#1
Been playing for roughly six months
I wanted to speed up my playing about 3 months ago so I started alternate picking.
Problem: I'm still much faster with plain downwards strokes.
I've practicing on scales and **** so mostly I get caught up when I have to skip string frequently.
Normal?
#4
It's all in the wrist. Try the main riffs of these songs to improve your alt picking. Play them slowly at first and then speed up. Do not attempt the solos unless you think you're pro

Glasgow Kiss by John Petrucci
Technical Difficulties by Paul Gilbert

Try to be aware of yourself when you're playing. Catch yourself if you're downpicking and switch to alt picking. DOWN UP DOWN UP DOWN UP DOWN UP DOWN UP.

In time alt picking will come to you naturally. I wasn't even practicing alternate picking before I realized I can alt pick smoothly.

PS I don't know why people hate upstrokes. I love upstrokes. They're so much more comfortable than downstrokes.
#5
Quote by area5x1
It's all in the wrist. Try the main riffs of these songs to improve your alt picking. Play them slowly at first and then speed up. Do not attempt the solos unless you think you're pro

Glasgow Kiss by John Petrucci
Technical Difficulties by Paul Gilbert

Try to be aware of yourself when you're playing. Catch yourself if you're downpicking and switch to alt picking. DOWN UP DOWN UP DOWN UP DOWN UP DOWN UP.

In time alt picking will come to you naturally. I wasn't even practicing alternate picking before I realized I can alt pick smoothly.

PS I don't know why people hate upstrokes. I love upstrokes. They're so much more comfortable than downstrokes.

he has been playing for 6 months, i doubt he can play glasgow kiss and shred stuff. i suggest easier songs, like some iron maiden, or the intro of sweet child o' mine. that helps with basic string skipping. question by System of a Down, there's a part where you need a lot of alternate picking.
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#7
Quote by magnum1117
he has been playing for 6 months, i doubt he can play glasgow kiss and shred stuff. i suggest easier songs, like some iron maiden, or the intro of sweet child o' mine. that helps with basic string skipping. question by System of a Down, there's a part where you need a lot of alternate picking.


I can already play SCoM and Up Around The Bend, both have "intense" string skipping
#8
Quote by magnum1117
he has been playing for 6 months, i doubt he can play glasgow kiss and shred stuff. i suggest easier songs, like some iron maiden, or the intro of sweet child o' mine. that helps with basic string skipping. question by System of a Down, there's a part where you need a lot of alternate picking.


Well to be honest the main riff (keyword) of Glasgow Kiss isn't really "shred" its just lots of alt picking and string skipping which he needs to improve in, so to improve in something you have to go look for challenges ^.^ You know the part that looks like this

E||---------------------------------------|
B||-----------7--------10--7--9--7--------|
G||--------9-----9------------------9-----|
D||-----9-----------9------------------9--|
A||--7------------------------------------|
E||---------------------------------------|

And so forth

And like I said, play them slowly at first.
#9
Get a metronome (if you don't have one already). Play a slow, alternative picking riff/scale and slowly increase the tempo until you can play it at full speed .
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#10
true that.

well later on it gets hard.
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#11
Quote by red18420
Play for an entire day using only upstrokes. Not a single down!



Don't do this TS, that'll only get you good at doing upstrokes, not the fluid motion of up down.

And Technical Difficulties isn't a hard song, but it will pose a huge leap for someone just starting to alternate pick.
#12
Also watch Michael Angelo Batio's "Speed Kills" it should help some
#14
Quote by area5x1
Well to be honest the main riff (keyword) of Glasgow Kiss isn't really "shred" its just lots of alt picking and string skipping which he needs to improve in, so to improve in something you have to go look for challenges ^.^ You know the part that looks like this

E||---------------------------------------|
B||-----------7--------10--7--9--7--------|
G||--------9-----9------------------9-----|
D||-----9-----------9------------------9--|
A||--7------------------------------------|
E||---------------------------------------|

And so forth

And like I said, play them slowly at first.


Maybe it's just because I don't know the song... But wouldn't it be easier to just sweep that? Not for the TS (unless he knows how to sweep pick after 6 months... I definately did not) but for someone with more experience...

Try the intro to "My Heroine" by Silverstein. It's relatively simple but skips strings and just force yourself to use alternate picking. It also sounds more complex than it is and impresses pretty much anyone who doesn't actually play guitar.
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#15
Alternate picking isn't magically going to make you faster, I think the problem is you're expecting too dramatic an improvemnt too quickly. Don't worry about what you can't do and instead concentrate on what you can do and are doing, so make sure you're making a point of using alternate picking when you play and not just when you practice. If there's songs you know that you've learned with all downstrokes then learn to play them with alternate picking too.

Your alternate picking will gradually get faster as you get more control over it but you're not going to notice any improvement if you're looking for it every day. Also the key word is "control" - you need to teach yourself to alternate pick accurately at slow speeds before you worry about surpassing your downpickng speed.
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#16
I have only been playing for 4 weeks and after 1 week i decided to from now on ONLY alternate pick. It takes a while to get used to but now i do it without thinking. Also about the sweep picking i can do that too lol, well, I can do 3 note sweeps but thats about it.
I think this is because the first song i learnt, well in still learning it :p was critical acclaim by avenged sevenfold which is pretty much impossible to play without alternate picking and sweep picking.
#17
I'm glad I've been alternate picking since day one..I still have problems hitting the correct strings though at times, I guess it takes time to develop muscle memory. 4 months in here.
#18
Quote by area5x1
PS I don't know why people hate upstrokes. I love upstrokes. They're so much more comfortable than downstrokes.
Even though I'm pretty bad at it, I love doing the little popping motion when you perform an upstroke and then downstroke on a higher string. You know what I mean?
#20
Don't do scales. They won't help you at all. You can worry about alternate picking scales when you are ready to shred. Think about it, what songs (not including solos and shredding) use scales up and down? Pretty much none, they use scales of course but not up and down. Worry about playing songs when alternate picking. It will come naturally if you play songs.
#21
While we're at it, I want to learn sweeping.
Somebody hit me with a sweeping exercise and a wonderful youtube explanation video.
#22
Just learn some 3 string arpeggios and get REALLY good at those before you attempt any more difficult ones.
#23
Quote by Nilpferdkoenig
While we're at it, I want to learn sweeping.
Somebody hit me with a sweeping exercise and a wonderful youtube explanation video.

You've only been palying 6 months and haven't yet got to grips with alternate picking - sweeping is a long way off yet.
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#24
try this lick for a good while, just non stop -a classic Paul Gilbert lick( although there is some debate about who used it originally)

E---------------12----------------------12
B---12-13-15----15-13-12-13-15------15--13

Starting with a downstroke on the first 12th fret B note, and keep it all alternate so that you are doing an upstroke on the high e 12th fret, Always make sure that you start with a downstroke, keep it slow and then gradually speed it up. Also try and use all four fingers.
This should help you to get good at upstrokes when switching to the next string.

Sweeping isnt a lot harder, the only hard part is keeping it clean.
Last edited by Mr.Kvx10 at Aug 17, 2008,
#25
Quote by atreyurock9
Maybe it's just because I don't know the song... But wouldn't it be easier to just sweep that? Not for the TS (unless he knows how to sweep pick after 6 months... I definately did not) but for someone with more experience...

Try the intro to "My Heroine" by Silverstein. It's relatively simple but skips strings and just force yourself to use alternate picking. It also sounds more complex than it is and impresses pretty much anyone who doesn't actually play guitar.


I alt pick it, because John Petrucci alt picks it. It's the manly way to play the song
#26
Quote by Mr.Kvx10
try this lick for a good while, just non stop -a classic Paul Gilbert lick( although there is some debate about who used it originally)

E---------------12----------------------12
B---12-13-15----15-13-12-13-15------15--13

Starting with a downstroke on the first 12th fret B note, and keep it all alternate so that you are doing an upstroke on the high e 12th fret, Always make sure that you start with a downstroke, keep it slow and then gradually speed it up. Also try and use all four fingers.
This should help you to get good at upstrokes when switching to the next string.

Sweeping isnt a lot harder, the only hard part is keeping it clean.


People argue about a lick as lame as that? I play that everyday...
#27
Quote by Nilpferdkoenig
People argue about a lick as lame as that? I play that everyday...


The thing is that there is some debate as to who taught it as a practice lick first: Paul Gilbert or Michael Angelo Batio.

Either way if you whip out your metronome and play that lick using it your picking will get better but you should also practice it starting on an upstroke as well as a downstroke; inside picking is a sometimes neglected area of picking that I think has a lot going for it.
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#29
one way to get really good at alternate picking, in my experience, is to practice different scales over and over again. as long as possible.
#30
Quote by yoyodunno
yeah petrucci is hardcore alternate picking, but i'd sweep that.


In terms of Trooch's fast picking stuff that pales in comparison to The Glass Prison arpeggio section: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=K-1ebp9BIUw

That's not Petrucci playing it but it's one of the best covers on youtube.
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#31
Hey man, do what I did - just do chromatics over and over again, alternate picking them. at a comfortable speed for about and hour a day. I did this for 2 weeks and now its almost physically impossible for me to not alternate pick lol.