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> Pinch Harmonics!!!
Stevie-Ray-Vaugh...
post Dec 26 2006, 08:24 PM
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Hey GMCers,

Ive been trying to learn to pinch harmonic and for some reason i cant! sad.gif Every time I try a pinch harmonic either nothing happens or the note stops entirely. What am I doing wrong and what can I do to correct it?


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fretdancer
post Dec 26 2006, 10:20 PM
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QUOTE (Stevie·Ray·Vaughn @ Dec 26 2006, 07:24 PM) *
Hey GMCers,

Ive been trying to learn to pinch harmonic and for some reason i cant! sad.gif Every time I try a pinch harmonic either nothing happens or the note stops entirely. What am I doing wrong and what can I do to correct it?

I think its very hard to explain to someone how to do it but very easy to show someone. Its not as hard as you might think.
My way to describe it is this, I think part of it is to do with how you hold your pick. Im my case I usually only have a few millimetres showing below my thumb...so if I want a harmonic sound I simply dig deeper on the string with the pick so that as I pluck it, its a much harder pluck and my thumb just kinda strokes the string at the same time- its a matter of the pluck and thumb leaving the string together - I am not actually "pinching" the string...its kinda hard to explain other than if it were not for it being a harmoninic it would be a mute sound created, not a clean pluck. Its also vital that you pluck the string at exactly the right place - and I mean exactly!..
Fret the bottom E string (the thin one) at the 9th fret and pluck right where the neck ends as I describe above - won't sound right - a heavy dull pluck - move down towards the bridge a centimeter or less and pluck again - keep doing plucking and moving the picking towards the bridge, always downstrokes until suddenly you will hit the spot where the harmonic rings and instead of a dull poorly plucked note you will get a harmonic ring out. You will find a sweet spot where the harmonic works everytime.
So to summarise - its digging deeper with the pick and touching the string as you pluck with the thumb that is holding the pick - but at exactly the right place on the string which will vary depending on the string and where you fret the string.


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Stevie-Ray-Vaugh...
post Dec 27 2006, 04:07 PM
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Thank you!!! none of my friends knew how to do pinch harmonics either and wen i jammed with them they were pretty impressed


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fretdancer
post Dec 27 2006, 06:56 PM
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This is Kinda Surreal...
Does this Mean I can say on my CV that - I - taught SRV to play guitar !!!

pretty Ironic that

lol
rolleyes.gif rolleyes.gif rolleyes.gif


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Kristofer Dahl
post Dec 28 2006, 11:37 AM
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Kevin98497
post Dec 28 2006, 10:50 PM
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it is sweet when u can do it whenever u want though, it jazzes the songs up laugh.gif
talkin bout pinched harmonics here
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Jeff
post Jan 11 2007, 05:34 PM
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QUOTE (Stevie·Ray·Vaughn @ Dec 26 2006, 08:24 PM) *
Hey GMCers,

Ive been trying to learn to pinch harmonic and for some reason i cant! sad.gif Every time I try a pinch harmonic either nothing happens or the note stops entirely. What am I doing wrong and what can I do to correct it?


Hi -

I've been playing this way for years. In fact, I use harmonics so often that it has become second nature to me and I don't realize when I do it. It has become an adopted style for me. I can tell you that it just takes time. You can do it anywhere on the guitar too. Trust me, you just need to give it time. You most likely are exposing too much pick if they are hard for you to get. Try using a Dunlop Jazz III pick too. They are a lot smaller than standard picks (Fender, for example) but they work well. If you are using a larger pick, pull it closer to your thumb and try holding it sideways. Hit the string with the flesh of the thumb and the pick at the same time.

I have been able to get a different pitch from the same position so it isn't really critical (to me) that you hit the exact spot. It depends on the sound that you want. Time and practice will do it. Just try a harmonic on every not that you pick for a while. Sit down and practice any notes, it doesn't matter - just until you nail it. It's true that you will find some easier to get than others but soon enough you will be able to nail them all! biggrin.gif

Best of Luck!

jeff
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Climate
post Feb 5 2007, 07:15 PM
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QUOTE (jeff @ Jan 11 2007, 04:34 PM) *
Hi -

I've been playing this way for years. In fact, I use harmonics so often that it has become second nature to me and I don't realize when I do it. It has become an adopted style for me. I can tell you that it just takes time. You can do it anywhere on the guitar too. Trust me, you just need to give it time. You most likely are exposing too much pick if they are hard for you to get. Try using a Dunlop Jazz III pick too. They are a lot smaller than standard picks (Fender, for example) but they work well. If you are using a larger pick, pull it closer to your thumb and try holding it sideways. Hit the string with the flesh of the thumb and the pick at the same time.

I have been able to get a different pitch from the same position so it isn't really critical (to me) that you hit the exact spot. It depends on the sound that you want. Time and practice will do it. Just try a harmonic on every not that you pick for a while. Sit down and practice any notes, it doesn't matter - just until you nail it. It's true that you will find some easier to get than others but soon enough you will be able to nail them all! biggrin.gif

Best of Luck!

jeff

Thanks, that's gonna help me out a lot smile.gif
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Kevin98497
post Feb 6 2007, 10:22 PM
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i hold my plectrum like this, so when i want to pinch harmonics, i just move my fingers abit and pluck the string,
if this helps anyone....


i am NOT advertising for microsoft, and i am NOT a hand model lol! go me!
woops, just realised, you need the thumb abit lower down.....like 3 mm.. depends on how fat your finger is

This post has been edited by kevin-riff-after-riff: Feb 6 2007, 10:26 PM
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BalysLTU
post Mar 28 2007, 07:14 PM
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Hm. Im really not sure if I get this pinch harmonic thing right mellow.gif Im confused huh.gif
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Brandon2002
post Mar 29 2007, 12:30 AM
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basically you try to hold the pick lower than normal.. or slightly roll your hand towards you (your thumb goes downward )when your playing a pinch harmonic. the object is to hit the string with the pick then right after with the side of your thumb.. but only slightly as not to mute the string.. its the same with natural harmonics that you do with your left hand except your using your thumb to get the harmonic effect.. there are usually sweet spots on every guitar for doing this, i usually find the best place is by the first set of pickups closest to the neck. hope that helps smile.gif

This post has been edited by Brandon2002: Mar 31 2007, 04:39 AM


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Speedeh
post Mar 30 2007, 11:18 PM
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QUOTE (BalysLTU @ Mar 28 2007, 07:14 PM) *
Hm. Im really not sure if I get this pinch harmonic thing right mellow.gif Im confused huh.gif


Another way to do it is to set your pick on your index finger so that the tip of the pick and your finger are almost even, and then strike the string with an up stroke. (I envision myself opening a can of beer, but instead of bending my finger, I'm bending my wrist) Your pick will hit the string first but the tip of your finger will brush the string almost simultaneously, and you'll get a nice, higher pitched tone from your guitar. For more fun, do it with an effects pedal and your amp turned up WEEOWAAAH. When you get it down with your index finger, start practicing with your thumb. I still have problems doing it with my thumb but I know I have to learn it "the right way" eventually.
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Climate
post Mar 31 2007, 02:54 PM
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I can do pinch harmonica, but I find it hard to play normally playing with my thumb that far down the pick. When i want to do a pinch harmonic I find I have to move my positioning on the pick which can be tricky at times.
What should I do?


Thanks
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berko
post May 20 2008, 01:09 PM
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Hi fellow GMC-ers!

Following the links from Pavel's lesson i found this topic, and i know its quite old, but i have this little story of how i discovered pinch harmonics.

Well i think im one of the lucky ones who didnt need that much sweat for pinch harmonics even though for the first time (after watching videos on youtube and attending wikipedia (good explanation here even on natural harmonics as well) how the hell people scream with their guitar tongue.gif ) i didnt even care, because i thought with my cheap guitar and a lonely passive humbucker its impossible to squeeze out such sounds anyway.

Because its really about how you hold your pick. and im only telling you that for me it came with BLUES. this type of music was the first one wich made me relax in the way that i forgot about the heavy shredding for a moment and started to feel how ancient and genuine this music is. i became relaxed, my shoulders stopped hurting from the strap and i started to enjoy me bends giving them more odd phrasing and so. i think i was playing the solo of hey joe and by holding the pick a bit more in a relaxed way (my thumb laying across the very end, nearly at the point of the pick, the pick over my index finger, and the two fingers nearly in a "T" only upside down) suddenly there came this clear pinched harmonic, and for the firs moment i was asking myself what th f***, but then i realised ive done it! now this doesnt mean that from then i was the perfect pinch-guitarist, because it took me a long time to discover all the spots on the string for harmonics. My guitar is still that cheap thing, and NHs are still bad on it, which are much easier to create on an active EMG, or even with double humbuckers, but anyhow, i think harmonics are very good to spice your solos for exampl. But again: harmonics can easily be overplayed, so lets be cautious wink.gif


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Nighthawk1
post May 20 2008, 01:31 PM
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Yeah yeah the good old pinch harmonic problem. I think everybody being lucky to have this great tecnique finally under his fingers has a story to tell how he finally came to that point...always interesting because it comes out of nowhere...and I can tell you people...the following statements are not true: humbuckers can do this only, you need hell of gain, you can't do it with that pickup setting and however...
You can even pinch your classical guitar string a bit...personally it drove me crazy that I could do pinch harmonics after one day practising but couldn't do them on the low e-string for the next months....and this finally changed after I had chosen a thicker pick !Maybe it is just a coincidence just like somebody who claims it is all about humbuckers or whatever...I could say..it is all about the pick tongue.gif

This post has been edited by Nighthawk: May 20 2008, 01:32 PM
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Jenkinson
post May 20 2008, 03:25 PM
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Pavel's Harmonics lesson has an excellent intro video that explains and demonstrates both artifical and natural harmonics. I recommend watching it, it shows some interesting ideas for finding harmoincs and nailing them everytime. It helped me tremendously.


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Casper
post May 21 2008, 02:04 AM
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QUOTE (BalysLTU @ Mar 28 2007, 11:14 AM) *
Hm. Im really not sure if I get this pinch harmonic thing right mellow.gif Im confused huh.gif


A "Artificial Harmonic" most commonly known as a Pinch Harmonic occurs when your pick and thumb simontenously hit a string above your pickup (Creating a High pitched Squeel), there are "sweet" spots above your pickups that will produce clearer pitches I usualy play my "pinch" harmonics above my first pickup. If you having trouble producing them, think as if your digging a hole with your pick and your thumb is barley touching the string when you finish. I learned this about a week ago and now they are pretty much second nature now. gotta love the MAD SQUEEELZ

This post has been edited by [email protected]: May 21 2008, 02:13 AM


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