Not sure about this - don’t work up to picking speed , start with it Troy Grady

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https://youtu.be/RPVpw2seK9E

I set a timer and tried this for 30 minutes tonight 140s okayish but 150 a mess , I had to use the metronome to give me an idea of how fast.  Was able to do 4’s over a caged major scale last night at 96 to 97bpm sixteenth notes and after this tonight had trouble at 90bpm. I dont Know what to think about this , wether to keep normally practicing string crossing stuff until I can get that up to 110 or higher or to devote more time to this. Common sense says to practise around the edge of your previous ability and push to gain an extra bpm or two over time . Perhaps I did wrong trying to practice with the metronome like he said, but at those speeds it would be easy to mistake 144 for 154 etc.

So is this bogus advice? I know the old saying that you can’t learn to run by walking fast which makes sense , but then there is the saying practice makes permanent so if you practice fast and sloppy  you may end up playing sloppy .
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  • stratman3142stratman3142 Frets: 933
    edited October 2019
    I don't believe it's bogus advice. I think that the way you play fast might require a different way of playing than when you play slower. So you have to find a way of playing a fast line and also get to know the possibly new feeling of playing the fast line.

    If it ends up sounding sloppy then it's necessary to work at making it less sloppy with the technique you use to play fast. This applies to what I'd call motor skills.

    But I also think that there are some things (complex intricate lines)  that you need to get into your brain (i.e. not motor skills) that are best worked at by building up slowly.  I think that Troy Grady covers this in his videos, so I'm not saying anything new.

    As a disclaimer I'd say that I'm not a super fast player, nor am I interested it playing at super fast tempos, but I've certainly improved by following the Troy Grady videos.
    It's not a competition.
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  • Thanks stratman, appreciate your input . I am going to practice picking fast still daily like Troy showed and also keep up with my other stuff I’m working on at slower paces , I managed to put some practice in in small chunks on my scale last night and got back up to 98/99 so made an improvement on yesterday . You are correct that there is a difference at higher speeds , I will also work on some Paul Gilbert style licks on crossing strings. Cheers .. Paul and thanks again
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  • DLMDLM Frets: 2100
    Check out the Cracking The Code forum for masses more info on all this stuff, including (one of the latest revelations, though I'd heard it at the time, being a superfan/doink) Paul Gilbert's apology for giving everyone a "standard" picking exercise that is much too difficult for N00bs to start with! 

    Having watched a few video submissions on there lately, I will say this: make sure you really know the notes and can play them before you start cranking tempi.

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  • clarkefanclarkefan Frets: 620
    I don't believe it's bogus advice. I think that the way you play fast might require a different way of playing than when you play slower. So you have to find a way of playing a fast line and also get to know the possibly new feeling of playing the fast line.

    If it ends up sounding sloppy then it's necessary to work at making it less sloppy with the technique you use to play fast. This applies to what I'd call motor skills.

    But I also think that there are some things (complex intricate lines)  that you need to get into your brain (i.e. not motor skills) that are best worked at by building up slowly.  I think that Troy Grady covers this in his videos, so I'm not saying anything new.

    As a disclaimer I'd say that I'm not a super fast player, nor am I interested it playing at super fast tempos, but I've certainly improved by following the Troy Grady videos.
    Interesting stuff. I remember a Danny Gatton instructional vid where he was trying to explain a wicked fast lick which he could play without even thinking about it, but then he had a real problem trying to play the same thing slowly.

    I notice the same thing with the riff in Zep's Immigrant Song.
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  • It’s like that thing where you have a lick and if you think about it you can’t play it, but if you let your mind go blank and your hands work on their own it works . This is usually when you have not played it for a while lol
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  • That’s what Shawn lane did and advocated. Go as fast as you can, as soon as you can and then tidy it up later. 
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  • fastonebazfastonebaz Frets: 1055
    It's definitely my technique.... to attempt to play solos at gigs at a higher tempo than I can actually play them properly and fumble my way through it ;)

    Seriously though,  I do use this technique to learn stuff.  By getting used to playing it fast even if badly, when you slow it down to clean it up or feels really easy to play st that slower speed.   Bit like trying to play discord on a bad guitar for a bit and then picking up a 6 string guitar everything suddenly feels tiny and easy to reach. 
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  • Fastonebaz shreds like a mother lolz . Btw love your Steve vai cover .
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  • robertyroberty Frets: 1754
    Fastonebaz shreds like a mother lolz . Btw love your Steve vai cover .
    True!
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  • Had a go at this while I was laid up in bed with a bug.

    There's a fast run EVH does in Spanish Fly I've been trying to get right for a long time.  I knew the notes, my fretting hand was getting the speed, but I just could *not* develop the picking pattern. Months of this, banging my head against a plateau.

    Tried the "too fast" thing and in 20 minutes I'd nailed it :) First it was a mess, I kept going and suddenly it began to sound right.  My hands just adjusted or something, just like the "riding a bike" analogy in the Grady video where your body suddenly just gets it and adjusts all by itself.  I noticed my picking hand started to edge the plectrum forward and adjust its angle all by itself.

    I do the run now and even watching I can't see what my picking hand is doing.  I mean, I *know* what it's doing, I just can't *see* it happening, my hand is doing it all by itself :)  I had exactly the same experience with Immigrant Song years ago as I mentioned before.

    So going forward I'm going to combine both methods, first get the piece under my fingers, then go "too fast".

    Thanks OP for posting, I'm grateful :)

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  • clarkefan said:
    Had a go at this while I was laid up in bed with a bug.

    There's a fast run EVH does in Spanish Fly I've been trying to get right for a long time.  I knew the notes, my fretting hand was getting the speed, but I just could *not* develop the picking pattern. Months of this, banging my head against a plateau.

    Tried the "too fast" thing and in 20 minutes I'd nailed it :) First it was a mess, I kept going and suddenly it began to sound right.  My hands just adjusted or something, just like the "riding a bike" analogy in the Grady video where your body suddenly just gets it and adjusts all by itself.  I noticed my picking hand started to edge the plectrum forward and adjust its angle all by itself.

    I do the run now and even watching I can't see what my picking hand is doing.  I mean, I *know* what it's doing, I just can't *see* it happening, my hand is doing it all by itself :)  I had exactly the same experience with Immigrant Song years ago as I mentioned before.

    So going forward I'm going to combine both methods, first get the piece under my fingers, then go "too fast".

    Thanks OP for posting, I'm grateful :)

    Wow , that is pretty far out , it must be majorly gratifying after months of hard work to finally get it, amazing 
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  • It's worth trying out a few different things. I never practiced my picking that much when I was young for some reason, so have really gone at it the last few years. I find the strict alternate thing like Paul Gilbert does doesn't quite work for me...but if I change it, then it does -  ie the pattern 5-7-8 on B then 5 on high E and repeat - I have to start on the 5 on the high E and then I'm fine..can't do the outside picking thing to save my life. Also did a little exercise over 4 strings using different combinations of fingers that has helped. 
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  • I remember going through the first series of "cracking the code", and I'm pretty sure in that he talks about a similar topic - that playing slow uses different mechanical actions to playing fast (I think it comes up in the Eric Johnson centered lesson).

    That was a real breakthrough for me, and allowed me to actually play something fast and fluid.

    This new video (thanks to OP), has really helped re-enforce that, and point out a bunch of more subtle elements I need a bunch of time to think about.

    I'm currently working on a dream theater song, so this is quite timely!
    (I expect the solo to take me several months if I'm honest :D )
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  • clarkefan said:
    Had a go at this while I was laid up in bed with a bug.

    There's a fast run EVH does in Spanish Fly I've been trying to get right for a long time.  I knew the notes, my fretting hand was getting the speed, but I just could *not* develop the picking pattern. Months of this, banging my head against a plateau.

    Tried the "too fast" thing and in 20 minutes I'd nailed it :) First it was a mess, I kept going and suddenly it began to sound right.  My hands just adjusted or something, just like the "riding a bike" analogy in the Grady video where your body suddenly just gets it and adjusts all by itself.  I noticed my picking hand started to edge the plectrum forward and adjust its angle all by itself.

    I do the run now and even watching I can't see what my picking hand is doing.  I mean, I *know* what it's doing, I just can't *see* it happening, my hand is doing it all by itself :)  I had exactly the same experience with Immigrant Song years ago as I mentioned before.

    So going forward I'm going to combine both methods, first get the piece under my fingers, then go "too fast".

    Thanks OP for posting, I'm grateful :)

    Wow , that is pretty far out , it must be majorly gratifying after months of hard work to finally get it, amazing 
    You're right, it is, thank you :)  What's even better is I now know *for a fact* what works for me :)

    I should stress though that I had the thing under my fingers.  My fretting hand could do it legato at the fast speed. And I could pick the correct pattern, just not at speed and not in sync.

    I noticed afterwards watching my picking hand that as I sped up my hand changed its position and the position of the pick, the finger and thumb holding it moved it forward and also really reduced the amount of the point of the pick exposed if that makes sense.

    And that's what I meant earlier, *I* didn't think to make those changes, my hand made them by itself.

    Like @jonnyscaramanga says in the superspeed thread, you don't run the way you walk.
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  • Have you seen that thing Tom Hess (ooh no not him ,lol ) says , where you do the right and left hand separately . Like you would go through the piece with your left hand touching the frets lightly , and also just picking with the right hand . It’s tricky to do the right hand without the left just picking the strings that need to be picked. It’s weird
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  • Have you seen that thing Tom Hess (ooh no not him ,lol ) says , where you do the right and left hand separately . Like you would go through the piece with your left hand touching the frets lightly , and also just picking with the right hand . It’s tricky to do the right hand without the left just picking the strings that need to be picked. It’s weird
    No I'm not familiar with the bloke, but the idea of doing the two things separately makes sense to me.  The two hands are doing different jobs, makes some sense in my head to get them both doing their jobs properly, then bringing them together.
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  • I often have one hand that is the weak part of the equation . I’ve been studying Chris brooks book , neoclassical speed soloing tonight, it’s without the speed when I do it though lol. It’s full of try Grady type stuff, it’s very good . Going into stuf like DWPS , even and odd numbers of notes per string. Hand position etc. All his books seem real good you can get hardcopy or kindle for your iPad /kindle etc and you get downloads of audio. Though if you’re playing VH stuff you will probably not need it lol.
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  • sweepysweepy Frets: 2926
    That’s what Shawn lane did and advocated. Go as fast as you can, as soon as you can and then tidy it up later. 

    I remember this article very well, he also mentioned that people waste for too much motion on their picking hand by playing through the string too much, it’s very much an economy of motion approach 
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  • Have you seen that thing Tom Hess (ooh no not him ,lol ) says , where you do the right and left hand separately . Like you would go through the piece with your left hand touching the frets lightly , and also just picking with the right hand . It’s tricky to do the right hand without the left just picking the strings that need to be picked. It’s weird

    Teemu Mantysaari talks about something similar in the video below:



    It's not a competition.
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  • Have you seen that thing Tom Hess (ooh no not him ,lol ) says , where you do the right and left hand separately . Like you would go through the piece with your left hand touching the frets lightly , and also just picking with the right hand . It’s tricky to do the right hand without the left just picking the strings that need to be picked. It’s weird

    Teemu Mantysaari talks about something similar in the video below:



    Thanks for posting this 
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  • hollywoodroxhollywoodrox Frets: 378
    edited November 2019
    Serious sweeping 
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  • I thought I’d chip in again on this thread - I’ve been learning a Petrucci solo, and doing what Troy talks about has really really helped with the speed. 

    Got the thing under my fingers, and now just pushing faster “naturally” (without a metronome) and I do occasionally keep doing a clean run WAY faster - so I’m mechanically capable, just need to keep at it and figure out the issues. 

    I’ve recorded a “before” video, and will throw up one once I’ve got the thing down. 

    Just wanted to put up a note here for anyone in the same boat. 
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  • I thought I’d chip in again on this thread - I’ve been learning a Petrucci solo, and doing what Troy talks about has really really helped with the speed. 

    Got the thing under my fingers, and now just pushing faster “naturally” (without a metronome) and I do occasionally keep doing a clean run WAY faster - so I’m mechanically capable, just need to keep at it and figure out the issues. 

    I’ve recorded a “before” video, and will throw up one once I’ve got the thing down. 

    Just wanted to put up a note here for anyone in the same boat. 
    Ace , thanks for the input . I’m currently working on the famous Paul Gilbert lick among others . I’m freakin slow though lol. Good for my outside picking 
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  • I thought I’d chip in again on this thread - I’ve been learning a Petrucci solo, and doing what Troy talks about has really really helped with the speed. 

    Got the thing under my fingers, and now just pushing faster “naturally” (without a metronome) and I do occasionally keep doing a clean run WAY faster - so I’m mechanically capable, just need to keep at it and figure out the issues. 

    I’ve recorded a “before” video, and will throw up one once I’ve got the thing down. 

    Just wanted to put up a note here for anyone in the same boat. 
    Ace , thanks for the input . I’m currently working on the famous Paul Gilbert lick among others . I’m freakin slow though lol. Good for my outside picking 

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  • Fastonebaz shreds like a mother lolz . Btw love your Steve vai cover . Thanks man,  
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  • VibetronicVibetronic Frets: 490
    edited December 2019
    Separately, you could also try messing about with different picks. I've used the Jazz III Max-Grip ones for years, but thought I'd try out the new Ernie Ball Prodigy 2.0mm ones...they are that bit pointier with sloping edges....and do actually make a difference. I'll post a video if I get time. 

    edit - I'm using these most of the time now, but we did a gig last weekend and the different feel of the pick and lack of grip threw me off so much I had to switch back to the Jazz IIIs half-way through!
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  • lysanderlysander Frets: 296
    One of Troy’s essential piece of advice is to experiment with different movements, wrist angles, pick grips etc until you find one that feels natural
    Once you find the right one for you, some difficult licks or runs almost magically become easy and fast.
    I’ve found that it’s great advice. If you can play something quite fast but a bit sloppy straight away then you’re on the right track.
    If it feels like speeding up seems impossible and will take months then it’s probably never going to work well with that particular approach.
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  • lysander said:
    One of Troy’s essential piece of advice is to experiment with different movements, wrist angles, pick grips etc until you find one that feels natural
    Once you find the right one for you, some difficult licks or runs almost magically become easy and fast.
    I’ve found that it’s great advice. If you can play something quite fast but a bit sloppy straight away then you’re on the right track.
    If it feels like speeding up seems impossible and will take months then it’s probably never going to work well with that particular approach.
    I’m currently experimenting with how I hold the pick after years of barely having any of the tip showing , I’m finding with licks like the Gilbert lick  which has lots of outside picking that I’m favouring a slight upward pick slant. Also there isn’t unorthodox way I hold it that seems really efficient but is not much use for general playing. Can’t really describe it  though
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  • I thought I’d chip in again on this thread - I’ve been learning a Petrucci solo, and doing what Troy talks about has really really helped with the speed. 

    Got the thing under my fingers, and now just pushing faster “naturally” (without a metronome) and I do occasionally keep doing a clean run WAY faster - so I’m mechanically capable, just need to keep at it and figure out the issues. 

    I’ve recorded a “before” video, and will throw up one once I’ve got the thing down. 

    Just wanted to put up a note here for anyone in the same boat. 
    Ace , thanks for the input . I’m currently working on the famous Paul Gilbert lick among others . I’m freakin slow though lol. Good for my outside picking 

    Just stumbled across the following from John Petrucci's warm-up regimen:

    "

    Petrucci’s ‘hit and miss’ philosophy

    John has a clever way of building speed - he calls it his “hit and miss philosophy”.

    The idea is that you play faster than you are capable, and, rather than thinking about hitting each individual note, you think about keeping your hands in sync.

    As John says: “I wouldn’t recommend you do it all the time, but it’s a useful tool and you can gain a lot of speed from it.”

    Try applying John’s ‘hit and miss’ method to his arpeggio exercises. After you’ve done five minutes of controlled practice with a metronome, finish off by blasting through the pieces at high speed.

    At first, you’ll probably miss more notes than you hit, but the point is to let your hands experience the ‘feeling’ of moving fast. At some point your hands will hopefully synchronise."

    Seems to line up very well with what Troy talks about!

    https://www.musicradar.com/how-to/learn-john-petruccis-ultimate-guitar-warm-up-routine
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  • Thank’s that’s great advice , I’ve done a screenshot to save it for later .
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