Changing pick slant to accommodate swiping

Hi all new member here, love the website!

I’ve just had a lightbulb moment after watching the Pick Slanting Primer and Antigravity. I realised that when picking across 3 note per string scales I tend to DWPS when ascending and swipe the downstroke string changes, but then when Descending I UWPS and swipe the upstroke string changes.

I didn’t even realise what this was, or that I was doing it until watching the vids, but now that I’m aware I’ve slanted slightly more towards the desired angle and it’s made a MASSIVE difference to my over all speed/cleanness.

I’d be really interested to know if this is a valid approach and if anyone else had tried it, it just feels natural to me.

Thanks in advance.


@Troy I’d love to hear your thoughts on this if you have time :slight_smile:

Welcome to the community @Jpowellguitars!

I know that some elite players end up doing something like this (e.g. there is a clip of swipey scale playing in the Steve Morse interview). But I think the consensus is that almost none (or none?) of them practiced this explicitly - and we are currently debating whether swiping should be at all something to practice (as opposed to something that we should be aware may happen). It is a controversial topic to say the least :smiley:

The best thing to move forward - if you feel like it - would be to share a short clip of your scales so we get a sense of how it sounds/looks like. Suggestions for filming attached :slight_smile:

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Hi @tommo thanks for the reply, I didn’t even realise I was doing this until I watched the videos and had someone film my picking hand out of curiosity, it was something I was doing without thinking.

I always struggled more with ascending than descending, and I realised that I was downward slanting whilst ascending but just not very much, as soon as I slanted the pick slightly more downwards it seemed to make a massive difference instantly. I guess this is because the pick was facing the direction of the swipe as mentioned by @Troy in the swiping video. I was already doing this with the descending section which would explain why it would be easier if I understood the video correctly.

I’ll try and film it today at some point so you can see what I mean, I’ve been working a lot on the 2WPS since seeing the videos and am getting some cool results :slight_smile:

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3 posts were split to a new topic: Jpowellguitars scale playing

I could be totally wrong (as is often the case), but your post gives me the confidence to say that I swipe XD

I think I gained some speed/musicality/even songs! from this rather hackneyed approach, and regardless of whether it is technically orthodox or not, I’m glad I didn’t have prior knowledge of this.

Maybe sometime down the road, I’ll revisit some of these passages and try to fix them, but I still have so much to learn :slight_smile:

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Nonsense!!! :slight_smile: I haven’t read every word of your forum posts, but you always seem spot on to me. At the very least you’re best EJ cover-er I’ve seen.

RE: swiping…

I didn’t even know swiping existed before watching anti-gravity…now I’m hearing some people view it as non-legit. Weird. I have figured out how to do it with DWPS/USX and for it to be inaudible. Seems a no brainer to me. There was another thread where I mentioned being able to finally get in the ballpark of a Petrucci run.

“Another Day” solo

Swiping was the only way I could get it close haha. I’m not superhuman though. I’m sure plenty can play that with some other solution. Come to think of it I need to get back to this. There were days I could play that at 130bmp and now I’m back down to 120bpm or less :frowning:

But yeah I think swiping is cool to be aware of. I definitely wasn’t doing it before, then intentionally added it to some outside string change licks and saw good progress. I am in favor of it! lol!


Really glad to see that others are using it :smiley: I didn’t realise it was controversial, I’d never heard of it until about 3 days ago lol.

I’d be really interested to know how many top players do it with or without realising.


In one of the scarified vids on youtube, you can very clearly hear Paul Gilbert himself swiping on his most famous lick. I don’t know which one exactly, but the vids are short and the series is funny and worth checking out. Great thread!

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I’ll check them out, thanks, It’s great to get this feedback from you guys.

I feel like now that I know what I was doing and understand a bit about how it works, I’ve been able to make the movements more efficient and have already seen a difference in just a day!

Based on material here, we’ve seen Paul Gilbert, Michael Angelo Batio and Al Di Meola (EDIT: and Steve Morse…if it’s good enough for even ONE of these guys, it is good enough for me) use it. Most likely nothing any of them are aware of. I’m unclear of why it’s controversial. If you can’t hear it, and you can’t feel it (even if you’ve intentionally worked on engineering with it)…what’s not to love about it? Definitely not trying to fan any flames. If anyone doesn’t like it, cool. They don’t have to use. I will use it anyway :slight_smile: My career in music failed a decade ago, so it’s not like anyone besides me (and my poor wife and son) hear my playing anyway. The day of them says ‘Hey, are you swiping that lick?’ is the day I stop doing it haha

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I totally agree, anything that’s good enough for monster players like those guys is more than good enough for me :smiley: As far as I can see it’s just another tool in the box.

Hi Tommo. Since I’ve only learned recently that this is controversial, can you shed any light as to why? Is this another one of those things like Two-Way-Pickslanting, where the current understanding of it is different than how it was presented in the anti-gravity seminar? Curious! Thanks in advance!

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Well maybe I used the wrong words :slight_smile: The big question, as far as I understand, is whether swiping should be practiced explicitly or not. Not = try to make the string changes cleanly, but make sure that proper muting is in place in case a few swipes happen here and there.

In any case, I confess that I swipe too :slight_smile:


This thread has been so enlightening, I’ve also started giving the 2WPS a really good look now so hopefully I’ll be an all around better player after digesting all this info :slight_smile:

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I see. Since it’s something people who do it a lot are largely unaware of, it’s an organic enough thing that it possibly shouldn’t need to be something we intentionally work on. Not trying to put words in anyone’s mouth, just talking through this.

Hmmm…to me, EVERYTHING on CtC is stuff that most awesome players do by default without thinking about it a lot. The rest of us need to be made aware of these little treasures and work them into whatever we’ve been doing all these years. Why should I should show any impartiality? I’m not gonna be labeled as someone who shies away from swiping. That would make me a swipest. I’m far to accepting and inclusive for this. I’m going to keep doing it lol!


These are not the same.

Mike depends on it. It’s how he does descending upstroke string changes because his picking motion traps on upstrokes. Same with Al. His core motion is DSX so he hits the strings on certain licks. Yes he’s a wrist player so technically he could learn to make a different motion as needed. But that’s academic because he doesn’t and it’s been that way since the 70s. These players are systematically hitting the strings. It is their approach.

Steve’s motion is capable of playing all string changes. These are just “mistakes” if you like. They don’t happen systematically all the time. He knows he’s doing it because it was obvious in the interview when certain takes weren’t up to par.

All these players have great muting control so you don’t always hear it when it happens.


Cool! Degrees of swiping, eh? I learn something new on here every day! Thanks Troy!

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