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The Guitar (and Other Musical Instruments) Thread
29 November 2017
11.55am
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Beatlebug
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I do that with my ring finger. It's become habitual, but at first it was like 'What are you making me do' a-hard-days-night-ringo-11

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29 November 2017
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Dark Overlord
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I usually ignore that high E string as well when I play the A shape, it makes it so much easier. Do you guys have any tricks to playing the D shape barred, the E and A ones are pretty easy to barre but I've never been able to incorporate D shaped barre chords into my playing because it takes me like 15 seconds to get my fingers just right so when I do a D based chord, it's either an open D, a barred D5 shape, or I cut the root out so I'm only playing the top 3 strings.

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29 November 2017
1.54pm
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sir walter raleigh
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Barring the D shape just takes practice. It becomes second nature pretty fast. I was learning “Tin Man” by America and I thought I would never be able to reach the positions in time with the somg, but I just played it over and over again. Tin Man is a great song to practice with because its jut two chords the whole song. 

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29 November 2017
2.43pm
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Beatlebug
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Dark Overlord said
Do you guys have any tricks to playing the D shape barred, the E and A ones are pretty easy to barre but I've never been able to incorporate D shaped barre chords into my playing because it takes me like 15 seconds to get my fingers just right so when I do a D based chord, it's either an open D, a barred D5 shape, or I cut the root out so I'm only playing the top 3 strings.  

That's one I haven't conquered yet, either; I do the same as you. ahdn_george_06 However, 'Ramble On' by Led Zeppelin is based around an E to D progression during the verses and I really dig that song, so maybe I'll be able to get some practise in on it.

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29 November 2017
4.04pm
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Martha
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Dark Overlord said
How are the 4 of your new guitars doing @The Hole Got Fixed @Martha @ewe2 @sir walter raleigh last night I put a black pickguard on my Fender/Squier.

WIN_20171128_10_27_40_Pro.jpgImage Enlarger

It looks really cool from a distance although sadly it looks weird up close as the hole for the bridge pickup was cut so it could fit an angled humbucker so I'm going to need to get some electrical tape to fix that.  

Wow, I really like the look of your guitar, @Dark Overlord, the black pickguard contrasts the white píckups in a great way!paul-mccartney-thumb_gif

As for my guitar, we get along really well. The sound and the feeling are just awesome I especially like the sound of the neck and the bridge pickup, they are both very shiny and clear. And I absolutely love the fact that I am able to play with headphones through the amp because this enables me to play at almost every time of the day without waking anyone up. Yay, endless music!beatlemaniacs_02_gif

Currently, I'm playing lots of lead guitar, have learned the pentatonic scale and started to improvise but also the lead parts of some songs including Something , Heart Full Of Soul by the Yardbirds, Hey Joe, and Whole Lotta Love. Improvising is one of the greatest things on this planet.a-hard-days-night-paul-7

Oh, and @ewe2, I just wanted to say, that I love the name you gave your guitar! 'Shona' sounds almost like the German word 'schöner' and you know what that means in English? 'More Beautiful'a-hard-days-night-george-9

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Not once does the diversity seem forced -- the genius of the record is how the vaudevillian "When I'm 64" seems like a logical extension of "Within You Without You" and how it provides a gateway to the chiming guitars of "Lovely Rita. - Stephen T. Erlewine on Sgt Pepper's

29 November 2017
4.57pm
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@Martha I too am trying to improve my lead guitar playing, using The Grateful Dead as my template. 

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29 November 2017
5.57pm
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Martha said

Currently, I'm playing lots of lead guitar, have learned the pentatonic scale and started to improvise but also the lead parts of some songs including Something , Heart Full Of Soul by the Yardbirds, Hey Joe, and Whole Lotta Love. Improvising is one of the greatest things on this planet.a-hard-days-night-paul-7 

Wow, you're getting on so much faster than I did -- I didn't play lead till I'd been playing about two years. a-hard-days-night-paul-7 I'm not jealous, just proud of ya! john-lennon-salute_gif

I'm so glad to hear you have learnt enough to discover the joy of improvising -- it really is an amazing feeling, when you're on that plane of consciousness (the seventh level? ahdn_george_06) and the music is just flowing within you and without you. heart

I've been working on my lead guitar-ing for about a year now, starting with learning fairly easy solos and moving up to learning harder and/or longer (read: Pink Floyd a-hard-days-night-john-6) solos and taking the licks I learnt from them and trying similar things on my own. I've gotten to the point where I'm good enough to realise just how much more I have to learn. a-hard-days-night-paul-7

I like to study and analyse the distinct playing styles of my favourite guitarists and see how I can apply their philosophies to my own playing a-hard-days-night-george-4 or, in other, less pompous words, I like to steal licks from my favourite guitarists (just like everyone else does). a-hard-days-night-john-6 It so happens that my main two favourite guitarists (David Gilmour and Jimmy Page) are at pretty much the opposite ends of the scale as far as lead-work is concerned. ahdn_george_01

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29 November 2017
7.16pm
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Haha @Martha I'm glad you noticed that resemblance, it struck me too. Now as for barres, I generally use the pinky-bend method too but my hands tend to cramp if I do it too much and the thumb trick doesn't work if you're barring A-shape, the problem string is the A string, not the E string! I don't bother barring for D-shape just mute the lower three strings, it's not used except for some fairly weird circumstances and I can live without it.

As for lead, just getting scales right is enough for me for now, I can bend and vibrato, a lot easier than I thought (just keep practising I Want You (She's so heavy), lots of lead and interesting scales in that). I can't do harmonic pings yet though. I think one reason why I'm enjoying Page more these days is the knowledge that he can totally play hard and fast if he wanted to but he's a better musician than that and crafts great licks instead and leaves the guitar hero stuff for live playing, so I'm enjoying picking random songs and figuring out the licks. But still, I'm so far from lead playing (other than joyful distorted messes), right now I'd love to be able to barre-chord a bunch of songs without cramps. I'm a fan of the Pixies and the rhythm playing in those songs is super good practice, as is Talking Heads.

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I'm like Necko only I'm a bassist ukulele guitar synthesizer kazoo penguin and also everyone. Or is everyone me? Now I'm a confused bassist ukulele guitar synthesizer kazoo penguin everyone who is definitely not @Joe.  This has been true for 2016 & 2017 Sig-Badge.png but I may have to get more specific in the future.

30 November 2017
6.44am
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I have 2 guitar based questions for you guys:

1. For all of you Strat players, do you ever use the middle pickup alone. I never have found a use for it and typically stick to the bridge pickup, although I occasionally opt to use the neck pickup or what I like to call the neck and bridge humbuckers (AKA the neck/middle and bridge/middle positions) for certain songs.

2. Do any of you use the tone knob. Although I occasionally lower the volume on my guitar so I can go from a clean part to a distorted part such as in Hand Of Doom I never use the tone knobs and removed mine from my Fender because I want my guitar to sound as bright and treble-y as possible.

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30 November 2017
8.07am
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Martha
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Aww, shucks, thanks @Beatlebug! beatlemaniacs_02_gif 

However, there's a difference between playing lead and attempting to play lead. .. a-hard-days-night-john-7 And I've also noticed that my strumming abilities are very substandard because I've always rather fingerpicked or played scales than strummed. Oh well, I'm really not good at all, not even for a beginner's standard, but I'm having one hell of a time with my guitar, anyway. a-hard-days-night-george-9 And my admiration for George, Jimi, Jimmy, David, and all the other great guitarists has increased too, now. 

As to your first question, Dark Overlord, so far, I haven't used the middle pickup very much either. Personally, I think it sounds a bit hollow, especially on the three low strings. But the same applies for the two combination position, I only use them if I want to play a funky strumming pattern.At the moment, I Mainly use the neck pickup as the bridge pickup sounds a bit too sharp sometimes (not regarding intonation). 

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30 November 2017
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Dark Overlord said
I have 2 guitar based questions for you guys:

2. Do any of you use the tone knob. Although I occasionally lower the volume on my guitar so I can go from a clean part to a distorted part such as in Hand Of Doom I never use the tone knobs and removed mine from my Fender because I want my guitar to sound as bright and treble-y as possible.  

Yeah the tone knobs are really important for playing specific styles of music. I can get good jazz tones from Shona by rolling it back on the neck pickup and a bit less "edge" brings a bit of warmth to the bridge pup for funky and reggae styles. Depending on the chords you're using you can emphasise particular harmonics with tone settings. This is something I was used to doing on basses and it applies really well to guitars too, particularly if you want a definite attack but a rounded sound, it makes it so much easier to mix in a song. I'd be doing the same on a Strat or a Tele for that matter, it's something you often have to do with single-coils anyway.

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30 November 2017
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Dark Overlord said
I have 2 guitar based questions for you guys:

1. For all of you Strat players, do you ever use the middle pickup alone. I never have found a use for it and typically stick to the bridge pickup, although I occasionally opt to use the neck pickup or what I like to call the neck and bridge humbuckers (AKA the neck/middle and bridge/middle positions) for certain songs.

2. Do any of you use the tone knob. Although I occasionally lower the volume on my guitar so I can go from a clean part to a distorted part such as in Hand Of Doom I never use the tone knobs and removed mine from my Fender because I want my guitar to sound as bright and treble-y as possible.  

1. Yes! The middle pickup, I admit, is probably the most 'expendable' one as far as that goes, but I do use it for a very clean, glassy sound. And the middle/bridge combination is invaluable for my favourite Jimmy Page tone (I roll the treble up and the bass down some so that it sounds mostly like the bridge pickup, but with a slight darker overtone. It's quite satisfactory, for a Strat a-hard-days-night-paul-8).

2. I admit I never looked at them twice until the other day, thinking that they didn't really do anything, because when I first got the guitar I couldn't tell the difference between the tone knob at one and ten... paul-mccartney-facepalm_gif but then I actually used them the other day and my mind was blown at the cool tones I was missing out on. a-hard-days-night-ringo-14 Lesson learned: EXPLORE ALL OF YOUR STUFF! IT WOULDN'T BE THERE IF IT WAS USELESS!

So, yeah, I do use those tone knobs. I especially love the smooth jazz sound you can get with the neck pickup + tone knob turned about halfway down. And the middle pickup with the tone knob down is good if you want to sound like you're playing underwater. a-hard-days-night-paul-10 ahdn_ringo_09

@Martha when I first got my guitar, the neck pickup was my favourite too. It's got a very satisfyingly full sound, compared to the relatively lightweight middle pickup and the ear-shredding bridge pickup, which doesn't have a tone knob and is always at 10. But then I grew to appreciate the bridge pickup's edge. If you roll the treble back a little it's easier on the ears, but its strength is being hard on the ears in a wonderful cutting rock-and-roll way. a-hard-days-night-john-6

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2 December 2017
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Thinking about getting a Fender Telecaster* as my next electric guitar in the future. What do you guys think?

*you can thank my recent kick of the band Status Quo for that. It may be "three chords" but man, do they make good use of them on their Telecasters! 

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2 December 2017
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I fully approve @SgtPeppersBulldog. I've come to really appreciate Teles since I decided against one paul-mccartney-facepalm_gif (I don't regret my decision, mind you, but I'd like one in my arsenal one day).

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2 December 2017
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As of right now, @SgtPeppersBulldog I'm torn between putting money down for a Tele or a Strat. There's a great deal on a Squire Vintage Modified 70's Strat, and it's very close to the price of a Squire Standard Tele. One thing with Tele's is the bridge pickup can be a bit squealy, there's several fixes for that though. I do like that spanky tone, and it's a great rhythm guitar too.

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3 December 2017
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This is just me, but unless I didn’t have a guitar to play and actually NEEDED a guitar, I wouldn’t buy a Squire, I would wait and save up to buy a the real thing. I don’t really care about the difference between an American Fender and a Mexican Fender (although I’ve never owned an American, just my Mexican), the difference between a Squire and a Fender is remarkable. 

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3 December 2017
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Personally, I'd go for a Fender Stratocaster (or Squier depending on the budget) over a Telecaster unless if you already own a Strat for a couple of reasons:

1. The Strat has a double cutaway whereas the Tele only has a single cutaway, the double cutaway giving easier access to the upper frets

2. There are 5 pickup combinations on a stock Strat whereas there's only 3 on a stock Tele

3. The Strat has a contoured body making it much more comfortable to use

4. The Strat has a whammy bar while the Tele doesn't

5. You can adjust each string's intonation and action on a Strat as opposed to the Tele's use of having 2 strings share a saddle

6. The Strat is easier to modify due to it being top routed as opposed to rear routed

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7 December 2017
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Not a Strat in sight at the McCartney gig, a Fender bass but everything else was Gretsch or Gibson SG/LP. In fact both guitarists had contrasting SG's (I think Brian Ray plays his signature model) white with black pickguard and black with white pickguard. Paul had a psychedelic lefty LP he brought out for a couple of songs, I think Rusty had an LP too. Oh and Paul played his £100 Hofner bass throughout when he wasn't playing the LP or Martin or Gibson uke. 

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I'm like Necko only I'm a bassist ukulele guitar synthesizer kazoo penguin and also everyone. Or is everyone me? Now I'm a confused bassist ukulele guitar synthesizer kazoo penguin everyone who is definitely not @Joe.  This has been true for 2016 & 2017 Sig-Badge.png but I may have to get more specific in the future.

7 December 2017
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^ What a shame...!

There were plenty of Fenders at the Roger Waters concert... Strats and P-basses all round (though I think the main lead guitarist (Jonathan Wilson) had a custom kind of guitar which had a Tele-style body and a whammy bar). I should know -- I had about twenty minutes waiting for the show to start to stare at them -- I can safely say it was the longest twenty minutes of my life. a-hard-days-night-paul-7

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8 December 2017
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To be fair, Paul was never a Fender guy. He used a sunburst 1964 Fender Esquire on Sgt. Pepper and a Jazz Bass for some songs during 1968 and 1969 but that's about it.

Anyways, I thought you'd like to see an updated picture of my guitar.

WIN_20171208_08_01_17_Pro.jpgImage Enlarger

I put the middle and bridge pickups in the bridge so it's like a humbucker with a dummy pickup in the middle. Also, the positions on this Strat are unusual compared to other Strats. 1 is bridge and "middle" with bridge louder, 2 is bridge and "middle" with both equally as loud, 3 is bridge and "middle" with "middle" louder, 4 is all 3 with the bridge quitter, and 5 is just the neck and nothing else. Also, since my middle and bridge pickups are right next together instead of spaced out it doesn't give you that disco sound in position 4.

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