An observation about sweep-picking...

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Thread: An observation about sweep-picking...

  1. #1

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    An observation about sweep-picking...

    This is something that's just occurred to me recently...

    For all Yngwie and Frank Gambale are held up as the masters of sweeping by most rock and metal players, not many of them actually use similar fingering approaches to them. Gamable and Malmsteen both have some pretty idiosyncratic ways of fingering arps, Gambale with a lot of 213s or similar fingerings (have a look in his 'Speed Picking' book and you'll see what I mean), and Malmsteen with his wierd 'sweep to ascend, hammer-on to descend' approach (look at Troy Grady's site for an explanation of this). Most rock guys seem to neglect these approaches though, and stick to the Jason Becker approach of basing all their sweeping on 3 and 5 string CAGED position shapes. Don't get me wrong, this is an awesome, versatile approach, I just think it's odd that so many people rate the other two players so highly, and yet don't seem to have examined their technique in that much detail.

    Sorry if this comes across as overly pedantic, but I've been experimenting a lot with the Gambale approach recently and am having a lot of fun with it!
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  2. #2

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    I promise I won't call you pedantic if you post up a few tab examples so I can sww WTF you're talking about, lol.
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  3. #3

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    Gambale-style m7 arpeggio, all fully picked with no slurred notes, starting with an upstroke...

    How most rock guys seem to do arps for 7th chords...

    See the difference? The second one is more like you'd actually finger a m7 chord, whereas the first stretches the thing over several positions so it's fully sweepable without the need to incorporate any legato. Malmsteen's arps seem more like Gambale's fingerings as far as I can tell, but he tends to use more legato, especially descending.

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    I find that Gambale pattern diffcult to do without a little legato in there.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zepp88 View Post
    I find that Gambale pattern diffcult to do without a little legato in there.
    Funny, I tend to economy pick the whole thing except for a pull-off on the top string to make the change of direction smoother.

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    I find Malmsteen's playing in particular to be very idiosyncratic. He's often held up as a shred god (and rightfully so) but very few people actually mimic his style. I don't know much Jason Becker, but I see Petrucci as an example of a shredding style that your guitar teacher would approve of, and that a lot of people seem to emulate.

    I can remember looking at the Malmsteen stuff on Troy Grady's site, and thinking "THAT's how he plays that!?!"

  7. #7

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    My approach to sweep picking is I usually like to avoid the "rolling finger" motion. Not because I have so much of a hard time with them but because I feel they just naturally don't sound as clean as other positions. I would much rather do something like this:

    then this

    The second one is also a lot more in line with how you would finger a minor chord. Essentially I just go with the position that feels best and usually that involves tapping a higher note. But if I add color notes like 2nds or 7ths then I'll most likely resort back to the more obvious chord shape (the second one).
    Last edited by Claude; 10-12-2008 at 03:29 AM.

  8. #8

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    I avoid rolling fingers if I can, but the problem with sticking with a strict root triad like that all the time is some voicings start to sound sterile.

    For example this mixes shapes and stays in the same fingering range:
    -12-15---(bar shape)--15-14-17----(triad)------17--------11-14---(bar shape)---14
    While this uses strictly triads:
    Then again, I'm not exactly the best at sweeping, so I may be talking out my ass as far as how to best fit chords together.
    I'd give my right arm to be ambidextrous.

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