is it MANDATORY to pick up and down if you want to be a good lead guitarist?

#1
ive been playing a month or 2 now and it just seems so much easier to keep picking down

i strum up and down, of course,

but when i pick the notes

i always pick the wrong string whne i pick up and down

is it necessary to pick up and down in order to get good?
#3
Nothing's mandatory, but you'll grow out of this phase soon enough. I'm sure many beginners started off not wanting to alt pick.

(Oh, and things like this belong in the Guitar Basics forum).
#5
I guess its good to be able to pick in both directions, not just for leads, but for rhythm, or anything.
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#6
If you wanna be able to play some nice sounding licks then heck yeah. Alternate picking is something you have to practice man, you can't just do it.
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#8
Aye, wrong forum. But who cares.


I think if you practice alternate picking lead guitar will be so much easier for you. In fact, I know it will.
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#10
In all honestly if you are like me once you start playing faster stuff you will, without noticing it, be alternate picking. I was opposite of you took me so much longer to strum up then it was to alternate pick.
#11
Yes, it will, unless you only plan on sweeping, but you won't be able to develop the speed in your left hand to do that without alternate picking first.
#13
At first it feels weird but trust me, it will be worth it in the long run.
#14
every beginner starts only using down strokes, then they realize they can't play alot of stuff as clean and fast as they want to. So then they learn alt. picking. Then, some guitarist will move on to economy picking which is the best form of picking.
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#15
the song that will get you into alternate picking without even noticing that u are is stairway to heaven,if u play it with a pick, (which your supposed to play with your fingers) then you will be alternate picking without knowing it, thats what happened to me
#17
You're probably holding the pick the wrong way for alternate picking. I can't really describe how to hold it without showing you, but you only use your thumb and your pointing finger. The pointing finger holds the pick perpendicular, so that the tip of your finger is pointing at a 90degree angle to the tip of the pick.


Hard to explain... If you know someone who can do it, get them to show you how they hold the pick.
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#18
Not to steal the thread but does everyone just decide to learn how to alt pick, cus i like kind of just starting doing it after a while and know its completely natural.
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#19
Not mandatory...but it's going to be useful and VERY helpful while playing. It's just something you SHOULD do, it's not neccisary.

You'll basically grow out of it and want to do it. Just keep practicing and it'll come as similar as second nature.
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#20
Quote by MaidenRules666
Not to steal the thread but does everyone just decide to learn how to alt pick, cus i like kind of just starting doing it after a while and know its completely natural.


i tried to pretty much force myself to alternate pick, but it didnt work out at all so i kept playing the way i did, and one day i was playing some simple dream theater stuff and i just noticed i was alternate picking like a damn with no problems lol so i guess it just kinda came naturally for me
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#21
Lead guitar means solos. Yes it is mandatory to learn it.
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#22
Nothing is mandatory in art. However, don't try to justify not learning it.
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#23
i believe that if u want to be a *good* lead guitarist u should definatley alternate pic but as most ppl have already said it should come naturally sooner or later same thing happened to me it makes just about ne song 20x easier to play
#26
i didnt realize that alternate picking was such a problem among all guitarists

i thought i was just wierd.
(i had that problem too when i first started 4 years ago)
#27
well soon enough you'll learn to alternate pcik and it becomes natural and you'll wonder how the hell you play all down strokes or all up strokes.

Eric Johnson only picks up strokes though so its not mandatory, but its a lot easier to alternate pick
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#28
When I first started playing I always picked all notes with an upstroke. Still do some times by accident.
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#29
I figured out about the technique in Guitar World and I guess I subconciously integrated it into my playing. It helps when you're the only guitar player in a band and you have to combine rhythm and lead. It's kind of like the scope of my picking hand's strumming gets smaller and it's like your "strumming" individual notes. It's kind of cool when you sit there and think about it.