Prior to joining this forum, I attempted sweeping several times throughout the years and was never able to make it click. Now that I’ve joined the forum, I’ve been a lot more dedicated to improving in general but I’ve really wanted to make that breakthrough with sweeps because it just seems like the right way for me to play certain things. So I’ve put in a lot of time just playing a couple 3NPS licks over and over and over and think I finally made some real progress. However, it didn’t come from the repetition so I wanted to share what made really helped me in the hopes that it might help others who’ve struggled like I have with sweeping.
What made a big difference for me was simplifying (maybe considered chunking) the left hand and making sure my right hand sweeps. The two big things for me are listed below.
- Doing position shifts with the left forefinger and sweeping with the right (picking the first note of each string only).
- Picking the first note on each string and tapping the rest but still sweeping with the right (only picking the first note of each string).
The important thing for me when doing this was ensuring my right hand was actually sweeping. When I first started simplifying my left hand, I was frustrated because it was painfully easy to do what I wanted but of course couldn’t do it when picking every note. Then when I analyzed myself a bit more, I realized it was easy because my right hand wasn’t actually sweeping. It was resetting prior to each pick. Once, I realized this, I was able to focus on ensuring the right hand was sweeping while the left did the position shifts/tapping. I’m not sure why but this allowed me to make a lot of progress when doing that actual sweeps and picking every note. This might sound similar to a lot of guides on sweeping but I don’t think I’ve ever been told to focus on my right hand when simplifying the left.