Musical Fallacies

Discussion in 'Beginners/FAQ' started by bostjan, Jul 20, 2017.

  1. JohnIce

    JohnIce Singlecoils = tr00

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    I thought so too, until I got a teacher in college who had a freakish talent for hearing the intent behind your music. If there was even a little bit of a motivation in me to impress, get appreciated or copy other artists as a safety measure, he could sniff it out immediately because he'd seen it all before. That made a pretty big impact on all of us as students and really made me realize why only some of my songs/bands seemed to connect with people when most of them didn't. I was basically using too many tricks to write "good" songs and shooting myself in the foot by compromising my feelings and taste and relying more on skill and knowledge instead. I agree that this makes a lesser impact on guitar playing than on songwriting as a whole, but guitar playing is a part of the whole. I think you can hear "BS" in a person singing about some tragic event that never actually happened to them, or being braggy and show-offy when they're really quite insecure. Some people hide it well enough but to me most people don't. I don't think this is universally objective at all, but I do notice that the majority of people seem to have the same ear for it. But yeah, it's not 100% accurate all the time.

    I'm not trying to be pseudo-inspirational, it's just a hard topic to condense in a short paragraph. Like I said, speed or genre has nothing to do with it in my experience. People who don't like shred guitar might not care either way, but someone who is a huge fan of the genre might be floored by John Petrucci yet unimpressed by you, and I think the difference is mostly in the intent of the player. If your intent is to just play faster and cleaner than John Petrucci, I don't think you're gonna go nearly as far as he has.
     
  2. r33per

    r33per SS.org Regular

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    Yes yes yes. The fallacy is that fewer notes per minute, bends/vibrato, rake-and-dig-in with the pick (Brian May anyone?) = big feels.

    That's not untrue, but it also missed the mark. Feeling is so subjective, but the usual task of the musician/composer is to play in such a way that the listener experiences the emotion you want them to convey.

    I remember when Dream Theater's Scenes from a Memory was coming out and JP released a couple of isolated guitar solos, one of which was from Home. On its own it was VERY cool, but in the context of the song's subject matter and mood, it was near perfect. It is tracks beautifully with the music, is technically astute and has some superb note choices. His solo from Voices is of the same ilk - full of technique, yes, but giving it big in the "feels" department as well.

    That's another point: surely the "feel" of a guitar solo - or any instrument - will be affected by the surrounding music supporting it.
     
  3. r33per

    r33per SS.org Regular

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    Yes yes yes. The fallacy is that fewer notes per minute, bends/vibrato, rake-and-dig-in with the pick (Brian May anyone?) = big feels.

    That's not untrue, but it also missed the mark. Feeling is so subjective, but the usual task of the musician/composer is to play in such a way that the listener experiences the emotion you want them to convey.

    I remember when Dream Theater's Scenes from a Memory was coming out and JP released a couple of isolated guitar solos, one of which was from Home. On its own it was VERY cool, but in the context of the song's subject matter and mood, it was near perfect. It is tracks beautifully with the music, is technically astute and has some superb note choices. His solo from Voices is of the same ilk - full of technique, yes, but giving it big in the "feels" department as well.

    That's another point: surely the "feel" of a guitar solo - or any instrument - will be affected by the surrounding music supporting it.
     
  4. Spaced Out Ace

    Spaced Out Ace 0 0 1 0 0 6 5 0 3\

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    Eh. No offense, but John Petrucci is the definition of cold and clinical. Sterile and robotic might also apply to his playing. Sorry, but it's just not that exciting to me.
     
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  5. USMarine75

    USMarine75 Doc McStuffins Contributor

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    Marty sounds like he's trolling, but he's spot on IMO.

    The whole "Who told you this is happening?" rant is epic! :lol:
     
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  6. Spaced Out Ace

    Spaced Out Ace 0 0 1 0 0 6 5 0 3\

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    Marty freakin' Friedman is certainly NOT a fallacy. He's awesome! :agreed::dime:

    EDIT: And by the way, Marty has some INSANE downward pick slanting going on. And that part about "giving it that little jerk" and not making it totally metronomed out is what -- ahem -- feel is. Attitude as well. At least to me anyways.
     
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  7. A-Branger

    A-Branger SS.org Regular

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    I beg to differ a lot, one fo the reason I like him so much is becuase for me hes really melodic, plus adds the right amount of fast shred stuff while still keeping melodic slow and "feeling" stuff around mixed.

    And thats the perfect example of what "feelings" is really all about. It all depends of what you define it and what you like. For me its more about hitting the right notes at the right time in the right context, and to know when to go full on and when to step back. Its not about the notes but the silence on them.... or in a case of a solo, how long to hold a note.


    Usually people tend to asociate "feelings" playing with slow songs as they tend to be more "powerfull ballad" kinda thing which also allows for a more melodic, slower approach to soloing
     
  8. r33per

    r33per SS.org Regular

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    Oh in the last few years, I completely agree. I've just gone off their stuff entirely. Their 90s stuff is (imo) much better - sounds more like music than an extended practise exercise.

    And - if I might say - you make my point: it is so subjective. Some of us will go nuts and wax lyrical about _the_ Comfortably Numb solo, others just find it meh. Again: the fallacy is that "feeling" is one specific style or genre and that it is mutually exclusive from technical virtuosity.
     
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  9. Spaced Out Ace

    Spaced Out Ace 0 0 1 0 0 6 5 0 3\

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    I am not one of those people to "associate feelings playing with slow songs." I consider Eddie Van Halen, Dimebag, and Marty Friedman -- among others -- to play with feeling. Whether that is what most people mean or not is another story. Like I said, I find John Petrucci to be really robotic and mechanical in his lead playing. But you seem to like him, which is fine.

    I think even their 90s stuff was kind of devoid of personality, attitude, and so on. I think if they entended to be the follow up to Rush, they focused on the wrong things. Rush -- especially during the 70s and up to Tom Sawyer -- were amazing. Once they got back on track sometime in the 90s, they continued to be amazing, and their last couple albums, like Vapor Trails [the redone version sounds great] and Clockwork were awesome, awesome discs.
     
  10. USMarine75

    USMarine75 Doc McStuffins Contributor

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    I actually quite like JP's solo in Wither and think it has an appropriate amount of "the feels". But musical appreciation is subjective.

    So most of us on here "know" how talented he is, and how talented that genre of music is, therefore we assess that he must be "playing" the right notes and not "feeling" them. I would bet that an untrained (uncaring? unknowing?) listener wouldn't differentiate between that solo and a Chicago Blues solo, as to either being more technical or sterile. IMO it is an artifact of us all knowing JP is a living breathing Berklee textbook.

    Similarly, people assume all blues and rock greats are all musically illiterate. I hear that all the time about Hendrix and EVH, even though they were both quite knowledgeable about theory in their own respective ways, even if it was not formal education.

    And we also assume that shredders have more music theory knowledge than other genres, such as pop, blues, and classic rock. Yet guys like Marty Friedman admit that he never gave an F about scales and modes and all that lol (however, Marty is a master troll). And a lot of pop (session) musicians are incredibly talented and knowledgeable.
     
  11. Spaced Out Ace

    Spaced Out Ace 0 0 1 0 0 6 5 0 3\

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    Some great points made about JP in the sense he's talented and knows what he's doing. I also agree that Marty is a master troll, but I get the feeling that while some of his playing might relate to a scale/mode here and there, I don't think he thinks about it or plots it out as he's writing a solo. Or as USM75 put it, he doesn't give an F [F# to be totally precise; he loves F# notes, and so do I thanks to him and Ace Frehley].
     
  12. A-Branger

    A-Branger SS.org Regular

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    yeah that was my point, that everyone thinks and like something different. What I see as playing with feeling is different to what you see and everyone else.

    At the end of the day the weirder the face you put when you play, the more people believe that you are sooooooooooo into it, so you must be flowing in feeling
     
  13. Spaced Out Ace

    Spaced Out Ace 0 0 1 0 0 6 5 0 3\

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    Fair enough, but for EVH and Dimebag, I consider them playing with feeling because I can hear them smiling through their playing. EVH's playing in particular sounds fun, rambunctious, and exciting. But you're probably right: eye of the beholder.
     
  14. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    This is pretty much what the majority of the recent posts were pointing out as a fallacy.
    To say that EVH's playing evokes playfulness and excitement is spot on, but saying that he's playing with more "feeling" than a player who evokes melancholy or determination or anger is just kind of an empty statement.
    It's like asking "which emotion is the most emotional?"
     
  15. marcwormjim

    marcwormjim SS.org Regular

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    "At the end of the day, 'emotion' may very well be nothing more than an information-age portmanteau of 'electronic motion.'"-marcwormjim
     
  16. A-Branger

    A-Branger SS.org Regular

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    yeah but that goes with the context of the band/music and the person. Of course he evokes Happiness, because the dude always smiles and his music was more inot the happy 80's side of things. Not because you can hear how he smiled trough his solo. Its more about you picturing the memories you have of him (or a poster in front of you).... same if its "anger", put a guy on a band with a "angry" look, settup, dress, art, paint, shape of the guitar, ect ect and the you would think their music and his solo its "angry"


    I made the joke of playing with feelings is one part making silly faces. But in a way its kinda true, its another way to express yourself, one with your body language and with the guitar, so when you put the two into context it evokes more "feeling" to the audience as they see you fully submerged into it. rather if you play the exact solo (sonically with an the same technique/mistakes) but you jsut stand there with a blank face/body
     
  17. Spaced Out Ace

    Spaced Out Ace 0 0 1 0 0 6 5 0 3\

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    Not a musical fallacy, but rather a gear fallacy. It is a bit annoying that the idea is passed around as fact that "active EMGs sound the same no matter what guitar you put them in." That is not really true at all, and especially so if you put EMGs in just about any guitar, then put them in a BC Rich. For whatever reason, probably construction, body thickness/headstock size, and other tone shaping factors like that, the BC Rich loaded guitars always sound way different than everything else. But even if you have EMGs to two very similar guitars, like my H500 and H1001, they have their own characteristics as well.
     
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  18. tedtan

    tedtan SS.org Regular

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    I think people say that about EMGs referring to the clipped/compressed nature of the pickups running at 9 volts. Going with some of the newer EMGs or the 18 volt mod will give you more dynamics.
     
  19. Science_Penguin

    Science_Penguin SS.org Regular

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    ^
    Definitely. If you're not satisfied with your 81, before you gut the electronics, try an X series or Retro Active.
     
  20. A-Branger

    A-Branger SS.org Regular

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    I have the Het Set in one of my guitars. I actually like the compressed nature for cleans a way more than my other guitar with Dimarzios. For the stuff I play it helps with better notes arpeggios
     

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