Ways to use one's instrument or voice precisely to produce a desired musical effect.

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Guitar solo techniques

I have been playing guitar for a while now and I've decided (after playing with a guy I know and seeing how expressive his solos are) that I need to improve my improvisation. My improvisations are ...
7
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5answers
160 views

Why is the guitar traditionally held by a strap, and not in the lap?

Ya know, like the late Jeff Healy used to play. Are there technical reasons for holding the guitar in front of you, and reaching up and around to fret the strings? Has anyone any experience with ...
7
votes
2answers
135 views

What is the technical term for what the percussion is doing in this song?

In Massive Attack and Burial's collaboration track Four Walls, the percussion in the middle part of the song does something interesting where it shifts around the beat. It can be heard at 6:22 and ...
7
votes
2answers
194 views

Improving my descending tapping technique

I find that it's very easy for me to get a clean phrase when tapping in an ascending pattern like the following: $1 7h9h12 Reversing that pattern, however, becomes hard for me: $1 12p9p7 I ...
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4answers
1k views

What are the dos and don'ts of positioning your thumb on a guitar?

What are the Dos and Don'ts of thumb position in guitar playing? Are there bad habits or just alternative techniques?
7
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4answers
2k views

Should I retrain myself to be a right handed drummer?

I'm in a slightly strange situation. I have been playing the piano ever since I was a kid, and have in recent years taken an interest in drumming. Not having consistent access to a real drum kit, I ...
7
votes
4answers
679 views

Do we hit all 6 strings for upstrokes?

I saw a video in youtube where they told us to play only the bottom 3 strings while upstroking and all 6 strings while downstroking. The reason given was that the upstrokes will sound slightly higher ...
7
votes
3answers
186 views

History of screaming in music throughout the world

Screaming is a common technique in metal and other music genres but according to Wikipedia it has also been used in blues music and very few times in more classical Western works. Are there other ...
7
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2answers
270 views

How accurate are the pedal indications of Bach - Busoni, solo piano works?

On the massive edition of Bach's solo piano works by Ferruccio Busoni with the complete name of Busoni-Ausgabe (Klavierwerke) in 25 volumes (Joh. Seb. Bach. Klavierwerke unter Mitwirkung von Egon ...
7
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2answers
1k views

What is tremolo picking?

Are you just picking the same note a bunch of times or are you picking a lot in general and kind of hammering on to hit the notes? What does it have to do with an actual tremolo (whammy bar)?
7
votes
2answers
585 views

Which tones or sounds can be made with a cajon?

When playing the cajon, I know that the sound of the snare can be obtained by hitting the upper left and right corners of the cajon using the fingers and moving the wrist only. The sound of the bass ...
7
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4answers
193 views

Improving Singing Clarity

How can you make your words clearer when you sing/rap? (I Imagine they'd both fall under the same category) When a song is simple words and long vowel sounds I'm not noticing a problem, but when I ...
7
votes
1answer
285 views

How do I sing from chest voice to falsetto without missing notes in between?

I am having difficulty singing in head voice. I am a bass who can also sing very high falsetto. However, when I try singing a scale, there is always a few notes between chest voice and head voice that ...
7
votes
1answer
729 views

How to do a finger roll on a doumbek

So, I've just started playing the doumbek. I've started trying to pick up finger rolls, but they don't have the same ring or intensity as my tek or ka strokes. While this is probably to be expected ...
7
votes
0answers
407 views

How to get the harmonics of ZZTop? [duplicate]

I'm a right-handed newbie, so bear with me. When Gibbons plays in his groove, harmonics seem to be immediate as he picks. Many times I don't hear the note itself and the harmonics is the primary ...
6
votes
5answers
871 views

Is learning an instrument online a bad idea?

I took ballet and with ballet you gain something called muscle memory and if you learn incorrectly, it's almost impossible to ever be a great dancer (because of muscle memory.) Because of this, you ...
6
votes
4answers
3k views

Rhythm guitar techniques for a great Blues/Blues Rock player

Firstly, let me say that I've been playing guitar for a couple of years now. I know a few scales (Major, Minor, Blues, Harmonic Minor) and the basic chords with it's different shapes. I've also ...
6
votes
3answers
7k views

Should I mute “unwanted” strings or not when playing power chords?

I've been playing guitar for a while but haven't yet actually learned to play any songs featuring hard power chords. Now I'm trying to learn some songs by Metallica and AC/DC, and I don't have to tell ...
6
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3answers
2k views

What is the best way to become super-accurate on the piano?

For an example of what I mean, look at Volodos or Marc-Andre Hamelin -- both well-known for their incredibly crisp and accurate technique. The answer is NOT to play more. There are some pieces I'm ...
6
votes
5answers
547 views

How does a metronome help me play music better?

I heard that anyone who received theoretical education in music should use a metronome to practice their timing. But I don't know how does a metronome help me? Or even how would better timing help me? ...
6
votes
3answers
213 views

Is closed hi-hat the same as foot hi-hat

I am confused over the terms Closed hi hat and foot hi hat Closed hi hat is hittng the hi hat when your foot is depressed on the hi hat peadal What exactly is foot hi-hat , is it the sound made ...
6
votes
7answers
452 views

What's the right way to hold a pick?

It there any difference between holding a pick in a fist like this and with your fingers sticking out like this: I've found that most online guitar lessons teach it the first way, but I've ...
6
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7answers
739 views

The “right” way to use my pinky.

Ever since I've been playing, I've always fretted a B chord like this: Using my pinky to cover the D, G, & B string. However, while it works, it's never felt quite right. I've tried to use three ...
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3answers
7k views

Causes of sharp pain in a fretting finger after playing guitar or bass?

I have been playing guitar and bass for about 20 years now and I have noticed that sometimes, particularly in the last five years, I will do something with my fretting hand that causes a sharp pain in ...
6
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4answers
826 views

Is this an acceptable fingering of a G Chord?

I'm trying out the CAGED method, and whenever I use the G Form, either my pinky can't keep enough pressure on the High E string, or my ring finger lies so flat that it mutes the A string. By curling ...
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6answers
1k views

Up-down strumming when playing fingerstyle

I'm trying to learn never dying Nothing Else matters by Metallica and got to the part where I need to strum C, A and D chords: If I had a pick in my hands, it would go like nothing - ...
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votes
4answers
911 views

Do competent violinists avoid open strings?

I just picked up a violin for the first time in what must be 25 years. All that time ago, I had lessons and playing in school orchestras - but moved on to other instruments. As a beginner I would use ...
6
votes
2answers
590 views

What technical difficulties will I encounter transitioning from violin to 5-string viola?

What is harder to play, violin or viola? My question is should be completely agnostic, i.e. no relation to the classical repertoire or any other rep., nor should it be about the string order. The ...
6
votes
3answers
139 views

Effective learning from videos

I've taken lessons and taught myself songs from books and tablature. I have also listened to a song repeatedly and attempted to learn it by playing along. One method I have not tried is learning from ...
6
votes
2answers
383 views

Tips for using complex time signatures in a “catchy” pop song?

I'm looking to write some music in the vein of a band I discovered recently called Icarus The Owl, who use some pretty wacky time signatures (anything from 21/16 into weirder territories) but always ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

How to start bass-guitar plucking?

I am looking for an online beginner tutorial to bass plucking (fingered) technique, something like the image bellow. Important: I am not looking to learn how to play the notes etc., I would say I ...
6
votes
4answers
223 views

Is there a “correct” position for the right hand when playing guitar?

Normally when I am playing I support my right hand by putting my pinky finger below the E string, but when I try to play past a certain speed I have difficulty keeping up. I have found a couple sites ...
6
votes
2answers
845 views

Is it acceptable to move hand position while practicing scales on guitar?

I was reading through the answers posted here, and I liked the idea of playing with the "finger per fret" method, but it's not always applicable. For instance I was practicing the Fmaj scale last ...
6
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2answers
507 views

How do I improve the rate at which I learn arpeggios?

I'm referring specifically to this sort of structure, where the notes cascade upwards or downwards but most often up and then back down. Many of the pieces I play (on piano) involve this rather ...
6
votes
4answers
456 views

Guitar - How to play two-string mini-barre chords?

How chords that require two-string barre should be fretted to avoid constraining other fingers in terms of general practice tips? See example below. My 2nd finger tends to block the D string. It is ...
6
votes
2answers
170 views

How to do apoyando in Romance de Amor?

I am trying to play Romance de Amor, sometimes attributed to Vincente Gomez. I have heard someone recommend using apoyando (rest stroke) for playing the melody (on first string) - since the beginning ...
6
votes
2answers
82 views

Right hand technique for low chromatic notes

I'm teaching myself alto recorder. Since I'm mostly interested in jazz, I'm trying to practice in all keys from the start. My problem is with the right hand technique for the low chromatic notes. I ...
6
votes
2answers
113 views

Voice-leading with three chords in first inversion?

Hey guys just keeping my part writing skills sharp (not flat) for the long summer. I got this out of Assignment 9.4 of Robert W. Ottman's "Elementary Harmony." It's in G♭ major. I was already given ...
6
votes
2answers
678 views

Where can I learn more about tapping on an acoustic guitar?

I want to learn tapping on acoustic guitar; its basics, various techniques and so on. How should I start with it? Reference of some video lessons would be a great help.
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Mark Knopfler picking finger patterns — Sultans of Swing intro

I know Mark Knopfler plays fingerstyle, but What combination of finger/thumb picking patterns does he use when playing lead? Here is an example from the Sultans of Swing intro (from here): ...
6
votes
2answers
383 views

What is the earliest known use or indication of “col legno”

col legno or col legno battuto meaning : strike (the string) with the wood (of the bow) is commonly found in 20th century chamber music. But I have heard it might have been used earlier (at least 18th ...
6
votes
5answers
2k views

What is the foundational book of Czerny finger exercises for piano?

I've recently started teaching myself piano (via Bartok's Mikrokosmos) and feel it would be helpful to supplement the pieces with some standard exercises. Everyone I speak with suggests Czerny, but ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

My fingers are huge; how do I adjust on a piano?

I'm a big guy and my fingers are proportionately big. I've been a student of piano for a few months now. I'm told regularly that I should play "into the keyboard" so that my fingers are closer to the ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Is there one or more “proper” finger picking styles/techniques?

Essentially, if there is some collection of proper techniques that have distinct rules or characteristics about them, that's what I'm looking for. There's not one particular artist or type of music I ...
6
votes
1answer
143 views

Alto Saxophone: tremolo using alternate fingerings

On Alto Saxophone, which notes can easily produce a "tremolo" effect, using alternate fingerings? It's a kind of "warble" effect I'm looking for, but without changing pitch (or without changing pitch ...
6
votes
2answers
449 views

Sticks moving in my hands (weak grip?)

I've been playing drums for a while and there's something bothering me. I've watched a lot of "how to hold your drumsticks properly" videos for the 'matched grip' style (the one i use) to try to ...
6
votes
1answer
160 views

How can you prevent loss of or bad posture during drumming?

As an IT technician I am well aware of the problems with posture and the injuries as a result of such problems at work... so I was thinking can the same principles be applied to drumming to prevent ...
6
votes
1answer
94 views

Tips on playing quietly/gently?

I am amateur self taught musician and I am new to reed instruments. I decided to try out saxophone, but the problem is, it is way too loud. Each time I try to practice I need to blow very hard to ...
6
votes
1answer
136 views

Scalpel technique in Guitar

What is Scalpel technique in Guitar ? I searched on internet but does not show proper results.It says "Scalpel - move only your thumb and forefinger" Can you please guide me through videos,images ...
6
votes
1answer
35 views

oboist performing Malcom Arnold's Divertimento for Flute, Oboe, and Clarinet

Does anybody know of an alternative way to finger high B flat to D? There is a vivace 16th note section alternating between B flat to D that I cannot play cleanly with normal fingerings. ...