learning to play fast

Discuss playing styles and techniques, or share your own here.
alexbib
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hello!
I'm teaching myself to play the guitar and was wondering if anybody could give me some tips about learning to play fast...
I can play regular songs like Classical Gas and the like, but I need to be able to play fast riffs. should I just pick shred lines and play them slow and then accelerate?
Thanks,

Alex
markelia
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I can't play too fast, but I had a buddy a few years ago who could play very fast. He told me that it's different from person to person, but it usually takes about 6 months to a year of hardcore practicing (several hours a day of scales/arpeggios etc) to bring your technique to a noticeably higher level and "hardwire" the mechanics into your fingers. This person was highly dedicated and practiced/played guitar a lot, and he could play fast and clean like Paul Gilbert; it was really amazing.

And I've always heard that you should play everything slowly and perfectly, then very gradually increase the speed. If you play everything fast and sloppy, you are TRAINING yourself to sound sloppy.
ultrazone_seeker
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yep, everything markelia just said. however, there's an opposite approach you can also apply (although i'd hasten to add in moderation and never at the expense of starting slowly):
the approach is to find your top speed and see how long you can maintain that. also in this approach you'd see how fast you can play the music, regardless of how sloppy it might be. done right, this is supposedly like training to sprint with lead weights on your feet: much more draining, but when you remove the weights it's that much easier doing it normally.

ok, don't mind me. just a slightly radical concept i read about one time. :roll: :lol:
Leftymonster
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Hey Alex,
First of all Welcome on board, secondly take is easy pal, you won't get anywhere by jumping straight on speed exercises. i'm telling you because i had a the same experience and now i can impress many people by my guitar playing except myself! that's why i'm practicing some basic exercises that i should have practiced 10 years ago.
don't rush for speed just focus on playing clean and neat and never ever practice without metronome. be patient and perseverant and you will be amazed by the result.
Lefty 8)
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Big Bad Bill
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Go slow to get fast!
:wink:

You're very lucky in that you can start from the very beginning and not make the mistakes and build upon them, in the way most of us do!

I'd say play scales (modes, perhaps, three notes per string) slowly witha metronome slowly, carefully and accurately using just the very tip of your plectrum. Gradually speed up over weeks/months years! This should get you right and left hand coordination up to a good level-something that I still struggle with at times.

Michael Angelo Batio says (in his Speed Kills instructional DVD) that you can get an idea of your maximum picking speed by tremolo picking a single string as fast as possible. He suggests that this picking style should be adheared to whether picking fast or slow to avoid the 'transitional gap' many people get when moving from slow to fast picking!

There are many suggestions but I think the best thing to do would be to buy John Petrucci's 'Rock Disipline'and perhaps a Paul Gilbert DVD and use their ideas. Speed Kills is OK-but not for anybody new to playing fast.

Oh and one last thing- don't get depressed after watching these DVD's as I did (and someimes still do!). They've been doing it for YEARS and it's there job. One day, with dilligent pratice you'll ge there.
Super_Turd
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hmmmm ive heard of alot of 'shredders' say that they never intended to have a monster technique but just ended that way cos its the music they like.

remember music isnt about speed, if it is then its not music.... its alternate picking....

But i it can be a very useful technique to leran. The way i would sujest is basically to do excersizes. Vai has a 30 hour guitar-workout in a magasine, u should try and get hold of it, its got some real good ones.

Basically get a metronome start slow. then play a geometric patarn such as :-

1__2__3__4_____
1__2__3__4_____
1__2__3__4_____
1__2__3__4_____
1__2__3__4_____
1__2__3__4_____

Then go back down reversing it.
Then go up one fret and do the same patarn.


Its hard to keep focus, some people find it boaring - i find it quite relaxing. Slowly build the tepo up.

keep going up the whole fretboard to the last fret then come down.

Then just think of other patarns such as 1___3___4___2 then do same on strings above and so on. Im sure u can use ure imagination to think of some more combinations.

u probobly know of this way, but its THE way ;).keep at it and be very focussed.

Todd ;)
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resha
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this is the BARNIE KESSEL exercise!
you have to play all the possible sequences with your finger (a witten chart will help you) start not slowly, more than slowly (even if your metronome is at 40 bpm!)

1 2 3 4
1 2 4 3
1 3 4 2
1 3 2 4
1 4 2 3
1 4 3 2


2 3 4 1
2 3 1 4
2 4 1 3
2 4 3 1
2 1 3 4
2 1 4 3


3 4 1 2
3 4 2 1
3 1 2 4
3 1 4 2
3 2 4 1
3 2 1 4


4 1 2 3
4 1 3 2
4 2 3 1
4 2 1 3
4 3 1 2
4 3 2 1

here you are!
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ricardo_impellitteri
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just remember dont hurt yourself, phisically and emotionally, its so easy feel that its "imposible" (take that horrible word and kick it out of your head), always read to bad bill posts theyre awesome, i would recomend you to buy the ULTIMATE GUITAR WORKOUT dvd by frank gambale, and buy a metronome, and practice hours and hours

im not a great musician, i dont know anything about musical theory, i had a friend a couple of years ago he was an excellent guitarrist, he can play Leo brouwer, Segovia, Manuel M Ponce, he bought an electric guitar then he tolds me to play something on it, i played a goerge lynchs lick, he didnt knew that i was able to play like that then he tolds me, hey dude im sure about one thing you are the "fastest begginer all over the world", since the first day i had a guitar in my hands i imagine myself moving my fingers so fast even when i didnt knnew anything about guitarrists.
markelia
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I agree with John Petrucci and Paul Gilbert when they say 99% of picking problems occur when you move from string to string. PG focuses on alternate picking "outside" the strings, while JP focuses on alternate picking "inside" the strings (he talks about when your pick gets trapped). You practice these techniques whenever you play alternately picked scales, but I think there's also benefits to focusing on a small group of notes and really looking at what your hand is doing. For instance, when picking "outside", my pick tends to accidentally touch one of the strings as I play at faster tempos. I try to focus on this at a comfortable tempo and teach my muscles how to play cleanly, a little bit every day. It's really too early to tell, but I think I'm very slowly improving! As you get to higher levels of playing, I think it's harder and harder to see improvement, so you just have to have faith and patience, and make the work as fun as possible.
kpxmikey89
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use finger weights, stick it in ur fretting fingers, play around for while, take em off, since ur hands is used to the weights, ur hand will play so dam fast, lol
alexbib
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thanks a lot for tips guys! I'm getting a new guit and a metronome in a week or two, so I guess I'll end up practicing a lot ;)
Loggie
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For you folks:
If a guitarrist can play at 270bpm 3 notes per beat, he's fast?
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jemgirl
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mwah.lol :wink:
dzdncnfsd
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is that possible?
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jemgirl
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mwah,.i don`t think so.lol :lol:
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