#1
I want to improve my picking speed and coordination, and eventually shred. However, I am not sure where to start. My main question is if practicing chromatic excercises to a metronome is a way to improve my speed. Would I just be able to play chromatics faster by following this path? Or will it speed up all of my playing including new riffs. If not will I have to repeat the metronome process with every riff I want to learn? Thank you.
#2
Hey,

I'm pretty knew to shredding myself. I've been playing for about nine years now and never bothered to expand my lead beyond basic penatonic licks. Recently I've been watching all the videos I could find from Kristofer Dahl on this site. He's got a bunch of exercises and tabs and explains things really well (I think so anyways). I've only been at it a short while and have noticed a huge difference in my approach to practicing as well as some small increases in my speed, you should check it out:

http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/columns/features/shred_masterclass_tapping_n_arpeggios.html

He's got about ten videos so far, and I've learned something new from each and every one of them.
#3
Quote by solace2718
I want to improve my picking speed and coordination, and eventually shred. However, I am not sure where to start. My main question is if practicing chromatic excercises to a metronome is a way to improve my speed. Would I just be able to play chromatics faster by following this path? Or will it speed up all of my playing including new riffs. If not will I have to repeat the metronome process with every riff I want to learn? Thank you.



It will definately help you play chromatics alot faster, but wont necessarily help you on sweeps and other aspects of "shred". What kind of chromatics? If all you practice are 3 notes per string chromatics, expect to sound like Yngwie Malmsteen in no time, however, you truly wont be a shredder, just a wanker. What I suggest is that you learn music from shredders, slowly, and then use a metronome to get it up to speed. Think of each song as a collection of riffs and exercises that will make you faster. Learn harder and harder songs, and you will progress MUCH faster than if you used a metronome and a simple chromatic scale.

Also, no, you do not have to get each and every riff to that speed by a metronome. At first, it will be hard to achieve a certain speed. Once you are comfortable with a certain speed, your fingers will always find it easier to get to that level of speed with a riff, if it resembles the riff you learned it with. Learn different kinds of riffs and exercises, and youll see that soon, you wont even have to work on a riff for more than a minute and get it up to "shred" speed.

Alot of it is finger independence too. On a flat surface, curl your fretting hand, so its relaxed and your fingertips are on the surface. Try to lift the first and third finger at the same time, and put them down, and at the same time you put them down, lift up the second and 4th finger, and keep repeating. Its harder than you think, but it shows you how to control your fingers, and it gains you finger independence. After a while, when you can do it without thinking, and at lightning speeds, youll be able to control your fingers without giving it any thought. Its a wonderful feeling.

Congrats on wanting to become technically skilled at your instrument of choice, many people try but not many get far. good luck, and have fun!

Last edited by insideac at Mar 5, 2007,
#4
Quote by insideac
Alot of it is finger independence too. On a flat surface, curl your fretting hand, so its relaxed and your fingertips are on the surface. Try to lift the first and third finger at the same time, and put them down, and at the same time you put them down, lift up the second and 4th finger, and keep repeating. Its harder than you think, but it shows you how to control your fingers, and it gains you finger independence. After a while, when you can do it without thinking, and at lightning speeds, youll be able to control your fingers without giving it any thought. Its a wonderful feeling.


That's hard!

I've never thought of doing that. Thanks.
#6
That is very tough, usually your fingers want to move together, so it's hard to control your muscles one at a time.

Also, in addition to gaining finger independence you will want to practice scales. Lots, most of shred can be boiled down to scales and other assorted music theory. Here is a link to a thread that I started yesterday with over 40 bars of scale exercises. It has over 80 views but not one reply. Don't let it die on me. The ONLY Exercise Thread
Yeah Dimebag is not the "Greatest Guitarist" of all time... Hendrix maybe... I must go get food to eat with my mouth

$250 for an amp? wow. is it worth it to invest that much in the amp?

#7
learn different styles of picking ie: alternate picking (up and down strums) and sweep picking ( a bit advanced) but these will improve your "speed" so to speak.