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#2927042 - 05/14/18 07:52 PM Guitar Licks
Tom Williams Offline
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Registered: 01/04/14
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As part of the "show" my current band is building, we're going to plug my imitation-guitar playing on keyboards.

After playing the main guitar part of Uriah Heep's "The Wizard," but before the beginning of "Reelin' in the Years," the idea is for our front lady to talk about my filling in when we need a second guitar part. With illustrations.

So, I was wondering if y'all could suggest some passages / hooks / licks that are associated with guitar by the general public. So far I've included the intro to Roundabout, and of course the beginning of Smoke on the Water, as "demonstrations" of guitar licks.

The more trite and cliche-ridden, the better.

Any kind of guitar -- acoustic, electric, jazz, nylon-string, is fair game.
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#2927045 - 05/14/18 08:05 PM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: Tom Williams]
moj Offline
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#2927051 - 05/14/18 08:38 PM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: moj]
Markay Offline
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Rolling Stones:
Start Me Up;
Honky Tonk Women;
Brown Sugar,
Satisfaction

AC/DC:
Anything but in particular Thunderstruck.
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#2927053 - 05/14/18 08:49 PM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: Markay]
drawback Offline
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#2927076 - 05/15/18 03:41 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: drawback]
stoken6 Offline
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So guitar riffs that work well when played with a guitar patch from a keyboard? I would suggest
Free: All Right Now
Eagles: Hotel California (the 12-string fingerpicked part)
Led Zep: Stairway To Heaven
Kinks: All Day & All Of The Night / You Really Got Me

Cheers, Mike


Edited by stoken6 (05/15/18 03:42 AM)
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#2927124 - 05/15/18 08:09 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: stoken6]
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Surely more than you're looking for, but this always blew my mind and worth a listen if you've never heard it. "Realer than real", and the guy did his homework. . .

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#2927126 - 05/15/18 08:20 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: Bobby Simons]
ABECK Offline
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Trying to play guitar licks on keyboard really illustrates how important articulations are to a compelling performance. In particular, pitch bend, vibrato and dynamics. Pitch bend specifically - guitarists seem to have a better handle on this over keyboard players. Not sure why - maybe it's easier to sound bad on a keyboard because the novice approach is to bend away from a note rather than bend into the note. Just my thoughts.

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#2927131 - 05/15/18 08:33 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: ABECK]
GRollins Offline
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Originally Posted By: ABECK
Trying to play guitar licks on keyboard really illustrates how important articulations are to a compelling performance. In particular, pitch bend, vibrato and dynamics. Pitch bend specifically - guitarists seem to have a better handle on this over keyboard players. Not sure why - maybe it's easier to sound bad on a keyboard because the novice approach is to bend away from a note rather than bend into the note. Just my thoughts.


There's just too much pitch bend available on your average wheel; it's almost impossible to avoid overdoing it. While it's possible to bend three or more semitones on a stringed instrument, it's much more common to do a full step (or less, in the case of vibrato).

Ditto the human voice. Yes, a voice can glide more-or-less seamlessly through its entire range, but in real world terms, it's just not done that way. We don't regard it as a natural effect. It doesn't express emotion--unless the emotion is: "I'm being eaten alive by a velociraptor!" in which case shrieks of any and all frequencies are to be expected.

Grey
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#2927142 - 05/15/18 09:29 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: GRollins]
poserp Offline
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Registered: 10/14/08
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Originally Posted By: GRollins
There's just too much pitch bend available on your average wheel; it's almost impossible to avoid overdoing it. While it's possible to bend three or more semitones on a stringed instrument, it's much more common to do a full step (or less, in the case of vibrato).


Yup, put it on aftertouch, along with some params that affect the "tone", and I suspect you'll have a much easier time getting it to sound closer to right. Most guitar players do vibrato by bending up (you can get it to go both ways, but it takes more practice), I'd say 300 cents is a decent range. If you're really tricksy, you can also have the overall pitch fall a bit too as you lay into the key to get the more violin/orchestral string-style vibrato. If you happen to have something that senses lateral key movement (like a seaboard), be sure to make the pitch bending asymmetrical (like, 25 cents down and 300 up). Still keep the pitch wheel, but give it a wider range (2400 cents should do it), and listen to people who "dive bomb" a lot (Steve Vai, for instance, but also Jeff Beck who uses the whammy bar for a lot of pitch articulation stuff). Finally, if you have somethings "springy" like a Touche, you can even get the "chatter" sound that Vai pioneered in the late 80's/early 90's -- on a guitar with a floyd rose bridge, you whack the bar and the bridge will vibrate, creating a very fast vibrato effect. Here are two vids showing this stuff in action:

Steve Vai, "For the Love of God" (I dig how he's playing the "nodes" of speaker feedback at the start, after some IMO needless noodling, at 1:09). "Chatter" can be heard at 5:19. He also does a fair amount of pitch stuff with the bar instead of using his fingers for bending:



Jeff Beck, being awesome. Like Clapton says, watch very closely. I recommend some volume-pedal action so you can bend a note and then volume-fade into it:



If you do the volume-pedal thing, try to do it _before_ any amp sim as that's often how they're wired into guitarists' rigs. To my ears, I prefer it there too because the tone gets cleaner/dirtier as it fades out and in. Or you can put it on a slider, which is kinda how Beck does it (he uses the volume control on the guitar, which also affects the tone at the same time as the volume is going in and out. In synth land, the effect would be somewhat similar to going from a sawtooth to a sine wave (but not an entirely clean sine wave. A lowpass filter on a sawtooth could probably be used to similar effect)).
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#2927146 - 05/15/18 09:38 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: poserp]
Sven Golly Offline
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You could always get yourself a Roli Seaboard:



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#2927160 - 05/15/18 10:32 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: Sven Golly]
keyman27 Offline
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Registered: 08/23/10
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Loc: United States
I like the David Gilmour string bend lick. You know, the one where he bends the string up first by 1 whole step, and then up another whole step. You can simulate this with the typical +-2 semitone bender setting -- play the note first with bender all the way down, then you've got the 2 whole steps up range to bend. Hope this makes sense. In the key of A blues, you'd play: A D A but with artful use of the bender, it sounds like A C D C E A.

If you're lucky enough to have polyphonic aftertouch, you can do the lick where two strings play the same pitch. For example, play a D and E together, then press down hard on the D note.



Edited by keyman27 (05/15/18 10:33 AM)

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#2927161 - 05/15/18 10:52 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: keyman27]
J. Dan Online   content
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#2927171 - 05/15/18 11:48 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: J. Dan]
Shamanczarek Offline
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The "Owner of a Lonely Heart" harmonizer guitar solo works well on Keyboard. Back in the day I used to do it on a Poly 800 with oscillators set at the proper intervals.
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#2927192 - 05/15/18 01:52 PM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: GRollins]
DaveMcM Offline
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Originally Posted By: GRollins
....
Ditto the human voice. Yes, a voice can glide more-or-less seamlessly through its entire range, but in real world terms, it's just not done that way. We don't regard it as a natural effect. It doesn't express emotion--unless the emotion is: "I'm being eaten alive by a velociraptor!" in which case shrieks of any and all frequencies are to be expected.Grey


Sorry to go off topic, but I couldn't help myself.
NOTE: Please advance this video to 1:42 minutes.



And now back to your regularly scheduled program. smile
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#2927196 - 05/15/18 02:09 PM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: DaveMcM]
Tom Williams Offline
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Loc: West Virginia
Good stuff folks. Re: pitch bend, that's one of my decades-old secrets: .

  • I set aftertouch for an up-only range of about 35-50 cents, with no LFO, so I can articulate the vibrato like a guitarist.
  • The pitch bend wheel (on my PC361) is a whole step either way, but quantized to half-steps for simulated fretting.
  • The big ribbon controller is set to a tri-tone, so that the hash marks coincide with frets / half-steps.
  • Mod wheel brings in compression, overdrive, and loudness compensation.


Also on aftertouch, I found that my heavy hitting tends to start the sounds sharp, so I introduced an aftertouch response delay using a FUN and a simple ASR envelope.

The soft pedal changes from twang to muted, though I haven't used that effect much yet.

A button switches the sample from Strat to Les Paul.

Finally, faders control filter cutoff, resonance, and chorus.
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#2927233 - 05/15/18 07:57 PM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: Tom Williams]
cphollis Online   content
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The other aspect here is strumming and finger-picking.

We do our fair share of folk, country, etc. material where there's plenty of strumming and finger-picking. Somehow, I've learned how to do both as a guitar player would, especially the finger picking.

I think I learned it when I was playing with only a single lead guitarist, and I had to learn all the supporting parts. It sort of came naturally with not much effort.

The peanut gallery seems to like it?

Piano, faux guitar, faux banjo, faux mandolin, etc. -- it's become a staple of the band. Not trying to do lead guitar (or steel) articulations these days smile
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#2927338 - 05/16/18 09:55 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: cphollis]
Shamanczarek Offline
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I once had a program on my old Commodore SX64 that allowed you to simulate guitar strumming. The way it worked is you held the desired chord below middle C. Above middle C you strummed the Keyboard like a guitar. The program remapped the keys to play only notes from the chord played by the left hand. I was able to do some pretty authentic strumming acoustic guitar parts which could be recorded into a MIDI sequencer.
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#2927340 - 05/16/18 10:13 AM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: Shamanczarek]
The Real MC Offline
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Emulating fingerpicked instruments is pretty easy on keyboard if you're a piano player. I've done it with banjo and acoustic guitar.

Some good fingerpicked acoustic guitar songs that work well on keyboard are Kansas "Dust In The Wind" and Peter Frampton's "Penny For Your Thoughts"

I've even done the Ballad of Jed Clampett.

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#2927363 - 05/16/18 12:33 PM Re: Guitar Licks [Re: The Real MC]
Wastrel Offline
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For banjo, I used a split with the lower side tuned two octaves higher than the higher side. That way I could whang away on a G with one finger of my left hand to create the high G drone string while arpeggiating and playing runs on the other four strings with my right. I got it to sound pretty darned convincing.
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