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I've got the vibrato blues!


jzbluze

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After months of hard practicing on my hand vibrato technique, my guitar playing friend (who has a very sensitive ear) informed me that my vibrato was sharp quite a bit of the time. I use the B.B. King method, where I use my hand as a pivot point. I pull down towards the floor when I vibrato, and oscilate quickly. Is this (pulling downward)the technique that most of you blues players use? Do some of you push upward from the string's starting point at level to vibrato? What methods do you use?
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I am somewhat hesitant to post on a thread with the word vibrato in it. http://cwm.ragesofsanity.com/s/cwm2/cwm27.gif But what the hell, here goes.

It sounds like you just need to ease up a bit on the depth of your vibrato. Just relax and let it flow. The key to good vibrato is finesse. Try to use a lighter touch. And don't get discouraged. Good vibrato takes time, like all other aspects of the instrument. Stick with it and you will get the hang of it.

So Many Drummers. So Little Time...
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Originally posted by KHAN:

I am somewhat hesitant to post on a thread with the word vibrato in it. http://cwm.ragesofsanity.com/s/cwm2/cwm27.gif

 

LOL KHAN http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

Just try not to piss off jzbluze, 'k?

~clockwirk~
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BB King has a very fast vibrato that is unusual. I don't think you can manipulate the note over a large range and stay that fast. It looks like he moves his hand very fast but keeps the finger pretty much in the same place.

 

Traditional vibrato is more like the violinists. You come on lightly at first and then bring it on to add to the sustain. It is very much like clasical singers too.

 

It really doesn't matter because vibrato is a personal thing where you put your own stamp on you sound. Go for what works for you. If playing sharp sounds good to you then don't worry about what someone told you. Maybe he has boring tasts anyways.

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Originally posted by KHAN:

I am somewhat hesitant to post on a thread with the word vibrato in it. http://cwm.ragesofsanity.com/s/cwm2/cwm27.gif But what the hell, here goes.

 

And I'm hesitant to poke fun at your reply.. so I won't!

 

J.Bluze - The classical style vibrato involves oscillating your finger parallel to the string. By doing this you go sharp when you push towards the headstock (increasing tension) and flat when you push toward the body/bridge (decreasing tension).

 

I read a Steve Vai interview years ago in which he explained that he combines the two movements; parallel and perpendicular motion to the string. This keeps his intonation correct (what you're looking for) but allows him to push the sharp oscillation further than you can with just parallel motion yielding a bit wilder effect when desired.

 

Got it? It takes a LOT of practice to get down the precise touch you're looking for. You'll do it.

 

Neil

It's easiest to find me on Facebook. Neil Bergman

 

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Don't think in terms of "Practicing Vibrato".

 

Instead, practice doing whole and half step bends, over and over, rhythmically in time. Start out slow, speed up.

 

The reason for this is to force you to make sure you're returning the string back to the original pitch. People tend to want to start out shaking their hand furiously, either with no result or with a random pitch center.

 

Also, consider that where you do vibrato affects it's strength and apparent ease. Start in the middle of the neck and work towards the nut, where it gets harder. Most importantly do it in time - that helps your reflexes judge the motion required to return the note to pitch by giving you a context. If you do it haphazardly - part of your brain is going "hey, we're pushing this string around, how about it?" while the other part is going "wait.. shouldn't we stop here? Or is it here?". Doing it repetively in time simplifies the process of teach your animal mind the reflexive aspect.

 

You'll know you're over doing it when you feel a pain underneath the edge of your left rib cage, or your elbow hurts.....

 

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I use two different kinds of vibrato...a wrist vibrato and a finger vibrato. The wrist vibrato uses the same motion as when someone uses their hand to indicate something is "so-so"...only the motion is translated to the neck. I (contrary to some others) usually begin this with a pushing motion rather than a pulling one.

 

I use a finger vibrato occasionally, say for example if I'm doing an index finger bend on a low G...and if I'm doing that I'm pulling the string obviously, as there's nowhere to push the 6th string to but off the fretboard. Then I use a motion as though I was telling one of my kids to "come here".

"Cisco Kid, was a friend of mine"
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I've found that if I want a really deep vibrato, I can start by bending the note a halp-step BELOW the note I actually want (you need good finger vibrato technique to do this) ie. if I want a D w/ vibrato, I'll bend Db up to where it will be a D then sound the note and apply vibrato. I've always preferred flat vibrato to sharp vibrato, and this allows you to do it w/o a whammy bar.

I used to think I was Libertarian. Until I saw their platform; now I know I'm no more Libertarian than I am RepubliCrat or neoCON or Liberal or Socialist.

 

This ain't no track meet; this is football.

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>>> khan told me i should put my fingers away in the case, forget 'em totally, and just use a whammy bar instead....

 

-d. gauss

 

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This message has been edited by KHAN on 05-15-2001 at 02:50 PM

So Many Drummers. So Little Time...
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Originally posted by jzbluze:

I use the B.B. King method

 

I'm not the best at describing things (as opposed to demonstrating)but here're the basic methods I use (& one I don't):

1-the BBK method (since I learned a lot of his stuff as a teen): to me this is sort of a "sting", like a narrow slide guitar "shake". My hand comes completely off the guitar neck, except for my fingertip,& I shake my wrist(kinda like I'm trying to get something off my finger).This is probably similar to what you're doing (although for me it never gets very "wide", so it doesn't seem that would make your pitch go too sharp).

2-For more strenuous effects (& usually on bent notes)I keep my hand in whatever position it's already in &, with whichever finger, wiggle at the first knuckle from the hand. This is great for controlled variations & can also be imitated, as a trill, while playing chords: try a "F" chord form & with your middle finger hammer-on/release the m3/3.(maybe you already do this;if so,excuse my over-elaboration).

3-Someone earlier mention the classical guitar method but I think that only works on those pliable soft strings, since it's achieved by pressure of the string pulling over the fret(& as on any fretted instrument, you can't actually lower pitch---well, unless you've got some awfully high, sitar-like frets). I've only found this effective on fretless instruments.

 

 

 

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Originally posted by d:

 

I'm not the best at describing things (as opposed to demonstrating)...

 

...

3-Someone earlier mention the classical guitar method but I think that only works on those pliable soft strings, since it's achieved by pressure of the string pulling over the fret(& as on any fretted instrument, you can't actually lower pitch---well, unless you've got some awfully high, sitar-like frets). I've only found this effective on fretless instruments.

 

Hey D. You misunderstand me. Take your finger and fret any note. Play the note. Without crossing any frets, push the string towards the bridge. This WILL flat the note. This mimicks turning your tuning peg. Nothing changes when you tune except the tension on the string. But the pitch certainly changes. You can easily flat a note considerably with this method. Conversely, you sharp the note by pulling towards the headstock. I expect this is identical to one of the other methods you mentioned.

 

Maybe I'm the one who can't explain myself in print! http://www.musicplayer.com/ubb/wink.gif

 

 

 

This message has been edited by fantasticsound on 05-16-2001 at 12:04 AM

It's easiest to find me on Facebook. Neil Bergman

 

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I'm with Khan......don't force it, let it evolve naturally. Forcing it makes it stick out, almost ugly in the extreme. Take your time and let it flow.
Down like a dollar comin up against a yen, doin pretty good for the shape I'm in
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Originally posted by strat0124:

I'm with Khan......don't force it, let it evolve naturally. Forcing it makes it stick out, almost ugly in the extreme. Take your time and let it flow.

 

(Cue Bellamy Brothers)

 

Let your vibrato flow.. Like a mountain.. stream and letyour vibrato flow..

 

Neil

It's easiest to find me on Facebook. Neil Bergman

 

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fntstcsnd

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