#1
will it ever become natural to me with alternate picking???? I'm trying to learn it but when ever I have to change strings I get confused weather I need to pick up or down. HELP IT"S TAKING ME AGES TO LEARN A TINY BIT OF A SOLO IN A SONG OR SCALE . Thanks
#2
Yes, this is actually very difficult for some people, thinking of it might be easy but it's easier said than done, you just need to take it slow and don't punish yourself if you cant do it because it might be weeks before you can do it smoothly...
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#3
It'll come to you if you keep practicing. Do it slow first and then take it up a notch in speed. I haven't mastered (you literally can't cause they're are always things to learn) it yet but I actually learned it in "groups." First I tried learning to pick twice on the same string going up and down the neck and up the frets and down. Also, you can do variations with which fingers you fret the note. Then I try alternate picking with three notes on the same string and do exercises like I do with two. Then I try with four and five and so on. Sooner or later, you'll be able to recall it with whatever you're playing. Might be three notes on one string then down a string with four or five.
#4
well sometimes, you dont have to be so strict with the up and down, i mean when im picking three note per string scales, some people say you would start on a downstroke then on the next string start on an upstroke and alternate each string. but i downstroke every one. So that its sort of like a mini-sweep, if you get what i'm saying....

but when i was first learning how to alternate pick, i found it easier to do it super fast first (running before you can walk) kind of... then i just got control of it. So just find out what works for you and keep practicing
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#5
Alternative picking was incredibly tough for me to learn. I remember being blown away when I first realized that it even existed, and that it was crucial for me to learn how. Now, after several years, it feels completely natural. Just look forward- getting good at guitar is a very slow process. Rather than stressing over the trouble you're having now, think of all the time you have to get better- your entire life, right?
#6
Quote by C.C. Deville
well sometimes, you dont have to be so strict with the up and down, i mean when im picking three note per string scales, some people say you would start on a downstroke then on the next string start on an upstroke and alternate each string. but i downstroke every one. So that its sort of like a mini-sweep, if you get what i'm saying....

but when i was first learning how to alternate pick, i found it easier to do it super fast first (running before you can walk) kind of... then i just got control of it. So just find out what works for you and keep practicing


That would be economy picking.
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#7
When I started playing with an up/down motion, it was actually economy picking. It suited me perfectly, but I lacked the accuracy, and fluidity, I was aiming for. Then, when I turned to strict alternate, it was a big, fat, ugly who*re, who didn't get paid. I had to struggle quite a bit with it. FP, and other technique masters, will tell you the same thing.

TAKE IT SLOW
! Let your muscles remember that they have to move a certain way. If I remember, Michael Angelo Batio said he put in 2 years to master alternate picking.
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#8
Alternate picking is an essential skill, one that you will have to learn eventually. As everyone else has said, take it slowly at first and don't push yourself too hard. I've been playing electic guitar for about 4 years, and the first two years I was a strict economy picker. And then I listened to some great guitarist (either Vai or Gilbert) and I read that he only used strict alternate picking. I was like, WTF!!! How can he go so fast and still be rhythmically accurate! So, that for me was a turning point, switching me right around to becoming an alternate picker.

Now, the old saying is true, old habits are the hardest to break. I swear, every day for at least a month I would sit in my room and go down up down up down up on two parallel strings. And man, it took a looooooooooooong time for me to get over the habit of having to go down when changing a string. Now, back then, I didn't know it, but I should have been practicing something that utilised both inside and outside picking, and too this day I still will rearrange a lick so that it will be more suited to outside picking. But the bottom line is that nothing is impossible, and if you give it enough time, alternate picking (espescially changing strings) will feel completely natural.
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#9
I'm the same way right now. I've been playing for years and only ever used my fingers - never a pick. I thought I should start and I feel like a total clutz with the pick in hand. I'm getting better though. slowly
Si
#10

TAKE IT SLOW! Let your muscles remember that they have to move a certain way. If I remember, Michael Angelo Batio said he put in 2 years to master alternate picking.

And hours a day.

TS, take it slow, relax - if it helps to say "up, down, up, down" then do it. If you can't do it, then do it slower. Trust me, it'll be second nature in 6 months.
#11
Do what feels most comfortable, there's just as many great economy pickers as there are alternate pickers.
#12
Quote by DaddyTwoFoot
That would be economy picking.

haha well, if its easier to do why not?
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<Raven> Do you have any idea how euphoric that is?
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#13
Here's my take on alternate picking. It's stupid. It complicates things.

Pick the easiest, most efficient way for whatever your playing.
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#14
Quote by C.C. Deville
haha well, if its easier to do why not?

Neither is really 'easier'. They both take tremendous amounts of practice to get good at. And generally, economy picking is used to get a smoother sound while alternate picking is used to get a more percusive, rhythmic sound.
"It is always advisable to be a loser if you cannot become a winner." - Frank Zappa

The name's Garrett.

Gear and stuff:
Taylor 310
American Strat w/ Texas Specials
Ibanez JS1000
Vox Wah (true bypass & LED mod)
Dr. Z Maz 18 JR NR
#15
Quote by metal4all
Here's my take on alternate picking. It's stupid. It complicates things.

Pick the easiest, most efficient way for whatever your playing.

the only one who says that... youll find it insanely hard to go very fast at all without alternate picking.
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#16
Learn to alternate pick before you learn to economy pick. A large part of economy picking is alternate picking, anyway. Personally, I find I use a combination of alternate and economy, but it might be better described as heavily favoring alternate with some sweeps/rakes thrown in.

When you alternate pick, you go D U D U D U or U D U D U D no matter what. You could change strings, skip strings, whatever. Also, if there is legato mixed in with the picking, ghost pick the slurred notes. That is, resume your picking pattern as if you had picked every note; the idea is to have a downstroke on the 1 2 3 4 of every measure at all times.

Edit: I'll elaborate upon request.
#17
Quote by oh poe poe
the only one who says that... youll find it insanely hard to go very fast at all without alternate picking.

So what if I'm the only one that says it?

Strictly playing UDUDUDUDUDUD is stupid. Play what's most efficient for it whether it be Economy picking, sweep picking, or alternate picking.


If you had this:


e|----------4-t13p7p4-----|
B|--------5------------------|
G|-----4---------------------|
D|---6-----------------------|
A|-7-------------------------|
E|----------------------------|



In front of you, playing DUDUD would be incredibly inefficient. Sweeping would be easier.


If you had this:

e|------------------------345-----|
B|-------------------456----------|
G|-------------567----------------|
D|-------678----------------------|
A|-789----------------------------|
E|----------------------------------|


Picking it DUDDUDDUDDUDD would be easier/more efficient than alternate picking.


Alternate picking is overrated.

If you're tremolo picking or chugging the low E string alternate picking is great but you SHOULDN'T be worried about accidentally picking up or down one too many times, messing up the "alternate-ness", even if it's easier. That is retarded.
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


-Max Planck

☮∞☯♥
#19
Quote by bangoodcharlote
Stupid comment. I expect better from you, dude. Alternate picking is vital.

It is (overrated). I'll stand by that comment.

When alternate picking crumbles someone's learning process...

Quote by xXguitard00dXx
will it ever become natural to me with alternate picking???? I'm trying to learn it but when ever I have to change strings I get confused weather I need to pick up or down. HELP IT"S TAKING ME AGES TO LEARN A TINY BIT OF A SOLO IN A SONG OR SCALE . Thanks



... there's a problem. It doesn't matter if you don't pick strictly UDUDUD. That means nothing. Being able to play accurately, efficiently, and with feeling means a hell of a lot more.


There are no rules to picking.
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


-Max Planck

☮∞☯♥
#20
Quote by bangoodcharlote
Stupid comment. I expect better from you, dude. Alternate picking is vital.

I can't really understand the "alternate picking vs economy picking" argument. Alternate just seems like a MUCH harder way to play the same thing. They sound 99% the same (to me) so I would much rather choose the easier way. I could understand it when I was watching a Paul Gilbert video and he used it to avoid hitting middle strings in string skips but other than that it's just a mystery to me. But I guess that slight difference in sound is all it takes for a preference to from. To each their own.
#21
Tell THIS man how to pick: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IXOrj7QAc8M


I dare you.
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


-Max Planck

☮∞☯♥
#22
Quote by GerGuam
I can't really understand the "alternate picking vs economy picking" argument...To each their own.
You need to learn alternate before you learn economy. Economy only matters when you shange string. When you're playing in the same string, it is alternate picking. Moreover, with alternate picking, you always have alternating down and up strokes. This makes timing easier.

I have nothing against economy picking and even use some myself. However, before you decide to be an economy picker, become an alternate picker. After that, learn economy is you want and then decide which you prefer and the scenarios where you may prefer one to the other.

Quote by metal4all
Tell THIS man how to pick: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IXOrj7QAc8M
As previously stated, I have no preblem with someone electing to economy pick once they've mastered both picking techniques.

And to counter your argument, Steve Morse exclusively alternate picks "Tumeni Notes," so crazy passages like that are possible without economy picking.
Last edited by bangoodcharlote at Jul 28, 2008,
#23
Quote by xXguitard00dXx
will it ever become natural to me with alternate picking???? I'm trying to learn it but when ever I have to change strings I get confused weather I need to pick up or down. HELP IT"S TAKING ME AGES TO LEARN A TINY BIT OF A SOLO IN A SONG OR SCALE . Thanks


Well, the way I learned it is, I just did one string for a while. Then, every once in a while, I would change strings. Also, theres a John Petrucci exercise that he shows in Rock Disipline that helped me out a lot.
#24
Quote by bangoodcharlote
As previously stated, I have no preblem with someone electing to economy pick once they've mastered both picking techniques.

And to counter your argument, Steve Morse exclusively alternate picks "Tumeni Notes," so crazy passages like that are possible without economy picking.

It was a joke because he (jazz guitar god) only plays with his thumb and we're talking about strict picking techniques.

Good for Steve Morse. That doesn't mean anything. I stand by everything I've said before which I don't think is very outlandish and is just logic. Why make something harder for yourself when you're trying to learn?


Edit: By the way, nice song example. It's a good great song.
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


-Max Planck

☮∞☯♥
#25
Quote by bangoodcharlote
You need to learn alternate before you learn economy. Economy only matters when you shange string. When you're playing in the same string, it is alternate picking. Moreover, with alternate picking, you always have alternating down and up strokes. This makes timing easier.

I have nothing against economy picking and even use some myself. However, before you decide to be an economy picker, become an alternate picker. After that, learn economy is you want and then decide which you prefer and the scenarios where you may prefer one to the other.

I think it's a bit too late to forget economy picking, learn alternate picking, then relearn economy. I've been picking pretty much the same way since day 1 (after I got through my little period of 100% downstrokes lol). I do alternate pick when I am picking one string (metal excluded) but changing the strings going from E on a downstroke to A with an upstroke seems a bit unnecessary. I've always just done upstrokes if I'm going to a string physically above the one I'm moving from and down strokes fro moving to a string below. It seems to work quite well but if my picking technique will drastically hold me back I suppose I could change it. But I would need some pretty strong convincing evidence.
#26
Just for reference, when I refer to 'alternate picking', I'm refering to utilizing both inside and outside picking where necessary. Of course everyone alternate picks, regardless of if they are regarded as an alternate picker or an economy picker. It's just about when changing strings that people have different views.

IMO, it's easier to stay in time, especially when playing fast, when using alternate picking. After many hours of practice, I have no trouble going DUDUDUDU on two parallel strings, using only outside picking. However, I still can't do it as fast as I would like to. Now, try doing that with inside picking. Is it easier? Of course it is! But that takes away the challenge. And what's the point of playing if there are no obstacles to overcome?
"It is always advisable to be a loser if you cannot become a winner." - Frank Zappa

The name's Garrett.

Gear and stuff:
Taylor 310
American Strat w/ Texas Specials
Ibanez JS1000
Vox Wah (true bypass & LED mod)
Dr. Z Maz 18 JR NR
#28
Quote by GerGuam
I think it's a bit too late to forget economy picking, learn alternate picking, then relearn economy.
Then you're one of the few who naturally economy picks with skill.

The only advantage alternate picking has over economy is timing. If you can deal with some downstrokes on upbeats then feel free to ecomony pick.
#29
Alternate picking is simply a bread & butter skill to have on the guitar. Without
it, you'll find advancement difficult. It seems every time the topic of alternate
picking turns up, "vs economy picking" does also. That's just nonsense. Economy
picking is just different. It's not a replacement, there's no either/or. You only
have the option to use economy when changing strings and if the pick motion
works out for the direction you're going. It's limited by definition and the situation.
Alternate picking doesn't have those limits and, chances are, even if you're using
economy picking you're also using some alternate picking as well.

Alternate, economy, sweeping, hammer ons, pull offs, tapping are all just different
ways you can get the strings to vibrate. They all sound different. One isn't any
better than another. But, if you want a dynamic where all the notes are picked,
alternate will get through the most general situations. I'd strongly advise alternate
picking as a high-priority skill to work on for most playing styles.
#30
Well it just depends on if you practice it alot. Whatever you practice will eventually become sorta' a second nature, if you will.
#31
Quote by bangoodcharlote
Then you're one of the few who naturally economy picks with skill.

The only advantage alternate picking has over economy is timing. If you can deal with some downstrokes on upbeats then feel free to ecomony pick.

I see. I think I will force myself to strictly alternate pick until I get comfortable with both techniques. I've been stupidly bashing a technique I've never even tried
#32
im with the people who say focus on alternate picking

and yes it does get easier with time. when i re-worked my technique to get rid of anchoring alternate picking was a major b!tch, but after a month or 2 it became totally normal again.
#33
When I first started alternate picking strictly, it was really hard and I thought it was pointless. Now it's total second nature. Economy picking feels really unnatural for me now.
Quote by dudetheman
So what? I wasted like 5 minutes watching DaddyTwoFoot's avatar.


Metalheads are the worst thing that ever happened to metal.
#34
If you know scales... work on those a lot. Practice running up and down scales with alternate picking, and be sure to start slow! This also helps improve string skipping.
#35
Quote by AngelOfDeth
If you know scales... work on those a lot. Practice running up and down scales with alternate picking, and be sure to start slow! This also helps improve string skipping.

Yeah I've been doing heaps of scales and I've kinda worked out that when I'm changing strings (downwards or upwards) if it's an odd number of strings that I'm picking on one string (E string) the next string (a string) will be the opposite picking motion of what the other one started on. example - if I pick frets 1, 2, and 3 on the E string I would pick it D U D so to go to the a string I would start it with an U stroke. And if it's an even number of strings it stays the same as the first stroke I made. example - if I pick frets 1, and 2 on the E string I would pick it D U so to go to the a string I would start it with an D stroke.

I know that's confusing but I get it so is that ok for me to think that way or will it just slow me down?

Thank you everyone who has replied you've helped me heaps
Last edited by xXguitard00dXx at Jul 29, 2008,