Season 2: The quest for guitar superpowers takes flight

Cracking the Code is a groundbreaking documentary series that solves the puzzle of virtuoso guitar picking.

Melding archival footage, in-depth interviews, painstakingly crafted animation, and custom soundtrack, it’s a pop-science investigation of an age-old mystery: Why are some players seemingly super-powered?

Grab a Season Pass and join us for an incredible monthly journey of mechanical discovery, as we follow the common thread connecting legends like Yngwie Malmsteen, Eric Johnson, Shawn Lane, Michael Angelo Batio, Eddie Van Halen, Steve Vai, Paul Gilbert, and more.

With extensive slow-motion demonstration footage, tablature, and performance notes for each episode, the Season 2 Season Pass is like eight instructional videos in one!

See what people are saying about Cracking the Code:

"After playing for over 18 years and always struggling with alternate picking (I was never clean enough and could never repeat the same phrase without mistakes) I stumbled upon your video about downward pick slanting and it really opened my eyes. I got your season 2 pass and the licks are awesome exercises, especially because of the demonstration and the tabs that denote the pick direction. For the first time in about 4-6 years I have the motivation that I actually learn can pick clean and fast. Keep up the good work and I'll be awaiting your next videos eagerly!!"

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"The quality of both the presentation and of the content itself is unparalleled in my previous YouTube experience...I greatly enjoy — and am extremely impressed with — your detailed mechanical analyses…The insights you have presented are already helping to improve my picking ability, and for that I am very grateful."

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"Most creative, refreshing guitar pedagogy I have seen in years."

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"I rarely post comments for anything. But this video series is a revelation...for the past two days I've been practicing patterns which change strings when my pick stroke is in the correct direction. That single idea has unlocked speed and accuracy I didn't know I had."

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"There's a billion great instructors on YouTube, and I've seen most of them. But you might be the absolute best. Both analysis and presentation is world class. Thank you so much for this."

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"Wow, this method of teaching is so far above any other video I've ever seen. Much more efficient, interesting, immersive and fun to watch. This is fantastic! Too many great things to mention!"

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"You've done it man. What you're doing here is something that's been absolutely absent and lacking in the rock guitar arena of ongoing education and analysis. This is everything I've needed and wanted as a player since I was a teen. Thank you SO much. I'm sharing this with all of my guitar friends."

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"Troy, this is OUTSTANDING stuff. Definitely signing up for the full series...these few videos have utterly transformed my playing."

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"I tried the pick slanting last night and I have INSTANTLY noticed a significant speed difference...I no longer feel like my pick is stuck in mud. It doesn't feel as awkward as I anticipated. Who knew that such a small mechanical change in conjunction with even note chunking would have such immediate benefits?! Incredible."

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What Do I Get With The Season Pass?

With a Season Pass, HD episode downloads are only the beginning. A substantial collection of analytical course material helps you learn the technical fundamentals. The following are included with each episode of Season 2:

Code Archive Packs

Technical examples from the episodes and beyond, filmed in slow motion with our custom camera mount.



Complete tablature for all example clips, including critical picking notation for alternate and sweep sequences.

Performance Notes


Mechanical explanations, harmonic analysis, and historical perspective to help you get the most out of this material.

Soundtrack Packs


Our custom episode soundtrack — real-world examples of Code techniques in a variety of cool musical styles.

Season 1

Season 1 of Cracking the Code recounts the story of virtuoso guitar amid the unprecedented flowering of technique in the ’80s, and sets out the core technical challenges of the instrument.  Read More…

Season 2

Season 2 of Cracking the Code is a technical detective story of unprecedented scope — the most incisive investigation of picking mechanics ever put to video.  Read More…

Season 3

Season 3 of Cracking the Code is an interview series with legendary players captured in high-speed video — a remarkable real-world look at Season 2 techniques in action.  Read More…

Code Archive

The Code Archive is the most unique collection of high-speed analytical guitar footage ever assembled, and represents a rare opportunity to study world-class technique in action.  Read More…