Go Back   UG Community @ Ultimate-Guitar.Com > Instruments > Guitar Techniques
User Name  
Password
Search:

Reply
Old 01-12-2013, 08:53 PM   #1
TheEelsAnkle
\m/
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Ontario, Canada
How do we get a fuller sound as an acoustic duo?

So my brother and I have written a bunch of songs on acoustic guitar and cajon. We also use a few other percussion instruments: washboard, tambourine with a foot stap, ankle bells, shakers, floor tom with cymbal attached.

I play guitar, kazoo, harmonica, tambourine, and back-up vocals. My brother sings lead and plays all the other percussion stuff. We switch it up for some songs so tips for percussion and guitar would be helpful. I was thinking about maybe getting one of those acoustic clip-on reverbs or making one, but I don't think that would help a lot.



Do you have any tips on getting a fuller sound? Thanks!

Last edited by TheEelsAnkle : 01-12-2013 at 09:07 PM.
TheEelsAnkle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2013, 12:07 AM   #2
InfiniStudent
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Is this an electric acoustic?

If it's not, you could mic it - just adding volume and EQ will do a LOT to fatten up your sound and not make it sound so tiny and thin.

Once it's in the electric acoustic domain you can add Effects to it (Fx you would use on a "clean" sound) so some reverb, sometimes light chorus or phaser/flange or delay (for a cool one-time special passage).

Honestly, when I was doing the acoustic thing I was totally happy with the fullness and warmth of my electric/acoustic just properly EQ'd running through the PA - of course, it was also a top of the line Takamine so... it was already oozing tone.

The other thing you could do is just drop the percussion...and swap it out for a much more important acoustic bass. You could play along with MIDI drum tracks. OR expand your line-up and add a friend.

Happy Jammin!

Last edited by InfiniStudent : 01-13-2013 at 12:09 AM.
InfiniStudent is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2013, 05:04 AM   #3
Mind_Reader7
Registered User
 
Mind_Reader7's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Perth, Australia.
Reverb is magical in some scenarios. I use it more often than I should.

When I do any acoustic type stuff, I always play with reverb + delay.
__________________
"I think, as a musician, you should practice your technique to be as good as you need to be to facilitate whatever ideas come into your head."
- Devin Townsend
Mind_Reader7 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2013, 05:49 AM   #4
GaryBillington
Grumpier than normal.
 
GaryBillington's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Trow Vegas
My last band was an acoustic duo as well, the difference being it was just me on guitar playing with a female vocalist - nothing else was required.

Seems to me that adding all the extra stuff like kazoo, harmonica etc could be what is making you think you need more to fill out the sound - when you add a layer on top, you also need to add a layer at the bottom to even things out. Have you tried cutting the extras out & just using the guitars to play a nice stripped down melody behind the vocals? It's often the case that less is more.
__________________
.
Gibson LP Studio x2, SG Special Plus, Midtown Custom
Barber Tone Press > EHX Worm > TC Polytune > MXR Custom Badass 78 > EXH Glove > EHX East River Drive > Zoom G3 > TC Spark Mini Booster
Laney VC30 210 + GS112VE cab
Jet City JCA22H
GaryBillington is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2013, 11:49 AM   #5
InfiniStudent
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by GaryBillington
Seems to me that adding all the extra stuff like kazoo, harmonica etc could be what is making you think you need more to fill out the sound - when you add a layer on top, you also need to add a layer at the bottom to even things out. Have you tried cutting the extras out & just using the guitars to play a nice stripped down melody behind the vocals? It's often the case that less is more.

+1 Yup. That's what I was thinking too. Typically in an "unplugged" scenario percussion is the last layer to be added. You really need a bass "bottom" layer before adding percussion or the bottom sounds "missing"
InfiniStudent is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2013, 01:24 PM   #6
TheEelsAnkle
\m/
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Ontario, Canada
Quote:
Originally Posted by InfiniStudent
Is this an electric acoustic?

If it's not, you could mic it - just adding volume and EQ will do a LOT to fatten up your sound and not make it sound so tiny and thin.

Once it's in the electric acoustic domain you can add Effects to it (Fx you would use on a "clean" sound) so some reverb, sometimes light chorus or phaser/flange or delay (for a cool one-time special passage).

Honestly, when I was doing the acoustic thing I was totally happy with the fullness and warmth of my electric/acoustic just properly EQ'd running through the PA - of course, it was also a top of the line Takamine so... it was already oozing tone.

The other thing you could do is just drop the percussion...and swap it out for a much more important acoustic bass. You could play along with MIDI drum tracks. OR expand your line-up and add a friend.

Happy Jammin!



Yes it is an electric-acoustic, but we often play in places with no access to electricity (camping, beach, street). We do have a couple friends that play bass, but then we have the same problem with electricity as only one of them owns an acoustic bass (and he happens to be at school 9 hours away ) Thanks for the tips!
TheEelsAnkle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2013, 03:13 PM   #7
steven seagull
not really a seagull
 
steven seagull's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Southport, UK
Easiest solution - buy a 12 string

Failing that make sure you're both covering different parts of the frequency range, if one of you is playing open chords or using the lower strings make sure the other player is using inversions higher up the neck that use the higher strings - if you both play similarly voiced open chords it will sound a bit flat, and also any timing discrepencies will be much more apparent.

Likewise for your vocals make sure you're harmonising each other, don't just double the same line - you'll be amazed at the difference it makes.
__________________
Actually called Mark!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave_Mc
i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


stuffmycatswatchontv.tumblr.com
steven seagull is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2013, 06:42 PM   #8
racertj5
Wannabe Guitar God
 
racertj5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Nashville Tuning one of the guitars may work for you as well
__________________
"Music is the only thing that makes sense anymore man, play it loud enough it keeps the demons at bay." - Jojo from ATU
Currently Own:
Ibanez GAX70
Peavey VYPYR 15.
Mitchell Acoustic M0100
Johnson Acoustic JG 100
racertj5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2013, 10:07 PM   #9
TheEelsAnkle
\m/
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Ontario, Canada
Quote:
Originally Posted by racertj5
Nashville Tuning one of the guitars may work for you as well


I have never heard of that! That's very cool! Do you know of anything similar to Nashville tuning I can try right now without restringing?
TheEelsAnkle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2013, 10:16 PM   #10
TheEelsAnkle
\m/
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Ontario, Canada
Quote:
Originally Posted by steven seagull
Easiest solution - buy a 12 string

Failing that make sure you're both covering different parts of the frequency range, if one of you is playing open chords or using the lower strings make sure the other player is using inversions higher up the neck that use the higher strings - if you both play similarly voiced open chords it will sound a bit flat, and also any timing discrepencies will be much more apparent.

Likewise for your vocals make sure you're harmonising each other, don't just double the same line - you'll be amazed at the difference it makes.


Ahh, harmonizing the vocals. I haven't really though much about vocals! Thanks! MIght also buy a twelve string once I get some money. I really like the 'playing chords higher up' idea! I've already started changing some stuff! Thanks!
TheEelsAnkle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 04:33 AM   #11
steven seagull
not really a seagull
 
steven seagull's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Southport, UK
Nashville tuning effectively replaces the bottom 3 strings with the bottom 3 harmony (octave) strings from a 12 string, so in that situation playing the exact same chords on both guitars would be very similar in sound to a single 12 string, it also saves the trouble of having to find different chord voicings.
__________________
Actually called Mark!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave_Mc
i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


stuffmycatswatchontv.tumblr.com
steven seagull is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 04:48 PM.

Forum Archives / About / Terms of Use / Advertise / Contact / Ultimate-Guitar.Com © 2014
Powered by: vBulletin Version 3.0.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.