#1
It's obvious that if you want to sound professional you need good tone.

Does anyone have any ideas on developing a good blues tone? I am not talking about effects, pedals or amps.

I believe if you can't get a good tone on crap gear then their is no point in spending money on good gear.

My tone sucks....

.
Last edited by wiggedy at Aug 31, 2013,
#2
Try to make every note sound great, as slow as you need to, bend perfectly to notes and have feeling in the vibrato

as far as crap gear goes, I think good gear helps a huge amount, a great guitar is on another level to your standard $499 guitars
Last edited by Tempoe at Sep 1, 2013,
#3
Can you describe what you don't like about your tone? Like Tempoe said, a lot of it could be your amp. You're absolutely right in that tone starts with your fingers, but sometimes the thing you hate could be how the amp or guitar sounds. What gear do you currently use?

On the subject of teh fingers though, a thing that helped me is learning how to relax your fretting hand. I would subconsciously be strangling that neck, and my fingers were almost white from the pressure, and it made smooth transitions and bends really hard to work out- so focus on how hard your pressing down. You don't need hardly any pressure to make the sound, and you want to use as little as possible.
#4
I haven't actually read much of this thread, but tone does come from the fingers, but only to a certain extent. Your amp is still more important obviously.
My biggest guess is you're in denial that you need a new amp.

What you really need.. is a new amp.
Last edited by vayne92 at Sep 1, 2013,
#5
Quote by voncameron
Can you describe what you don't like about your tone?
What gear do you currently use?
relax your fretting hand

I can't put my finger on it... just sounds too thin.... sort of. I'm using a 20 Watt Fender Mustang. I have been worked on fretting lightly, but some blues bends take some heavy fretting.

Quote by Tempoe
bend perfectly to notes and have feeling in the vibrato
.

Been working on vibrato, it's getting better.

Quote by vayne92
What you really need.. is a new amp.

You might be right... damn it...

I think my sound is kind of weak, I also notice my accuracy or coordination is some times slightly off. Where I might pick a note slightly before I have it fretted (not always) and that note will sound weak

.
#6
Quote by wiggedy
It's obvious that if you want to sound professional you need good tone.

Does anyone have any ideas on developing a good blues tone? I am not talking about effects, pedals or amps.

I believe if you can't get a good tone on crap gear then their is no point in spending money on good gear.

My tone sucks....

.



Dont know about your tone but your mentality and way of thinking are certainly in the right place.You are on the right track thinking like that.Get your bending and vibrato to sing and you have a solid start as far as blues is concerned...also play with dynamics and accents sometimes using your fingers instead of your pick in order to make them happen.Play your lines staccatto,play them legato,mix em up etc etc etc.Check out Guthrie Govans short lick library clips on youtube about bending alone, to realise that there are a million things you can do to improve your tone.

And always remember this....your favorite player with your crappy gear would still sound like him,you with his expensive gear would still sound like you.Tone is indeed in the fingers.Good luck .
#7
Honestly, a guitar that stays in tune and doesn't break up and shit and an amp that doesn't sounds like a busted pair of headphones is all you REALLY need. As for blues, it's all in the phrasing. Every blues player uses a different guitar, tuning, amp, whatever, but it's all the blues, because that's what they play. Give Joe Bonamassa a squier strat and a peavey vypyr and he's still gonna sound like Joe Bonamassa, there will be SLIGHT tonal differences as far as what effects he uses, but 95% of his tone comes from his hands and his mind.

Really, the only difference gear makes is to the player. If you have something you LIKE, you'll be more inspired to play and all that jazz. It won't sound any better to an outside listener. If the sounds is an EQ difference, as in "This sounds too bright and piercing" or "this sounds far too bassy and fat" then it's pretty easily rectified, but if it's "these licks just sound boring as hell" then it's your phrasing.

The best example is when these guys play an acoustic guitar, it still sounds like them, but slight EQ and effects changes. It's a very common misconception that better gear will somehow make you sound drastically better, but it's minimal at best. I mean, the gear all the guys in the 60's and early 70's played was gaaarbage.

I'd like to point out that Brendon Small recorded most of the songs for Metalocalypse with his Line 6 POD.
Last edited by Velcro Man at Sep 1, 2013,
#9
Copy players you think have good tone and put a lot of ambition into detail. For me that would mean copying Players like Philipp Sayce or SRV and staying away from Santana or BBking as I think their vibrato/bending control suck.
#10
Quote by Velcro Man
It's a very common misconception that better gear will somehow make you sound drastically better, but it's minimal at best. I mean, the gear all the guys in the 60's and early 70's played was gaaarbage.


I see.
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#11
Quote by Velcro Man
It's a very common misconception that better gear will somehow make you sound drastically better, but it's minimal at best. I mean, the gear all the guys in the 60's and early 70's played was gaaarbage.


yeah all those 1959 les pauls, pre-cbs fenders and original plexis, tweed deluxes etc. were shite.

Quote by vayne92

What you really need.. is a new amp.


haha awesome that's even starting to come over here

Quote by Tempoe
Try to make every note sound great, as slow as you need to, bend perfectly to notes and have feeling in the vibrato


+1, that's about the height of it. And listen really closely to the playing of good players. There are often a lot of things that they're doing that you might not hear if you're only casually listening to it.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
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#12
Quote by voncameron
You don't need hardly any pressure to make the sound, and you want to use as little as possible.

I disagree.

Playing lightly may have it's use in certain styles (shred, for example), but some styles call for heavier playing.

Personally, the majority of my favorite players were all heavy-handed guys who played hard. These, of course, were guys who were big in the 60s/70s when you actually had to do some work to get a good sound going, as there weren't ridiculous, high-gain amps to do it for you.

Also, I will disagree completely with anybody who claims there's no real noticeable difference between two players playing the same passage, one with a heavy approach and one with a light approach.
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#13
Quote by Dave_Mc
yeah all those 1959 les pauls, pre-cbs fenders and original plexis, tweed deluxes etc. were shite.


Yap, compared to shit today. There's nothing special about those old fenders and gibsons other than the pick ups being inefficiently wound so that they all sounded different, so some sounded good, and others sounded terrible. The idea just kept on that somehow these were the best, and those guitars that were awful were better than most, and the ones that weren't were like the holy grail.

$150, Pearly Gates pickups, bam, you can have the sound of a 59 les paul

Then the amps...just LISTEN to anyone from that era. Technology doesn't get WORSE over time, things have improved from primitive to current, but a lot of that shit was awwwwful.

I will admin, I did like the fender amps...though they've easily been replaced today.

Buuut we're getting off topic not.


I disagree.

Playing lightly may have it's use in certain styles (shred, for example), but some styles call for heavier playing.

Personally, the majority of my favorite players were all heavy-handed guys who played hard. These, of course, were guys who were big in the 60s/70s when you actually had to do some work to get a good sound going, as there weren't ridiculous, high-gain amps to do it for you.

Also, I will disagree completely with anybody who claims there's no real noticeable difference between two players playing the same passage, one with a heavy approach and one with a light approach.


Well, obviously a heavy right hand is good, dynamics and all that, but there is no benefit to playing with a heavy left hand, it just slows you down and throws you out of tune.
Last edited by Velcro Man at Sep 1, 2013,
#14
Oh i'd agree that there's a lot of BS around the vintage market, and the prices have gone through the roof so they're only for collectors, but at the same time the "good" stuff from back then is pretty much the standard that everyone seems to be aiming for as far as tone is concerned (for more vintage tones, obviously).

i'd also say you're confusing technology (which i agree, normally only goes forward) with quality of manufacture, which isn't necessarily the same thing. the irony is that better technology actually can be used to let people cut more corners...

I'd agree that all that "awesome" vintage stuff was made to a price too. But "made to a price" back then was often different to "made to a price" nowadays. Not always, of course, some old stuff was tat too, of course.

regarding "Then the amps...just LISTEN to anyone from that era. "

that's really a matter of taste.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#15
Quote by Dave_Mc

regarding "Then the amps...just LISTEN to anyone from that era. "

that's really a matter of taste.


Fair enough, but I was watching a Sabbath concert circa 1970 and Iommi's amp just sounded bleh to me, but his playing made it sound like Sabbath and you don't even notice. He has such an amazing vibrato...
#16
I'm going to throw my 2 cents in here because I consider myself a beginner and tone has been a huge issue for me since day one. I've done all the research and there are so many things that affect tone like amp, strings, pick, pickups, pedals, cables, pretty much anything will affect your tone. I've experimented with SS amps, combo tube amps, and different pickups, guitars, and cables. What I've discovered, and i'm sure a lot of seasoned players will agree, is that the tone mostly comes from YOU. The better I get as a guitar player the better my tone gets, it's that simple. I don't know how to explain it except you can hear a confidence more in my tone than you could when I first started.
#17
^ agreed, but at the same time I think you can separate "tone" into "finger tone" (i.e. the player) and "gear tone" (the kit you're using). I normally hang out in the gear forums, and we just assume that you can play. That being the case, a jazzbox into a fender twin sounds an awful lot different from a king v into a 5150, for example.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?