Attempting 2wps run

I recently upgraded to Masters in Mechanics membership and I must say its really amazing stuff. Recently I’ve been working on developing two-way pickslanting but I don’t want to fall into any bad habits, hence my post. Watching Anitgravity seminar was a major breakthrough in my technique because I realised that my main motion for playing odd nps licks was crosspicking. I always felt that my right hand technique had some kind of speed limit attached to it and thanks to CTC now i know why.
Here are the videos of me playing the run:

and here is the tab:

The lick is a fast alternate picking run from Jason Richardson’s interview with Guitar World called picking perfection. It’s available on youtube

I would love to hear your feedback so that I won’t develop and bad habits with this technique.
Thanks in advance!

Hi! Thanks for signing up, and thanks for posting.

The Antigravity seminar is getting a little old at this point, and we no longer use the term “two way pickslanting” to describe scale playing. Mainly because it is vague, and does not describe what type of picking motion you’re actually supposed to make.

The short answer is that the way you play odd numbers of notes depends on which type of joint motion you are using as your primary motion. The upcoming Primer update will explain this more clearly, but basically, not all joints can really even play a scale by themeslves. The elbow is a good example of this. When Vinnie Moore plays a scale, the elbow joint can only do downstroke string changes. To get the upstroke, he uses either swiping, or a very small amount of forearm rotation.

Wrist technique is different. The wrist can make both escapes and it does not require any rotating motion of the forearm to do this. So when players like Andy Wood play a descending scale, the forearm is mostly stationary. The wrist (i.e. the hand) simply changes direction to get the other escapes.

So, what should you do? The simplest answer is that the very first step is to get a joint motion that moves fast, and then you would use only that joint motion at first. It doesn’t matter what kind of joint motion it is, whether that is elbow, wrist, wrist-forearm, etc. Any of the motions we teach in the Primer are fine. However you should not try to “do pickslanting”. You are trying to do a fast joint motion, that is all. Even if you did only this, with good hand sync and good muting, and completely ignored all string changes, you would basically be doing what Batio does when he plays descending scales in the Antigravity seminar. And we know how good that sounds!

So… in your clips, your alternate picking motion looks like some kind of forearm or forearm-wrist motion. However it doesn’t look completely smooth, and I’m guessing this isn’t your best motion. Have you taken the table tapping tests, and what results did you get? i.e. What were the metronome numbers for each joint motion? Did you do the tremolo test, and which motion did it turn out to be?

That’s the motion you should be using to start with here.

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Thanks for the reply!
On the table tapping test I got pretty much the same results as you got, which is 210bpm being pretty relaxed and I can also go 230 bpm for few measures but that definetly doesn’t feel comfortable.
Here is my Tremolo:

I am not an expert but it looks like some kind of elbow motion.
So… How should I approach fast picking and scalar playing? Is there some post which describes more in depth why Antigravity seminar is kinda outdated or some other guide that could get me into this?

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Awesome, thanks for revisiting this. Yes, that’s downstroke escape elbow motion. The upcoming Primer update is a section on identifying your motion once you’ve taken the tests, and includes all kinds of hints for figuring out which motions are which. But in this case DSX elbow is what you’re doing.

So the next step is to apply this to single-string patterns to learn to synchronize the hands, at a speed similar to what you’re doing here. If you can already do that, then you want to try multi-string patterns that switch using downstrokes. The idea is to become as fluid as you can with the motion that is working best.

You may recall from Antigravity that when MAB plays descending scales, he just uses his primary motion which is only downstroke escape, and allows the pick to hit / swipe the upstroke string changes. He uses some left-hand muting to take care of that noise. You can do the same thing. If all you ever had was a simple motion, like the elbow, but your motion was smooth and your hand synchronization was totally on point, many common phrases would sound just fine even with occasional swiping. As an example, I suspect that Al DiMeola’s “Race With Devil On Spanish Highway” is done this way, or at least mostly this way, even though it contains a mix of string changes.

So getting at least this much happening goes a long way, because these are fundamental skills you need even if you eventually learn to use the occasional “helper” motion to get over the string, a la Vinnie Moore. Those observations in Antigravity about what Vinnie does are still accurate. Again, it’s just the vagueness about which motions he was using (elbow, plus forearm helper), that don’t necessarily apply to every other kind of joint motion someone might use for picking. But they do for you, since your motion is similar to his.


In addition to the primer update that @Troy is working on, we also have a very comprehensive overview of how picking motion works in webpage format:

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Thanks for the replies!
I will practice this motion and I will probably post an update after few weeks or so.
I really admire that you spend time to help us out here on the forum.

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While practicing I realised really weird thing about switching strings with my new motion. Theoretically this motion is DSX but somehow I don’t really clear the strings after downstrokes with it?
I have been practicing simple 3 note per string pattern on 2 strings. The pattern doesn’t loop, so after I finish the phrase I have time to reset my pick into position.
What I found when I started speeding up is that when I go on the higher string I subconsciously swipe and this pattern changes strings only after downstrokes. My new motion theoretically is also downstroke escape so I don’t really know why this happens.
When I start the pattern on a higher string and then descend onto lower string after a downstroke the escape is clear and working.

Here is the phrase when I swipe after downstroke:

Here is slow mo:

Here is the one with clear escape:

I don’t know if it a mistake or not. To my ears the sound isn’t bad but the feeling is weird.
I would like to hear your thoughts on this.