The Intimidation Lick and Issues with Left Right Hand Synchronisation

I attach a transcription of the Intimidation lick with a slight variation which has made it somewhat easier for me. Having got over the disappointment of being a downstroke escape player, I have been devising some licks which work, mostly descending pentatonic 2nps licks, and starting with an upstroke which turns out to be easier than I thought it would be - just a matter of doing it. I then decided to have a go at the intimidation lick.

Suddenly I have issues with left right hand synchonisation particularly on the B string notes, as the note groupings are a bit unusual, eg 12-15-12-13 etc. Interestingly I have notated it with an even number of notes so the pull off from 12 to 10 would then be unnecessary, although I see on the short Youtube video of @Troy playing it fast then slow, that he just picks all of the b string notes without pulling off, when playing it slowly.

In terms developing synchronisation, I wondered whether this then would be where Troy Stetina’s concept of playing in bursts comes in, for example taking a beat of 4 notes from the b string section of this lick, and playing these slowly to quickly over and over, and then adding another beat in, and so on. Is that what others are doing to try to develop synchronisation?

I don’t seem to have too many issues with the rest of the lick in relation to the left hand, other than my dreadful pinky, but I am just using Index Ring Middle which is working.

The Intimidation Lick.pdf (46.2 KB)

Playing in bursts has helped me, but more for relaxation and ability to process notes at high tempos. I don’t think it’s been as useful for synchronisation, although it hasn’t hurt.

I’d say that you want to increase your burst length quite gradually, one or two notes at a time. Going from one beat to two is doubling the length, and that’s a LOT.

For sync, these exercises helped me:

  1. playing the same lick with different rhythmic subdivisions (e.g. sextuplets at 100 are the same speed as 16ths at 150 but feel totally different. Nailing both really helps. Ben Eller has some great exercises which flip rapidly between 16ths and sextuplets too).

  2. Mike Philippov on YouTube swears by playing the same lick but picking every note twice (so you’ll need to halve your fretting hand speed) for hand sync. I’m still making my mind up how much this helps, but I have been practising it and my sync has improved, so maybe it works.

  3. It might be obvious, but check you can play the lick in time legato. If your fretting hand can’t play the lick in time by itself, what chance is there of doing it right with both hands at once?

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This has helped me a lot in my quest with 2nps EJ stuff. I realized some of what I was attempting, my left hand was incapable of (the way I was approaching it anyway).
Playing through the left hand by itself exposed this. Once I got that in line and faster, I could play the whole lick faster than before…and the whole time I thought it was my right hand that was the culprit ha…

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I know Ben’s stuff and know the exercises you are talking about. His channel is great!

This is why sometimes i just play with my left hand and make sure Im always trying to improve my left hand skills. It really is the hand that holds everything down. I think my right hand skills are much ahead of my left and now im trying to catch it up

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