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Old 12-12-2013, 09:21 AM
MarshallNole's Avatar
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Picking question

Is it the norm to do downstroke and then an upstroke when picking? Or do most people do downstrokes only unless required to play fast?
Old 12-12-2013, 09:30 AM
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I teach students to use alternate picking (down-up-down-up) when the eighth notes start. That's a VERY general rule designed for beginners. But consistency is important.

There are exceptions where both the guitar and perhaps the bass will want all downstrokes, even on eighth notes.

Flexibility is a good thing, and working alternate picking into your playing will let you do certain runs faster and cleaner.
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Old 12-12-2013, 09:33 AM
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There is a similar type thread here :

Playing with a pick - upstroke first?

Carol Kaye is regarded as one of the best pick players around. Here are some tips (#26 &27) on general pick playing, from her site :

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Old 12-12-2013, 09:44 AM
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It depends. I play exclusively with a pick. I've found that downstrokes give me a heavier sound, more chunky. Alternate picking I use for fast stuff, for smooth stuff, and for intricate left-hand work (just feels better to me to alternate pick when my left hand gets going). Then, to really throw a wrench in this whole thing, we've got a couple riffs where I'll hit the DOWNbeat with an UPstroke. It leaves my pick in a better position to switch to different strings sometimes.

Really, the best answer is do what feels rights. There's not really a wrong answer here...as long as your playing is smooth, consistent, and accurate, you're doing it right.
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Old 12-19-2013, 09:44 PM
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Yeah, generally speaking , most players for most passages start with a down stroke, but it doesn't mean anything.
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