#1
Why is the guitar set up so that the e string closest to us is the high e and not the other way around?
#2
What? All the strings are roughly the same distance from player's body.
^^The above is a Cryptic Metaphor^^


"To know the truth of history is to realize its ultimate myth and its inevitable ambiguity." Everything is made up and the facts don't matter.


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#5
I mean who decided that the low e string was the one that should be closer to our face when we're playing, If I gave you a ruler and measured the distance from the low e to your face and the high e from your face it would be a bigger distance to the high e string in the standard way a guitar is set up. Is there a reason for this or was it just arbitrary
#6
i dont know, but i know a guy who happens to be a lefty and when he started playing guitar (standard) he just turned it on the other side do the string nearest to his face was high e, he learnt to play like that and it looks very funny when he plays... oh and now he has a lefty guitar but he has switched his string upside down like he has had on his standard guitar
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#7
So you are talking about the string order - why the lowest sounding string is the highest and the highest sounding string is the lowest.

Well, I think the lowest sounding string is the highest string because you usually play bass notes on it. I mean, it makes it possible to play the bass notes on your thumb and chords on your other fingers (if you are a fingerstyle player). Thumb is a good finger for single note playing because it's separated from the other fingers. And basslines are usually single notes.

Another reason is that somebody just decided to string guitar like that and it became a standard. There are other instruments that are strung the same way, like all string instruments.

Quote by richso
i dont know, but i know a guy who happens to be a lefty and when he started playing guitar (standard) he just turned it on the other side do the string nearest to his face was high e, he learnt to play like that and it looks very funny when he plays... oh and now he has a lefty guitar but he has switched his string upside down like he has had on his standard guitar


Dick Dale plays like that.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lRH_70_Foow
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#8
Yeah I actually play like that too. I heard Hendrix did that then switched it back over. I was just wondering if switching could help me progress a little more. I feel sometimes that certain pieces are much harder for me to play the way I do
#9
^ Guitar is designed so that the chords are easy to play. If your strings are in the opposite order, playing some chords may be harder. Though you may find more unique voicings for chords.

How long have you been playing? If you just started, I think it would be better to learn it the standard left handed way (or just try playing right handed - many left handed guitarists play the guitar right handed - you need both hands to play the guitar). But if you have been playing for a longer time, you have already learnt to play the way you play. Switching the string order could just confuse and make you need to relearn everything. I don't see any disadvantages in your way, other than you need to learn everything by yourself because there aren't that many guitarists that play your way (and of course if you want to play some country where you need to play a bassline on your thumb - that would be a bit hard).

And yeah, some pieces are harder because they are written for standard string order. But maybe you'll find your own way to play the songs.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#10
I have been playing for 5 years now. I feel like my only drawback is playing a bar chords and upper fret access on the high e is a little difficult on an acoustic. Electric seems like more of a level playing field though
#11
Sorry this has probably been asked before but i figure is ask it here. Is knowing the note made by each fret on every string attainable? Would knowing this help a lot for soloing composing? And are there any shortcuts for learning all the notes
#12
^^
Yes and yes.

I've only been doing theory for a couple of months but already know most of the notes on the fretboard.

The thing that worked best for me was doing a circle of fifths progression twice a day firstly in one position and then up and down the neck.

Much like this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QXtShCJ1kLU

Also this is what I tried to follow to learn them, but I got bored and didn't follow through..

http://www.guitarhabits.com/learn-the-guitar-fingerboard-thoroughly-in-16-days/
#13
Well, for what it's worth, bear in mind that most other stringed instruments are tuned similarly: with the lowest strings closest to the player's face. eg, look at a violin, or a cello, or an oud. If you ignore exceptions like a banjo or a uke where the topmost string is tuned in a different way from the rest of the strings, which still follow the lowest-on-top rule, the you're left with a harp and a lyre, which are tuned "the other way" unless you imagine that the lyre evolved into something like a violin by pivoting it around which sort of makes sense if you look at the way you hold it.

Although I also notice that the harp and lyre are instruments where the strings aren't the same length, so some of it may be practical in those cases: easier to reach the distant strings if the near strings are shorter.
#14
I fingerpick using the thumb to do bass lines while my fingers pick the rest of the strings. I can't even imagine how you would be able to do something like that with the guitar upside down. I mean using your ring finger to play 4 quarter notes per bar on the bass strings while your thumb index and middle play syncopated rhythms on the e b and g strings...your hand just isn't built that way. I guess you would find ways to play that worked and that people maybe couldn't do with their strings set up in the standard fashion but yeah it would be weird for fingerpicking.
Si
#15
Quote by hanginout
I have been playing for 5 years now. I feel like my only drawback is playing a bar chords and upper fret access on the high e is a little difficult on an acoustic. Electric seems like more of a level playing field though

Yeah, I wouldn't recommend changing your playing style any more. If you had just started (less than a couple months of experience), maybe then you should have flipped the strings (or the guitar). But I don't think I would have the patience to relearn everything I have learnt in five years (OK, of course not everything but you would need to change your thinking and learn the basic stuff again). I mean, that's the way you have learnt to play - some people use different tunings and really, so do you. You could call it the "reverse tuning".
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
Last edited by MaggaraMarine at Dec 15, 2013,
#16
Quote by hanginout
Sorry this has probably been asked before but i figure is ask it here. Is knowing the note made by each fret on every string attainable? Would knowing this help a lot for soloing composing? And are there any shortcuts for learning all the notes

Yes and yes. Read this. Do what it says.
#17
awesome this stuff helps a lot appreciate it.
last one : I'm not looking for an immediate fix for this, but once you know where all the notes are, how can you use this information to pick out notes that work with a certain song when improvising. Is this just a matter of being able to hear the notes and recognize them so that I can pick them out on the fretboard?
#18
say I am trying to follow a song with a certain chord progression, usually playing notes on the fretboard that match the chord work, but it seems like you can use completely different notes that arent even included in the song. is there any theory to this
#19
The way we are conditioned to hear guitar chords, is strummed from low to high. Whe you reverse the string order, every thing that was a prior downstroke, now must be made with an upstroke.

IMHO, down stroking is a bit easier than up stroking. Also, every stroke that follows must be reversed, if you're intent on doing a cover that sounds similar to the original.

I'm a lefty that tackled right handed guitars for sport, once in a while. I learned a few chord fingerings upside down, but my rhythms were never quite right.

As for staccato upstrokes, they're known as,"chinks", and are perhaps a bit of a lost art. At one time, they were so indispensable to rock/pop song style, studio musicians that specialized in chinking, were sought out for session work..

The best example of that I can think of which displays that ancient style, is Bruce Springsteen's, "Darkness on the edge of Town". (And that's kind ancient in an of itself).
#20
damn ive been playing peoples songs for a while and didnt realize it sounded completely different. but then again i dont do a lot of strumming anymore. could just be tone def
#21
Quote by hanginout
damn ive been playing peoples songs for a while and didnt realize it sounded completely different. but then again i dont do a lot of strumming anymore. could just be tone def
We get requests , mostly from beginners, asking for the "strumming pattern", for "xxxxx" song. So, the answer might be, "D, D, D, U/D". were you to apply that directly to an upside down string pattern, it couldn't possibly sound the same, now could it?
Last edited by Captaincranky at Dec 16, 2013,
#22
Quote by hanginout
awesome this stuff helps a lot appreciate it.
last one : I'm not looking for an immediate fix for this, but once you know where all the notes are, how can you use this information to pick out notes that work with a certain song when improvising. Is this just a matter of being able to hear the notes and recognize them so that I can pick them out on the fretboard?

Yes, it's all about hearing sounds and knowing which fingerings to play to achieve that sound. And yeah, knowing the fretboard of course helps. I'm not that great at navigating on my fretboard - I just haven't bothered practicing.

But yeah, I can hear sounds in my head but I can't always achieve them, even if I know exactly which note I should play. I just may not find it on the fretboard (or it takes too much time to find it). If I stay in just one position, it gets easier to find the right sounds but then I'm feeling my playing is a bit limited.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#23
Quote by Captaincranky
We get requests , mostly from beginners, asking for the "strumming pattern", for "xxxxx" song. So, the answer might be, "D, D, D, U/D". were you to apply that directly to an upside down string pattern, it couldn't possibly sound the same, now could it?

yeah you're right. I'm not denying that. I think that realization is why i subconsciously decided to shy away from chord heavy stuff. Then again different isnt always a bad thing i guess
#24
Hangin, you asked about picking out the notes to solo with vs. the chords. I think it helps to learn a) the scales and positions, b) some music theory (yes!), c) a lot of other people's solos (and then study them). Try balancing this with just ear training and jamming (without technical thinking). There really are no "wrong" notes, so don't get too hung up on that. If you play bass at all, you'll get used to using transition notes often a half step up or down from your destination. When all else fails, remember that an "in key" note is always a half step away.

As you progress, you can more often replace thinking with just feel and you'll be more comfortable adding notes outside of the current chords and scales, but if you get some theory, you'll understand why certain notes happen to sound better against each chord.
#25
Sorry to revive this thread but i thought I should say. I just picked up a lefty squier for 180 bucks to test out if a real lefty would work for me. All i can say is I now realize why the guitar is set up this way. Its simply easier to play. I don't know why, but it is. Plus I'm pretty quickly relearning what I used to know and feel like I'm already playing better. I'd recommend the switch to anyone who plays my way.
Last edited by hanginout at Dec 31, 2013,