Thoughts on Trey Anastasio tone (video)

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by AB07302, May 11, 2015.

  1. AB07302

    AB07302 Member

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    Hey guys,

    A bunch of my students are working on Phish tunes right now, mostly because I really like to use Trey's technique to work on "making the instrument speak." It's one of the most vocal and expressive guitar tones out there, and one that lots of people try to emulate.

    I found that a lot of the discussion centered on the gear he was using, and that the demos on YouTube featured people playing the same gear (sometimes down to a real Languedoc!) and managing to sound nothing like Trey simply because the style and technique weren't there. All this information online seems to be confusing my students.

    So I threw together a little video just sort of demonstrating the "it's all in the hands" thing, which I think is extremely applicable here. It's not really a lesson on how to play the licks, though I could do that if anybody wanted it. It's more of a demonstration, with and without effects, of how there's a big difference between sounding like Trey and playing like Trey -- and frankly, you probably can't do the first without the second. And it goes for anybody, not just Trey.

    Anyway, I hope interested parties will enjoy hearing the examples. It might help you focus your practicing on those stylistic elements (vibrato, sliding in and pulling down to notes, working the pick to make the notes "talk") that help define the sound.

    Have fun!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpQxvwdwwvE

     
  2. thesauce

    thesauce Member

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    It's the Django, Wes and Grant Green influence that leads to that pick attack IMO. Ttying those more aggressive approaches on an archtop unplugged till you perfect it then plugging it in.
     
  3. iaresee

    iaresee Member

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    Yea man. You're speaking truths in this video. Like you, I've gotten over my deep love of Trey's playing and tone and just roll with it now. So much of Trey is in his phrasing and his attack. He has wonderful attack. Lots of variance to it. And his phrasing keeps the lines moving, alive, like you said: vocal.
     
  4. AB07302

    AB07302 Member

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    Thanks guys, glad you dug it -- and yeah I definitely agree that there's a LOT of that gypsy jazz and swing element in his attack. Thick pick, round edge, lightly closed fist, thumb close to the string, really working the percussive thing.

    In fact, I forgot to mention how major the Adamas pick is. I didn't think the pick would matter so much, but when I first played with one, it was a huge lightbulb. Those picks have such a weird sharp bevel, they really help to get those little articulation a going.
     
  5. ShawnH

    ShawnH Member

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    Video was interesting. Would have been way better if the video was of your hands and guitar given the whole premise. Not sure watching the pedalboard really helps illustrate your point. You are getting a pretty convincing Trey sound. Also maybe a little more variation as far as licks and styles that Trey delves into. Cool stuff though. Thanks.

    ___________
     
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  6. Lephty

    Lephty Member

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    Something that strikes me about your video is that some of the tweaks you make--adding compression, the buffer, etc.--don't make a huge difference to the ears of the listener (though it certainly does make a difference to the player). A non-guitar geek might not even perceive any difference at all. Which I guess goes to further illustrate your point that it has more to do with the way you dig into the notes than your choice of guitar and gear.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2015
  7. dmkz

    dmkz Member

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    Cool video! You got some nice tone going there. I for one would love to see a video on his technique if you ever get around to it.

    Thanks
     
  8. Triocd

    Triocd Supporting Member

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    Cool video! What do you mean pulling down to notes? Is that just a slide down?

    I would love to see a video or get info on the unique ways he enters/exits notes. In a short passage, it seems like he uses a ridiculous amount of prebending, bending, slides, etc in a way that it's hard for me to keep track of what he's actually doing.
     
  9. tsbot

    tsbot Supporting Member

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    I would love to see a video of the OP's hands and how he manages the pick attack etc - hint hint! Great thread.
     
  10. iaresee

    iaresee Member

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  11. tsbot

    tsbot Supporting Member

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  12. satisphied

    satisphied Member

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    def going to check this out

    OP I would definitely LOVE some videos of HOW to play any/all of the trey licks you know. Mainly his bluesy stuff, some of which i have figured out myself but he seems to make a pentatonic scale his own more than any other player ive heard
     
  13. AB07302

    AB07302 Member

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    Hi guys!! I'm so sorry for being away, honestly I used the iPhone app for my TGP activity for a very long time, and I've lost track of the action around here since they took my app away! I'm SO HAPPY that so many people have found this stuff helpful, I've just recorded a 10 minute video FACING THE GUITAR that I'll upload and share as soon as it's processed. I hope it's helpful and fun. Thanks again guys, and thanks to everyone who's chimed in with advice in my absence!
     
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  14. iaresee

    iaresee Member

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    I've tried the Starcaster in the past wondering how close it would get me to the 'Doc type tones and didn't think it did a particularly good job. It's nice, but in it's own totally unique way.
     
  15. AB07302

    AB07302 Member

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    Here you go!

    If you have specific songs or licks you want help with, I'm happy to. Man, I wish YouTube was around when I was in high school and DYING to figure this stuff out!

     
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  16. satisphied

    satisphied Member

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    could you pretty please post a video teaching the lick from 4:00 to 4:04 and 4:33 to 4:37 - theyre both kinda the same but thats the kind of lick when I was talking about treys blues licks. Must be the slide down!

    also the moma lick would be nice!

    great playing man I may be interested in some skype lessons sometime if youre able
     
  17. iaresee

    iaresee Member

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    Look at the video. Around the 1:30 mark he goes in to it.
     
  18. Triocd

    Triocd Supporting Member

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    Thanks! Cool video. The rake into high notes got your dogs attention!
     
  19. satisphied

    satisphied Member

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    yea I didn't notice that last video
     
  20. satisphied

    satisphied Member

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    OP I owe you a lifetime of jealous listening..

    I had been wanting to know some of these licks for so long and was just unable or maybe not willing to sit down and figure it out. Ill go with the former though.. I tried many times and could not make it happen. Even watching videos of trey I could not discern what he was actually doing.

    You are the MAN!
     

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