Legato Picking Lucky 7's
First off, I would like to say thanks to Chris Brungardt and Chops From Hell for having the world's greatest guitar site on the web. We should all feel very lucky as guitarists that such a kick-ass outlet has been created for all of us budding unknown shredders out here in the abyss. Keep up the great work, Chris!!!! I feel very honored to be part of this.
In my own personal playing style, I have worked a lot on using legato combined with just enough picking upstrokes and downstrokes to push and pull my fingers back and forth (kind of like a violinist uses a bow) more than I have used strict alternate picking. I call this style "Legato Picking".
I also like to work on experimenting with odd-numbered groupings of notes (5's, 7's, 10's, etc.) to spice things up a bit, especially when warming up.
Lick #1 demonstrates a way that I like to practise a regular 3-note-per-string modal scale position with groupings of 7's and “Legato Picking”.When played up to speed, this creates a pretty seriously rippin' ascending run.
Lick #2 demonstrates a way I would descend back down this run, also utilizing groupings of 7's.
Practise both of these licks slow at first in time with a metronome before combining them and bringing them both up to speed. Pay close attention to the picking upstrokes and downstrokes to get the full effect. These licks also work well within any type of 3-note-per-string scale groupings (major, minor, dimished, augmented, etc.) in any position on the neck. I also threw an extra MP3 of me warming up on here so you can hear how I practise some of these odd-grouping licks. Have fun with this stuff and email me with any questions you might have.
Andy Garrett (nicknamed “StringMaster” by his friends) has played guitar and bass for 30 years, performed 100's of shows, and has worked professionally testing strings for Dean Markley/American Winding Company. He continues to release his instrumental guitar music independently through his own label “GBM Records” in Ocala, Florida; and is putting the finishing touches on material for his first instructional CD-ROM explaining his advanced shred techniques. You can contact Andy by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and also download and burn your own CD-R of his free MP3 shred demos at http://www.soundclick.com/bands/9/andygarrettmusic.htm.