Author Topic: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome  (Read 39867 times)

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Offline justinguitar

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« Last Edit: May 13, 2011, 04:59:20 pm by justinguitar »
"You can get help from teachers, but you are going to have to learn a lot by yourself, sitting alone in a room." Dr. Seuss

Asvarox

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2011, 06:11:07 pm »
Hello, I have a question regarding picking.

In the lesson you said that we should use alternative picking. That's what I've been doing since I started doing this-like exercise, but recently I started using economy picking. Didn't really had a thought "well I should start using economy now" but as I reached certain speed it felt natural to use this technique - my hands started doing it themselves (not my fault ;) ).

Now when I plan to start doing this exercise more seriously following all tips you gave in the video, I wonder whenever should I "fight" this economy picking habit-thing, or should I let it be?

Thanks for advance ;)

AllyMcintyre

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2011, 06:12:24 pm »
Was just wondering, when you say play 16th notes, do you play 4 strums on each fret(eg, 3333,5555) or is it supposed to be done like how you play it in the video?

Offline justinguitar

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2011, 06:37:22 pm »
@Asvarox DO NOT start economy picking until you are VERY comfortable with alternate picking. Good economy pickers are usually great alternate pickers first!

@AllyMcintyre - should be like on the video - one pick on each note, 4 notes per beat... but start simpler than that with just one note per beat, then two, then 4, but only one pick on each note - got it?

Cheers, J.
"You can get help from teachers, but you are going to have to learn a lot by yourself, sitting alone in a room." Dr. Seuss

LESbum

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2011, 11:01:32 pm »
Should I look away from the fretboard during this exercise?  I don't know if it's just psychological, but I think I actually make FEWER mistakes when I don't look at my fretting hand.  It makes me less nervous somehow.

GreenJay

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2011, 02:48:00 am »
Should I look away from the fretboard during this exercise?  I don't know if it's just psychological, but I think I actually make FEWER mistakes when I don't look at my fretting hand.  It makes me less nervous somehow.

Hi guys, let me throw in my 2 cents. I had a fellow tell me to practice my speed exercises three ways. 1) looking at left hand fingering, 2) looking at picking hand and 3) eyes closed
I try to do five minutes of each and can see a bit of improvement in only a week.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2011, 08:13:56 am by close2u »

kaisaki

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2011, 10:31:29 am »
Hi there, this site is really helpful, been using your site for about a year and half ago and I like to thank you Justin for making this site.

This is my first post ^^.
I started with this lesson for about 3 weeks and I'm still at 60bmp.
I have been able to go to with the metronome (I'm starting to get the hang of it) but my problem is that I sometimes hit the wrong string :'(.
I get frustrated when I hit the wrong string.

Will it correct itself or there is something I'm doing wrong.

I'm doing this and the spider.

Thanks... (Maybe I need more patience)

XamTheOne

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2011, 10:33:54 pm »

The more you practice, the more your hand will memorize where are the strings.  I think I still have the same problem a little, but when you play a lot it goes away.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2011, 08:14:33 am by close2u »

Svenshinhan

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #8 on: February 09, 2011, 10:34:11 pm »
My advice would be to take it slow. Stay at 60BPM (or heck, lower it if you want to, there's absolutely NO shame in that!) and work on getting the right notes and strings.

Alternatively, you might want to practice the scale whilst looking at your picking hand. If you're playing at slow speeds your fretting hand shouldn't have too much of a problem hitting the right frets. That way you can work on your hitting the right strings with the picking hand a bit.

Do it at 40BPM, or 30. Whatever you're comfortable with. Just get it right, and speed will develop naturally. :)

--

Now, I have a question of my own with regards to scale practice. I was thinking about that 120BPM goal with 4 notes per click and I think that's a great goal to try to achieve.

Right now I can comfortably play at around 80-84 BPM, playing the scale 4 times in a row without making a mistake. I did it at 86 BPM today but can't seem to repeat it. Fingers must be tired, so I'll let them rest.

My idea was to try to increase the BPM by 2 per week, so I'd end up at 120BPM sometime in May if all goes well. To me that seems like relatively slow improvement, since I managed to get to 160BPM with 2 notes per click relatively fast.

I was just wondering if this was too ambitious? Or perhaps not ambitious enough? Looking at how I progressed in the past and my general learning speed I think it's fairly realistic, but I'm not really sure. I can always re-evaluate after a few weeks if I progress slower or faster, but I want to have an end goal and an end date so I have something to work for (and look forward to).

Of course I'm not neglecting everything else in my practice routine. This is just really the only thing that I feel unsure about.

I do find practicing this fun, though. Not as fun as improvising solos over the backing track, but it's almost like a game to me.

drav

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2011, 02:16:01 pm »
Could somebody please explain the pick angle?

I tried to find out myself by checking the beginners lesson, but I really don’t understand how to get the right angle on holding my pick.
Is there any graphic or photograph showing exactly what Justin means in the video?

I’m holding the pick just as Justin explains in the beginners video (pointing straight away from my thumb, aligned to the position of my index finger).

Afterwards I started holding the pick in an straight angle to the strings, but what now? Should I tilt it to the right? Or angle it upwards/downwards 15-30 degrees?

Please help me, otherwise I won’t be able to continue this exercise in the right way, and at the moment there’s no way for me of consulting a teacher around here :-/

Thanks everyone!

PS: Love the video lessons, Justin – I’ve met a couple of guitar teachers, and teachers in general in my life, and you’re one of the few persons that really explains things very very well in a sympathetic manner. So I’m really sorry I’m not getting your point on how to hold that ****** pick! =)


Update:
Found some hints in BC-107 Thread by SJP – is this the right way to hold the pick?
Quote
I mean that the pointed end should point slightly towards your chest on a downstrum and towards your feet on an upstrum. So the wide end of the pick always 'leads' the strum like a comet. But I'm sure you know that.

The other angle is the pick in relation to the string. It tends to be smoother if you tilt the pick so the edge furthest away from your elbow is slightly closer to the ground than the opposite edge.

So say you place the pick squarely, at 90 degrees, against the fat E string, parallel to the ground. You'd then tilt the fat end 'forward' say 45 degrees (towards the ground) then also rotate it slightly clockwise (if you're right-handed). So that's tilt and twist.

Offline BDC

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2011, 05:28:43 pm »
Yes, I think you've found your answer.  It takes a bit of fooling around with the angles to find out what sounds best  ..... too much angle and the sound is thin, too little and the pick digs into the strings making it harder to play smoothly.

Offline Jonny5

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #11 on: February 17, 2011, 12:58:03 pm »
Svenshinhan I'll take a pop at your question.

I think where you're at now is a place that is achievable for most people. If you consistently play the scale up and down, even with some flaws in your technique, you can make it sound good at that pace. As you progress to 100bpm and beyond you really have to be playing efficiently to make perfect runs, and the time required to achieve that extra couple of bpm grows exponentially. The goal of 120bpm is certainly doable, but it's not easy, or at least wasn't for me. I had to change my technique twice on the way there, and that meant slowing right back down and effectively starting again. In the long run I guess that's a good thing, but it was the source of immense frustration. I have no intention of trying this for all 5 positions now, to be honest for me my practice time is better invested elsewhere. Be prepared that it may take a long time, i think you're at the point where the difficulty starts to ramp up significantly.




Offline BDC

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #12 on: February 17, 2011, 02:40:10 pm »
Jonny,thanks for that.  I'm going through a similar thing and it's good to know I'm not alone.  I'd gotten up to 1/16ths at 100bpm (with a following wind), discovered a flaw in my technique and had to back it down to 50bpm.  I've slowly increased back to the 85 -90 range but I've often wondered whether the 120bpm goal is neccesary for a basement/occasional jam with a buddy kind of player.  Maybe time would be better spent reaching the 100 zone and then learning another position.  Any thoughts?

Offline Jonny5

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #13 on: February 17, 2011, 05:00:35 pm »
It's definitely worthwhile learning the 5 positions, not so much as a picking exercise but for improvising and general playing. It's your call really as to how much time you put into this. As I said I got to a point where it was obvious that the diminishing returns just made it futile for now. I'm focusing more on the melodic patterns and intervals when practicing scales, which I believe are also covered in the Intermediate Method. It certainly helps with improvising. That said I do still practice various exercises to improve my technique, just this isn't one of them! I think you'll figure out over time when and where to shift your focus to get the most out of your practice, or tailor your own exercises, that way you can bring a few different areas along simultaneously.

I spend most of my playing time alone with the occassional jam too. We could probably get away with playing Wonderwall only, but the fact that you're approaching this exercise methodically shows you want to be the best you can regardless. I've discovered that busting my balls to achieve a very specific goal in my playing simply doesn't work. More often than not trying something new will result in overall progress, sometimes in unexpected ways. Push for your goal, push a little more when it gets tough, then leave it for a while if you don't make it. That's what I've learnt works for me at least.


LESbum

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #14 on: March 07, 2011, 03:50:04 am »
I started with 60bpm and was able to increase my speed to 150bpm, adding 5 beats every day.  I started having real trouble at 150bpm.  It took me a few weeks to figure out what the heck was wrong.  No matter what, I could not complete the full scale 4 times perfectly at 150bpm.  

It turns out that the problem was with my foot tapping.  My left foot was simply getting tired too quickly at 150bpm, which kept my whole body tense while trying to get the foot to keep tapping, and I would make both fretting and picking mistakes very easily.  I eliminated the foot tapping and was able to get through 150bpm and 155bpm within fifteen minutes.  I hope this is OK?  I will re-introduce tapping once I begin practicing 2 notes per click at 80bpm.

ronaldfs

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2011, 08:53:17 am »
Hi,

I'm playing without using a pick.

I always use my right hand thumb to play the notes, but when I play this exersise or any solo faster I need more fingers to play with.

Can you please teach me how to play a solo with my right hand without a pick?

Thanks!

ronaldfs

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #16 on: April 15, 2011, 10:27:47 pm »
Justin, it would be great if you made a videolesson about righthand technique without a pick... not for strumming but for soloing

Offline irishalkies

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #17 on: April 15, 2011, 10:38:40 pm »
Is there a specific reason why you're not using a pick Ronald?

It's something worth practicing with and getting used to, and not that hard after a little while trying.

If you do want to persist with the finger technique you could do worse than study Mark Knopfler who always plays with his fingers.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7_evdAGB7g&feature=fvst

Welcome to the forum.


twilkes

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #18 on: May 05, 2011, 01:55:15 pm »
Hi

Im a little confused, Ive been doing this excersize for a while and have been increasing the BPM very steadily  :) However today a really good player I know told me it was a waste of time because all it will just make it so I can play scales really fast up and down and nothing else. Usually I would take Justin's lessons as pretty much gospel on account of how far Ive come on the back of them but this guy has always given me great advice so Im a little confused ??? Is there a limit on how effective this excersize is?

Tom

Offline BDC

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #19 on: May 05, 2011, 05:05:29 pm »
My understanding is that scale practice works on the co-ordination between L and R hands as well as scale knowledge.  As you follow the Inrermediate course you will also be doing exercises to break out of scalular play.

Offline jerronimo3000

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #20 on: May 27, 2011, 09:57:57 pm »
So i've been at 60 bpm for over a month now and i'm wondering if i'm trying to do this a little too perfectly.  In the video when justin was playing (at 60 bpm) it seemed like he was slightly off at times, especially in the beginning.  Is it alright if i'm just a little off like he was?

Offline SteveD

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #21 on: February 08, 2012, 08:22:38 pm »
I've been practicing this for so long i forgot the part in the lesson where you get to 160bpm and go back to 80bpm and then do 2 notes per metronome click, i went on to 184bpm. ::)

I'm really struggling now with the 2 notes per click, it's easy to do it when playing one note or even the first 3 but it all goes horribly wrong by the end of the scale.

Any tips?  i think i know the answer, keep trying  ;D

Offline jacksroadhouse

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #22 on: February 08, 2012, 10:35:01 pm »
One thing comes to mind: what scale are you using? A simple way to get used to this is to use the minor pentatonic (you'll need that anyway), position 1 is the easiet. With that you always have 2 notes per string, which means your index finger is fretting the note on the click.

I also found it useful to accent (emphasize) the note on the click to get into the rhythm.

Offline SteveD

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #23 on: February 08, 2012, 10:52:29 pm »
One thing comes to mind: what scale are you using? A simple way to get used to this is to use the minor pentatonic (you'll need that anyway), position 1 is the easiet. With that you always have 2 notes per string, which means your index finger is fretting the note on the click.

I also found it useful to accent (emphasize) the note on the click to get into the rhythm.

I've been using the major scale. I just tried both your suggestions and it was alot easier. 
Thanks alot! great advice.

Offline justinguitar

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Re: IM-124 • Technique: Playing Scales With A Metronome
« Reply #24 on: February 15, 2012, 01:47:51 pm »
@LESbum

 I always think it's best not to look at your hands while you play. There are always much nicer things to look in the audience ;)

 it somehow enhances the year hand connection when you're not looking too. Of course sometimes during technical practice you need to look at your hand for whatever reason, to check that the people fingers aren't moving too much, or just to check that you doing things right.

 But as soon as you can I think you should be playing without looking at the neck.
"You can get help from teachers, but you are going to have to learn a lot by yourself, sitting alone in a room." Dr. Seuss

 

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