Hey you guys! you know... I have read some articles by Eric Vandenberg(that inspired me alot!) and I think they are awesome!! but I don't really know how to practice my timing, my rhythm... How to practice that? maybe some exercises? maybe some links?
Please answer Robak
well to keep in time use a metronome(if thats how to spell it), that will help u keep in time. I play drums as well which has really helped me keep in time as a guitarist but of course not evertome plays drums so u could jam with a half decent drummer. If u cant find a drummer download some tabs using guitar pro and learn the song but when u learn it take away the guitar track(s) and lay with just the bass and drums playing.

Hope this helped
maybe so...maybe so young one.

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Okay here we go i got another long drawn out lesson to put. It will be well worth it though.

Rhythm Figures (Alternate Picking)

in my mind I am using the word rhythm figure in the context of patterns you play to practice sounds or riffs. I am not talking about scales, or any of that. These are just some basic riffs to improve your smoothness in guitar.

I am an advanced guitar player, but these are riffs I came up with to help all levels.

Rhythm Figure for Beginners:


This is very simple riff it?s used by a lot of people to get your feel for the strings and position.
To look at it deeper so you know exactly what to do. You put your finger on fret one, E String, and then you make that sound. Go down to fret two, E String. Go down again to Fret 3, E string. Then continually do this with all of the strings. Do this slowly at first, and then you can speed it up really well.

That is in standard or half-step down. Doesn't matter it will work all the same.

When you get that down do it backwards:


If you are more known with your fret-board you are in an intermediate you have a good feel for the chords and all, but need some soloing.

Rhythm Figure for intermediates:

That is for more of a rhythm guitar feel. For lead in intermediate I say use something like this:

Solo Figure for intermediates:


It?s a lot easier then it looks, do like you did before do that backwards.

For more advanced players I suggest using this solo it?s used with a medium to high speed:

Advanced Solo:


That is not all that hard but it?s close to advanced. If it is not fully advanced, it is close enough.

Relax with this one, just take it slow from beginner to advanced playing. It will take you a while to get the feel for it. You can keep those riffs; I don't use them in my songs.

That is for alternate picking and the string feel. Really works trust me on that.

Here is another one for rythm itself.

Alternate Picking


Strumming is continuously up and down over and over, on all the strings. Alternate picking is picking the strings one at a time, or picking the strings in different orders.

So basically think of strumming as all the strings. Alternate picking is strings individually.

Strum: Together
Alternate: Separate


I know this is a copy from the one in my rhythm figures section, but it?s for alternate picking:


Do this same riff but do it backwards to make your fingers more used to this moving. The reason is your fingers get used to knowing how far it is from string to string. This makes it easier on transferring notes. You can make your own alternate picking exercises and they will actually be metal riffs.

Do this slowly at first so you can get the feel for it. Don?t do lead before rhythm. That is the ultimate guitar mistake; you have to crawl before you walk. Most people say ?I don?t need that? and then they skip it and have to backtrack.

Alternate picking/Strumming:

Strumming and alternate picking is different, but this doesn?t mean they can?t be combined. At some point a guitar player will mix a little bit of a strumming tempo and hit a note also independently. As in like playing an ?Em?, strumming up and down, and hit the ?A? string and do his pattern again. The left hand doesn?t move but it gives you a better sound, instead of a consistent strum. This is used a lot in acoustic music. It is a very effect technique for those trying to give it a very particular sound. Some people make other variations to this. It is a very good thing to work on though; it may be hard at first. It is well worth the practice though; it will open up many doors for your guitar playing.

Extra Notes in Strumming Chords:

Also sometimes while you strum and alternate pick you may also mix up you?re notes and chords. So let?s say for example you have an ?Am? and then in your strum you put your pinky on the ?B? string 3rd fret, and take it off. It gives you an extra note and is also smooth. You can also use chord taps which are very effective to get a nice clean sound.

Chord Taps:

A chord tap is simply when you form a chord and you tap a string during your strumming or alternate picking to add a little bit more character to your music. It makes a very nice sound but has to be done right. You must feel out what sound you are going for, and the string you want to do. The best way to do this is have a chord that has that finger already on the string you want to tap. Like an ?Am? is perfect for this, the index can tap the ?B? string during this very easily. That also gives you a very pleasing sound, and can be combined with other chords in a progression.

Remove/Replace notes:

When you are playing a chord or a pattern while you are strumming/alternate-picking/finger-picking, you can remove the note as in take your finger off of the string and put it back on without a tap. This will give you a little bit of a variety effect. Sounds pretty good, ?Am? again is the perfect chord for this. Trust me; ?Am? is probably my favorite chord even today in playing songs. ?Am? is a very easy to play chord, and you can practice with this chord in a lot of different areas, movements and any of that. Also, it sounds very good, and very easy to switch in and out of.

Alternate picking pattern (chord practice):

This is really a pain for most people. It is hard at first to play a chord and you know pick the notes individually as it is. So to help you with this what you need to do is simply play the chord down picking it (hitting it down towards the floor), and up (up towards the ceiling) repeatedly. Do these until you can hear the notes, and where they are placed and the anatomy of them. Also as I said before use ?Am?, very versatile chord for this.

Finger-Picking (No pick used):

Believe it or not, finger picking is quite difficult to learn. You need to liberate all of your fingers on your right hand mainly for this. Plus you have to individually hit the strings with your fingers or a ?finger pick?, not a guitar pick. A finger pick is what older players use, but today regular fingers are more used. This makes it nicer though because you can basically play 2 different rhythm parts at one time. Basically playing rhythm and lead in some senses. The reason this is, is because of the fact that your fingers are not working all together at once, so you have a little better variation in this.

That is for like giving you a better idea of what rythm is and how to make it.

As for the whole timing thing you wanna try to feel it out. You need to listen to stuff that is simple on timing and all. Build yourself up, work on like scales, arpeggios. Whatever you feel comfortable with. The main thing to keep in mind though is keep at the same speed, most times when u speed up or slow down suddenly you just leave your strings ringing making it not as good. So gradually let down but if you need to drop way down, have a mid point do go from like 250 BPM to 100 BPM (beats per minute) make a mid range to slow down so it has time for that next note. I say maybe about 175 for so.

Timing comes with exactly wht it says Time. Practice on alternate picking, your regular barre chords and all. Just make your flow as smooth as possible. When that comes it will be 10x easier to do that kind of stuff because you have such a feel for it the tempo wont really make difference. u will automatically note at the right time.