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Hand on bridge

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NotYetNirvana
(@notyetnirvana)
Trusted Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 55
Topic starter  

Hey

When I play, I usually rest my hand on the bridge and pick from there, unless im strumming. This causes the problem of having unwanted notes ringing out. I have decided I should try and break this habit.. How can I play without having unwanted notes wringing out? whats the technique you guys use when picking?

Thanks,
NYN

Also, I forgot to add. When I see bands playing live, they're sound is perfect, no unnecisary notes wringing out, even when they're strumming. However when I play I get quite alot of notes jumbled together :S
also, with distortion, when I hit palm mutes, I tend to get a sort of harmonic sound (on certain frets) instead of the muted sound.. any tips?

"Me... In a Nuclear Power Plant?...... KABOOM! Hahahaha!" - Homer Simpson in Highschool.


   
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stock28
(@stock28)
Estimable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 109
 

Try to get in the habit of having your hand float over the strings. It will feel really strange at first but will come with a little practice. At the same time, I say to use the blade of your picking hand to mute strings you don't want to sound especialy with overdrive. I find that the higher strings tend to put out more unwanted noised than the bass strings. Just takes a bit of trial and error to determine when to mute strings and when to float over them. With the palm mutes, again it's just practce of hand location to get a muted sound without overtones. Try using more or less pressure and moving your hand closer or further away from the bridge.


   
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Metaellihead
(@metaellihead)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 653
 

That harmonic sound you describe is there on the 7th, 9th, and 12th frets. I think it's on the 19th, too. If you touch the string with your fretting hand and pluck it, then lift your finger off right away you can get a harmonic "bell" sound. If you watch some guitarists play you can see them do it to get the sound I'm talking about. To avoid it don't mute strings right above the frets I listed above.

And the reason bands sound perfect live is cause they practice their songs over and over and over and over again. Particularly bands on tour who know their songs inside and out. I dunno if you're watching live, or live recordings, but remember that some live recordings might have overdubs. Particularly if they're from the 60's era of recording. Back then PA systems and live sound was much harder to get to sound good.

It's why Led Zeppelin blew out every other band of the era in live performance. They had a great PA system and sound managers that allowed them to put on great shows.

-Metaellihead


   
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NotYetNirvana
(@notyetnirvana)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 55
Topic starter  

I think I know why my guitar playing sounds rather jumbled up when I play. When I play a power chord for instance, and then I stop it ringing with my fretting hand, the chord sound stops dead, but there seems to be a humming after that, even if I completely deaden the strings with my hand.. Its hard to describe really.

I'll hit a chord, then completely mute it out with my fretting hand, the chord stops dead, but theres an after-hum, which isnt being caused by the vibrating of the strings..

Is this because of my crappy single coil squier pickups, or am I just a bad guitarist?

I also just noticed something else: My strings are completly dead, not a sound, If I just hit a single note, for example on the high E string, some of the other strings vibrate causing an after sound.. I'm really starting to think I'm playing the guitar horribly wrong :?

"Me... In a Nuclear Power Plant?...... KABOOM! Hahahaha!" - Homer Simpson in Highschool.


   
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NoteBoat
(@noteboat)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 4921
 

For the first problem, the humming - you've got all the strings deadened, and you still hear a hum. Try playing a C power chord, then deadening all the strings. Then try an F# power chord and deaden all the strings. If the hum is different, you're not deadening one (or more) strings quite enough... but if the hum is exactly the same, the source is electronics. It could be coming from your pickups, your amp, or your cord. Hum is often caused by an improper grounding... my guess is that problem is equipment based, not technique.

When you hit a single note, you're generating a bunch of frequencies at once. The strongest is called the fundamental (the note that you're playing), but you're also generating frequencies called overtones - an octave above the fundamental, an octave and a fifth, two octaves, two octaves and a third, etc. Some of these frequencies can cause something called sympathetic vibration in other strings - you're most likely to see them if the note you're playing is A, B, D, E, or G (the notes of the open strings). Sympathetic vibrations are much weaker than played notes, so they tend to get buried in the overall sound... except when you stop playing - then they can keep going, as you're noticing. When you want to have a 'full stop' to your sound, it's easiest to deaden all the strings with the side of your picking hand.

Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL


   
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