This is a public version of the members-only Rock Guitar with Paul Gilbert, at ArtistWorks. Functionality is limited, but CLICK HERE for full access if you’re ready to take your playing to the next level.

These lessons are available only to members of Rock Guitar with Paul Gilbert.
Join Now

30 Day Challenge
«Prev of Next»

Rock Guitar Lessons: Picking 3 Over 4

Lesson Video Exchanges () submit video Submit a Video Lesson Study Materials () This lesson calls for a video submission
Study Materials
information below
Lesson Specific Downloads
Play Along Tracks
Backing Tracks +
Written Materials +




Additional Materials +
resource information below Close
Collaborations for
resource information below Close
Submit a video for   
Rock Guitar

This video lesson is available only to members of
Rock Guitar with Paul Gilbert.

Join Now

information below Close
Course Description

This page contains a transcription of a video lesson from Rock Guitar with Paul Gilbert. This is only a preview of what you get when you take Rock Guitar Lessons at ArtistWorks. The transcription is only one of the valuable tools we provide our online members. Sign up today for unlimited access to all lessons, plus submit videos to your teacher for personal feedback on your playing.

CLICK HERE for full access.
One, two, three, four.
All right.
This is a serious picking lick.
And it has three over four.
And what does that mean?
That means that the phrase itself, the
basic part of the phrase is three notes.
[SOUND] But I'm putting it over a division
of four.
These are 16 notes that I'm playing.
So the, the speed of it is [NOISE] one,
two, three, four.
[NOISE] One, two, three, four.
[NOISE] One, two, three, four.
[NOISE] One, two, three, four.
But over that, I'm playing the three note
So when it re-starts,
it starts in kind of an odd place.
But if you do it enough times and end it
right, it all works out in the end.
And you can hear how it works.
It goes one, two, three, four.
As long as I end it there,
everything is cool.
And then I'm gonna take the whole thing
down a half step.
And how can you do that?
You know, if you take things down a half
usually it makes them horribly out of
But somehow this one sounds good.
The reason it sounds good is that if we
play [SOUND] this beautiful chord here,
it's a D9 [SOUND] barred with our third
[SOUND] First finger there on the fourth
fret and
then our second finger playing the root.
[SOUND] Those notes [SOUND] sound really
nice over that chord.
So, we go from our A to our D9 [SOUND].
Like magic, those notes seem to work out.
then to spice it up, the next time I did
it I added.
The ninth.
Oh, that's a nice one.
And the next one.
And that one's actually the fifth.
[SOUND] So, I'm adding some extra notes to
give it even more color.
The technique for this is really a great
picking challenge and
really useful to build for your picking
And the reason is because we're starting
this three note phrase with
the downstroke, doing all sorts of
pickings, so we're doing down, up, down.
There it is.
Not too bad.
But because we're doing alternate picking
and it's a three note phrase, the next
time we do it, everything is reversed.
Everything that you once knew.
Is now backwards.
Because the next one's going to start with
an upstroke.
So, [SOUND] we still have that motion,
that constant strumming motion that we're
used to.
And that's the thing that we're gonna rely
on the most.
But we some, have to lock it up to a three
note pattern that causes us to have to do,
basically different strokes in relation to
the left hand part.
So let's look at it again, we're gonna go
down, up, down, up, down, up.
That's the thing.
Now, I can't think that fast, you know?
I wanted to explain it to you but
when I'm playing, I'm not thinking of it
in those terms.
Basically I just try to keep that motion
my hand is just keeping in that strumming
[SOUND] Down, up, down, up, down, up.
But I have to aim for the right strings,
the best way to do that is to slow it down
[SOUND] and
keep this motion going with your right
I'm sort of exaggerating it to make sure I
get it right,
to make sure I get the downstrokes in the
right place.
And the upstrokes in the right place.
Let's try it again.
Three, four.
Then a half step.
this motion, with the right hand, I'm
kinda curious to see, as I speed it up,
if that's still there, or if I have to
make it smaller.
Let's see.
Yeah, definitely as I speed up,
the motions get smaller, in this case, and
it becomes more of a wrist motion.
But I think initially, to get the
coordination, it's good to keep that,
that motion going, just, almost like a
That'll give you the coordination.
You can also try those high notes.
That's the third finger.
that one's on the with the third fingers.
All right.
we're gonna put those chords in between.
these accents are interesting because it,
we're still doing the strumming motion.
We're accenting down, up, down,
up, down, up.
It's such a good technique to get used to
Where we still having that flowing rhythm
of the strum, underneath it all.
But we can choose accents,
whether they're down beats or
based on what we have in our, in our,
head, what we wanna hear.
The other chord I'm doing is,
of course, thumb chord.
[SOUND] And I'm doing the seventh, minor
[SOUND] One, two, three, four, five, six,
And I'm also doing [SOUND] [INAUDIBLE]
let's see,
what are those notes [SOUND] and the major
third [SOUND].
One, two, three.
So that's our seven, A7 chord.
All right, and let's check this out
together cause I'm only one guitar player
so, I can't play these things together.
But I do have access to some over dubs.
So, I'm gonna lay down a rhythm track and
then I play the solo over the top and
you can hear how it sounds.
All right, so here's a medium tempo of a
And I'm gonna play the solo over the top,
so you can hear how the two fit together.
Here we go.
All right, we're all gonna do a fast
So, let's crank up the tempo and see if I
can make it through this one.
Oh, fantastic, so you can check out these
backing tracks as well, on the site,
play along, and really lock that into the
groove as it's a great riff.
One, two, three, four.