How do you play this tricky lick?

krzyskrzys New

Seems quite a common lick, but I cannot get it flowing. Do you use a pull-off or pick every note? Any trick to the up/down stroke order?



  • vanmalmsteenvanmalmsteen Diamond Springs ,CANew Latch Drom F, Eastman DM2v, Altamira m30d , Altimira Mod M
    edited July 2022 Posts: 337

    Just always make sure the F is a down stroke

    Long story short

  • edited July 2022 Posts: 75

    So is this the Dinah lick but starting on the D string? If so, exactly what @vanmalmsteen says and to expand, it's always a sweep from the F to the G and you need to maintain a constant downstroke on the quarter note beats, almost like you're "churning" notes through the rhythm. Although it incorporates upstrokes on the g string, I've always viewed this more as a sweep lick w/hammer-ons and pull-offs where you're matching the rhythm w/pick strokes to give it the requisite projection needed on an acoustic instrument. And once you have it, it's actually pretty automatic and becomes super easy to pull off at any time.

    Also, and perhaps even more importantly, I've found the trick to getting this one is also to play it like Django and only use your 2nd and index fingers, not even sure it's worth trying any other way unless your 3rd/4th fingers are on PEDs and ridiculously strong lol. Last, I'd recommend trying the Dinah version out as well with the b and high e strings, might be a little easier for your fingers to accommodate at first.

  • richter4208richter4208 ✭✭✭
    Posts: 522

    in a couple of Django's solos you can clearly hear him picking every note! I don't think he always does, but it seems he can.

  • pdgpdg ✭✭
    Posts: 470

    When you have to play two down strokes in a row quickly, sometimes the first can be a lighter "flick" -- muscle tension released even before the pick hits the string -- and you quickly rotate your wrist back for the second down stroke.

  • dellartehommage2005dellartehommage2005 Northwest NJNew
    Posts: 28

    You would play this over an FMaj chord?

  • Posts: 4,777

    As @pdg said, the first of two in the row downstrokes isn't really a rest stroke. Christian van H calls it half rest stroke. This wrist-plus-muscle-rebound-flick isn't something that comes quickly. Depending on previous guitar playing experience and the amount of daily practice, it can take several months to several years of playing time.

    There has to be a tempo where it feels fluid so keep it there and practice the picking: DDUDUDD etc. Which isn't set in stone, but many players can pick every note at a high tempo and get that double down when going back up to the lower string. If you have to use pull offs and hammer ons to get it to the performance tempo, do it. But keep trying to get the double down up to speed.

    It's a very unique way of picking, specific to the genre. But also, it is so practical in general. It solves many picking issues that other picking techniques can run into and then people use slanted picking, wrist rotation and so on. Majority of these are a non-issue if you got double down up to speed.

    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
  • Posts: 75

    Buco, very interesting on the double down for this lick because I always thought everyone swept into it. Personally speaking, I aped Jimmy's picking during Limehouse w/Frank Vignola from way back in the day, starts at about 1:44ish:

    Kinda tough to see due to the fast tempo and poor video quality but imo definitely looks like he sweeps through it (not to mention he sweeps a ton in general lol) fact, now that I'm trying the lick 100% picked w/the double down method, I can't imagine ever getting it this fast without reverting back to the sweep style. That said, it certainly sounds a bit more "crisp" and for more moderate tempos and I will attempt to start picking it like that for the tone benefit.

    Sweep style picking method if starting the lick on the b string: DDU for D, E, Gb and then a downstroke/D on the G but a pull off back into the Gb, upstroke/U on the open E - wash/rinse/repeat into perpetuity

  • Posts: 4,777

    @voutoreenie you're right, he's not picking every note there but I think he's doing pulloffs, that's what it looks like when set to 1/4 original speed. But yeah, that's Jimmy in his prime and nobody really needs to play that fast.

    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
  • billyshakesbillyshakes NoVA✭✭✭ Park Avance - Dupont Nomade - Dupont DM-50E
    Posts: 1,314

    Did somebody upload that video at 2x speed?! 🤷‍♂️ Damn, that's fast.

  • Posts: 4,777

    Yeah, his playing on these hotel room videos (I'm pretty sure there's a few more on YT) is very much mind boggling. Frank is doing a really good job keeping up but the ferocity of Jimmy's playing is unlike anything I've seen.

    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
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