Banging My Head (part 2)

Ok, so I’m going for Aldrich style now. Straightened out my arm and tried resting my palm on the bridge strings… I think this is pretty close despite my sloppiness, no?

[4 notes. 2 notes per string.]


I’m no Troy but can’t see any obvious inefficiency, so you may be able to bring this up to speed. In fact this may be the next thing you need to try: go as fast as you can and see if you can still make the string changes cleanly (forget about left-right synchronization for this experiment - you can even just play open strings).

Also have you tried to play licks with less frequent string changes, where it may be easier to play faster? If you like penta stuff, this sort of thing is something that I found very fun to practice:


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Tommo, thanks for the reply.

Indeed, I have been trying to bring it up to speed, but so far, when I do, the entire motion tends to get smaller and then I don’t quite clear the lower string.

I feel like I’m very very close, but I’m missing something…

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The thing that jumps out at me is that your pick trajectory is very curved. A bit of curve is probably natural, but at the end of your downstrokes, your pick trajectory is almost parallel to the plane of the strings, which might be creating more work for yourself than you want in order to switch it back into an “escape” trajectory for the upstroke. I haven’t looked closely at Aldrich, but when I do something similar to this, the pick trajectory looks much closer to a straight line (more in line with what’s happening as you begin your downstrokes).

To my eye, I’d say the wrist extension component of your movement is more exaggerated than it needs to be (unless you are going for a “double esaped” motion, in which case, you can probably get that by changing to a more pronated arm position). But for USX, I find when I do this sort of forearm rotationish movement with fingers touching the guitar body, I don’t actively think about extending my wrist at all, but a subtle wrist motion happens naturally as a byproduct of the forearm rotation and the resistance of the fingers touching the guitar body. Another potential fix would be to experiment with different forearm approach angles and hand positions to try and find one where the “byproduct wrist movement” from the forearm rotation is more subtle, which should result in a pick trajectory that more closely approximates a straight line.

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Hi @Jeff_C ! Thanks for taking a stab at this. For reference, here’s what this looks like when I do this:

@Frylock I do tend to basically flatten out at the bottom of the pickstroke so I don’t think that in itself is problematic. It is simply the way this motion works, at least when I do it.

As you tool around with this, make sure you’re including single string ideas in that basket of experimentation. I understand that lots of people want to do the 2nps stuff but that introduces complexity thanks to the string switching. Ultimately you will need this to be smooth even on a single string so try some good old fashioned Yngwie six-note pattern stuff, Di Meola sixes (i.e. threes repeated), and so on. I wouldn’t stop doing the 2nps things, but I’d be sure and include, additionally, phrases like these where it will be more obvious when the motion begins to feel smooth.

As far as the motion itself, don’t try to “do” anything with your arm. Don’t even think about that at all. Just maintain the two anchor points — forearm and side of the palm — and visualize the pick moving parallel to the pickups in whatever way feels smoothest. Don’t worry about whether it’s escaping or not. Just get something that’s smooth first and then when you think you have something, film it and see what it looks like. If it checks out, excellent, see if you can replicate. But get it by the anchor points, smoothness of feel, and speed first.

Nice work on this stuff - you’re very close.

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Fair game. I’m doing something which isn’t such a close fit to what @Jeff_C is doing and is closer to “pure forearm”. This also seems like a good excuse for me to dig back into the updated primer stuff. :wink:

Thankful for all of the constructive criticism. :slight_smile:

Grateful for your feedback and encouragement, Troy. It means a lot.

Got it. Both anchor points. No arm. Will do both single string and 2nps stuff.

Will get this. Feels very close.