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View Full Version : Non-jazz guitarists that use flatwound strings?


soma89
07-29-2009, 10:42 PM
Hey, I am really getting into flatwound strings and wondering what non-jazz players you know that use flatwounds on their electric guitars (from any era).
I'm curious to hear some cool sounds you could get with flatwounds other than a jazzy sound.

Flyin' Brian
07-29-2009, 10:53 PM
The Beatles....Ticket To Ride comes immediately to mind, but they put them on the J-160s too.

Gretsch47
07-29-2009, 10:53 PM
I use them on my Jazzmaster and Gretsch 6120 (Thomastik Swing Series 11's)

SHM
07-31-2009, 11:46 AM
Kenny Vaughan.

strat a various
07-31-2009, 12:26 PM
Albert King used flatwounds, at least part of the time, and it's been quoted of Dick Dale that he used a combination of flat and regular, but he says different things at different times, so the story changes from time to time.
They were pretty common in the 50s and 60s, I remember music stores, when I was a kid, didn't always have non-flatwound electric strings in stock until Ernie Ball Slinkies got popular. I'm guessing a lot of early rock, rock-a-billy and blues were recorded with flatwounds, and those cats used them but didn't talk about it much because it was so common. Usually when I find an old guitar from the 50s in an attic or under a bed in a farmhouse somewhere, it's strung with flatwounds, 90% of the time.

sodapopinski
07-31-2009, 04:58 PM
forgive my ignorance, but whats the difference between flatwounds and regular?

MattBeckTwenty
07-31-2009, 05:41 PM
Greg from Mutemath uses flats.

Lolaviola
07-31-2009, 05:56 PM
A guy in a surf band uses them on his Jazzmaster. I think that's pretty standard for that repertoire.

whoismarykelly
07-31-2009, 05:58 PM
A lot of reggae guys use flats.

hangten
07-31-2009, 07:15 PM
Will Oldham aka Bonnie Prince Billy

Whiskeyrebel
07-31-2009, 08:09 PM
Me, but only on my dedicated bottleneck rig.

Literally Elvis
07-31-2009, 10:36 PM
I use them on my 8-string, and I'm not a jazz player. :)

zezozeceglutz
07-31-2009, 10:49 PM
Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead.

Mandoboy
08-01-2009, 05:52 AM
Pyramid flats are a totally different experience from the usual rubberband flats- Pyramids are bright and articulate, that nice flatwound attack without instant death on the decay...they also last forever. Expensive but worth it!

MjCartney
08-01-2009, 07:14 AM
I've been using flatwounds on my Ric 360 for the past year and really like them. Nice tones for Rock, Jazz, and Country. The only thing I don't like is how the G string repsond to bends. No matter how far I push the string, the pitch just doesn't go up as much as I'm used to. I'm thinking of switching in a plain G at the next string change. Do others have this same issue? I've been using D'Addario Chromes & am wondering if other brands might respond differently also. I'd like to try a few others, particulary Pyramid and Thomastik, but the price put me off a bit. I'd also like to experiment with the flats on some of my other axes too, just haven't had the time.

Robapov
08-01-2009, 07:46 AM
Pyramid flats are a totally different experience from the usual rubberband flats- Pyramids are bright and articulate, that nice flatwound attack without instant death on the decay...they also last forever. Expensive but worth it!

+100000 :agree

monstermike
08-01-2009, 08:49 AM
I've been using flatwounds on my Ric 360 for the past year and really like them. Nice tones for Rock, Jazz, and Country. The only thing I don't like is how the G string repsond to bends. No matter how far I push the string, the pitch just doesn't go up as much as I'm used to. I'm thinking of switching in a plain G at the next string change. Do others have this same issue? I've been using D'Addario Chromes & am wondering if other brands might respond differently also. I'd like to try a few others, particulary Pyramid and Thomastik, but the price put me off a bit. I'd also like to experiment with the flats on some of my other axes too, just haven't had the time.

You have to be careful with a plain G - it'll be WAY louder than the bottom three strings. If you can live with that (and it may not bother you at all), go for it!

C-Bone247
08-01-2009, 09:05 AM
Pyramid flats are a totally different experience from the usual rubberband flats- Pyramids are bright and articulate, that nice flatwound attack without instant death on the decay...they also last forever. Expensive but worth it!


I use Pyramids on all my electrics and never change them (the wound strings). I just buy garden variety plain strings in bulk and change those every few weeks or right before a gig, if I'm only taking one guitar. The Pyramids are expensive, but the D'addario Chromes are awesome for the money. I've found them to have even more "twang" than rounds. They feel great and no finger noise, especially with gain boxes. I just wish I could find a set of flats for my baritone.

Whiskeyrebel
08-01-2009, 08:23 PM
Thomastic are better than Daddario chromes by a larger margin than the price difference in my experience. Get 12s or larger and they are bridge cables. They last like bass strings.

GuitarToma
08-03-2009, 02:24 PM
forgive my ignorance, but whats the difference between flatwounds and regular?

A round wounds string is exactly that - a round wire wrapped around a round wire.

A flat wound string is the same. It's a flat wire wrapped around a round string.

Flatwound strings have a drastically different sound than round. They have a very mellow "piano-like" quality to them which is why they are used by a lot of jazz players. They don't bend very well and typically don't have much sustain. But they do sound pretty cool.

i found this pic:
http://chandrakantha.com/articles/indian_music/dilruba_media/flat_wound.jpg