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#1
Well, the ensemble I'm currently in encourages the players to try out non-standard techniques on their instruments (the fact that it's based entirely on improv and isn't always tonal helps this quite a bit).

Besides a few relatively common techniques like using the pickup selector as a killswitch, violining, and two-handed tapping stuff, I thought I'd list a few of these techniques, and see if anyone else has come up with new ways of looking at their instrument.

Hand-held fans: Just a cheap fan that you might pick up to fan your face. Like this:

It can make a few different sounds on the strings, from ultra-fast tremelo picking to a steady drone, depending on where and how you play. Fading it in creates unusual washes of sound. Holding it just above the strings can create some interesting high-frequency noise. Yesterday, I detuned my low E, and played it with the fan while adjusting the pitch by pulling the string behind the bridge (could've been done behind the nut, too). When I had it right, it sounded like a motorboat revving and engine

Stuff in between the strings: I'm sure some of you have tried this. Various things make different sounds in between the strings. Picks allow the strings to still make pitched noises, but they're oddly muted and sound a bit like bells. Paper can get the strings to make percussive noises when hit. A combination of fan and paper can sound very cool.

Modified Electric Toothbrush: Well, I took off the toothbrush head, which left a vibration piece of metal. I applied the toothbrush head to the strings, which made a very cool noise. I'm not entirely certain how the sound worked, but maybe the metal was playing harmonics? I'm not sure. Regardless, it was making high-pitched sounds, but by moving the toothbrush up and down the strings I could get a sense of the different pitches and make melodies.


Those are the only ones I've used in performance so far, but I look forward to hearing if anyone uses other interesting techniques
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#2
I definetly suggest these things you're using along side of a flanger, tremolo, etc pedal or effect. I made a ghetto violin bow once and for what would be the string, I used a low E string. I can make some interesting sounds with it. I just thought of this one but what would happen if you somehow held a harmonica on the strings and played it? I don't know, just some random thoughts.
#3
If i want some sqqelies on a tom bridge, i usually the high e string and the play a harmonic on the 3 fret. after that i pull up on the string behind the bidge and it makes a sqealies. you could also make it more sqealies like if you have high gain and play by the amp for feedback.
#4
Quote by shtiming
If i want some sqqelies on a tom bridge, i usually the high e string and the play a harmonic on the 3 fret. after that i pull up on the string behind the bidge and it makes a sqealies. you could also make it more sqealies like if you have high gain and play by the amp for feedback.


"For squealies, mash on the trembolo. For meadlies, tone up on your chord surpassers."

I don't know if that's the quote you were looking for, but I could hardly read your post.

On-topic:
I love using a whammy pedal, one or two octaves up, and just play some silly melody while jumping between octaves. Kind of like the White Stripes, but...uh...not.

Wah pedal + high gain = atonal joy.
Wah pedal + high gain + a slide over the pickups = atonal joyous hell

Now that I think about it, mixing a wah and a whammy would be fun...might be hard to balance on two expression pedals at once...

Slide on random objects, as long as they're smooth, such as a mic stand, stage corner, edge of amp, or dual guitar slides:

One guitarist holds the guitar horizontally, the other vertically, and they press the guitars together around the neck pickup area, and pull.
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#5
Haha, sorry.
I was tired last night and i had some monster, like 3 cans so my fingers were trembly.

What i meant was that if you want to get some psuedo-sqealies and you have a TOM bridge, you can detune your High E string, play a harmonic on the 3rd fret, and then pull up on the part of the string behind the bridge. If makes a sqealy if you do it right. if you put your guitar next to your amp while doing it, you might get feedback, so it can get a more sqealy like sound.
#6
What my friend does (hes a drummer) is that he drums/drum rolls on the neck of the guitar and it makes these weird harmonic like sounds.
We ain't pushing the boundaries, we're blowing them up.
We ain't trying to expand the scene, we want the scene to erupt.


#7
I like running my pick over the strings around the pick ups while playing a little three string pull-off. Gives a really neat sounding "clickadickaclickadick" sound with harmonics sounding.
#8
the sounds from the toothbrush you mentioned are caused by the pickups detecting vibrating metal and trying to convert it to the guitar's normal frequency. pretty cool effect tho. especially if you bend the string with it over the pickup
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#9
also tapping the back of the neck can start feedback which (with ALOT of practise) can be used to play some amazing harmonics.
Quote by snipelfritz
Yeah well the Nazi Horn conquers the French Horn in two weeks.


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#10
im sure this isn't new or anything but i like to do something like holding a string on the 3rd fret then do a natural harmonic on the 15th fret. not easy to do with just 2 hands (i usually have to drop my pick or hold it between my middle and pointer finger) i'll do this with chords to get a groovy natural harmonic'ed chord.
#11
^yeah that called harp harmonic picking. every twelves frets there is minimal vibration so you can place your finger directly over the 12+(fretted fret) and it will sound a harmonic. this is due to overtones in the string vibration. there's more positions for this on certain guitars eg 7 and 19 on most guitars
Quote by snipelfritz
Yeah well the Nazi Horn conquers the French Horn in two weeks.


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#13
^ no no no

artificial harmonic = pinch harmonic = equal uber Dime squeal

natural harmonic = that nice soft sound

at least, this is the way i understand it. what i'm doing is just a natural harmonic but i'm raising the pitch up away from the standard EADGBE or 5,7,12 the frets that are normally used, for example i'll do an open A minor chord and then hit natural harmonic like this


e-----------------12--
B--------------13-----
G---------14---------
D-----14-------------
A-12-----------------
[\code]

not really easy with just 2 hands.
#14
Yeah, I get the part about creating natural harmonics based on fretted notes, I use this technique as well. I just thought it was this practice that was referred to as artificial harmonics.
#15
I don't remember what the guys name was, but he used to do a lot of floyd rose stuff. If you have a guitar with a floyd rose, drown out your sound with distortion and a little bit of echo, dive bomb it without hitting a note. Then give the back of your neck a could hit with your palm and bring it up. It was his "rhino" sound. You can have a lot of fun with that by getting feedback from your amp and throwing in some other effects. Van Halen loved the power-drill too, but you might have that sound with the toothbrush.
#16
Get a 1, 2 or 5 cent coin and tap the treble strings up by the bridge with it and slide up and down and you can get a C3PO sound.
Originally posted by WlCmToTheJungle "you have just received the amish computer virus. Since the amish dont have computers it's based on there honor system so please delete all of your files immediatly. thank you
Last edited by Caressing Death at Oct 9, 2007,
#17
Nothing wrong with getting chops but I think you guys need less time practicing and more time gigging!!
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#18
Quote by synth002
Nothing wrong with getting chops but I think you guys need less time practicing and more time gigging!!



lol thats ignorant. Unless youre a really big band, I doubt youll be playing shows every day. What us normal musicians do is practice every day, and gig once a week or something. You can gig alot, and still practice alot.
#19
has anybody tried artifical harmonics on chords
it gives it a wah type sound
really cool
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#20
wow for some reason
i was expecting this thread to be ALOT more popular than this
at least it seemed like a good thread to me
anybody else have any other crazy guitar concoctions (pretty sure that's spelt wrong).
Glimsom wrote:
I fell several hundred feet, and hit the ground, and then Batman appeared. He said "You gotta press the Y Button to fly." Then I woke up.
#21
Whenever I let a chord ring out I often tap corresponding harmonics. Just go twelve frets up and lightly tap ON the fret.
#22
^ i've tried that before and i always hit it wrong or something and the note get squealched (if that makes any sense) i have trouble tapping it on the fret and sounding the note. it just deadens out the note.
#23
Quote by CowboyUp
Whenever I let a chord ring out I often tap corresponding harmonics. Just go twelve frets up and lightly tap ON the fret.


no i mean a full pinch harmonic on each string
might be a little difficult at first but it sounds wicked in the bridge w/ distortion
Glimsom wrote:
I fell several hundred feet, and hit the ground, and then Batman appeared. He said "You gotta press the Y Button to fly." Then I woke up.
#24
Playing a melody by pulling your top e off the side of the fretboard by different amounts is pretty cool, and shouting into your pickups. You're so lucky to have somewhere to try stuff like that live, it must be awesome
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#25
i acidently pulled the string off the fretboard during the interlude to master of puppets
it was actually really cool
im sure you could experiment with it
Glimsom wrote:
I fell several hundred feet, and hit the ground, and then Batman appeared. He said "You gotta press the Y Button to fly." Then I woke up.
#26
Quote by z4twenny
^ i've tried that before and i always hit it wrong or something and the note get squealched (if that makes any sense) i have trouble tapping it on the fret and sounding the note. it just deadens out the note.

Really? Whenever I tap almost directly on top of the fret, it rings out pretty clearly.
#27
behind the nut bends,detuning while playin
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TRADES????
#28
I like to do a legato lick with my left hand on the low C (I tune to drop C, **** you) and slide the middle finger of my picking hand up and down the string near the neck pickup so I hit different harmonics. Stole the idea from EVH, forget the song he does it in though.
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#29
Oh man, I love experimenting with this kind of stuff.....

Well, one of the things I've found is a way to get a, I dunno, falling bomb/diving plane noise. Take a coin with notches on the edge (quarter, susan b. anthony dollar) and just run it down (or up) two of the strings. works best on a bass.

and if you hold a tape recorder near your pickups, you can get some insanely weird feedback.
#30
Two words dude: SLIDE TAPPING.

Like regular tapping but you can go faster because the slide is'nt fleshy. Hold the slide, (dont wear it !) and tap just like you normally would but only with the slide and not your fingers. It makes some amazing one string leads, especailly when you go in between the frets (microtones).

Also, if you put a load of phase on, and whip a slide around on the low stings, you get a very windy sound. The easiest way to describe it is like those winds at the end of that Pink Floyd song, "Echoes."
Last edited by Les Paul 72 at Oct 16, 2007,
#31
Drumsticks VS Guitar strings, Dremel Tool, pieces of metal between strings. E-bows are fun. Banging the guitar on the ground randomly. Magnetics over the pickups. Just play around.

One thing I did was take a broken guitar, use its pick up with different strings wrapping around them in odd shapes and begin to bang on them. Add distortion and reverb/echo and have fun.
#32
do a natural harmonic and wiggle the string behind the nut

try playing with a vibrator!
Up the Punx!
#33
Get an electric toothbruch and put in on the polish section and if you have a volume pedal you can do swells and take off the brush part, and drag the metal part down the string while frettign a note and it creates an F1 car sound and also a dropping bomb. It works really well on the acoustic too.

EDIT: Put it on the polish setting
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Last edited by SRVspeaks at Oct 23, 2007,
#34
I heard Sonic Youth does this, I take a screwdriver and jam it between the strings in between the bridge and middle pickup on my Strat. Play behind the screwdriver with distortion, and a bit of chorus sounds cool.
#36
Quote by The4thHorsemen
I just got an idea from Dvnc... use a vibrator as a slide!



YES!
Up the Punx!
#37
I don't know if anyone else has tried this, but its another right hand technique for harmonics that I made up. As far as I know, I'm the only one who does this, but I could be wrong.

Heres how to do it:
When you're going to strike a string with your pick, rest your right pinky lightly on the string your going to pick and just as you pick the string and the harmonic rings, take the pinky off the string. It's pretty much an artificial harmonic only with your right hand.

I didn't like artificial harmonics with the left hand cause I wanted to keep my fretting fingers free for more note playing, but pinch harmonics pissed me off cause I'd drop the pick when trying to position it right into place and sometimes not get it right, so I tried this method and it works great for me. I call it the corna harmonic cause I make kind of the corna (rock on) hand gesture when I do this.
Gear:
- G&L Tribute Series Legacy Guitar
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#38
Steve Vai wrote an article on this in 1984 for a guitar magazine and has it on his site (among other mini-lessons).. here's the "weird noises" section of it:

"1. With a vibrato bar, bend the low E string down to the point where the strings are flapping. Try to play the low E string.

2. Same as above, but this time let the E string get magnetically stuck to the pickup. With the movement of the bar, raise the string and lower it so it gets stuck, then free, then stuck, then free. Sort of "the burp syndrome".

3. Bring the bar very low. Hit a harmonic on the G string, 5th fret (or any that will sound). Move the bar really fast in the lowered position. Then release it to normal. Whee Wheeeee!

4. Turn the bar 180 degrees from where you would normally use it. With your fist, bang the base of the guitar as hard as you can. All this time, you are to fret a note. This causes the bar to "traumatize" and vibrate at a very fast rate. It's probably not too good for your guitar, but it sure sounds cool.

5. With the nail of the second finger on your left hand, pull the B string off the neck towards the floor. Now oull it around the neck. You should get a pretty funny "squeak". This is caused by the string fretting out on the frets and the pickups. This effect also works well with the G string. It's not hard to ruin your nail, though.

6. With the second finger on your right hand, fret a note on the G string. Now raise the note up the neck (towards the tail piece) until you'd go off of the fretboard. Keep pushing on the string very hard until it "squeaks out" on the pickups. Oh what fun. Sounds like little animals are flying out of your guitar.

7. Strum the strings behind the nut. If you have a clamping system or locking nut that is closed, this effect won't work.

8. If you have springs on your guitar's vibrato system, strum them with your pick.

9. Scream into your pickups.

10. Take out your guitar cable and touch it to your tongue. ZAP!

11. Beat your strings with the guitar cable. WAP!

12. Stretch the highest note on your guitar until the string breaks.

13. Slide your pick down the string for that standard "big rock tone" pick screech.

14. If you perform the previous example enough times, your pick will be pretty rough on the edges. This will lend itself to a host of other "concoction extravaganzas" such as:

a) Rub the rough end of your pick strings as you fret a note. This will give a "glassy" effect.

b) Try fretting a C on the G string. With the worn and rough edge of the pick, rub really fast on the D fret. Bend G up to an A, or higher, by pushing the string behind the nut.

15. If you don't have a locking tremolo system, bend notes from behind the nut. Bend G up to A, or higher, by pushing the string behind the nut."
Nor less I deem that there are Powers
Which of themselves our minds impress;
That we can feed this mind of ours
In a wise passiveness.
--Wordsworth

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#39
try a cellphone over your pickups while the front screen (If it has one is on) is on
and hovering back and forth over it it weird kind of anoying tho

dont touch the string with your phone
or do i dont care

also play behind the nut
or past the bridge if your strings go past it

if they do go past your bridge

sound a natural harmonic and push

CHEAP WHAMMY!!!

just not too far or they could snap
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Last edited by aeon20k at Nov 7, 2007,
#40
I've stuck high powered magnets against the strings overtop of single coil pickups (not sure if humbickes will work, never tried) on a high gain sound. By moving the magnets around I could affect pitch controlled scraping sound and create manipulated feedback and screeching sounds. I currently do not have any magnets with me and this descrpition is going off an old memory, but I deffinitley recomend experimanting with stronger magnetic objects and the strings/pickups.

Oh, and this is probably the thread to ask it in. I've seen pictures of Thurton Moore of Sonic Youth using a drumstick with metal rings /behind/on his strings. What does this do? Can someone explain?

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Last edited by rhymeswith suck at Nov 7, 2007,
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