February 11, 2010
String skipping can add more color to standard licks by automatically introducing wider intervals.
from David M. Brewster's Harmonics for Guitar
We’ll start with a string-skipping exercise that’s played exclusively on the G and high-E strings. Using the C major scale as a catalyst, the example starts with a pick/hammer/hammer legato move on the G string, followed by three picked notes on the high-E. The pattern is then reversed, with the legato line (pick/pull/pull) on the high-E string, and the picked notes on the G string; this back-andforth sequence follows through the entire example. Experiment with different picking directions (outside picking, alternate picking, economy picking, etc.) until you find the one that suits you.
Fig. 2 expands on the legato/picking pattern from the previous example. Using E Phrygian dominant (E–F–Gb–A–B–C–D; fifth mode of A harmonic minor) as the scale source, the example rolls across the fretboard via non-adjacent string sets (low-E/D, A/G, D/B, and G/high-E).
Here’s a G minor scale (G–A–Bb–C–D–Eb–F) string-skipping lick that’s just dripping with legato moves (Fig. 3).
Fig. 4 applies string-skipping tactics to the A blues scale (A–C–D–Eb–E–G). You may find that a combination of sweep picking and outside picking works best for this one.