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> Economy Picking, Economy Picking rules
Hajduk
post Feb 6 2014, 06:37 PM
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Hi All, have another silly question smile.gif in regards to economy picking! I understand what it is I actually learned a really cool Eric Johnson style lick using Economy picking, but what are the rules in regards to its use??? When do you choose to use it? And is it down stroke, down stroke, upstroke? Or the other way or a mix of everything? Thank you


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miguelbatalha
post Feb 6 2014, 09:08 PM
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QUOTE (Hajduk @ Feb 6 2014, 05:37 PM) *
Hi All, have another silly question smile.gif in regards to economy picking! I understand what it is I actually learned a really cool Eric Johnson style lick using Economy picking, but what are the rules in regards to its use??? When do you choose to use it? And is it down stroke, down stroke, upstroke? Or the other way or a mix of everything? Thank you


With economy picking you economize movement so it's easier (if you practice it) to go from one string to another and so on (With the right practice it's easier or at least less physically demanding to play faster with economy picking). I choose to use alternate picking over economy picking when I want a different attack/sound.

This post has been edited by miguelbatalha: Feb 6 2014, 09:09 PM


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Ben Higgins
post Feb 6 2014, 09:27 PM
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The thing with economy picking is that the 'economy' part only occurs when you change strings. The idea is that when you change to another string, you would continue the pick stroke through just like a sweep.

However in order for this to work it would necessitate that your last pick stroke is in the right direction that you need.

If you started a 3 note pattern with a down stroke on the low E and wanted to change to the A string, you would play D,U,D (Follow the downstroke through so that it becomes the first stroke on the A string.)D,U,D.

A simplified rule is when ascending from low to high strings, you use down strokes to sweep through when changing strings.

When coming from high to low, you use upstrokes.

The thing to remember is that any time that you are not changing strings, you are using alternate picking as normal. So you would always maintain a basic alternating pattern except when it comes to a string change. Also, not every note needs to be played. Sometimes, in order to make a certain run work, you might pick most of the notes and hammer on the last one just so you can keep your economy picking pattern working. If your pick is pointing in the wrong direction to sweep through the strings, then you might need to hammer on a note whilst you bring your pick back to face the direction it needs to sweep through to the next string.

I know this doesn't make sense without examples but the bottom line is, economy picking refers only to the string changing aspect of it. For the rest of the time it's alternate picking and sometimes you don't pick some notes at all. smile.gif

There's plenty of vids on YT which will give you the basic starting points for things like 3 note per string shapes.

EDIT: A lot of people avoid the technique because they're worried it will mess up their AP. In my experience this has never been the case. I use both whenever I want just fine and EP has never messed up my AP reflexes or anything. If someone doesn't have an ingrained AP reflex then I could see how it might confuse things so it's good to have AP down. You don't have to be ultra fast but just have an automatic up/down motion going. If that's ingrained already than EP won't remove that. I really recommend playing with the technique because it's given me loads of great licks and ideas smile.gif

This post has been edited by Ben Higgins: Feb 6 2014, 09:34 PM


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AK Rich
post Feb 6 2014, 09:53 PM
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Excellent explanation Ben smile.gif I feel that alternate picking combined with some economic string shifts (minisweeps) and legato is the "secret sause" for many shredder's out there.


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Todd Simpson
post Feb 6 2014, 10:20 PM
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Well said!!! Ben is spot on here. He also doesn't like the term "Economy Picking" he prefers "Mini/Micro Sweep" smile.gif Which does sound better!!

I personally train my students to try Economic Picking during traversing up strings. E.G. from E to A to D etc. Conversely, I often focus on Alternate Picking for traversing down strings. E.G. from D to A to E during a scale run smile.gif

I've found this leverages the natrual motion of the hand and arm. As a result, many of my drills/examples in vid chat focus on this approach. But this is just one approach by one guy smile.gif As with any technique you have to figure out where it fits best in your style of play.

Todd



QUOTE (Ben Higgins @ Feb 6 2014, 03:27 PM) *
The thing with economy picking is that the 'economy' part only occurs when you change strings. The idea is that when you change to another string, you would continue the pick stroke through just like a sweep.

However in order for this to work it would necessitate that your last pick stroke is in the right direction that you need.

If you started a 3 note pattern with a down stroke on the low E and wanted to change to the A string, you would play D,U,D (Follow the downstroke through so that it becomes the first stroke on the A string.)D,U,D.

A simplified rule is when ascending from low to high strings, you use down strokes to sweep through when changing strings.

When coming from high to low, you use upstrokes.

The thing to remember is that any time that you are not changing strings, you are using alternate picking as normal. So you would always maintain a basic alternating pattern except when it comes to a string change. Also, not every note needs to be played. Sometimes, in order to make a certain run work, you might pick most of the notes and hammer on the last one just so you can keep your economy picking pattern working. If your pick is pointing in the wrong direction to sweep through the strings, then you might need to hammer on a note whilst you bring your pick back to face the direction it needs to sweep through to the next string.

I know this doesn't make sense without examples but the bottom line is, economy picking refers only to the string changing aspect of it. For the rest of the time it's alternate picking and sometimes you don't pick some notes at all. smile.gif

There's plenty of vids on YT which will give you the basic starting points for things like 3 note per string shapes.

EDIT: A lot of people avoid the technique because they're worried it will mess up their AP. In my experience this has never been the case. I use both whenever I want just fine and EP has never messed up my AP reflexes or anything. If someone doesn't have an ingrained AP reflex then I could see how it might confuse things so it's good to have AP down. You don't have to be ultra fast but just have an automatic up/down motion going. If that's ingrained already than EP won't remove that. I really recommend playing with the technique because it's given me loads of great licks and ideas smile.gif


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Hajduk
post Feb 6 2014, 10:51 PM
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Wow smile.gif Thank you Miguel, Ben, Todd, Akrich. Killer explanations. I knew there were some rules involved and it makes sense to economies movement. Great point on the AP, I always worried because I can alternate pick at a slow rate but thought if I started doing economy picking it might mess things up. Damn, that was a awesome answer to my question smile.gif


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jstcrsn
post Feb 7 2014, 12:19 AM
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QUOTE (Hajduk @ Feb 6 2014, 10:51 PM) *
Wow smile.gif Thank you Miguel, Ben, Todd, Akrich. Killer explanations. I knew there were some rules involved and it makes sense to economies movement. Great point on the AP, I always worried because I can alternate pick at a slow rate but thought if I started doing economy picking it might mess things up. Damn, that was a awesome answer to my question smile.gif

i would like to add , as far as rules, if it is workin , throw the rules out the window
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Mertay
post Feb 7 2014, 12:32 AM
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As a student my rule was for exercises alternate (which was like %90 of my routine) and for real world solo stuff economy when needed (and sound good) smile.gif

Sure no rights or wrongs here but personally I see this as a student level independent approach to learning both in a healthy balance.


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Todd Simpson
post Feb 7 2014, 04:36 AM
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As I'm always saying in chat, "It's not a card game, so you really can't cheat" smile.gif These are less "rules" and more "tips/tricks". So not much to throw out really, just some good advice from several different folks smile.gif

QUOTE (jstcrsn @ Feb 6 2014, 06:19 PM) *
i would like to add , as far as rules, if it is workin , throw the rules out the window



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Cosmin Lupu
post Feb 7 2014, 01:24 PM
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Great explanation by Ben and the guys! I think that as with each technique, this is a different kind of animal, used for certain things smile.gif

When you will start working on building your own licks extensively, I totally recommend you to try each lick with all the available techniques - legato, alternate picking, economy picking, tapping and so on. The 'voice' of that lick will not only change from a technique to another, but also offer you the chance to see which one suits the context best.

In the mean time, why not study the concepts in a real situation:

https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/solo-guit...nomy-picking-i/ - don't get scared about the speed - practice it with the slow backing tracks and focus on getting the mechanics right. You will deal with the speed later on wink.gif


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