Music Player Network

Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Do you sound like YOU? #1334090 02/15/01 01:26 AM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,070
michael saulnier Offline OP
MP Hall of Fame Member
OP Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,070
There's a recent post that echoes a common theme... how do I sound like... (fill in the name of the "artist").

Obviously, emulating a great player is a typical way to learn, and if you're in a cover band, part of the business. Of course you can get the tab and learn the notes, play them efficiently, and still not "sound" like the person you're emulating... the "magic" is not there.

Most, if not all, of my favorite players have a unique and identifiable style that within a few notes, I can tell it's them.

I think of this as one way to evaluate a guitarist... have they developed a "sound" and "style" that's fully "theirs". Virtually all my favorite players have achieved this.

Then I listen to my own playing... do I have a "unique sound"? If not, how do I get it... is it only my hands, head and heart, or does my selection of guitars, amps, pedals, music writing and playing ability, and so on have as much or more to do with it? (To paraphrase a famous Chip thread... I want to buy that pedal that makes me "sound good"!)

I also think it's hard to evaluate yourself. I think I'm so "close" to my own music that it's hard to "hear myself" without the baggage of knowing how and why I played something. (It's sort of like sausage, you might like it, but you wouldn't if you knew how it's made.)

In spite of that, I'm curious to hear how you feel about your own "sound"... and even if you think you have one?

guitplayer


I'm still "guitplayer"!
Check out my music if you like...

http://www.michaelsaulnier.com
GP Island
Re: Do you sound like YOU? #1334091 02/15/01 03:46 AM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 483
N
nrg music Offline
Senior Member
Offline
Senior Member
N
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 483
Here we go again!!
My own sound?....... Definately. I reckon your own sound comes from a number of elements which have to empathise with each other in order to create a sound that is truly you. The combination goes somethin like....
Guitars / strings / set up
Amp
Cab
Efx
Playing style
Tone
Vibrato
Phrasing
Heart / Soul
Love for the thing you do
personal loss / hurt factor ( write more moving stuff if you have loads of baggage )
How ya feel on the day

Man you name it and it all goes towards making your own sound and yes Guitarplayer I think good or bad we all have one. As you rightly say I can tell who it is within a couple of bars... It certainly should be something we strive for!!!!

Simon


...remember there is absolutely no point in talking about someone behind their back unless they get to hear about it...
Re: Do you sound like YOU? #1334092 02/15/01 04:00 AM
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 0
T
THOR_dup2 Offline
Member
Offline
Member
T
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 0
I'll let others comment on who I sound like. However, I can comment on what players I aspire to sound like. Hopefully to the end listener I'd sound like a cross between Billy Gibbons/Buddy Guy/Eddie Hazel with a little King Buzzo thrown in to give it some crunch. It's all about the vibrato baby.

Re: Do you sound like YOU? #1334093 02/15/01 07:48 AM
Joined: Sep 2000
Posts: 5,940
Tedster Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member
Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member
Joined: Sep 2000
Posts: 5,940
I think a lot of people develop certain licks...even if they're initially borrowed from someone else, inevitably you'll put your own twist on it. I have certain little thingies that I haven't heard anyone else do...nothing amazing or earth-shattering, just my little take on the turn of a phrase. It's like a signature...put a hundred third graders in a room and teach them to write in cursive the same way. Then come back in 20 years and look at their signatures.

Which, in a way, bothers me about the "Stevie", "Jimi", "Satch" clones etc...I mean, you could learn every lick Stevie ever played, but you wouldn't be Stevie. I remember when Hendrix died all of the same crapola happened "Who's the next Hendrix?"...everyone was listening to Mahogany Rush and Robin Trower and saying "Yep, there's the next Jimi"...but they weren't. Stevie was (arguably) "the next Jimi", but not really, he was Stevie. So there won't be a next Stevie, but someone else will come along. Wow, I've just ventured way off topic...or have I?


"Cisco Kid, was a friend of mine"
Re: Do you sound like YOU? #1334094 02/15/01 08:24 AM
Joined: May 2000
Posts: 4,062
KHAN Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member
Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member
Joined: May 2000
Posts: 4,062
It's all in the hands (and in the heart)...
---------------------------------------------------

I was hanging at my local music store a couple of years ago , and a local musician I know quite well (mainly a bassist) came in to pickup his 70's Strat that the store did some work on . He plugged in an amp and played a little. He is a good musician in general , but at best a passable rhythm guitarist. The Strat sounded noticably thin and weak to my ears . When the salesman , who is also an EXCELLENT guitarist picked it up and went into a little Couldn't Stand the Weather , it was like **BAM** instant SRV. Big ,Fat and alive with tone. Same guitar ,same amp , same settings ! ! !
The guitar ,amp and processing do of course play a huge role in the "Tone" of the sound . But SRV playing through Eric Johnsons rig would still sound like Stevie , and vice versa.
-------------------------------------------------------

Did I mention that its all in the hands (and the heart ) ?


So Many Drummers. So Little Time...
Re: Do you sound like YOU? #1334095 02/15/01 08:34 AM
Joined: Feb 2001
Posts: 0
S
stratman_dup1 Offline
Member
Offline
Member
S
Joined: Feb 2001
Posts: 0
Quote:
Originally posted by guitplayer:
I also think it's hard to evaluate yourself. I think I'm so "close" to my own music that it's hard to "hear myself" without the baggage of knowing how and why I played something. (It's sort of like sausage, you might like it, but you wouldn't if you knew how it's made.)

guitplayer


There ya go Guitplayer, I too think it's very hard for someone to know what *Thier* sound is. Some players do, and I think that just comes with the years spent playing. I've only been playing for 3 1/2 years now so I'm still deep in the study of theory, scales, arps etc.... so it's very hard for me to say what *MY* sound is. I'm trying to develop this but I don't know if it can be conciously done.

I'm of the opinion that you can't make your sound, it just naturally develops over time. I've always thought that I sounded like a cross between Buddy guy, SRV, and Gary Moore. Don't get me wrong, I don't consider myself anywhere near as good as these players, mainly I'm speaking of feel not technical expertise. But I've heard it commented many times at gigs that I sound a lot like Johny Winter but not quite, someone I would have NEVER compared myself to. I love Johny's stuff, just never thought I sounded like him. So does that mean that's *my* sound and I didn't even realize it??

So here's a question to those who feel they do know their own sound.
How do you know?? What was it that made you say one day, Hey this is my sound. Did it come like a lightning bolt or a feeling that just grew on you???

This message has been edited by Stratman on 02-15-2001 at 12:38 AM

Re: Do you sound like YOU? #1334096 02/15/01 09:47 AM
Joined: Jan 2000
Posts: 4,792
Chip McDonald Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member
Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member
Joined: Jan 2000
Posts: 4,792
Quote:
Originally posted by Stratman:

So here's a question to those who feel they do know their own sound.
How do you know?? What was it that made you say one day, Hey this is my sound. Did it come like a lightning bolt or a feeling that just grew on you???


What's important is to develope habits that are particular to what you like *coupled* with awareness of history (uhg... I sound like Wynton there...).

The problem with a lot of people is that they only pick up habits from one artist. Hybrids rule. Ultimately everyone steals, it's just how it's osmotically absorbed. If you wear your VanHalen influence on your sleeve, it will be obvious. If you mix it in with a Django thing you really dig a lot, mixed with a little tendency you picked up from listening to a lot of SRV, it's going to be "different".

The trick, if there is one, is in making all of your influences agree with each other artistically. I think I've finally gotten this down in the past 2 years or so: integration. In other words, you don't subdivide the genres you're influenced by, you figure out how they can work outside the normal context.

But the only way to do that is to pass through those influences completely. Become intimately familiar with a player's style, then move on. A lot of people stop and hang out and that's how you get clones.

If your listening interests are one dimensional, chances are your playing will be as well.

LISTENING TO MUSIC IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN ANYTHING YOU CAN BE TAUGHT IN MUSIC.

http://www.mp3.com/chipmcdonald


www.chipmcdonald.com
(tagline inlieu of having a representational page of downloadable music for the moment...) / "big ass windbag" - Bruce Swedien
Re: Do you sound like YOU? #1334097 02/15/01 05:35 PM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 204
jef5f Offline
Senior Member
Offline
Senior Member
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 204
Is it at all possible that some people sound similar. There are a few very unique sounding players, BB, Stevie, EJ, Carlos and others, but without trying, I think I sound similar to a couple of different players.

I know tone is in the fingers, and our equipment can help emulate certain sounds like EJ or BB, but it is entirely possible that there are some simularities between some players, unconsciously, unpurposely.

I found my own vioce, but others say, "you sound like ...."


Psalm 33:3
The best instrument you have, is your heart.
Re: Do you sound like YOU? #1334098 02/15/01 08:46 PM
Joined: Jul 2000
Posts: 414
T
trick fall Offline
Senior Member
Offline
Senior Member
T
Joined: Jul 2000
Posts: 414
I'm not a great guitar player, prolly not even a very good guitar player, but I can assuredly say I sound like myself. The reason for this, well I never learned how to play any one elses songs, or riffs either. If I wanted to play at all I had to write something, cause basically my songs are the only ones I know how to play.

Re: Do you sound like YOU? #1334099 02/16/01 09:34 AM
Joined: Feb 2001
Posts: 77
A
art Offline
Senior Member
Offline
Senior Member
A
Joined: Feb 2001
Posts: 77
I'd like to think I have my own style. I think most people do regardless of their level of playing. Everyone has their own way of talking, walking, wearing their hair, etc.... A case in point, there's this one guy I know (he's a major asshole) who's playing is absolutely awful. It doesn't matter what guitar or amp he plays thru - he sounds horrible. He has his own style.
A lot of players (myself included) I know started by trying to emulate certain favorite players. I have to agree with Chip's comment about listening to a variety of players. It's like cooking - you don't have to use everything at once but if you have a lot of ingredients to choose from, you can brew up a wide variety of tastey musical treats.

Re: Do you sound like YOU? #1334100 02/16/01 10:12 AM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 63
G
gtr Offline
Senior Member
Offline
Senior Member
G
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 63
Yep - you hit it on the head jef5f - - People can sound similar. I mean we have all met someone and said "You remind me of somebody I know"!! Their idiosyncrasies are the same, they talk the same, they have the same goofy glasses, etc, etc, etc. So it is quite natural that players can sound the same, if several players listened to the same music growing up, or played in similar musical situations in their young years, then they are going to probably have similar styles and quirks. I think the secret is to do the music you love, and play what is in your heart. So what if it sounds like Stevie or whomever - if you dig it, then that is what counts! Life is waaaay to short to be doing what you don't like! So if you do "your thing" and you like it, then life is good -


Moderated by  A String, Bluesape, myles_rose 

Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.3