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So how are your playing chops when wearing your guitar as low as Jimmy Page?

davebc

Member
Messages
4,298
How does he do it?
The live footage of Jimmy winging his ass off in The Song Remains the Same" is easily one of the the most intense, dazzling displays of guitar wizardry ever
recorded.

And somehow, he pulls the whole thing off with his Les Paul slung down
around he knees.

I tried, who hasn't? And Visually, it's cool. But I just can't
play anything with my guitar down that low; and I'm lanky.

Can you guys pull it off?
 

whoismarykelly

Oh look! This is a thing I can change!
Messages
8,130
You cant just dramatically change your playing ergonomics and expect to play brilliantly off the bat. Dude probably played that way for a decade before becoming a big deal. You have to practice with the guitar that low to be impressive with the guitar that low.
 

saltydogg

Rock & Roll Enthusiast
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
7,384
How does he do it?
The live footage of Jimmy winging his ass off in The Song Remains the Same" is easily one of the the most intense, dazzling displays of guitar wizardry ever
recorded.

And somehow, he pulls the whole thing off with his Les Paul slung down
around he knees.

I tried, who hasn't? And Visually, it's cool. But I just can't
play anything with my guitar down that low; and I'm lanky.

Can you guys pull it off?
One of rock-n-roll's great mystery's....

Slash is another one...

It's easy easy to understand why they "prop" the guitar on their knee while they're killing solo's..
 

blownirocz

Suppoutin' Memba Sinss Dem Oud Dayz...
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,215
I actually played for years with the guitar somewhat high because of the general consensus that up higher is the "proper" way.

One day I played a buddy of mine's guitar with it slung lower (not at the knees like Plant, but significantly lower than where I had mine) and it was sooooo much more comfortable. I could play easier and faster pieces were so much more natural.

Been playing that way ever since. Again, not at the knees, but if you'll excuse the vulgarity, the strings are at crotch level. So maybe for him that is actually the more "natural" position...
 

davebc

Member
Messages
4,298
Well that's a good point, I've been playing since around
1970; but never considered playing confortable with your ax that low actually
Would take practice.

I just tried it for the he'll of it the other night after seeing
movie. Forget about it.

Billy plays it sling real low too.
 

timberic

Member
Messages
766
Ergonomics aside though, the flipside is that when it's up too high, you look like a dick.
 

Echoes

Senior Member
Messages
6,218
I played for years with the guitar that low...it changes the way you play for sure. Do it for a few years and you find yourself playing the standard blues licks just like Page et al....you are significantly limited in playing long legato lines or wide intervals and altered chords....in short: you learn to 'cheat' all over the place because you cant very well get your wrist in front of the fretboard ....

Randy Rhoads is another wizz at playing real low but pulling off very impressive lines...
 

rm41400

Member
Messages
79
I considered creating a similar thread to this a few weeks back but figured yall would just poke fun at me :)

Anywho, Ive been analyzing my playing form and looking for ways to improve and wondered if infact the consensus is to play with the guitar so that you have about a 45* bend @ your elbow. For the less lanky ones the guitar strings probably fall somwhere at the waste or slightly above...
Is that more the consensus??
 

wharris

Member
Messages
684
I played for years with the guitar that low...it changes the way you play for sure. Do it for a few years and you find yourself playing the standard blues licks just like Page et al....you are significantly limited in playing long legato lines or wide intervals and altered chords....in short: you learn to 'cheat' all over the place because you cant very well get your wrist in front of the fretboard ....

Randy Rhoads is another wizz at playing real low but pulling off very impressive lines...
Doug Aldrich kills it with a low-slung guitar.
 

hammersig

Member
Messages
1,419
I've only ever played low slung, about crotch level. To me, it's more comfortable than anything higher, but probably because it's what I'm nurtured to. It doesn't hurt my technique, but I'm not exactly encroaching on George Lynch though.
 

myke232

Member
Messages
893
Yeah, it's crazy... I don't know how he could play like he did with the guitar so low... Puts your wrist at a crazy angle, especially for bar chords...
 

Earplayer

Member
Messages
562
the thing is some people have different proportions - longer hands short legs vice v.

another thing is to hold up the guitar at the neck if that makes sense - like aldrich... or bend over like slash. technical stuff like sweeping or tapping works better on the knees atleast for me...

i think especially as a les paul player you will need to play the les paul hanging deeper - otherwise you will look like petrucci :bonk
 

Red_Label

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,205
My right (picking) hand LOVES a low-slung guitar. My left hand hates it. When I do play that way, I have to hook my thumb over the top of the neck (ala Hendrix) and that limits my ability to play three-note-per-string/wide-interval scales well. Just limits my left-hand control in general. So for me, it's always about trying to find the comprimise spot between left and right hand comfort.

In regards to guys like Page... I have never considered him to be a technically accurate player. He's pretty sloppy (awesome songwriting notwithstanding) as a lead player. Same thing goes for Slash, Joe Perry, etc. It's more impressive to me when I see a guy like Zakk Wylde ripping-off 20 minute flawless solos with his LP slung so low.

Edit: See Doug Aldrich mentioned here as well. Pefect example. The guy is a machine.
 

tiktok

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
23,705
How does he do it?
The live footage of Jimmy winging his ass off in The Song Remains the Same" is easily one of the the most intense, dazzling displays of guitar wizardry ever
recorded.

And somehow, he pulls the whole thing off with his Les Paul slung down
around he knees.

I tried, who hasn't? And Visually, it's cool. But I just can't
play anything with my guitar down that low; and I'm lanky.

Can you guys pull it off?
I always wanted to look as cool as Page, but it never worked for me--the fretting hand was severely compromised with the guitar that low, the picking hand somewhat compromised. Over the years, I've noticed that the guys who can play well with the guitar slung low have long arms and long fingers.
 

Lukeling

Member
Messages
1,547
The bass player in my band thinks he's in the Ramones & his bass is stupidly low. There are certain riffs & songs I have written that we can't do because he can't play them. It's a fine line.
 




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