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> Classic Rock picking technique, Alternate vs. Economy
radarlove1984
post Feb 13 2007, 10:59 PM
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I know there a million threads on this, but they're all about playing really fast. I am NOT trying to achieve Paul Gilbert speed or anything close to that. The styles of music I like don't get any faster than Freebird or Stairway To Heaven. Certainly not shred guitar cool.gif

My question is this: should I practice strict alternate picking 3 hours a day when I DON'T want shredder speed?

I've always slipped into Economy Picking without even knowing what it was, and I'm very comfortable with it. Using 100% alternate picking, I can't play anything yet. I'm trying to fine tune my practice schedule and I'm not sure if this should be in it.

Can a Classic Rock/Blues player get by with Economy picking? Once again, I'm not after speed.
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Ibanez_player
post Feb 14 2007, 04:41 AM
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QUOTE (radarlove1984 @ Feb 13 2007, 11:59 AM) *
I know there a million threads on this, but they're all about playing really fast. I am NOT trying to achieve Paul Gilbert speed or anything close to that. The styles of music I like don't get any faster than Freebird or Stairway To Heaven. Certainly not shred guitar cool.gif

My question is this: should I practice strict alternate picking 3 hours a day when I DON'T want shredder speed?

I've always slipped into Economy Picking without even knowing what it was, and I'm very comfortable with it. Using 100% alternate picking, I can't play anything yet. I'm trying to fine tune my practice schedule and I'm not sure if this should be in it.

Can a Classic Rock/Blues player get by with Economy picking? Once again, I'm not after speed.


Well even some shredders prefer to economy pick so you could do it. I would argue that it is better to alternate pick even if you don't shred. IMO alternate picking gives a smoother sound because it is constant up, down, up down.
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fkalich
post Feb 14 2007, 12:47 PM
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QUOTE (radarlove1984 @ Feb 13 2007, 10:59 PM) *
I know there a million threads on this, but they're all about playing really fast. I am NOT trying to achieve Paul Gilbert speed or anything close to that. The styles of music I like don't get any faster than Freebird or Stairway To Heaven. Certainly not shred guitar cool.gif

My question is this: should I practice strict alternate picking 3 hours a day when I DON'T want shredder speed?

I've always slipped into Economy Picking without even knowing what it was, and I'm very comfortable with it. Using 100% alternate picking, I can't play anything yet. I'm trying to fine tune my practice schedule and I'm not sure if this should be in it.

Can a Classic Rock/Blues player get by with Economy picking? Once again, I'm not after speed.



Well, Zep avator, gotta love it. You want a plan, a definitive goal. Very specific. That is how one accomplishes things. Like the Chinese analogy from antiquity, the mind is like 4 wild horses. You mind will constantly try to distract you, sidetrack you. It is human nature. That is why one needs a specific plan to follow.

One of the ways you can get sidetracked is looking for a more optimal path to your goals. You think, maybe there is a better way, different thing to do. You end up spinning you wheels looking for the best path, getting nowhere.

When I decided I would master shredding, I looked in a lot of places, and was spinning my wheels looking for better learning material. I came across this site. To me it is like I have been on one side of a creek, trying to get to the other side, and not finding a good path. Here I can see, I have found a bridge. Just take the steps that Kris outlines, follow his instruction, looks like a workable bridge across the path. Just take all the steps he has laid out.

Maybe there is a better bridge around the bend out of sight. Or a ferry. Could be. I know when to settle down and say "this will work" and take the path in front of me, may just be more mud holes around the bend, and this path will work.

So that is what you do. This will work, and the discipline is now to just work though what he has here, patiently. Don't worry about the type of picking. Do all the lessons, practice them all till you are good at them. Really, you will find that if you get good at one, the others will be much easier to learn after that.

This post has been edited by fkalich: Feb 14 2007, 01:56 PM
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Andrew Cockburn
post Feb 14 2007, 01:58 PM
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or perhaps another way to look at it ...

If you play at 110% of your max speed you sound like a chimpanzee.

If you play at 100% you sound strained

If you play at 90% you sound good

If you play at 50% you sound awesome !

One thing I have found through practicing speed picking is that although I still can't do it worth a damn, the rest of my playing is also improving, getting smoother and more controlled. So, I would recommend learning speedpicking and shredding even if you never really use it, just so that you have enough speed to play your regular stuff at 50% and sound awesome!


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Pavel
post Feb 14 2007, 03:51 PM
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There is one thing to make clear: as Andrew said - you don't have to be a shredder to play good. If you want to be an overall good player you will have to practice all the stuff shredders do, it's just they get it to much higher level. If you practice sweeps - it doesn't mean you have to sweep all the time. All of the techniques develop your overall playing skills - so there is NO technique out there you should skip in practice. You should practice EVERYTHING in order to be a good and skilled overall guitarplayer.

This post has been edited by Pavel: Feb 14 2007, 03:52 PM


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fkalich
post Feb 14 2007, 04:22 PM
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QUOTE (Pavel @ Feb 14 2007, 03:51 PM) *
There is one thing to make clear: as Andrew said - you don't have to be a shredder to play good. If you want to be an overall good player you will have to practice all the stuff shredders do, it's just they get it to much higher level. If you practice sweeps - it doesn't mean you have to sweep all the time. All of the techniques develop your overall playing skills - so there is NO technique out there you should skip in practice. You should practice EVERYTHING in order to be a good and skilled overall guitarplayer.



Hey Pavel. What you are saying makes real sense to me. Working though your lessons now.

BTW, I grew up around a zillion Croatians. Two of my neighbors growing up were of Croatian ancestry. Maybe 20% of the kids in my high school were. I learned how to hold a pick yesterday from this forum, and for the first time, I find I can do the stuff that the Tamburitzans could do, you know the real fast tremolo picking. (that was what the Croatian kids called their traditional music and dancing group, the "Tamburitzans"). My brother-in-law was a Tamburitzan in fact.

edit: oh, that reminds me. Slivovitz. They drank Slivovitz, plum brandy. No offense, but that stuff was awful!

This post has been edited by fkalich: Feb 14 2007, 04:26 PM
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moorkop
post Feb 14 2007, 04:22 PM
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It also depends on style
classic rock/blues usually have some occasionally fast runs, and it will be very hard with economy picking, and not smooth
I think you will thank yourself in a few months when you control alternate picking and just play everything so much smoother

I'm not a shredder either, i'm into jimi hendrix and led zeppelin and i must say, economy picking would be so much more difficult and to an extend that you'll be unable to play a lot of stuff no matter how much u practice

ofcourse you consider this as a forum advise, but any teacher would oblige you to use alternate


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Andrew Cockburn
post Feb 14 2007, 04:52 PM
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QUOTE (fkalich @ Feb 14 2007, 06:47 AM) *
Well, Zep avator, gotta love it. You want a plan, a definitive goal. Very specific. That is how one accomplishes things. Like the Chinese analogy from antiquity, the mind is like 4 wild horses. You mind will constantly try to distract you, sidetrack you. It is human nature. That is why one needs a specific plan to follow.

One of the ways you can get sidetracked is looking for a more optimal path to your goals. You think, maybe there is a better way, different thing to do. You end up spinning you wheels looking for the best path, getting nowhere.

When I decided I would master shredding, I looked in a lot of places, and was spinning my wheels looking for better learning material. I came across this site. To me it is like I have been on one side of a creek, trying to get to the other side, and not finding a good path. Here I can see, I have found a bridge. Just take the steps that Kris outlines, follow his instruction, looks like a workable bridge across the path. Just take all the steps he has laid out.

Maybe there is a better bridge around the bend out of sight. Or a ferry. Could be. I know when to settle down and say "this will work" and take the path in front of me, may just be more mud holes around the bend, and this path will work.

So that is what you do. This will work, and the discipline is now to just work though what he has here, patiently. Don't worry about the type of picking. Do all the lessons, practice them all till you are good at them. Really, you will find that if you get good at one, the others will be much easier to learn after that.


Hey fkalicj - I just re-read this - you have a way with words, are you a philosopher? wink.gif

Thanks, I enjoyed it.


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Pavel
post Feb 14 2007, 05:02 PM
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QUOTE (fkalich @ Feb 14 2007, 04:22 PM) *
oh, that reminds me. Slivovitz. They drank Slivovitz, plum brandy. No offense, but that stuff was awful!


Yeah i don't like that also! hahaha but yes there is such a thing - Slivovitza! biggrin.gif


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radarlove1984
post Feb 14 2007, 08:52 PM
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Thanks for the advice everyone. I never really thought about one technique affecting my overall playing, but it makes sense. I set out to JUST learn blues and rock, but having more tricks up my sleeve would never hurt.

I really liked that 50% speed analogy, Andrew.

And fkalicj, great story. You're right, it is easy to get distracted even trying to find the right way to practice. I never even thought of that until now.

Pavel, you're right. To be a well rounded guitarist, I'm going to add sweeping and tapping back into my practice routine. Knowing the techniques could only help.





Anyway, I'm off to go practice everything. Thanks for the advice.
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fkalich
post Feb 14 2007, 11:59 PM
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QUOTE (Pavel @ Feb 14 2007, 05:02 PM) *
Yeah i don't like that also! hahaha but yes there is such a thing - Slivovitza! biggrin.gif



Hey, I learned all the cuss words too. I know just exactly what say to someone in Croatia that will get me beaten to a bloody pulp. smile.gif

Oh, while I have you, I have a question for you. You know three string sweeping lesson. You have the major chord, the one like open D major. I know you don't bar and roll your finger on that, you play the 1st and 3rd string with the tip of the index finger. However on another sweep in a later lesson you roll your finger in a similar situation. Why are you not doing so on that 3 string sweep, you know, rolling a barred index finger on those two notes? Seems like moving the tip of the finger puts a cap on how fast one can possibly play that.

I assume there is a good reason, not doubting that, just wanting to know what that is. Am I making any sense?

frank

This post has been edited by fkalich: Feb 15 2007, 12:11 AM
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Pavel
post Feb 15 2007, 12:43 AM
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Do you mean this shape?

e|--------------------19--24-p-19-------------------------|
a|-----------------20--------------20---------------------|
g|--------------21---------------------21-----------------|
d|-----------21---------------------------21--------------|
a|--19-h-22----------------------------------22-p-19------|
e|--------------------------------------------------------|



If yes - i made the notes bold where i roll the finger - btw. it is not the index but the ring finger. You can't play it in any other way because they are at the same fret but different strings...


If you mean some other shape - could you please copy/paste the tab of the shape? It would be much easier for me to guess what you were asking about wink.gif

This post has been edited by Pavel: Feb 15 2007, 12:44 AM


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fkalich
post Feb 15 2007, 12:50 AM
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QUOTE (radarlove1984 @ Feb 14 2007, 08:52 PM) *
And fkalicj, great story. You're right, it is easy to get distracted even trying to find the right way to practice. I never even thought of that until now.


very common. human nature. it is clearly possible to accomplish a great deal in a short amount of time. it is humanly possible. Looking at human history, it is amazing how much a person or group got accomplished in a short amount of time, when circumstances force their back against the wall, and survival was at stake.

The thing is, nobody is forcing our backs against the wall to learn who to play guitar with the skills of Kris et al. So one has to come up with a self discipline to do that, not having an external discipline being imposed on you. But one must be careful not to spin one's wheels trying to find the perfect system. That is your mind trying to distract you from the task at hand. My favorite eastern philosopher is Chuang Tzu, but there is a concept in yoga of the mind being like wild horses trying to run in all directions. In fact I believe that is what the word yoga means, "to yoke a horse". something like that. You have to be aware that is going on, and not let the horses drag you all over the place.

This is a good school, I can see that. No need to keep looking for a better school. This one is just fine. But just like in a school, you don't just take one course. You take several at the same time. But you have to complete the courses to graduate. Then you are prepared for the real world.

This post has been edited by fkalich: Feb 15 2007, 12:51 AM
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Andrew Cockburn
post Feb 15 2007, 03:37 PM
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QUOTE (Pavel @ Feb 14 2007, 09:51 AM) *
There is one thing to make clear: as Andrew said - you don't have to be a shredder to play good. If you want to be an overall good player you will have to practice all the stuff shredders do, it's just they get it to much higher level. If you practice sweeps - it doesn't mean you have to sweep all the time. All of the techniques develop your overall playing skills - so there is NO technique out there you should skip in practice. You should practice EVERYTHING in order to be a good and skilled overall guitarplayer.


Its just occurred to me that Pavel is a great case in point - Pavel is our Shred instructor, yet his last 2 lessons have been slower than the blazing riffs he is capable of. Listening to the Skipping lesson, I was stunned by the clarity and cleanness of the playing, particularly the 16th passage right at the end. If I played that it would be 110% for me and I would sound like a chimp. For pavel, its probably about 5% smile.gif and it sounds absolutely pristine. So, its not about speed, its about playing within your abilities!


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