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Old 05-31-2015, 08:28 AM   #1
TLGuitar
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Any way to perform (other than single-note pinching) harmonics out of natural frets?

Let me paraphrase it better:

I occasionally like adding the pieces I write this ringing-flavor achievable using open-string harmonics. The issue is, there are only so-many harmonic functions you can use the few audible overtones for under normal-tuning. Is there any way of doing something with your hands to create these using other notes? Maybe through some way of finger picking while holding down the pattern you want using the fretting hand? In the studio you could probably record these using especially-prepared different setups (different tunings/capo), but even that's a hassle and is not practical for live performing.

Thanks.

Last edited by TLGuitar : 05-31-2015 at 08:30 AM.
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:32 AM   #2
Sickz
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Yes. The ones you are talking about that you can already find are natural harmonics, meaning harmonics that naturally appear in certain places on the instrument.

In order to get the rest, you will have to use different techniques to achieve artificial harmonics. The most common way of doing this is placing your index finger of your picking hand twelve frets up from the note you are fretting with your fretting hand, and using the thumb of the right hand to pluck the string. By doing that you have created a artificial harmonic.

Jody Fisher explains more about it in this video:



There are of course other ways to produce harmonics as well, you can do tapped harmonics twelve frets from where you are fretting, you can use the tremolo bar to manipulate the natural harmonics, you can use pinch harmonics, and you can use this right hand technique.

Cheers.
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:39 AM   #3
theogonia777
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You can also do the same thing as above but using the heel of your hand to create the harmonic.
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Old 05-31-2015, 11:40 AM   #4
TLGuitar
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I'm familiar with natural/artificial harmonics, as I mentioned in the post. But yeah, this looks pretty great! Basically similar to what I had in mind, but I'm still not seeing whether it's possible to achieve an immediate or quickly-strummed effect with it, similar to what you'll get when for example strumming the E minor harmonic on the upper three 12ths? I need this to achieve quick formations of sounds using the harmonics, and going like that using a mid-paced arpeggio won't do the same effect. I guess I could test different palm positions, but my point being is that it should emulate having a dynamic capo and being able to strum the harmonics to their full extent.
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Old 05-31-2015, 11:59 AM   #5
Sickz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TLGuitar
I'm familiar with natural/artificial harmonics, as I mentioned in the post. But yeah, this looks pretty great! Basically similar to what I had in mind, but I'm still not seeing whether it's possible to achieve an immediate or quickly-strummed effect with it, similar to what you'll get when for example strumming the E minor harmonic on the upper three 12ths? I need this to achieve quick formations of sounds using the harmonics, and going like that using a mid-paced arpeggio won't do the same effect. I guess I could test different palm positions, but my point being is that it should emulate having a dynamic capo and being able to strum the harmonics to their full extent.



You are still able to do that with this method. You simply put your index of your picking hand out to create an artificial harmonic and then strum with the thumb on all strings, keeping the index at the designated fret as you strum.

Watch Eric Johnson show it off here, at the timestamp 5:35.

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Old 05-31-2015, 12:13 PM   #6
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It's reasonably manageable to barre a set of strings and "drag" a claw shape (right hand index finger touching the node, thumb strumming the strings) across it, and with practice I can see that being possible at speed. I think you could make that totally workable to get the same kind of sound, but anything involving a change of fret would be a lot more difficult.
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Old 05-31-2015, 12:16 PM   #7
TLGuitar
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Heh, I attempted doing that before watching this and it just didn't seem to work because my index finger pulled the strings too hard and made them vibrate the fundamental. That's probably something you need to master, I supposed.
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Old 05-31-2015, 12:29 PM   #8
Sickz
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That's probably something you need to master, I supposed.


Yeah, as with everything else, with slow practice and patience it will come. It definitively a hard technique to get clean everytime, but once you get good at it is one of those things that will help you enhance your rhythm playing and melodies quite a bit.
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Old 05-31-2015, 01:10 PM   #9
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I find using the outside of the hand (as if doing a karate chop) or the heel to be more effective for multiple strings. I also sometimes use the back of my middle or ring finger (like if you made a fist and put it knuckles down on the strings. They all take some getting used to, since you need just the right pressure on multiple strings while still strumming.
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