Developing Speed – Part 2. This online guitar lesson is the second installment of my two part picking mayhem. This week we are going to cover a couple of examples that I personally dig. This is the kind of self-indulgent stuff that usually only guitar players can relate to. Others are often offended, insulted, or just outright scared! Whatever the case, just be careful when you get these things up to speed that you don’t let your fingers get away from you. You could put an eye out.
I would also like to stress again “economy of motion”- meaning the smaller the distance you move the pick, the faster you will be able to go. That does not mean that if you choose to use your whole arm to tremolo pick, for example, that you are wrong. If it works for you, then it is the right way. Eddie Van Halen chooses to use his whole arm to tremolo pick. Who’s going to tell him he’s wrong? I choose to use my wrist for all picking type licks and tend to stick to strict alternate picking as much as possible. I would strongly urge you to do the same. This is common practice among “the picking kings” – anyone who picks like a madman.
Example 1: This example comes from Steve Vai’s, “The Animal.” It is in D minor. Notice how it doesn’t lock into the click. It kind of has a “floating” sound. The effect that was used was a harmonizer set to a fifth below.
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Example 2:This lick makes a great warm up exercise. It starts out in E Dorian (E, F#, G, A, B, C#, D) and ends in the A Blues scale. This lick works very well over the A bar chord. In fact, if you choose to play this over an A power chord, then theoretically, it is an A Mixolydian (A, B, C#, D, E, F#, G). These are both modes from the key of D Major, so note-wise they are all the same.
Listen to the MP3