Another relatively easy way to play fast is to use sweep picking, a technique in which the pick is dragged or "raked" across the strings, playing only one note per string. Sweep picking can be very useful for playing open-voiced arpeggios, as in FIGURE 16, and weird wide-interval licks, as in FIGURE 17, quickly and with minimal effort. When sweep-picking, be sure to mute each string with the left hand immediately after picking it to prevent the notes from ringing together and sounding like a strummed chord.
What's shakin', tough guy? Like I promised at the end of last month's column, this time I'm gonna light you up on how to do "harmonic squeals," like the ones at the end of "Cemetery Gates" (Cowboys From Hell.) A bunch of you have written in asking about this technique.
Now that you have some cool ideas for creating your own single-string licks, let’s look at some easy-to-execute speed licks that use two adjacent strings. FIGURE 8 is a Steve Morse-style ascending sextuplet run that climbs up the B and high E strings and finishes with a screaming bend. There are two good ways to play this lick: you can either pick every note for a machine gun-like staccato effect, or, for a "creamier," more legato sound, pick only the first and fourth notes of each sextuplet and use double hammer-ons to sound the remaining notes.
Show us your chops and win a Corona Chorus Pedal, courtesy of TC Electronics. Watch Paul Riario demonstrate a Power Ballad Arpeggios lick lesson. Then film yourself putting your signature spin on Paul's lick and post the video as a response to ours.
Musicians Institute and Guitar World bring you a new series of guitar lessons with some of the top guitar instructors around. In this video, instructor Pathik Desai gives a lesson on Mixolydian Pentatonic.