Economy Picking The Pentatonic

Some words about the Economy Picking The Pentatonic.

TAB: Economy Picking The Pentatonic

The backing track is made of the three most used chords in R&R, the E,G and A chords.Towards the end of the progression you can hear a little twist where C and D chords are played.

The concept behind these licks is to apply the mechanics of Economy Picking to the

3-note-per-string style Minor Pentatonic so that it won’t sound like the ordinary Pentatonic anymore.

You can also use these licks to develop your finger stretch, Economy Picking and your fretboard visualization.

Economy Picking?

Economy Picking is a right hand technique which combines the use of Alternate Picking (when picking notes on the same string) and Sweep Picking (when traveling from one string to another) to maximize picking efficiency.

So for example your basic 3 notes per string scale would be played as shown below:

  • Ascending : Down Up Down (change string) Down (sweep) Up Down etc.
  • Descending : Up Down Up (change string) Up (sweep) Down Up etc.

3 notes per string Pentatonics?

This is a very easy concept if you ‘re familiar with the 5 Pentatonic positions.If you do so then the only thing you have to do is to combine two consecutive positions.

This way we end up with 5 3 notes per string pentatonic positions.

Some of the reasons to do such a thing:

  • We can now use legato and right hand techniques as we ‘re used to apply them to the 3 notes per string situations.
  • We can create Pentatonic lines that has nothing to do with the blues or rock use and sound of the pentatonic scale.

How to make your own licks using the concept.

Well there are two seperate things that you have to work with.

The first thing to do is to practice economy picking with simple exercises until it feels natural to you. The key here as with practicing any other technique is SLOW practice with NO tension.

The second one is to get used to the positions of the 3 note per string pentatonics.

I highly reccomend you to not only play them vertically but horizontally as well.

The next and final step would be to find little pentatonic patterns (start with two strings patterns) that cater to the nature of economy picking and move them around like there’s no tommorow.

Have fun!!!

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