Rock Guitar Lick 13: Combining Sweep Picking, Hybrid-Picking and String Skipping

Welcome back to another instalment of the Rock Licks Booster course. Hope all the practising has been going well. :-)

In this lesson we’re going to look at a challenging lick that combines sweep picking, hybrid-picking and string skipping. If you’re new to any of these techniques, then it’s definitely worthwhile reviewing the following guitar licks before starting with this lesson. This will help you to get comfortable with each technique in isolation, before you attempt learning the lick in this lesson.

All done? Great. Let’s now check out the lick for this lesson…

Rock Guitar Lick 13: Combining Sweep Picking, Hybrid-Picking and String Skipping

Rock Guitar Lick 13: Combining Sweep Picking, Hybrid-Picking and String Skipping

This is a scary looking lick composed using the E Natural Minor scale, and it’s one that is quite challenging to play cleanly. It also uses some very awkward movements in the fretting-hand, so be sure to learn the lick in very small chunks before trying to play the entire lick.

Although the lick looks complicated at first glance, the cool thing about it is that much of the lick uses the same picking mechanic. This means that once you master this mechanic, the picking-hand side of things becomes quite easy. So let’s check out the picking mechanic now. Here’s the same lick with the mechanic highlighted…

Guitar Lick Explained

If you look at the yellow highlighting, you’ll notice that the picking-hand has to do the following…

  • A downstroke on the A-string.
  • A downstroke on the D-string.
  • Pluck the B-string using the third finger (a) of your picking-hand.

In other words, we’re sweep picking the first two notes, and then finger-picking the third note. And if you look closely at the lick now, you’ll notice that this exact same picking mechanic is repeated five times. (Well, it’s actually seven times, which I’ll explain in just a second).

You might be wondering about the blue highlighted notes. If you examine the TAB, you’ll see that it’s really just the same picking mechanic we’ve just talked about, but it’s been moved to a new set of strings.

Hope you have fun with this lick. I know I did! :-)

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