Alternate Picking Technique For 2 Note Per String Melodic Triads || Jazz Guitar Lessons Daily 16
From our free, Jazz Guitar Lessons Daily Series: Lesson 16
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I’m not a big technique junky. And I don’t recommend my students spend a majority of their time working on that element of their playing… at least not in their earlier stages with the melodic triads approach. To me, musicianship, ear development, and learning to control melody and harmony should be the foundation. But of course we need SOME level of technique to pull that off. A day one beginner who has never held a guitar pick before is going to struggle to improvise convincing phrases no matter how well they understand the anatomy of melody or how developed their ear is. Most of my private students, however, are not day one beginners. I generally work with late stage intermediate up to advanced players. So use some self-awareness and discretion with how much time you want to spend on this lesson. If you feel moved to work on your technique and your right hand picking patterns, this is a great lesson to try. Just make sure you’re following some of our melodic ear training and ii V I’s and Tunes lessons to supplement this technique work with improving your ear and your musicianship.
Here’s the idea. We’re taking a G major triad and we’re adding an A note. This gives us our G major + tension 2 quadratonic. Now we’re going to construct this mini scale-like structure on the fretboard so that it always has two notes per string. You can download the PDF to see the exact fingering, notation, and tab if you need help with this.
Once we have the two-notes per string layout of our quadratonics, now we can integrate the right hand picking technique. The idea is to pick the 1st note on each string, and then use some type of left hand, legato technique to create the 2nd note. This could be a hammer-on or a slide if you’re ascending the quadratonic, or it could be a pull-off or slide if you’re descending. Check out the video to see which techniques I use on which string in each of our four positions. But ultimately you should explore and find what’s best for you. Remember that at the slow tempo we want to start at, A LOT of techniques are going to SEEM like they’re comfortable. But our goal is to setup a technique and a form that will allow us to get the tempo up to 200, 250, or even 300 bpm with as little tension as possible.
The reason this technique works so well is that it disperses the work of creating the sounds evenly between the left hand and the right hand. We pick a note, we use a legato technique, we pick a note, we use a legato technique. This allows us to play at any given tempo where our right hand is moving half the speed. So if we’re playing at 200 bpm, our right hand is only going to be moving as through we were
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