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> #36 Pinch / Squeal Harmonics, Dime/Zakk Style Pinch Harmonics on the fly
Todd Simpson
post Jul 14 2018, 07:53 PM
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INTRO
In this QUICK LICKS we are going to work on "PINCH HARMONICS" also known as "PINCH SQUEALS". Some folks like ZAKK WYLDE and DIME have used this technique to great effect and are well known for it. We are not talking here about using the bell like harmonics where you don't fret a note but glance off the string while striking. The ones we are talking about here are fretted and there is some vibrato as well. The vibrato makes the the entire thing stand out more and ring out better. If you don't use any vibrato or bending, the "Pinch" will not sustain very long. You can use your Whammy/Trem with this technique if desired, however, we are not going to cover that today. This is about doing the actual Pinch itself and sticking the landing, as it were. Nothing sounds worse than going for a Pinch Harmonic and missing it completely. It draws attention to itself in a very bad way and it's easy to tell that one just missed ones intended lick. To wit, we are going to put the Pinch in the context of a simple riff and repeat the pinch as we move down the neck and alternate with an open string. This will give you practice in "Sticking the landing". E.G. Hitting your pinch "On the Fly" as God intended. You should not have to stop what you are doing and prepare for doing this technique. It should flow seamlessly.

Also, feel free to Bend anywhere Vibrato is notated. Either is fine. However, try NOT to use tepid/shallow, "back and forth" wagging vibrato. Use forcefull, intentional, up and down vibrato. The better your vibrato, the better your pinch will sound. Let's take a look at the video. It contains the lick itself and wads of tips/close up shots of how to get the most out of this techique. It's the longest Quick Lick vid in quite a while but worth the watch. This is a basic Rock/Metal technique. It should be in one's bag of tricks smile.gif

*Make sure to watch the vid!. It Contains the "Secret Sauce"



*NOTE: Pay Special attention to letting your thumb graze by the string after the strike, this is what creates the harmonic squeal.

BACKGROUND / COMMENTS : Don't beat yourself up if you struggle with this. Most players struggle with this at some point. I did as well. I've yet to find someone who could pull this off without trying. But it is possible, with a bit of practice, to get it to where you can pull it off anytime you want and not miss it.

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Attached File  36.gp5 ( 2.25K ) Number of downloads: 4


BTW:
Please let me know if you have any questions about this lick, send me a PM if you like or post here. I'm happy to help!


This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Jul 14 2018, 08:58 PM


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Phil66
post Jul 14 2018, 09:31 PM
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Take 1 ready for improvement advice Sarge. I've never really done pinch harmonics on the wound strings.

https://youtu.be/CeyIltqZVAk


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Todd Simpson
post Jul 14 2018, 10:01 PM
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First to fight! NICE smile.gif I fear that your tone may be getting in your way a bit here. It seems a pinch fizzy here. Maybe try a different patch. Using a tube screamer block with the gain down/volume up and mid gain setting on a marshall style amp with 4x12 cab v30s. PRESET 01A sounded good to me when I tried the plugin. Give that one a try. It's got plenty of gain, nice cab, etc.
It's the first patch on the software version which I'm hoping is the same smile.gif Also the stock patch called CALI RECTIFIER sounds good and would work. What patch are you using in your vid?






On playing, it looks like your right hand needs a pinch more oomph. Notice in the vid what it sounds like when I back off the pressure with the right hand, then how it changes when I put the pressure on with the pick hand. It takes a good strong strike to make a good pinch on the wound strings. They are a bit more of a challenge which is why we are using them smile.gif

Also, slow down a pinch to give each pinch harmonic a moment to sink in, and use a deeper / stronger/ wider vibrato. You can use one finger if you iike, just make sure it's a strong one. smile.gif

Focus on being able to hit the pinch at each position. So repeat position 1 until you can hit the pinch each time, then add position 2, the second pinch. Make sense?
Todd

This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Jul 14 2018, 10:06 PM


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Phil66
post Jul 14 2018, 10:28 PM
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Thanks Todd

I'm using the Panama patch modified. I have to confess, I have a habit of chewing the skin around my thumb nails and have worked down to the first knuckle on my right thumb right where I need to hit the string to create the harmonic. It's pretty sore rolleyes.gif

Thanks for the advice buddy

This post has been edited by Phil66: Jul 15 2018, 03:49 PM


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Todd Simpson
post Jul 15 2018, 01:26 AM
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See if the Cali Recto gives you a betters result. It just might smile.gif As long as you let the string just graze the edge of part of your thumb you should be ok. At the end of the vid, you can hear my thumb bouncing off the string. The vocal mic picks up how hard I'm striking and then how hard the string is bouncing off my thumb. If you start hearing that, then the squeals are not far behind!
QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jul 14 2018, 05:28 PM) *
Thanks Todd

I'm using the Panama patch modified. I have to confess, I have a habit of chasing the skin around my thumb nails and have worked down to the first knuckle on my right thumb right where I need to hit the string to create the harmonic.

Thanks for the advice buddy


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Phil66
post Jul 15 2018, 09:22 PM
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Hello Todd,

I tried the Cali Rectifier and it didn't change much, it just needs time on instrument I think. Having said that, this is recorded with the same patch but I did use the Rectifier with everything else the same. I do think the squeals are getting better, I'm struggling with palm muting still and the three notes on the open strings aren't very clear. Not had much time today only had 10 minutes practise plus time to record and upload the video.

The second round is better than the first. Is it okay to post takes asking for improvement advice or would you rather me wait until I have it nailed before posting?

https://youtu.be/CeyIltqZVAk


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Phil66
post Jul 16 2018, 09:22 PM
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Take 3, getting better I think. I didn't try vibrato as I think it is enough to try for the squeals especially as my vibrato isn't brilliant. I can work on that separately.

Rip it up dude.

https://youtu.be/7H72obACzJU


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Todd Simpson
post Jul 17 2018, 04:21 AM
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Progress! smile.gif You are getting a better handle on the pinch itself which is the entire point of this drill. Your bend works great as it's always a good thing to bend pinch harmonics imho. I actually use a bend myself on some of the pinches in my video instead of using vibrato. You can use bends just fine on pinches. smile.gif
Your vibrato could use a bit of work, but hey everybody could probably use a bit of work on vibrato. This seems like a good spot to try to work on your vibrato to be honest as it goes with the technique just as well as bending does. I think you may be over thinking your vibrato on these. Try using a bend, but instead of one bend, make it two or three. You don't even have to play the lick. Just one triplet on the E and then a pinch with bend and repeat the bend. The effect will sound very similar to vibrato and be more along the lines of what I'm looking for here. Slowing down ones oscillation on vibrato is really just a matter of doing multiple bends one after the other smile.gif Give it a whirl and see what comes out.
There is still a buzzy/fizzy thing happening on your tone which I think is getting in the way of you nailing this lick and this technique. You need something that has just enough drive but is still tight on the low end. This patch sounds a lot like the previous patch which is the original one that I thought was getting in your way. Try doing some pinches with different patches on the Helix. I'm sure there has to be one that will actually help you nail the pinch instead of getting in your way.

Congrats on your progress!!!!!!!
Your technique is improving each time. You are able to nail the pinch while on the move which is exactly what I was hoping folks would get out of this smile.gif I"ve seen folks that have to stop what they are playing and "prep" to make a pinch. That's something to be avoided imho. This technique should flow seamlessly in to your lead work. You are on the way to making that happen!!
Here is a vid with a guitar player that you may know of. His name is Alex smile.gif He demos with very low distortion showing his command of the techique. He also has very good vibrato. He points out that where you make the strke has an impact on how things turn out.







QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jul 16 2018, 04:22 PM) *
Take 3, getting better I think. I didn't try vibrato as I think it is enough to try for the squeals especially as my vibrato isn't brilliant. I can work on that separately.

Rip it up dude.

https://youtu.be/7H72obACzJU


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Phil66
post Jul 17 2018, 07:30 AM
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Thanks for the advice Todd,

I went through a stage where I could throw a pinch in, at will, but only on the unwound strings. Maybe my hand position has changed over the years, I've found the sweet spot, it's just ever so slightly in front of the middle pickup. Maybe I used to have my hand further back (no palm mute) and found the pinch spot by default.

I don't know where the fizziness is coming from, I tried Helix cabs, various IRs etc. I also used the Rectifier on that last one. I have been turning the treble up and using low cut filter. I notice more fizziness on some pinches than others, maybe it's just from the technique? Helix isn't renowned for fizz.

I'm off to the south of France on Friday for two weeks so hopefully I'll nail it by then.

Cheers buddy.

Phil


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Todd Simpson
post Jul 18 2018, 02:16 AM
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I'm glad it's working it's way forward! Doing pinches on the wound strings is a bit different than doing it on the G for example which is where a lot of pinches get done. I love doing them on the G string as it's easy to bend after a pinch and sounds spiff smile.gif I wanted to try to force folks to do it on wound strings as it becomes something used in rythm techniques at that point, no just leads. Zakk wylde uses it to great effect on Rythm and Lead, wound and unwound strings, but it could be argued that he relies on it so much that it sometimes becomes a pinch repetitive.

I"m sure you can get it by Friday smile.gif Give it one more whirl before you head out of town. I don't know where the fuzzy bits of tone are coming from. It sounds like it's just part of the patch. Don't go to high on amp treble or it will really start sounding shrill. Tone is a life long journey, we are not likely to fix it before friday so don't worry about it for now. Just focus on the techique and it will work out along the way smile.gif
Todd




QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jul 17 2018, 02:30 AM) *
Thanks for the advice Todd,

I went through a stage where I could throw a pinch in, at will, but only on the unwound strings. Maybe my hand position has changed over the years, I've found the sweet spot, it's just ever so slightly in front of the middle pickup. Maybe I used to have my hand further back (no palm mute) and found the pinch spot by default.

I don't know where the fizziness is coming from, I tried Helix cabs, various IRs etc. I also used the Rectifier on that last one. I have been turning the treble up and using low cut filter. I notice more fizziness on some pinches than others, maybe it's just from the technique? Helix isn't renowned for fizz.

I'm off to the south of France on Friday for two weeks so hopefully I'll nail it by then.

Cheers buddy.

Phil


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Phil66
post Jul 18 2018, 09:28 PM
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Hello Todd,

Watched the Skolnick vid, really struggling to pull a pinch tonight. Tried my Ibby, HSH Strat, PRS Custom 24 SE, PRS ACE SE, Epi Les Paul, NOTHING.
Felt like throwing the towel in on the whole thing and the guitars out of the window. To restore some faith in myself I played a bunch of squeals on the G string. BOOM. I can still do them.

Not sure if I'll manage a video tomorrow if I'm this crap tonight though buddy.


Cheers

Phil


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Todd Simpson
post Jul 18 2018, 09:40 PM
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Try striking a bit harder and letting the string bounce off of your thumb. In the end of my vid you can hear the pick strikes in the mic cause I'm striking so hard. Wound strings to require a bit more pressure. If you've heard the FLOOD solo from DIME it's a great example of pinches on lower strings. Give it one more whirl!! If possible smile.gif If not I"ll use your last submission.



QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jul 18 2018, 04:28 PM) *
Hello Todd,

Watched the Skolnick vid, really struggling to pull a pinch tonight. Tried my Ibby, HSH Strat, PRS Custom 24 SE, PRS ACE SE, Epi Les Paul, NOTHING.
Felt like throwing the towel in on the whole thing and the guitars out of the window. To restore some faith in myself I played a bunch of squeals on the G string. BOOM. I can still do them.

Not sure if I'll manage a video tomorrow if I'm this crap tonight though buddy.


Cheers

Phil


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Phil66
post Jul 18 2018, 10:25 PM
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Dude

I don't want you to use my last submission if it wasn't worthy mate. I'd rather get it right ;l


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Phil66
post Jul 19 2018, 09:18 PM
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Sorry Todd,

I didn't get chance to get another video up. YOu can critique my last one if you want to, I can always do another on my return.

Cheers


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Todd Simpson
post Jul 21 2018, 02:33 AM
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Good point! Enjoy your Holiday smile.gif Some time away from the Axe can often be a good thing. It will probably seem easier once you pick it up again.

Todd
QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jul 19 2018, 04:18 PM) *
Sorry Todd,

I didn't get chance to get another video up. YOu can critique my last one if you want to, I can always do another on my return.

Cheers


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Phil66
post Aug 5 2018, 09:16 PM
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Hello Todd,

I hope you got my PM.

Here is a take, it's a long one, it starts with a mistake then I do the lick then I noodle. Hopefully you can get something from it. You might as well critique this if possible. If I don't level up I can keep at it along with trying to catch up with the others that you've posted while I've been away and also the back catalogue wink.gif

Cheers buddy.

https://youtu.be/VQaPFSRMo3w


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Todd Simpson
post Aug 6 2018, 07:35 PM
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Welcome back!! smile.gif This is my fave take of this so far. i can hear some very clean pinches happening in there. I think you are getting the hang of it!!! This is a particularly demanding way of doing pinches as it allows no time to prep/change hand position/angle in order to make the pinch happen. it puts them in the context of a riff instead of done as a pinch in a solo where they are more like the period at the end of a sentence. In this riff, they just come fast and furious one after the other with no pause. This is the kind of lick that takes while to work in to. add this to your bag of tricks and try to run through it as a warm up/cool down when possible. the more you run it, the easier pinch harmonics will get smile.gif your muting is improved and i think this is helping with over all tone and pinch. You've got this riff down. sprinkle pinches in to your solos to see how they can fit in to your personal style! as for this one, you just...
LEVELED UP!!!!
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Todd
QUOTE (Phil66 @ Aug 5 2018, 04:16 PM) *
Hello Todd,

I hope you got my PM.

Here is a take, it's a long one, it starts with a mistake then I do the lick then I noodle. Hopefully you can get something from it. You might as well critique this if possible. If I don't level up I can keep at it along with trying to catch up with the others that you've posted while I've been away and also the back catalogue wink.gif

Cheers buddy.

https://youtu.be/VQaPFSRMo3w


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Phil66
post Aug 6 2018, 08:27 PM
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Thanks Todd,

I'll keep working on it. This is a very narrow part of the string that allows this, just behind centre of the middle pickup.

Cheers


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Todd Simpson
post Aug 9 2018, 07:39 PM
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Finding the sweet spot is key. Also, it's sometimes not the same spot that ones pick rests in for the rest of the lick! So sometimes you gotta reach for it in under one beat. Being able to grab these on the fly though is a great way to add flare to ones playing. of course, it's possible to over do it a "pinch" ala zakk wylde, but still, a very spiff technique and not one that just anybody can grab at will. It's easy to miss the pinch and the result is unpleasant. It's easy to hear when someone goes for a pinch and juuuust misses it. Sounds like a half dead note.

Todd
QUOTE (Phil66 @ Aug 6 2018, 03:27 PM) *
Thanks Todd,

I'll keep working on it. This is a very narrow part of the string that allows this, just behind centre of the middle pickup.

Cheers


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onetabmat
post Nov 22 2018, 08:41 PM
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