Alternate picking

I’m still very confused about which technique to develop, but I think the way is to train a lot … and I miss specific exercises for the chosen technique.
What I mean is that I can’t play counting the pick if it is even or odd, but I want to have a more intuitive technique, simply switching the palette up and down.


Hi! Thanks for posting. Great playing!

Re: your choice of mechanical technique, there is no “counting”, in the same way that when I speak, I don’t really think about verbs and conjugations. Instead, I memorize the mechanical aspects so I can create the lines in the language without thinking. So for something like the downward pickslanting style used by Django, Joe Pass, and George Benson, they just improvise in that language by memorizing common motions, and learning a wide variety of phrases and phrase parts that use those motions. They are not counting numbers of notes per string when they’re playing live. The improvisation is no more intuitive or less intuitive than any other type of mechanics.

By contrast, players that do pure alternate, like Pat Martino, tend to avoid the kind of sweep/economy phrases that Django and Benson would play. This guides their choices to slightly different kinds of lines. But the process is the same. Memorize all the common mechanical patterns by learning a wide variety of phrases and phrase parts. Then you can put them together in real-time, in a way that doesn’t feel like counting or thinking.

So basically, once you choose the mechanical style, you build your vocabulary directly in that style. There is no rule for which style to choose, but there are some conventions. Bluegrass is usually pure alternate, and very often wrist motion. Jazz and rock are not really one style, but many styles, so they have the most mechanical variety, and no standard. You can do one-way economy (Django, George), two-way economy (Gambale, Oz Noy), pure alternate (Martino, Clint Strong), alternate and legato (Scofield), mostly legato (Holdsworth). It’s up to you. We’ just want to give you options.

I apologize if that’s not the answer you were looking for!


Song name? And if it’s all improv you got mighty chops my friend \m/

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Excellent answer!
Thank you for your attention and congratulations on the course and your talent.
I am taking advantage of the information to improve new techniques that were forgotten in my memory.
Strong hug!

Jasper,The name of this song is Vôo noturno and it is my own. This is an excerpt from the improvisation section.
Thank you so much for listening!

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Woah man I didn’t know you actually made an album! I’ll def have to check that out.

All of the above comments are true, but note that you don’t even have to count to infer even or odd: Even brings you back to the side that you started from, and odd takes you over to the other side.

(I am actually trying to come up with a great scheduling algorithm to eat up sheet music and spew “perfect” TAB [optimized for speed], but the problem is more subtle than i first thought.)

Are you sure Benson didn’t do any crosspicking? Transcribing some of Lines he’s just playing they seem impossible to play with pure downwardpickslanting.