Playing off the neck

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Playing off the neck

Postby valdae » Fri Feb 23, 2007 8:48 pm

Do Gypsy guitarists ever play just off the end of the fingerboard? I can't say I've ever witnesed this on video, at least not that I remember. What would the sound be like? Would this soften or sweeten the nasal quality of some instruments...very curious.
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Postby nwilkins » Fri Feb 23, 2007 9:40 pm

these types of guitars generally don't sound that good played on that part of the strings, probably because the strings are such a light gauge and (when playing in the typical style) the pick stroke is too powerful. This combination makes the guitar sound thinner when played up there, and there is not as much volume.

So if you're playing in a typical way, you should notice a sweet spot that offers maximum volume and pop (usually near the edge of the soundhole that is nearest the bridge.

However, if you are using the guitar for a different style of music (think solo/duo/trio acoustic jazz) then choose a light (1.5mm or less) pick and play softly just off the end of the fingerboard - the sound you'll get is much less dark than an archtop, but in the higher register the notes will be quite a bit warmer and fatter than an archtop. It's a nice sound :)
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Postby valdae » Fri Feb 23, 2007 10:24 pm

Thanks, that makes sense. I was curious because I'd often play this way on a conventional acoustic, so I couldn't help but wonder if the same could be said for a GJ.
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Re: Playing off the neck

Postby TomLandman » Sat Feb 24, 2007 5:59 am

Yes, I think Django did this for effect occasionally.
Just check out this famous video (especially at about 1:00 - 1:29)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zD6ZD1Igxr0

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valdae wrote:Do Gypsy guitarists ever play just off the end of the fingerboard? I can't say I've ever witnesed this on video, at least not that I remember.
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Re: Playing off the neck

Postby nwilkins » Sat Feb 24, 2007 2:22 pm

TomLandman wrote:Yes, I think Django did this for effect occasionally.
Just check out this famous video (especially at about 1:00 - 1:29)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zD6ZD1Igxr0


exactly - in just the context I was talking about.
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Postby DaveM » Fri Jul 06, 2007 6:20 pm

You should listen to dans le monde by les doigts de l'homme, some of the songs, especially le poinconneur des lilas have amazing little solos right up by the bridge. Dont know how he does it!
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