If you're going to do a pull off, I'd suggest bending the string with the ring finger, then pulling it off to the index finger already in place on the 8th fret. Any approach using the index finger to do the bend, results in having to do a slide down to the 8th fret, not a pull off.

You can use both fingers to do the bend, it's actually easier that way.

The (10) in parenthesis merely indicates that the tone returns to the fretted note
thanks. I just read that notes in brackets could be ghost notes, would this be a ghost note if I'm playing the 10 note before the pull off?
If you "bend and release", isn't the 10th fret still fingered? I'm not an electric guy, so I don't quite understand what you're saying by "ghost note". If the string sustains all the way through the bend and release, then the note at the 10th fret, is the note it returns to.

If you need an answer in different syntax or nomenclature than that, you could try "Guitar Techniques".....
Ghost note and tied note look nearly identical in this exact context in tab. The only difference is that if this was a ghost note, the bend/release sign would end right in front of the note - here it lands on the note so it's tied and not to be played but sustained.
This varies between tab editors and would be easier to see if standard notation was included.
bend up to the B (10th fret bent up to 12th)

release back down to the A (10th fret)

pull off to the G (8th fret). as cranky says, have your index finger already at the 8th fret in preparation, so bend at the 10th with either your second or third finger.

it's probably not a ghost note (though it's hard to say without proper notation, as fanapathy said). it's probably just a normal note played legato (i.e. not picked again).

EDIT: I don't play acoustic but I'm assuming, like cranky did, that this is for electric playing? that's how you'd do it on electric, anyway.
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Last edited by Dave_Mc at Dec 14, 2013,
I think of a ghost note as a note that may, of necessity, come through as you play the notes the composer really has in mind, and because they do not clash with the melody, you have permission to let them play but you are NOT supposed to go out of your way to emphasis them or ensure they can be heard.

So, in the above phrase, first beat, you attack the string which fretting it at the 10th fret, and that note needs to be distinctly heard, then second beat, you attack the string again still fretting at 10 and that note needs to be distinctly heard. Then, third beat, while the string is still making noise, but without re-attacking it, you bend it up 1 tone (or is that 1 semitone?), and that note needs to be heard (and if it's not, you need to practice attacking the string harder on the 2nd beat). Then, on the fourth beat, you release bend back down (still fretting at 10), but -- as reflected by the parenthesis -- you don't really need this note to be heard, but it's okay if it still is coming through somewhat softly. If it's ringing through loudly, you probably need to attack softer on the 2nd beat. Then on the fifth beat, you do a pull off (at which time you presumably are also fretting 8) which pull off is another form of attack, since you pluck down with the fretting finger on 10 when you pull off.

So the parenthesis mean it is sort of optional/acceptable, but it should definitely be softer than the surrounding notes (and it actually should be, since it is 2 full beats after you attacked the string).

Sorry, the reference to beats may be wrong, as it assumes each note is one beat apart, which could be wrong. However, whatever the spacing / cadence may be for these notes, the significance of the () should be the same.

This is different from playing the notes legato, which would necessary REQUIRE that the note from the released bend comes through. Similarly, it would be different from a notation that this released bend note be played softly / sotto voce? as that would again REQUIRE it to come through. I think the () mean that if you are playing this right, the note WILL come through, just as a byproduct of the other notes you are playing, and that's okay, but it is not a note you are supposed to worry about playing.

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Last edited by krm27 at Dec 17, 2013,
Quote by krm27
... [ ]...I think -- but I could be wrong -- that sometimes when you play certain notes, or chords, there is a known phenomenon of sympathetic resonances from other strings creating notes, and these can also be known as ghost notes. They'll generally be soft, compared to the notes actually being attacked, and they are acceptable (perhaps even intended in some cases). Otherwise, the composer would presumably find a way to play the intended notes without causing the ghost notes (e.g., put in a signal to mute the strings that might otherwise give rise to ghost notes).

You're correct in saying notes played one one string can cause harmonic resonances on other strings. In fact, that's pretty much the whole point behind the sitar's design.

An in tune guitar will also sustain better, and stay in tune a bit longer, than one which is a bit off. This would be especially true when playing multi-string chords. (since each string forces sympathetic resonance on its neighbors).

The fact the you can only generate very strong harmonics at certain frets also bears witness to this phenomenon.

Where we differ, is that I've never actually seen sympathetic resonance notated.

I have seen pinch harmonics tabbed, but never on the standard musical staff.
Last edited by Captaincranky at Dec 17, 2013,
sorry for the late reply guys, thanks for the help, the note plays better as a tie than ghost note