Alternate Picking Sextuplets Guitar Exercise

Guitar Trio Concepts:

Guitar Trio alternate picking guitar lesson
Al di Meola John Mclaughlin Paco De lucia Guitar Trio

Sextuplets alternate picking guitar technique:

The point of this exercise is to understand that the last note plucked in each group of sextuplets is on an “Up” stroke, so it is “Up skip over pluck down” for the next group of 6 notes.

Alternate picking Guitar Technique

Exercise: For alternate picking sextuplets technique in one position.

Alternate picking Guitar Technique sextuplets lesson

Extended sextuplet alternate picking guitar technique exercise for “Coming up on the upstroke”

alternate picking guitar exercise sextuplets 6's

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Shakti Indo Jazz fusion alternate picking guitar lick

The key to this Shakti guitar riff is to “Shift” the fretting hand positions whilst employing strict alternate picking with the plectrum in the right hand as can be found in the guitar style of John Mclaughlin.

This is a great exercise for right hand picking technique by alternating with the plectrum starting on a “downstroke” whilst synchronising the left hand with the position shifts on the guitar fingerboard.



Shakti alternate picking hand position shifting guitar lick in TAB/Notation

shakti John Mclaughlin guitar alternate picking lesson

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John Mclaughlin Paco de Lucia Al Di Meola GUITAR TRIO CONCEPT


Performing in the style of the Guitar Trio with the plectrum requires strict ALTERNATE PICKING for the solo lines that are picked at a very high velocity. You need to be able to “Jump” straight into the rhythmic flow.


Line 1-“16ths” Alternate Picking starting on a “Down” stroke

Guitar Trio Paco de lucia John Mclaughlin Al di Meola

Line 2- Extended version of the previous line above, again starting on a “Down” stroke

Guitar Trio Paco de lucia John Mclaughlin Al di Meola alternate picking lesson

More Alternate Picking guitar video lessons:

The key to all of this is to "Count Time/Groupings"and "Tap your foot" as you do so. If you count time you will play what you hear. It is the key to performing this guitar trio music.


Line 3-Groups of “4” with strict Alternate Picking but this time starting with an “Upstroke” creating a “Rolling” effect as the plectrum glides across the strings.

Guitar Trio Paco de lucia John Mclaughlin Al di Meola alternate picking guitar lesson

Groups of 6 VARIATIONS:

Line 4-This is a “Variation” of our very first pattern but this time played in “Sextuplets” starting on a “Down” stroke.

6s 1

Line 5-This line can be heard as Triplets or Sextuplets. This time though we are starting on an “Upstroke”. Again, because we are starting our alternate picking on an up stroke there is a fluid rolling effect as we cross the strings.

Guitar Trio Paco de lucia John Mclaughlin Al di Meola

Line 6-This is a key signature line of Pace de Lucia and Al di Meola. It is an ascending G major scale in double timed triplets [or Sextuplets]. We are starting our picking on an “Upstroke”and ascending passionately up the scale, The better the rhythm of the alternate picking the more clean and powerful this little lick becomes.

Guitar Trio Paco de lucia John Mclaughlin Al di Meola alternate picking

Line 7-Here is another variation of the 16th note line. This time we start “Upstroke and roll the line along with tight rhythmical alternate picking. The key as always is to count good time when picking and tap your foot for precision.

Guitar Trio Paco de lucia John Mclaughlin Al di Meola alternate picking guitar lesson

Line 8-“Spanish” descending 2 string line. Really it is an ascending “Down” stroke alternate picking pattern followed by an ascending “Up” stroke rolling alternate picking pattern. If you treat it like that then it is easy to play and learn.


For a closer look there is a complete transcription of “Friday Night in San Franscisco” Book available AMAZON

Guitar Trio Paco de lucia John Mclaughlin Al di Meola alternate picking guitar lesson with tab, video and music notation

Alternate Picking John Mclaughlin style guitar lesson in 4/4


Simple pattern and repeated fingering in the style of “Belo Herozonte” and “Music spoken here” by John Mclaughlin. Like the 3/4 pattern in our last alternate picking lesson this borrows the same fingering but it is in 4/4.



alternate picking guitar exercise john mclaughlin secret fingering

Click below for free alternate picking ebook

Alternate picking but up





Sextuplets Alternate Picking Guitar Lesson

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EXERCISE 1: Repetition alternate picking sextuplet method by counting 1 2 3 4 5 6 to get the “feel” and rhythmic flow with the right hand picking hand.

sextuplets alternate picking guitar lesson

EXERCISE 2: An alternate picking guitar rhythmic sextuplet extension following on from the first exercise

sextuplets alternate picking guitar lesson

EXERCISE 2: VARIATION: another extended sextuplet variation for alternate picking. The key again is to get the sextuplet rhythms flowing from the brain/auditory into the right picking hand.

sextuplets alternate picking guitar lesson


EXERCISE 3: How to use alternate picking for playing sextuplets on the “Off-beat” on guitar by missing the first beat/hearing the silent beat.

off-beat sextuplets alternate picking guitar lesson

EXERCISE 4: Counting “1 and 2 and 3 and” as opposed to 1 2 3 4 5 6. For fluid alternate picking momentum around the 90 to 110 BPM metronome beat.

3/4 as sextuplets in 4/4 time alternate picking guitar lesson

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Jazz/fusion improvisation Altered scale Theory Lesson

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Today we will look at a John Mclaughlin alternate picking Jazz/Fusion improvisation cadence employing the altered dominant chord! Please watch the video below and then try it out yourself.

As you will see this cadence employs the Altered scale. It is a 2 [minor 7 flat 5] going to 5 [ “Altered Dominant”] 1 [major 7th]. This being Dm7 flat 5  G7 altered resolving to C major7.

I also employ a flat 5 substitution on the Dm7 flat 5. All of this resolves though and slips nicely into the altered dominant 5 chord. I also use pentatonics within the altered scale for rhythmic flow. Please look at the TAB/MUSIC below and play through it yourself to see and feel how it all “Naturally” unfolds. I employ alternate picking the same as John Mclaughlin.

John Mclaughlin alternate picking altered scale line Music/Tab

John Mclaughlin Alternate picking Altered scale jazz improviser line

VARIATION With an A flat Pentatonic shape replacing A flat minor/Major Arpeggio for the flat 5 substitution.


Altered scale jazz improvisation, jazz improviser lesson

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