16th note alternate picked rhythm playing falls apart


I’ve recently just joined after purchasing the Pick Slanting Primer. Loving the course and seeing a lot of improvement in my playing.

One thing that I’m still struggling with is playing 16th note alternate picked rhythm patterns (specifically on the E and A strings). If I took something like Ozzy’s “I Don’t Know” it would very quickly fall apart and I’d get stuck.

Examining my playing I noticed that I was a fairly pronounced UWPS . I’ve started to correct this to DWPS and have noticed gains in my lead playing.

However fast alternated single string rhythm patterns are killing me!


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Just as an aside, it’s not that UWPS (or better escaped upstrokes) is “bad” and should be corrected, both types of playing are good for different things!


Apologies yes I agree with your comment. I have however noticed that moving to DWPS has allowed me to play faster and more cleanly for some reason!

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I’ve always suspected that R. Rhoads was an UWPS as his riffs always felt more natural and smooth for me compared to known DWPSers.

One thing I noticed when I moved from UWPS (my default playing) to DWPS is that my upstroke was too short to effectively change strings. I had to conscientiously accentuate my up strokes during practice. Once I got into the habit of larger up strokes, everything DWPS became smoother.

Perhaps a short upstroke is causing an unequal pick spacing around the string. That might cause a loss of rhythm.

This applies to me as well. I notice also that it’s hard to keep the note durations steady, I tend to shuffle instead of achieving a steady 16th note feel unless I really concentrate. The problem is there for both DSX and USX.

What do you mean by “fall apart” and “get stuck?” Do you at least have a video?

Hi, brief update.

I recently started taking some lessons from John Taylor (Mile High Shred) via Patreon.

John has really helped me with my rhythm playing by focusing on short exercise that have helped me overcome specific issues.

I think by working on small, focused chunks of my playing technique has been the key.

Can’t recommend John highly enough and his $10 per month Patreon video exchange tier is amazing.

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