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Is tone in the fingers or gear?

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by clunk, Jul 14, 2006.

  1. clunk

    clunk Member

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  2. countandduke

    countandduke Member

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    That's a good read. I particularly found it interesting that they mentioned Eric Johnson and SRV as those are 2 of my all time favorite dudes. Eric's rig has gotten a tad smaller as I believe he uses one Marshall and a couple combos for his clean stuff. His setup is surprisingly simple compared to someone like Scott Henderson who has a whole rack of pedals.

    I remember reading an interview with Pat Metheny saying that he didn't really like to play with anyone else unless he had his rig with him and that he was trying to get over that.

    I think tone is definitely in your fingers but I think it's in your gear too. Certain amps and pedals and speakers and blah blah blah just sound a certain way. With that being said, I can usually find a pretty decent tone out of most any amp although I may not find a great clean/jazz tone AND a great overdrive tone in the same amp, I can usually find one or the other.

    I will point out that if you ever see Eric Johnson's fingers he has really large pads at the tips of his fingers and I think this really does help the tone and largeness of the note. I have relatively small pads and especially on my pinky, so anytime I play with my pinky I am aware of that and try to compensate. Try it sometime for you non-believers, try playing the same note on the same string with different fingers.

    Lately, I have also been into picking like Metheny and Scott Henderson, with the larger side of a Fender pick. Changes the tone quite a bit from my usual Jazz III's.

    Chris
     
  3. µ¿ z3®ø™

    µ¿ z3®ø™ Member

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    beat me to that reply...
    inextricably linked.
     
  4. Jarick

    Jarick Supporting Member

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    After making clips with both a microcube and a class A amp, I will say both.

    The gear is your POTENTIAL for sound. Your playing ability is the ability to MAXIMIZE THAT POTENTIAL.

    For example, a Dumble has potential to sound phenomenal. A beginner will make it sound decent. A pro will make it sound phenomenal.

    Likewise, a solid state Crate has potential to sound decent. A beginner will make it sound like crap. A pro will make it sound decent.

    I still can't believe that SRV would have gotten a god-like tone out of one of a DS-1 into a PA system, even if he could play his ass off. But he would have made it sound decent by adjusting his playing to suit the rig.

    That's the closest I can get to the rhetorical question...
     
  5. anyone

    anyone Member

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    "...at least two guitars. At once." !!!!!?????

    I didn't know EJ had such a Nigel influence.
     
  6. Jon Silberman

    Jon Silberman 10Q Jerry & Dickey Gold Supporting Member

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    Did you major in logics? You'll get no argument from me here.
     
  7. Greggy

    Greggy Member

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    The tone is in your ears, period.
     
  8. Deaj

    Deaj Member

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    I sound like me whether I'm playing through my rig or my 10 year old son's 3/4 scale Squire strat and X-10 SS amp. That said I like the audibe results through my rig much more than with my son's gear. :)
     
  9. Matt F

    Matt F Member

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    The basis for anyones tone is in the fingers. Hand Robben Ford a Mim strat and a Peavy solid state 1 X 12 combo and he will still sound like Robben Ford.

    Having said that, decent gear can help one expand on their tone and sometimes make playing more enjoyable/fun.
     
  10. Bluespicker

    Bluespicker Member

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    It's all semantics, he didn't say anything profound.



    It's in the player's brain= Tone is in the fingers= It's the player not the gear. No matter which way you say it, it all means the same thing.
     
  11. HammyD

    HammyD Supporting Member

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    There was a television program called "Michelob Presents Sunday Night" hosted by David Sanborn and Jools Holland. Robbin was playing with the band that night and he had a new looking strat and a Roland JC120 (I think that is the model) and he sounded much the same as he always did.
     
  12. lv

    lv Supporting Member

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    Tone is in the hands, that's why you see so many players using peavey solid state amps.
     
  13. Matt F

    Matt F Member

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    Maybe we should define tone. In my opinion tone comes from the fingers and hands. Sound comes from the gear. Ultimately the final "Tone" or "Sound" comes from the combination of the two. But I feel tone mostly comes from the fingers and the soul of the player.
     
  14. babyblue

    babyblue Member

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    Its a combination of the gear and hands that makes the tone.
     
  15. HammyD

    HammyD Supporting Member

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    I think talent can trascend inferior exquipment. But no amount of equipment can compensate for a lack of talent.
     
  16. Matt F

    Matt F Member

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    + 1 on that.
     
  17. n.j.

    n.j. Member

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    +100, but the equipment can make cool sounds, even if the practitioner lacks talent. :)

     
  18. Shredcow

    Shredcow Member

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    I always thought good tone = needing some measure of good gear...

    Articulation is what makes a player sound similiar despite playing thru different rigs.... all them nuances of technique and touch...

    Tone is merely a sound to me... which good gear will most definately accentuate well.

    Anyway, nowadays, many stock, off the shelf products sound pretty good to start with... and with most standard guitar tones being covered already, its all in the feel/reaction of the gear... whether that tube amp or a solid state will interact with your playing, thats what makes me want to try new stuff... for the sake of feel... everything else is starting to sound similiar and intertwined...
     
  19. Coach

    Coach Senior Member

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  20. lv

    lv Supporting Member

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    Sure, someone can play the right notes, and no matter what the tone, they are still the right notes. But the right notes don't change the timbre, no matter what you do. How many really great players actually choose the solid state peavey?
     

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