Sweep picking direction change legato

Discussion in 'Music Theory, Lessons & Techniques' started by remnant24, Apr 14, 2017.

  1. remnant24

    remnant24 SS.org Regular

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    For those of you who sweep pick, do you pull off (1) or hammer on (2) to change direction at the bottom string? Do you think it matters?

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  2. JustMac

    JustMac ss not-so-regular

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    I don't think pulling-off is feasible,at least at faster tempos, in this case. On the highest string (10-14-10 bit) you could do a pull off to change direction though. I prefer backwards hammer-ons generally because you don't get that annoying slight pitch shift you get from doing a pull-off, and has a more consistent tone.

    The choice there on the lowest string seems to be whether to bother picking the 9th fret, in which case I wouldn't. The motion is (up-pick on 14th fret)-(hammer on to 9th fret)-(hammer on to 14th fret), then continue sweeping down to the 10th fret on the highest string.


    I hope that makes sense, I know it reads silly typed out like that. That way seems the most conducive to economy of motion (and therefore speed).
     
  3. endmysuffering

    endmysuffering I'm serious

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    Backwards hammer-ons feel pretty inefficient to me when performing fluid motions like sweeping, or maybe I just need more practice.
     
  4. InCasinoOut

    InCasinoOut syncopAZN

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    Depends on the tempo, but generally #2 for me. At higher bpms, I might just do 14-9-14 all legato. #1 would just feel weird because you wouldn't be starting the downstrokes on a downbeat, assuming this is being played with a triplet feel.
     
  5. prlgmnr

    prlgmnr ...that kind of idea

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    Practise all the possibilities and then you're free, free as a bird.
     
  6. remnant24

    remnant24 SS.org Regular

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    Interesting. I do strictly (2) since that's what I got used to, but I've been really anal about my technique lately, trying to see if there's anything I can optimize, and something about (1) feels right. I do pull off on the high string which is why I tabbed it that way, and it feels pretty fast and comfortable, so I don't see why it wouldn't be feasible on the bottom at high tempo.

    It never occurred to me to do it all legato, but I suppose that's a good approach if you don't care about picking as many notes as possible which I do.

    Not sure what a "backwards hammer on" is, but unless you want notes to sound from the nut end of the strings rather than the bridge (eww), you can't hammer on to a lower fret on the same string. Your description of the motion tells me you're really doing 14͜p0͜h9͜h14, thereby adding the open string to the mix.
     
  7. Konfyouzd

    Konfyouzd Dread-I Master Contributor

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    Bottom string? On my way down I pull off and hammer on on the way back up in a legato like fashion.
     
  8. prlgmnr

    prlgmnr ...that kind of idea

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    I guess it's more like a hammer on from nowhere on the note you would have pulled off to, to achieve a true(er) legato sound.
     
  9. JustMac

    JustMac ss not-so-regular

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    Why would you want to pick as much as possible when doing legato? Isn't that literally the opposite of it? At least on guitar. Uniform tone is achieved by picking as little as possible and making the picked notes match the hammered-on ones.


    Backwards hammer-ons are when you hit the fret instead, it sounds nicer than pulling off (as in the technique, not wanking).

    The reason it doesn't work at high tempo on the bottom string is because your hand placement; you cannot get your first finger ready (on the 9th fret) to do the technique in time. The 10-14-10 movement allows the pull-off because your first finger is already at the 10th fret.
     
  10. remnant24

    remnant24 SS.org Regular

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    I don't want to use legato—we're talking about sweep picking here. The only reason I have to use it is so my pickstroke direction lines up with the sweep direction at high speed.

    Guys, there are only two physically possible ways to go from 14 directly to 9 on the same string:
    - pull off to 9
    - pick 9

    There are no options left. It can't be a hammer on from nowhere, since you just played fret 14 on the same string a split second ago—fret 14 isn't 'nowhere'.

    If you can get your finger ready in time for picking it I don't see why you couldn't also do it for a pull off. The left hand goes through the exact same motion in both cases.
     
  11. prlgmnr

    prlgmnr ...that kind of idea

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    You're right, I just made up some nonsense off the top of my head to .... with you, for a laugh.
     
  12. prlgmnr

    prlgmnr ...that kind of idea

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    Seriously though, I assume you would consider it possible to play 14, lift your finger off, wait, say, 15 years, and then hammer on to 9 from nowhere?

    You could do that, but wait a shorter time of your choosing before hammering on the 9, even including waiting an imperceptibly short amount.
     
  13. remnant24

    remnant24 SS.org Regular

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    Then it wouldn't be directly from 14 to 9. More like 14-0-9, as I pointed out in one of my previous posts.
     
  14. JustMac

    JustMac ss not-so-regular

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    You're contradicting yourself, you put "legato" in the title so naturally one would surmise that was your goal. Picking is of course an option, it usually is.


    You CAN hammer on from 14 to 9, no problem, why would an open note have to factor in? The velocity in your left hand can actually play by itself if you practice it. You let off the pinky and hit the ninth fret with your first finger, easy as that. plmgnr was using the "hammer on from nowhere" as a reference point, as that is a thing. Call it "hammer on from 14th fret down to the 9th" if you want! :lol:

    Maybe you can do it with a pull-off, it just seems unnecessary, I'm thinking about faster tempos though.
     
  15. InCasinoOut

    InCasinoOut syncopAZN

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    Look up Allan Holdsworth, the god of legato. You will see that you can hammer on from nowhere, if you practice it. No open notes needed, just finger strength and the right timing.
     
  16. remnant24

    remnant24 SS.org Regular

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    Wow, you have a serious problem with logic if you think this. I am asking people how they handle the mandatory legato in sweep picking direction changes in the above example—nothing about that implies legato is my goal. Everyone else in this thread understood this just fine.

    If you're referring to an initial string attack that isn't a pickstroke, that's called tapping (even when done with the left hand), otherwise they are pull-offs. I think the issue is you guys have the incorrect definition of 'pull-off'—you don't need to already have your finger on the note you're going to pull-off to when playing the preceding note, for it to qualify as a pull-off.

    Legato to a higher fret = hammer on
    Legato to a lower fret = pull off

    Simple as that.
     
  17. Zeus1907

    Zeus1907 SS.org Regular

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    Pick every note, then that way you don't even have to worry about any type of legato.
    When I learned to sweep pick arpeggios my teacher made it a priority that every note is picked.
    This might help it might not, I learned almost every shape and inversion, but before I learned the mechanics of sweeping, I alternate picked EVERY arpeggio for months.
    That way once I got the the actual mechanic of sweeping I would automatically alternate pick the the 2 highest and 2 lowest notes of an arp. Thus eliminating the question you are having OP.
    I hope this helps.
     
  18. endmysuffering

    endmysuffering I'm serious

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    Allan uses a mix of pull offs and backwards hammer ons.
     
  19. JustMac

    JustMac ss not-so-regular

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    No, not as simple as that. Holdsworth rarely used pull-offs yet played entire lead sections in a legato manner.

    Don't be all obstinate about it, people are just trying to give you (good) advice here.
     
  20. prlgmnr

    prlgmnr ...that kind of idea

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    Yes most people when talking about legato on guitar mean playing just, or predominantly, with hammers and pull offs.

    There is also the view that "true" legato cannot be achieved with pull offs as the sound/tone/timbre of the note being produced is changed.

    You repeating it over and over again isn't going to make one of these true and the other false, they're both just ways of talking about guitar that people use.

    And just as I said before, the best thing is to have both methods in your locker and then you can do as you wish in the moment.
     

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