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View Poll Results: What is your sweep picking status?

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  • I'm amazing at it.

    0 0%
  • I'm pretty good.

    10 9.71%
  • I'm okay at it.

    16 15.53%
  • I can do it, but not well.

    26 25.24%
  • I'm terrible at it.

    18 17.48%
  • I don't try, because it's over my head.

    7 6.80%
  • I don't try, because it doesn't fit my style of music.

    17 16.50%
  • Rob option.

    9 8.74%
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Thread: How is your sweep picking?

  1. #1
    Jessie's ghost
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    Default How is your sweep picking?

    I don't even know if this is the right sub-forum for this, but here goes:

    Do you sweep pick?
    How good are you at it?
    How much do you have to work to get your hands coordinated so that it comes off right?
    Who are some players who inspired you to get started with it?

  2. #2
    Our Neighbor Totoro FuseG4's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    I'm halfway in between "it's over my head" and "it doesn't fit my music".

    I've never been much of a speed guy, thus I don't have the left hand dexterity to go after any great sweep licks, and I don't have much of a need to try to learn that stuff. I'm mainly into classic rock and blues, some punk/pop-punk/college rock, and I'm getting into Ska and rockabilly.

    So, that's not to say that I can't appreciate the stuff you can do with sweeping, and I certainly appreciate anyone who can do it.

  3. #3
    Ultimate Tone Slacker P.A.Foholic's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    I have to coordinate quite a lot so that it comes off right. Scar Symmetry's guys have been my biggest influence in sweeping, especially Per Nilsson. That man just has so amazing phrasing.
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  4. #4
    Vintageologist crusty philtrum's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    How is your vocabulary ? Do you know lots and lots of words and can say them really really fast ?

    Do you have anything useful to say with them ?

    But don't mind me, you just go ahead and worry about your techniques so that you can end up sounding like almost everybody else .... a collection of techniques that sounds like nothing but a collection of standard techniques that say nothing other than that you spent a lot of time practicing said techniques so that you can end up sounding like everbody else who did the same thing.

    Of course if that kind of thing impresses you, stay with it. After untold hours of practice you'll sound just like you came from the '80s.
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  5. #5
    Mojo's Minions crguti's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    ^ I disagree
    When the technique is good and well played in the right context, it puts you above the rest.

  6. #6
    Jessie's ghost
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    Quote Originally Posted by crusty philtrum View Post
    How is your vocabulary ? Do you know lots and lots of words and can say them really really fast ?

    Do you have anything useful to say with them ?

    But don't mind me, you just go ahead and worry about your techniques so that you can end up sounding like almost everybody else .... a collection of techniques that sounds like nothing but a collection of standard techniques that say nothing other than that you spent a lot of time practicing said techniques so that you can end up sounding like everbody else who did the same thing.

    Of course if that kind of thing impresses you, stay with it. After untold hours of practice you'll sound just like you came from the '80s.
    Just like any other technique, you can say something meaningful with it, or not. I choose the former.

  7. #7
    Vintageologist crusty philtrum's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    Quote Originally Posted by crguti View Post
    ^ I disagree
    When the technique is good and well played in the right context, it puts you above the rest.
    I guess i'm just old. I see it the other way around .... when the music requires a certain level of competency to be able to play it, a decent player should be able to deal with it. Technique serves the music, not the other way around.

    If you want to see a result based on technique, sports are the area to observe and enjoy. In music, it would be far preferable if players discussed the music and simply took it for granted that they could either play what was needed or raise their skill level to be able to do so. Endless discussion about technique only detracts from the central issue .... music.

    Funny thing is, in the '80s there was a kind of rebellion against the unschooled blues/rock era of the '70s, which had become overdone and cliched by then. The irony is that technique-heavy styles that were spawned in the 80s now sound equally as tedious and cliched (tapping, three-notes-per-string, sweep picking, etc.)

    However it will always be like this, and i don't have much of a problem with it as the usual result is that most will be followers and imitators, leaving room for true innovation to shine through. And true innovation is rarely spawned of technique.

    I'd be interested to know how many supposed 'musicians' can actually read and write the language of their craft, despite the emphasis on technique.
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  8. #8
    Mojo's Minions Petrovsk Mizinski's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    Hell, just for this thread, I recorded myself doing sweep picking (not uploading any clips though) just to see where I stand in this poll.
    I figured you'd appreciate a more in depth response and for someone to be able to test out their technique, so thought why not?

    It's a technique I honestly haven't bothered to sit down and practice properly in about 3 years now, and it really showed in the recordings.
    I used a variety of tempos, from 100bpms to 150bpms using sixteenth note triplets and here were my findings :

    At 100bpm I was able to to perform the standard 5 string major arpeggio shape pretty cleanly, as well as the standard 3 string major (which is just the top 3 strings of the 5 string shape anyway) and the standard 3 string minor arpeggio shape fairly cleanly.
    Could also do some 3 string diminished shapes fairly cleanly. 5 string diminished stuff was pretty awful.
    Couldn't do the 5 string minor arpeggio shape particularly well, but it wasn't the worst.

    At 120bpm, could still do the 5 and 3 string major arpeggios, but the 3 string minor arpeggio started to fall apart a bit and the 3 string diminished patterns were noticeably more sloppy. Couldn't do 5 string diminished stuff at all.

    At 150bpm, my ability to synchronize my hands together for any of the patterns broke down entirely. You'd be lucky to hear the first and last note of the 5 string major arpeggio pattern. Everything else in between was just string noise/just noise in general.

    On a scale of "I'm amazing at it", probably being able to do all sorts of 6 string wizardy stuff moving from shape to shape with ease in a single run , perhaps with tapping bits in between,, to "I'm terrible at it" being not really being able to do it at all, I voted "I can do it, but not well".
    I used to be able to do stuff like 3 octave, 6 string patterns with tapping in it (although not quite good to the point of being able to seamlessly move from shape to shape with 6 string arpeggio shapes), which took me a long time to get right, and well, my ability is now back down to almost near the beginnings of when I started to learn to sweep pick.

    So, you're perhaps wondering why, even after getting to that level I did, I just stop practicing it.

    Well, it wasn't a technique that came all that naturally to me.
    Legato, on the other hand, came much more naturally, to the point where I spend only half the time practicing it compared to sweep picking, yet my legato technique made twice the progress as my sweep picking did,

    I had no use for the technique (sweep picking) at all at that point (2008, when I stopped practicing it), and I just couldn't justify spending all that time practicing a technique I just wasn't using in any of the music I was playing.
    Used to also be able to alternate pick at 240bpm in 16th notes back then too, but again, just had zero use for that.
    I don't even really practice alternate picking anymore either, but I do use it in my playing so it hasn't deteriorated anywhere near as much as the sweep picking, but I just can't do it as fast as I used too, and can't do it with as complicated patterns anymore
    Last edited by Petrovsk Mizinski; 11-08-2011 at 06:47 AM.

  9. #9
    Luckybastidologist bungalowbill's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    I have no use for sweep picking....I am a hybrid picker. To each his own.
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  10. #10
    High Voltologist Wattage's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    I was never really into it but all the power to you if it is your thing.

  11. #11
    Asshatologist
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    Economy picking and alternate picking is more my forte.

    I can do sweep picking but I am not good enough to do it alot.

  12. #12
    Her Little Mojo Minion DankStar's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    terrible

    Quote Originally Posted by Petrovsk Mizinski View Post
    not uploading any clips though
    why not?

  13. #13
    Minion of One Andrew Lamprecht's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    I am good at the 3 string sweeps just for adding effect every once in a while but I could never do the 6 string sweeps... that said, I don't do to much of it these days but maybe I should....
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  14. #14
    Dawn Of The Shred TheLivingDead's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    I think I'm pretty good at it. I'm at the point where whatever the shape maybe be, I don't really have to think about it.

    Tons of influences. But I'd say the biggest inspiration came from Jason Becker... And the fact that my (overly-competitive) friend, years back, bet me $50 I couldn't learn and play Serrana Arpeggios perfectly within a year.

    I bought us all drinks not long after.

    (of course I didn't nail it, but it was good enough to where he couldn't tell)

    But yeah. Sweeps by themselves are just way overdone. But when used in tasty moderation or at a certain point in a tune can sound absolutely amazing... But they sure can be fun by themselves! Overdone but fun fun fun.

  15. #15
    Asshatologist
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    The living dead wins the internet.

  16. #16
    Mojo's Minions Diego's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    Not very good.

    I just don't like it very much. I usually won't go further than 3-string sweeps,
    and if I play them it's usually because I'm playing a cover and someone else recorded it that way.

    I think the key for not making it sound like everyone else is timing and silences.
    If you play sweeps perfectly in sync with the kick drum and snare, it sounds predictable. Everyone does it that way.

    But try throwing sweeps in a unorthodox way inside a rhythm and it can sound interesting.
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  17. #17
    JustAskinologist cream123's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    I honestly look at this like I look at tapping:

    all too often people replace writing ability and musical note choice etc with their ability to play "real fast."

    honestly, I could give two ****s about it. If you wanna go ahead and tap or sweep and use those techniques, its really the end product that matters more.

    As for myself, I've got much bigger fish to fry than whether or not I can sweep or tap well. I could really use a lot of work with my writing and thats how identify myself as a musician. Some poeple are players, I'm not really. I can still play somewhat, but I'm no "holy ****, this guys good" kind of player.

    To each their own...
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  18. #18
    watch where you point that sword Phantasmagoria's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    I can sweep pick okay....nothing too crazy lol....I'm more of a tap/slide freak & an alternate/economy picker.
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  19. #19
    The Drama Dude CTN's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    I'm not terribly good at it.

    It's cuz I haven't learned enough arpeggios to make it interesting

  20. #20
    member jcthejester13's Avatar
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    Default Re: How is your sweep picking?

    I think it is stupid, but who am I to judge. Do whatever soaks your panties.
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