 9 ... you get the idea).  Reverse them.  Check timing and tension.  Play in 3's and 4's.  Don't pick at all.  Leave your picking hand out completely.   Then some more complex patterns  (e.g. 5 8 7 5 7 8).  Once good, then try horizontal scale pattern  with these.  All mege mega slow (e.g. 1 note per click at 40 bpm).   Then crank the metronome a bit.  This may take you only a little practice, or it may expose problems.  Then try on a string pair.  Again, check and fix.

Picking hand.  Accurate picking on one string.  Then accurate picking on a pair of strings.  Then different pairs.  Etc.  Again, watch out for missing a string, for uneven pick strength (unless intended).  Mega slow, and pick up speed provided all is good.

Then combine.


You can do a little of each, each day.  The problems you find should dictate where you spend more time.
#7
jerrykramskoy Hi, thanks for the input!

What you are mentioning is kinda what i've been doing the past two days since i started my reformed bedroomshredder progam. 

I found that my fretting hand is fairly good but my economy picking is faa from where it must be. I've been practicing right hand only in fact without picking notes for a fair amount of time each session. Just going through the picking pattern of a lick being sure its stricktly on time and that each up and down stroke gets more or less equal tension. Kinda like a drummer would practice i guess. Its super akward at first since i didnt even know where the string changes where without fretting it

I find my left hand to be pretty good legatowise and stays ahead of my picking hand for now so i mainly practice right hand ( sounds so wrong lol) to get it up to speed.

I just need to be honest with myself forward to be sure i allways feel in control when i decide to go on a shred rampage. Its so easy to push the tempo when your at it Feels like i've started to play guitar again for the first time and its a wierd but good feeling!
#8
2Mass I'm going through precisely this same thing myself ... I've been out of action for a few years due to a nasty accident to my hands (I had virtuoso technique prior, though I would only use it now and again for some extra colour to the music).  I haven't practiced technique for a long time ... I had what I needed for what I was playing at the time.  Now I am forced to (and want to) practice again and am fighting against the results of residual nerve damage which makes it awkward for me to control my 3rd and 4th fingers on the fretting hand.  I'm enjoying this and making steady progress.  I'm just using acoustic at the moment (as a lead guitar) ... makes me focus more.

I've been investigating Troy Grady's pickslanting tips (which he's observed from players like Malmsteen and Eric Johnson), and I've picked up on a fascinating bit of advice on the angle of the palm to the strings (due to forearm rotation), which in turn means the pick is not traveling parallel to the strings.  Rather it's driving in towards the body, and lifting off up into the air (when the motions are exaggerated).  This makes a huge difference for me (alternate picking), including the ability to easily stress any pick stroke, and I am starting to investigate how this can be combined with economy picking.
Last edited by jerrykramskoy at Aug 2, 2017,
#9
jerrykramskoy Musicians worst nightmare to get hand related injuries... 

I bought some video lessons from Rick Graham regarding economy picking since i find him to have one of the best economy/hybrid picking techniques in the world. Been applying the "planting" technique he mentions and finding it to work wonders so far. I just hope i'm strong enough to keep this going on a regular basis. Sometimes after having practiced picking/legato for an hour or so it almost feels like I've improved tenfolds when i start to noodle around afterwards. I just to realize working on / identifying problems and improving techniques is great fun and motivating as well

I think my problem for the past years is that i was too afraid to really dig into my technical issues and what i'd find out there lol.
#10
2Mass I studied many years with a guy called Shaun Baxter, who used and taught economy picking. Biggest problem I hd (have) is my forearm sticks ever so slightly to the guitar body, and the resulting tiny jarring motions (as friction builds and releases) throws my timing out at high speed.  I had to resort to a glove in the end.  The difference was astounding.

A key role/goal for practicing is to observe yourself critically to find and eliminate problems.  As long as we are doing this, we know we are always reaching our practice goals each day.

Make sure you stretch, and take breaks at least every half hour.  You don't want RSI  !!   I've been down that road also :-(  I used to practice up to 9 hours a day, without breaks (very very stupid), and after one day of solid legato at very high speeds (usually ok), my hand seized.  6 months later ...  no exaggeration ... I went from flat out to not being able to move my fingers other than glacially slowly.

Don't be afraid of finding issues ... that's the whole point!!
#11
I already wrote this.. if you study making mistakes you will learn to make mistakes, my teacher keep repeating me this, so easy to say but so hard to REALLY understand it... It's not really only about slow down, that help but there are some more ingredients, its all in your mind. If you want i can give you 2 or 3 lesson, FOR FREE, i don't want money, i just want to see if i am right about what i am thinking,  my offer is serious.  I had a guy who had a problem similar to your and he was so good with economy picking but leaving that world he was not synchronized at all.  About me i had a similar problem, i fall down, i didn't break my bones or arm but i had to start from zero with my right hand because i couldn't use my previous position, Instead of fight and pretend to play as i was used to play i tried to find another position that worked for me and then i started to rebuild my synchronization from zero and funny is that i had zero problem playing classical guitar, the problem was only with the pick!!  anyway... if you want let's try this "experiment", write me in pvt so that we can find a time that work for both of us. 8 )