EJ fives without USX?

I will preface this post by saying that I am not trying to play EJ 5s without USX, but trying to understand what I think i see other people doing :slight_smile:

On youtube, I sometimes see people playing the EJ descending 5s run but with a setup that looks like a DSX setup - they appear to be anchored at the thumb, like they’re using a dart thrower setup, and their picking hand is angled in a upward-pickslanting-looking fasion. They also appear to use an upstroke sweep instead of the downstroke sweep you would use if using USX

So I guess what i’m asking is this - how does this work? Does there have to be some element of mixed escape in order to play this without USX, or maybe utilising notes played using legato?

This is not something I am trying to do, I just noticed that (i think) I see some people doing this, and I found it very interesting!

Thank you :slight_smile:

Here you go, timestamped at the descending 5s part with tab, no legato needed just shifting around the string changes:

I believe Andy Wood plays them this way when he speeds up but I’m not sure he’s aware of that :grin:


Ah! Great, thank you thats very interesting - I was always confused by this and couldn’t figure out how people were doing it, but now I do :slight_smile:

Thank you!

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You could rearrange descending fives into DSX economy with 3 notes on one string, followed by 5 on the next:

high e: 15–12–10. U, D, U.
b: 12–10–15–12–10. U, D, U, D, U.
g: 14–12–14–12–9. U, D, U, D, U.


Another option, if you prefer starting on a downstroke, would be to start with the higher note on the first string and go DU UDU etc. I’m a DBX player with some DSX movements, never learned any EJ but that feels relatively natural to me.

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