Wikipedia will tell you.
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Its there to stop his playing from sounding sloppy. It basically dampens the strings. Its sort of cheating because you can play as sloppy as all hell and you wont hear the mistakes.
I just read the info box on the youtube video then, it tells you there as well.
At the first fret is the usual spot for it. You can also use a hair scrunchy. You wont be able to play open notes though.
So the rag can help me record better but I won't be able to use the technique if I record a song with open notes?
On another note... That's the worst professional guitar solo I've ever witnessed/heard.
Yes exactly. But if you did the rag thing in a context where your jamming with your mates, they would likely burn the hell out of you, because using a rag is generally considered a cop out. So you'd be better off learning good muting techniques than relying on a rag. See what i mean?
Quote by carr4600
Thank You Sir

No worries, Freepower has a great lesson on muting, its in one of the stickies.
There are a few valid reasons for a dampener, like 8 fingered tapping. That aside, it's a bad idea, and it will make your playing worse. If you are playing something without a dampener and it sounds bad, you say to yourself "that sounds bad, I've got to work on it". Not the case when everything sounds artificially fine. Even your existing muting skills will go backwards if you do to much of this - it may be more or less subliminal but you are constantly paying attention to muting because you know it will sound bad if you don't - I'm not sure that continues to happen if you don't have to worry about it.
Quote by Ekofu
On another note... That's the worst professional guitar solo I've ever witnessed/heard.

Not trying to derail the thread but I have to agree. Worst tone i've ever heard in a recording studio enviroment, not to mention the actual solo.
With our lives based on the hope for salvation
The humanist paradigm is nothing but a charade
Condemned to inertia: a passive race
We wait and contemplate