#1
Hi there, I just started a band with three members last month, and we're seeking our musical direction by writing different stuff. Yet my biggest concern is to blend both the acoustic and electric element in our band at the same time. Our first song actually worked: I played the rhythmic acoustic part while the other guy went solo on the electric, the drummer did his part. But with second song, which is fast-paced, my acoustic guitar couldn't cut through. We're going to have a bass player soon, but im not sure how that's relevant.

Having said that, I'm wondering if you guys have any suggestion for a band like us in terms of sound. Also, can you recommend me on the bands that successfully did it like we're doing? The only one that crosses my mind is The National.
#2
There's heaps of bands that have both electric and acoustic guitarists - too many to name.

Why isn't your acoustic "cutting through"?

If it's a level thing, hopefully you have the acoustic guitar going through a PA. Secondly have the electric guitarist turn his gain and volume down to a "tasteful" level.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#3
If it's a volume thing, definitely do what Alan suggested. I wouldn't really know what else it wwould be besides a volume level.
Skip the username, call me Billy
#4
Quote by phan.nguyen.6


We're going to have a bass player soon, but im not sure how that's relevant.

Having said that, I'm wondering if you guys have any suggestion for a band like us in terms of sound. .


I played electric guitar in a group like that for a while. Here's some tips:

1) Arrangement is king: Bass is incredibly relevant ! The most important thing you, the other guitar player, and the bass player need to consider to make your parts "cut through" and sound good, is the arrangement, i.e. what notes you are playing ( and more importantly : not playing). The same applies to rhythm - if everyone is constantly playing everything at the same time, it will sound cluttered. No amount of equipment, equalization or processing is going to save a bad arrangement. It's important to audition parts in the context of the full band to see if they work or not. For example, the acoustic guitar player may have a part that sounds great when played alone, but that sounds muddy and terrible when played in the context of the whole band. Maybe he/she needs to play a different chord voicing that doesn't contain as many notes etc. Maybe the bass player needs to change the part, or the electric guitar player. A good general rule for each player in a band with two guitars is : less is more. Another good general tip is to avoid having everyone play parts in the same register all the time, which can clutter up the sound, especially in the lower frequencies. The same applies to rhythm. If one instrument is very percussively
busy, you may want to have the other instrument use more silences or sustained notes.

2) general sound tips: you should all be setting your levels, amp eq etc. specifically for band playing when together in your jam room. Whatever setting works when you are playing solo will not necessarily translate well when in a group setting. This means, for example, the acoustic guitar may need to cut the bass frequencies a lot to make room for the Bass and electric guitar.

3) make sure your drummer doesn't play too loud - this is the most common sound quality issue for new bands.
Last edited by reverb66 at Apr 14, 2014,
#5
What reverb said.

That being said, you also have to be very careful of volume creep.

There's a tendency when jamming around for everybody to slowly get louder over the course of the session. Some of this is hard to avoid (our ears actually tighten up and become less sensitive, by design!). But it also comes from the fact that everybody wants to hear themselves clearly, so when one person gets a little louder, everybody else gets a little louder to compensate.

So the drummer hits the skins a little harder. The electric guitarist - sometimes even subconsciously - dials his volume up a smidge. (But, of course, three or four smidges and you've gone from 5 to 9). But the acoustic guitarist - not so much you can do.

So all of a sudden you're getting drowned out.

Practice listening to each other. That matters as much as anything else. If you guys are listening to each other, that will help you not play louder.

When you get to a point where you can't hear yourself because of volume creep, stop playing. Does eveyrbody else instantly recognize that you've stopped? If not, then you guys need to work on listening to each other. Learning to listen to the other guys, and not yourself, is one of the biggest things you have to learn to function well as a band.
#6
Quote by reverb66

1) Arrangement is king: Bass is incredibly relevant ! The most important thing you, the other guitar player, and the bass player need to consider to make your parts "cut through" and sound good, is the arrangement, i.e. what notes you are playing ( and more importantly : not playing). The same applies to rhythm - if everyone is constantly playing everything at the same time, it will sound cluttered. No amount of equipment, equalization or processing is going to save a bad arrangement. It's important to audition parts in the context of the full band to see if they work or not. For example, the acoustic guitar player may have a part that sounds great when played alone, but that sounds muddy and terrible when played in the context of the whole band. Maybe he/she needs to play a different chord voicing that doesn't contain as many notes etc. Maybe the bass player needs to change the part, or the electric guitar player. A good general rule for each player in a band with two guitars is : less is more. Another good general tip is to avoid having everyone play parts in the same register all the time, which can clutter up the sound, especially in the lower frequencies. The same applies to rhythm. If one instrument is very percussively
busy, you may want to have the other instrument use more silences or sustained notes.

.


Thank you! This is exactly what I've been through right now, do you recommend any source of reading to get better at arranging different part of a band together? or just listen and experiment? I think that the acoustic sound will fall out of context soon, so should I trade mine for a telecast? In your experience, how did those bands manage to pull off both sounds?