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I need help! Please answer if you play Electric Guitar.


(@medarrah)
Estimable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 103
Topic starter  

Okay. I am having problems playing my Electric Guitar. It is my second guitar, but the one before it was a Acoustic, and I got rid of that one. So im still getting used to the Electric One, and ive had it for about 5 Months now. But my problem is, I dont know how to like, actually play it "Right." I always end up strumming it as if it was a Acoustic Guitar, and I dont know how to play it the correct way. I've tried, and practiced, but it just isn't working.
If you have any advice, and could help me, please respond! Its starting to drive me crazy, because I cant get it...

PS: im REALLY new to this... but Whats a bend? Sorry. Im a newbie, and dont get any of that yet.

Thanks in Advance.


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(@ricochet)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 7850
 

A bend is when you start by fretting a string on one fret, then push or pull it to stretch it so it sounds like it's playing a note a fret or two higher. That lets you smoothly "slide" up to that pitch, then waver up and down to it in a smooth vibrato somewhat like a singer. Or a slide guitarist with a bottleneck on his finger.
8)

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


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(@kent_eh)
Noble Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 1885
 

Welcome to Guitarnoise medarrah.
I dont know how to like, actually play it "Right." I always end up strumming it as if it was a Acoustic Guitar
Nothing wrong with that.
It's a guitar, play it like a guitar

I strum my electric, and play fingerstyle on it.
I also play single note melodies.
PS: im REALLY new to this... but Whats a bend?

Fret a note somewhere in the middle of the fretboard, maybe 8th fret-second string.
Pick the string.
Now, while the note is still sounding, use your fretting finger and push the string sideways (in my example, towards the 3rd string).
Make sure to keep the note fretted as you do this.
Hear the pitch of the note "bend" up.

That's the basic idea.

David talks about bends in this lesson, and Olav incorporates bends into this lesson

I wrapped a newspaper ’round my head
So I looked like I was deep


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(@beaner)
Estimable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 122
 

But my problem is, I dont know how to like, actually play it "Right." I always end up strumming it as if it was a Acoustic Guitar, and I dont know how to play it the correct way.

Strumming is okay on an electric, but now start to arpeggiate, you know, pick the strings one at a time. Form your chord and play the lowest fretted (root) string, then play the 3 high strings one at a time, in a 1, 2, 3, 4 fashion. There are stacks of variations from here. Have a listen to House of the Rising Sun by The Animals.

I'm sure you'll get plenty more helpful suggestions.

Regards,
Paul


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(@margaret)
Noble Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 1689
 

Quite often on electric, especially when effects/distortion are being used, fewer strings are played at a time.

Instead of utilizing as many strings as possible as you might on acoustic for a fuller sounding chord, on electric the chord is sometimes brought down to essentials. For example, power chords use just two strings--the I and V tones.

Do you have a good electric guitar basics book or can you take some lessons? Both can help a lot in getting started on a good foot.

Margaret

When my mind is free, you know a melody can move me
And when I'm feelin' blue, the guitar's comin' through to soothe me ~


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(@dagwood)
Noble Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 1029
 

Hey Medarrah,

Welcome to GN.

I learned early on that playing electric guitar takes a very fine/soft touch.

Unlike acoustic instruments, any acoustic instrument, piano, drums, guitar the player must finesse or somewhat 'force' the sounds out. Especially as a newbie/beginner we have the tendency to play way too hard.

With electrics its almost the opposite. Every little squeak, crack, movement with your hands will be amplified so a light touch with both picking hand and fretting hand is a must. Forget what you see in music videos with these guys wailing away on their AX. That's all BS.

Instead get a performance video and watch guys like Clapton or Santana or <insert your guy here> and watch how lightly they actually play. Their sound it still HUGE and Powerful because they've learned to let their amps do all the work.

Try this, if you can. Turn up your amp. Go on.. turn it UP. No Louder!! hehehe. OK, now try and play softly, quietly, OK you can turn down your volume knob on your guitar if you really have to, but say only to half.

Now play......lightly, gently, softly. Its still loud yes? My point is you don't have to 'wail' on your Ax to get the loudness out of it.

I used to pretend I'm playing at Gig or performance levels and crank my amp and I'm amazed how 'crappy' I sounded at louder volumes. I still do this, usually when I'm pissed at my neighbors or something and for me its a good exercise to control the 'noise'.

Mind you I still like to wail on a kick arse piece of hard music and its OK. In those situations my mistakes and noise (or SLOP) is usually hidden in the distortion etc. But to play cleanly you must be light on your fingers.

Cheers..
D-

Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing. - Wernher Von Braun (1912-1977)


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(@embrace_the_darkness)
Honorable Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 540
 

But my problem is, I dont know how to like, actually play it "Right." I always end up strumming it as if it was a Acoustic Guitar, and I dont know how to play it the correct way.

It depends a great deal of what sort of music you are playing; if you learnt a lot of acoustic songs and are now playing them on your electric, then you ARE going to play it the same way as it's an acoustic song.

Playing blues/rock/pop/funk/classic/acoustic etc all take different kinds of skills.

Being a rock/metal player, I can only offer insight into this genre, but it tends to involve bends, releases, hammer-ons, pull-off's and palm muting.

Also, as Margaret said, if you are playing using distortion/gain, you would tend to break down chords into 2 or 3 strings only.

Also strumming may be different as well. In a lot of modern rock songs, very few upstrums are used, everything is played using downstrums.

Best advice I can give is to get hold of electric-guitar based songs (anything you want to play that isnt acoustic really!), find a TAB for that song, and play along with it. You'll soon find out how to make the sound you need from the chords. Also, the TAB's will help show you the powerchords commonly used.

Pete

ETD - Formerly "10141748 - Reincarnate"


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(@medarrah)
Estimable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 103
Topic starter  

"Being a rock/metal player, I can only offer insight into this genre, but it tends to involve bends, releases, hammer-ons, pull-off's and palm muting."

......... what? Okay... i dont get ANY of that stuff, but ive heard a lot about it. Please Explain? Esp. Hammer-ons and pull-off's... and palm muting???

Thanks for ALL the help guys, I really apreciate it. PS: How do you do the little quote things? I dont get that either...


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(@medarrah)
Estimable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 103
Topic starter  

... oh yea... whats a release???


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(@rahul)
Famed Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2764
 

Here is a great complete beginner's guitar tutorial that will take you miles.

Read all through Chapter 1 to 11 and then feel free to ask your doubts here.

Enjoy !

P.S. - Since you are interested to know about bends etc, you can have a look from chapter 7 onwards. Believe me, this is one of the best 'complete' and free beginner's instruction. Don't miss it.


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(@medarrah)
Estimable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 103
Topic starter  

I already know all the chords and stuff, I just need to know the Electric better I guess.


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(@rahul)
Famed Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2764
 

Bends and Hammer Ons, Pull offs, Palm muting are the same, whether on acoustic or electric.

Since you know the chord stuff, start with the Lesson 7 onwards. I am sure you will learn about bends, palm muting and other techniques easily there.


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(@medarrah)
Estimable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 103
Topic starter  

Thnks


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