Tech­nique Fo­cus

Al­ter­nate pick­ing arpeg­gios

Guitar Techniques - - Play: Arpeggios -

At slower tem­pos us­ing al­ter­nate pick­ing to play arpeg­gios can pro­vide some real ad­van­tages in terms of im­prov­ing the over­all feel and dy­nam­ics. The most eco­nom­i­cal way to play notes on ad­ja­cent strings is with a sin­gle stroke of the pick - an as­cend­ing ar­peg­gio would be played with all down strokes, and visa versa. At slow tem­pos how­ever it is dif­fi­cult to main­tain even tim­ing when pick­ing this way - it can be­come ‘lumpy’. The al­ter­nate pick­ing tech­nique im­proves tim­ing at slow to medium tem­pos be­cause it adds a me­chan­i­cal, pen­du­lum style move­ment to the pick­ing hand. The con­stant move­ment of the pick­ing arm up and down also helps re­tain a con­sis­tent dy­namic and you will find it eas­ier to ac­cent notes in a mu­si­cal way with this tech­nique. The hard­est thing to mas­ter is con­sis­tency, as the pick will of­ten be skip­ping strings when play­ing more com­plex pat­terns. The best plan is to start very slowly and be strict with yourself. The al­ter­nate pick­ing regime of down up, down up needs to be main­tained if you are to reap the full ben­e­fits of us­ing this tech­nique.

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