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17

It's in their fingers, by which I mean the way they attack the string, the way they use vibrato, the inflections they use. All of these things contribute to tone in subtle ways. Picking: Where and how you pick makes a huge difference: picking close to the bridge makes the guitar sound bright and sharp, closer to fingerboard makes it sound rounder and ...


15

I highly recommend reading What Every Pianist Needs to Know About the Body by Thomas Mark. The answer to this question has a lot to do with the action of the piano itself, but it has more to do with the way you move your muscles to play. The answer to your question is explained in detail in Chapter 7, entitled "Mapping The Piano". To paraphrase the first ...


12

The main advantage of neck-through construction is better sustain, achieved through greater stiffness. It's all about maintaining the string's energy as long as possible. Why does a guitar string lose its sustain? Why doesn't it keep vibrating forever? When you pluck a string, you impart energy to the string, and that energy keeps it vibrating. But some ...


10

Those terms mostly describe the frequency characteristics of a given sound and how the person feels about those characteristics. For instance, an emphasis on lower frequencies can be characterised positively as "warm" or "mellow", or negatively as "muddy". Likewise, an emphasis on higher frequencies can be characterised positively as "bright" or "crisp", or ...


9

What influences a player's tone has a lot to do with the equipment they use. A Strat sounds slightly different to a Tele, and a Les Paul sounds drastically different to a Rickenbacker. The construction of the guitars and the pickup used has a big effect on this. A semi-hollowbody guitar on the neck pickup is going to sound worlds apart from a solid body ...


8

Basically, we use the vast amount of recorded guitar music as a guide. We listen to the guitarists who have come before us and use their tones to help us to make educated guesses as to how to achieve the tones we want. A lot of the times, certain gear is closely identified with certain players and certain sounds. Here are some examples of pieces of gear ...


8

There is a large difference between tone deafness and an undeveloped voice. Unless your parents are musicians, comments like that can be hurtful and can stifle musical exploration and creativity. Tone deafness is actually quite serious and is as it suggests - an inability to distinguish between certain sounds. This is akin to color-blindness, where a ...


7

They're almost purely aesthetic. By far the most important tone woods on a solid body are the back of the body and the neck (not fingerboard) wood. And there's no real sonic difference at all between different types and grades of maple. Flamed maple sounds the same as quilted maple, and the number of A's is irrelevant to sound. I'm always amazed at ...


7

EXCELLENT question! The answer actually rather like "Why does stopped french horn sound up a half step when closing the bell lowers my tuning?" Horn players routinely adjust their hand position to close or open the bell of the instrument, thereby changing the tuning. When they need to adjust themselves down, they close the bell, and when they need to ...


6

Sounds to me like exactly the same principle. The first rhythm gets faster and faster until it becomes a blur of noise and is removed from the sound, but over the top of that is superimposed the same rhythm at half speed. While you're listening to the first rhythm get faster, the second does the same, and eventually becomes the main focus of attention. By ...


6

First, of course, is to play single notes. The Sax is a single-voice instrument, and double stops will not sound sax-y. Next, you'll have to change the attack-decay-sustain-release characteristics of the guitar to match the saxophone. The sax has sustain as long as the player has breath, and there are techniques like circular breathing that expand that. You ...


6

I have read much about the Telecaster, but I still don't know what Leo Fender was thinking. I know that Seth Lover was thinking the same thing, as PAF humbuckers had covers too. It was only into the 70s when you started seeing pickups with their covers removed. Even Strat pickups are covered, albeit with plastic. In part, the nickel cover was to make the ...


5

"Mark Tremonti's Guitar Gear Equipment and Rig" mentions his amp's settings, and amp types. That's a starting point. Note that it says he uses a "Bogner Uberschall for low end", so on your X3 try setting up a dual-patch with a Rectifier head and cabinet, and a second stack using the Bogner amp model. I don't remember which one it was, but I'm pretty sure ...


5

Fourier analysis allows you to take a waveform, and translate it into a graph of frequency against amplitude. The graph for a sine wave is at zero everywhere apart from one frequency. The graph for white noise shows the same amplitude for all frequencies. The graph for a single note played on, say, an acoustic guitar shows a big peak for the frequency of ...


5

"Tone deaf" is a bit of a misnomer -- if someone truly wasn't able to understand relative pitch, it would show up in their speech patterns. So, usually the term is applied to people for whom discerning differences in pitch is difficult, at least with the precision that is required for music. The fact that you must multitask this process with the act of ...


5

The way I understand it, this is more of an issue on upright pianos than grands. It has to do with the construction of the action, the system of levers and hammers that transfer the energy of striking the key into the energy of the hammer striking the note. If you own an upright piano at home, I highly recommend dismantling the front panel (ask yer parents, ...


5

This is an interesting question and I'm not aware of much if any actual research on it. Most pianists seem to claim that you can play a note with exactly the same loudness but with a different quality. I myself have a difficult time believing this as I cannot see any physical reason for it; the only thing you can control before the note is the speed at which ...


4

Use a shallower mouthpiece. On any brass instrument, a shallower cup on the mouthpiece will allow the player more range (it's easier to switch partials; I'm actually not sure why, but I think it has to do with adding backpressure), but the tradeoff is a "blattier" sound; less mellow, harder to blend in with a large group (because that backpressure makes it ...


4

I have an Epiphone 335 copy (they call it a "Sheraton") and a Warmoth-parts solid-body with "tone chambers" in it. I wouldn't describe either as having a "mellow" sound, per se. The Epiphone does have a sound I'd describe as "open" and "woody", though not as much so as my all-hollow archtop. You've heard 335's a thousand times, I'm sure, and you know how ...


4

Equipment plays a significant role in a guitarists tone, as does technique, but another important factor to consider is post-production. For example, if I take a pair of Metalcore bands, hand them all PRS SE 245's and a Boogie Triple Rec and tell them to go nuts they will sound very close to alike. They won't sound exact due to inflection and expressiveness ...


4

The fundamental problem you are struggling with is that human language is inadequate to describe sounds and the timbres of instruments. This goes back to the maxim "Writing about music is like dancing about architecture." Any time anybody tries to create written descriptions of sounds, that person has to apply their own subjective vocabulary. So no, there ...


4

Where it's used is irrelevant. No genre demands a particular type of voice, a particular sound, etc. Well, opera demands some special usage of some muscles, but other than that you find all sorts of characters dipping into all kinds of genres. That being said, it is true that a lot of rock artists have higher tenor voices, but that doesn't mean bassier ...


3

The tone quest is very ellusive. I too went down trying to get Andy Timmons sound several years ago. It is damn near impossible to get the exact sound without the exact equipment. PU's matter but the amp and effects are just as important. Each variable in the equation interacts with all the others to create compound effects that are impossible to determine. ...


3

The answer to this question is related / depends on each instrument/player. One thing you didn't mention and is important is that heavier strings might make more tension and stress on the violins neck/fingerboard. Trying to address your questions: Yes. But this change is bigger between different brands than different gauge on same brand. Depends. If you ...


3

First, let's make a distinction: When you say "bassy", are you talking about the tone of your voice, or the pitch range of your voice? Your pitch range, or voice type (bass, baritone, tenor) is not something you can change, but you can learn to expand your range. If by "bassy" you mean the tone you produce rather than the pitch range, then voice lessons ...



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