Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Alternative alternate picking ?

If there is one thing that kills me when reading a guitar magazine (whatever the country), it’s lessons about alternate picking. Some magazines allow 1 or 2 pages to the mastery of alternate picking. Every time they interview people like Steve Morse, John Petrucci, or Patrick Rondat, you can be sure they will go for some questions about their “alternate picking technique”. Well, I’ve got great news for you : THERE IS NO “alternate picking technique”, you morons !!
“Alternate picking” means you do a downstroke, then an upstrock, then a downstrock, etc. And if you’re in a funky mood, you could even reverse that order and start with an upstroke. END OF THE STORY. Is there any other way to do “alternate picking” ? NO. So stop the bullshit about “learning alternate picking”, or “improving one’s alternate picking”. You want to improve your alternate picking ? Take any tab or music sheet and play it with strict alternate picking, that’s all. Even better, don’t pick “any” tab or sheet, but rather “specific” tab or sheet, like some Frank Gambale’s stuff and play all his swept shit only with alternate picking. When you’re done, you can burn all those magazines that tried to “improve” your technique because you’re miles away from what they tried to “teach” you.