Steve Harris and his technique


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watchingmefall
01-03-2007, 03:03 PM
*Foreword*
This thread is not about discussing whether Mr. Harris plays with 2 or 3 fingers, we've been discussed that forever. /foreword

That out of the way, my bass teacher said that when you play the notes should be defined and consistent (I agree) and he then said that Steve Harris has a bad right hand technique because of the clank we can all hear, never the less he makes great music.

What do you say? bad technique or his own style?

musicology
01-03-2007, 03:09 PM
That argument will probably go on forever. I believe that the way you play is the way you play, and unless it interferes with how the music sounds, then it's all good. However, there are certain habits that hamper your ability and will end up hurting your muscles and eventually lead to surgery and the like, so that's probably not the best either. But, whatever works for Steve Harris makes him who he is.

DaliLama
01-03-2007, 03:19 PM
I was always impressed with Harris' note definition, a little finger noise never kept me from hearing a full, clear note from him. It's like pick noise on a guitar, and you can't get rid of that no matter how good you are. Would you say that Steve Morse has poor definition because of the sound of his picking, which is quite audible? In my experience as a young teacher at a music store, most older teachers are bitter bastards that don't like a god damned thing anymore.

watchingmefall
01-03-2007, 03:27 PM
^ yeah, a lot of teachers have a higher-than-thou attitude. I say it's his own style, an IF it is bad technique he just found a way to make it sound good.

SocKo?
01-03-2007, 04:41 PM
i actually enjoy that "clank" it makes him unique from other bassists and even adds some heaviness, if yuo will.

flyingmarlin
01-03-2007, 05:50 PM
i actually enjoy that "clank" it makes him unique from other bassists and even adds some heaviness, if yuo will.

i get a clank and i use three fingers, its from the index finger hits the string too hard, i have a very bad technique

indie-bassist
01-03-2007, 07:44 PM
He gets his clank from the strings hitting the frets because he attacks his bass hard. I dont think its a bad thing, its just individuality

Your41Plague12
01-03-2007, 08:02 PM
Kudos to Indie! The "CLANK" you hear in his bass sound is made from him pressing very harshly on the strings with his fretting hand, it has nothing to do with his right hand technique (at least that's what I've heard from numerous people, so correct me if I'm wrong).

IRONxPANTERA
01-03-2007, 08:23 PM
well i heard steve harris lowers his action

and that works for me

but i really belive that he just plays so damn hard on the strings
he dose play with 2 fingers, and they can go insanley fast, and he can do it for the longest time

DiabloCoche
01-03-2007, 10:58 PM
just to disagree i'm going to say he uses three fingers.
regardless

it's a combination of both his style AND where he plays

yes, he absolutely destroys his bass with its attacks.
but still

he plays closer to the neck as opposed to the bridge
which has a tendency to make the string hit the fret, hence the clang

and i think it sounds cool, personally

Porkie
01-03-2007, 10:59 PM
Well, I am almost sure , like 85% that I read somewhere that he uses roundwounds or flat wounds and that he doesn't play them like someone who woul dusually play them, but thats what works for him. Maybe thats the thing that make the clang so much.

UtBDan
01-03-2007, 11:02 PM
He uses 2 fingers, he has said that in several interviews - that is fact even if I always believed otherwise previously.

and its both... bad technique is style. Look at Flea for crying out loud. Les Claypool, Stanley Clarke, Victor wooten, sheehan, those guys are minimalists and have their own style, but I just mean - unless your technique is so bad no one gets the right idea, your technique (good or bad) is your style.

Greenday389
01-03-2007, 11:17 PM
He uses heavy guage flatwounds with a low action and plays close to the bridge. He also has a very hard attack.

So I say it's his sound.

vashts80
01-03-2007, 11:20 PM
just to disagree i'm going to say he uses three fingers.
regardless

it's a combination of both his style AND where he plays

yes, he absolutely destroys his bass with its attacks.
but still

he plays closer to the neck as opposed to the bridge
which has a tendency to make the string hit the fret, hence the clang

and i think it sounds cool, personally

He uses two fingers and plays over the P pickup with heavy gauge (.110-.050) flatwounds and a low action. The only time he plays close to the neck is when he plays chords. He has a VERY hard attack though which gives him his signature clack-clack tone.

Leper Affinity
01-04-2007, 05:17 AM
i think if you get the tone and sound and feel you desire consistently without much mental effort, and get good enough at it to where it is natural, then you have good technique.

when I want to i can get as much clank as i want out of my bass ( medium-low action ) but I can also get a lot of sustain and no clank when I want to as well. Its got to do with what your goal in your tone and sound is and if you can achieve it.

and speaking of technique, many famous bass players have " bad " technique if you go by the " unwritten rules of technique ". Ive seen cliff burton in videos just slap the sh*t out of his bass with his palm, ive seen geddy lee with his thumb way over the top of the neck at times ( pretty much looks like hes going " thumbs up " ) and ive seen people play things with strange hand techniques ( victor wootens double thumping, bill clements tabla-style left hand tapping, fieldy's thumb-pinky slap ( bleh ) ) but they get what they want out of their music.

by any chance is your bass teach Jeff Berlin ( joking ).

TJ1991
01-04-2007, 07:43 AM
It's like pick noise on a guitar, and you can't get rid of that no matter how good you are.
Just do the same as Paul Weller and don't use a pick.

I like Steve's playing, and the clanck just proves he's not miming. And he's just generally awesome, so what does it matter?

myself101
01-04-2007, 04:34 PM
I get that "clank" sometimes when i play, i really hate it

any tips on how not to?

indie-bassist
01-04-2007, 04:39 PM
Make your action slightly higher, don't attack the bass so hard

myself101
01-04-2007, 05:29 PM
Make your action slightly higher, don't attack the bass so hard

:confused:

Led_Zeppelin992
01-04-2007, 05:44 PM
He means don't attack or touch the strings really hard. Try a bit softer.

watchingmefall
01-04-2007, 05:45 PM
^ Soften your touch, they are your friends, not you enemies ;)

mistersharp
08-25-2009, 10:48 PM
well i play a lot of maiden and can get the exact same sound by playing with high treble and ocasionally using my nails (i discovered this accidentaly, im guessing thats how steve does it: pluck with the edges of the fingers very slightly and ocasionaly hit harder and letting your nails grace the strings, you get the EXACT same click sound)

ps: i use his bass and his strings, that helps to get his sound

capslockisnton
08-25-2009, 10:53 PM
this thread be one and a half years old, matey, arrrrrrrr

/pirate