Poll: What is your view on the topic?
Poll Options
View poll results: What is your view on the topic?
The emotion is solely from the interpretation of the listener.
20 65%
The emotion is due to the music, not the listener.
9 29%
It is impossible to have emotion in music.
4 13%
It is impossible not to have emotion in music
11 35%
Voters: 31.
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#1
I was just tired of seeing other people's thread's get filled with discussion of emotion in guitar playing, and having their questions get ignored, so I felt it would be better if there was a separate thread for this. A few things first:

KEEP IT CIVIL This is for discussion of emotional versus unemotional playing. Be friendly with each other. There's no reason to personally attack another person.

Now, feel free to vote in the poll and discuss the topic. For the poll, you can vote for one of the top two and one of the bottom two as they are relatively independent from each other.
Last edited by TheShred201 at Jun 1, 2008,
#4
Emotion can be conveyed in both slow and fast playing. But it really depends to one's own preference.

Oh, and vibrato helps.
#5
I agree, to an extent. Playing with emotion is something you can feel, and can be done with speed, and or slow playing. but, when you base everything you write on "what scale should I use here" or " does this not belong" you start to lose the feeling to it, and you're trying to hard to be technical. speed does come into play here too. for many speed is the most important part of playing, which to me ( IMO) is not feel.

don't get me wrong, you can play fast as hell and still have emotion, and you can play really slow with no feeling. but there is that fine line. that's why i agree it's up to the listener to decide- kind of. If a player is truly playing with emotion, everyone will know it, if they aren't, well same goes.

hope I'm making sense here. good topic btw.
#6
I also agree that it can be conveyed in both slow and fast playing. However it seems that the majority of people automatically dismiss fast playing as emotionless. Here's a brief point on my view:

The original composer probably has some emotion that he is trying to express/generate/convey with the piece. The listener may or may not feel that emotion from it. If they don't however, that doesn't mean the composer plays with "no feeling" it means that you didn't interpret the feeling the composer was trying to convey.

The reason that you could say that Vibrato helps is that it adds an element of the sound of a human voice to the guitar and makes it in a way less sterile. A key point however is that GOOD vibrato CAN help. Poor vibrato just makes things sound bad, and in some cases vibrato may not be used in order to create tension or other feelings.
#8
Quote by ouchies
^ So basically what you're saying is that emotion is subjective..



yeah, but the beers i've been drinking made me care to eloborate.
#9
To me, every song, riff, w/e is basically a story, you are basically telling a story with your instrument. Atleast thats how I see it. And in stories there is emotion. Just how books are expose to convey a certain reaction or emotions (if somebody dies your expose to feel sad, etc), songs are also expose to convey emotions aswell. Then it is up to the listener to decide what they get out of it.

So it is different for each listener but every song will make you feel some kind of emotion.
#10
The poll doesnt have an option that represents my opinion, so I'll just say it:

Music is an art. Art is one way that we as humans can express ourselves, be it emotionally or not.
That thing that we express "exists" in the work itself, not in a physical way, but in a way that someone in the audience can perceive it when they experience the art themselves. Whether the audience perceives the art in exactly the same way as the artists is irrelevant. The fact is that the artist expresses........ the artwork itself retains that expression, and ultimately the audience perceives it.
#11
Quote by jamogod
I agree, to an extent. Playing with emotion is something you can feel, and can be done with speed, and or slow playing. but, when you base everything you write on "what scale should I use here" or " does this not belong" you start to lose the feeling to it, and you're trying to hard to be technical. Agreed in part--at times, you would think of what scale to use as such IN ORDER to figure out what notes will sound good for the emotion you are trying to convey so that when you go into it you can try to come up with a melody. If you have no idea what notes will sound good, you will end up most likely trying to come up with a melody but ending up taking longer as you keep having notes that sound bad to you.

speed does come into play here too. for many speed is the most important part of playingName three, and I will happily disagree with all of them, which to me ( IMO) is not feel.

don't get me wrong, you can play fast as hell and still have emotion, and you can play really slow with no feeling. but there is that fine line. that's why i agree it's up to the listener to decide- kind of. If a player is truly playing with emotion, everyone will know it, if they aren't, well same goes. I disagree with this a bit too--a player can play with plenty of emotion and you could have no idea--the emotion that they interpret from their playing will be different than yours, and you could end up with none. Also, first in my opinion, it is impossible to have a truly "emotionless" piece of music. But take this example: I learn X guitar solo, which is well known or being a highly emotional piece of music. I however don't care for it, and have no real emotional connection to the piece. I record me playing it, but I'm bored at the time, and not experiencing any kind of anger, sadness, happiness, etc. from it. However, when you listen to my recording, you are filled with sorrow, and tears nearly start to well up in your eyes. Did I play with emotion? Did you interpret emotion from my playing? Oh, and by the way, boredom is an emotion too, so if it makes you bored it still succeeded in inspiring emotion.

hope I'm making sense here. good topic btw.


There ya go
#12
Quote by GuitarMunky
The poll doesnt have an option that represents my opinion, so I'll just say it:

Music is an art. Art is one way that we as humans can express ourselves, be it emotionally or not.
That thing that we express "exists" in the work itself, not in a physical way, but in a way that someone in the audience can perceive it when they experience the art themselves. Whether the audience perceives the art in exactly the same way as the artists is irrelevant. The fact is that the artist expresses........ the artwork itself retains that expression, and ultimately the audience perceives it.


If you give me a brief option to add to the poll I'll edit it in...Can you edit polls?

Just based on this though--I agree with a lot of this. The problem I see is that people criticize people for playing with or without emotion based on what they as the audience perceive even if it's NOTHING like what the artist is expressing--maybe the audience perceives nothing but the artist is expressing something. Then they say he has no feeling and plays with no emotion. However to him, it's very emotional. Maybe the artist is trying to express nothing at all but the audience perceives nothing. Then they say that he plays with emotion and feeling, but to him it's not emotional at all.
Last edited by TheShred201 at Jun 1, 2008,
#14
I think that emotion comes purely from the listener's interpretation of the music, if it was somehow inherent in the music then surely people would all feel the same things from the same pieces of music.

That's not to say that the composer plays no part; the player obviously chooses the notes to try and express themselves as best they can and while the notes and their harmonic arangement can be said to still contain the emotion when they've been recorded and even after the recording artist is dead that doesn't mean that they intrinsically have emotion, it's still up to the listener to derive some kind of emotional response to what they hear.
R.I.P. My Signature. Lost to us in the great Signature Massacre of 2014.

Quote by Master Foo
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Album.
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#15
Quote by GuitarMunky
The poll doesnt have an option that represents my opinion, so I'll just say it:

Music is an art. Art is one way that we as humans can express ourselves, be it emotionally or not.
That thing that we express "exists" in the work itself, not in a physical way, but in a way that someone in the audience can perceive it when they experience the art themselves. Whether the audience perceives the art in exactly the same way as the artists is irrelevant. The fact is that the artist expresses........ the artwork itself retains that expression, and ultimately the audience perceives it.

Hmm...this sounds familiar.

But this would be a good option if it were shortened.
#17
Emotion is required depending on the song. Think it depends more on the mood of the person listening.
#18
Quote by TheShred201
If you give me a brief option to add to the poll I'll edit it in...Can you edit polls?

Just based on this though--I agree with a lot of this. The problem I see is that people criticize people for playing with or without emotion based on what they as the audience perceive even if it's NOTHING like what the artist is expressing--maybe the audience perceives nothing but the artist is expressing something. Then they say he has no feeling and plays with no emotion. However to him, it's very emotional. Maybe the artist is trying to express nothing at all but the audience perceives nothing. Then they say that he plays with emotion and feeling, but to him it's not emotional at all.



Well there is alot of possibilities.

- the player plays with emotion, and the listener doesn't perceive, (many factors in why)

- the player plays with emotion, but the listener can't relate to it, and doesn't like it

- The player plays with little or no emotion, the listener can tell and doesn't dig it.


There alot of factors on both ends, but that doesn't change what art is.

Anyway, im not worried about poll. even though words themselves do not physically contain my point, im sure that anyone reading the post will get the idea.
#19
Quote by GuitarMunky
even though words themselves do not physically contain my point, im sure that anyone reading the post will get the idea.

I see what you did there, well played.
#20
Quote by GuitarMunky
- the player plays with emotion, and the listener doesn't perceive, (many factors in why)

- the player plays with emotion, but the listener can't relate to it, and doesn't like it

- The player plays with little or no emotion, the listener can tell and doesn't dig it.


4. The player plays with little emotion but the listener assigns his own and likes it anyway.
#23
Quote by TheShred201
Yeah, there are lots of possibilities, I was just giving a few examples.



I understand where you're coming from. There are indeed people that would say " that dude sux, he plays with no emotions". I believe sometimes it true, other times its not. Alot of times someone will say that when they're jealous because someone plays real fast.

That being said, the idea that an artwork does not in some way "contain" the artists expression is false. Spreading that idea doesn't solve the problem, it just creates a new one.
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jun 1, 2008,
#25
Quote by ouchies
5- The player is a girl and everyone laughs.


6. That girl has a PhD in music composition and teaches at Temple Univeristy in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and everyone in her classes learn.
#26
Quote by bangoodcharlote
4. The player plays with little emotion but the listener assigns his own and likes it anyway.


Right, that can and does happen.

Quote by bangoodcharlote
6. That girl has a PhD in music composition and teaches at Temple Univeristy in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and everyone in her classes learn.


who?
#27
Quote by GuitarMunky
who?


I'm guessing you just quoted her...
R.I.P. My Signature. Lost to us in the great Signature Massacre of 2014.

Quote by Master Foo
“A man who mistakes secrets for knowledge is like a man who, seeking light, hugs a candle so closely that he smothers it and burns his hand.”


Album.
Legion.
#29
Quote by ouchies
7. Everyone still laughs because shes still a girl.
8. The girl is about to give you head, but then you reveal your penis and she's the one laughing.

Oh, and then she leaves before any oral sex takes place.


Edit: Threads about emotion never work, so I suggest this thread gets closed.
#30
Quote by bangoodcharlote
8. The girl is about to give you head, but then you reveal your penis and she's the one laughing.

Oh, and then she leaves before any oral sex takes place.

/discussion

#34
Quote by bangoodcharlote
8. The girl is about to give you head, but then you reveal your penis and she's the one laughing.

Oh, and then she leaves before any oral sex takes place.


lol, BURN!

as for my 2 cents, i'm basically going with the answers between guitarmunky and bgc, its possible to play with emotion or no emotion. either way its up to the listener to perceive what they can out of it and either they like it or don't. i can play with all the "emotion" in the world and love what i just did, but if the listener doesn't "get it" or can't relate to it or whatever then they won't get any emotion or anything out of it (and will probably think it sucks)
#37
Quote by TheShred201
I was just tired of seeing other people's thread's get filled with discussion of emotion in guitar playing, and having their questions get ignored, so I felt it would be better if there was a separate thread for this. A few things first:

KEEP IT CIVIL This is for discussion of emotional versus unemotional playing. Be friendly with each other. There's no reason to personally attack another person.

Now, feel free to vote in the poll and discuss the topic. For the poll, you can vote for one of the top two and one of the bottom two as they are relatively independent from each other.

well i think its either you play with feeling or you dont. its not really up to the listener. just because they dont feel it, doesnt mean you lack emotion in your playing. however, that being said there are ways to tell if someone puts emotion into their playing or not. but i think these days people are to god damn arrogent to realize what playing with emotion actually is. ive seen so many people put down certain shredders playing just because they play fast. its stupid. not liking a certain style has nothing to do with emotion. speed has nothing to do with emotion. im a blues player and i think this whole thing is absurd. i highly doubt these players go out there a play and dont feel what they are playing.

i think we cant really put it up to the listener because for the most part the listeners have no idea what they are talking about. i think because most listeners dont actually play music, its harder. i think someone who is musically trained would be better at knowing if someone is feeling the music or not. but even then, its a tough subject because it might just be that they arent as good at getting the emotion accross to us.

so is emotion a technique? not really. but i think technique has a lot to do with how we get our emotions out to the listener. things like dynamics and note choice and even just how long you have been playing will affect this. because if you just started playing, you can have all the feeling you want but if you can make your notes clear and you dont know enough to make good musical phrases then its not going to come off very well.

but ive seen someone play a song with and without emotion. i cant really explain how to tell the difference. it just sounds like they are going through the motions, keeping everything in metronome like time and a steady vloume when they play without emotion. its the dynamics that lack. it sounds robotic. but when they play it and really mean it, you can tell.
#38
There's too many different answers. Emotion isn't a physical entity that can be contained within music, but at the same time, there is no "unemotional" music.

I think that music doesn't invoke any certain distinct emotion, but rather, that it creates a hightened state of "emotionalness", which then is interpreted by the listener and turned into whatever emotion the brain tells them to feel (for instance, most of us are memory trained to view slow music as sad, fast, major key music as happy, etc).

When it comes to playing, there is no such thing as playing without emotion. However, it is a learned technique to express your emotions in an understandable manner. It's not just notes. It's vibrato, tone, slides, gimmics, faces and body language, and overall control. A kid sitting in his room playing Dimebag Darrell solos badly in tribute to his hero is emotional, but he probably doesn't express himself well. Dimebag Darrell playing his solos on stage, is of course emotional, and as an experienced guitarist, he could also express himself in an understandable, perceivable, and entertaining manner.
Last edited by CowboyUp at Jun 1, 2008,
#39
Quote by GuitarMunky
The poll doesnt have an option that represents my opinion, so I'll just say it:

Music is an art. Art is one way that we as humans can express ourselves, be it emotionally or not.
That thing that we express "exists" in the work itself, not in a physical way, but in a way that someone in the audience can perceive it when they experience the art themselves. Whether the audience perceives the art in exactly the same way as the artists is irrelevant. The fact is that the artist expresses........ the artwork itself retains that expression, and ultimately the audience perceives it.


so in fact what you are saying is that emotion is perceived by the listener.
Who decided that pie would be sold on Tuesday but not Wednesday?
#40
Nice man, this just may end the debate. I believe that emotion in music is subjective, if you feel an emotion while playing, then you are in fact putting emotion into your playing, but if a listener is getting a different emotion, they are applying the emotion to your music. What I'm saying is that the emotion comes from what you feel from it, what you get from it. Music itself doesn't contain emotions, but the listener applies them, hence the whole argument in the first place....

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