Do you play the same way on your acoustic as on your electric?

Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by JL_LI, Dec 12, 2017.

  1. MDent77

    MDent77 Tele-Afflicted

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    I typically have different approaches. My default on acoustic is no pick. If I use a pick, I lean toward a medium (0.46mm - 0.70mm) on acoustic and heavy (1.5mm or 2.0mm) on electric.
     
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  2. basher

    basher Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    To me they're totally different instruments. Going from one to the other is almost like going between guitar and mandolin. Different feel, different sound, different response.
     
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  3. Pineears

    Pineears Tele-Afflicted

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    I have an acoustic sim pedal for my electric and have been picking some Bluegrass on it. First thing I notice is I have to pick way softer. The lighter touch on the left hand also has to be worked on.

    An acoustic guitar doesn’t have a volume control, so generally it’ll have heavier strings and you will pick and strum it much harder. Fingering and chording will be more difficult up the neck with heavier strings. High speed flat picking like is done in Bluegrass can be challenging.

    An acoustic electric guitar can have lighter strings and can be picked lightly with good results. Playing up the neck can be easier if setup is good.

    Electric guitar is much easier to play up the neck with lighter strings and low string setup.
     
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  4. philosofriend

    philosofriend Tele-Holic

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    To imitate strumming an acoustic on an electric guitar I turn the volume way down and strum recklessly up over the fretboard. Watch Johnny Cash to see him strumming up on the neck. To play acoustic fingerpicking or flatpicking styles on an electric I find I have to move much closer to the bridge than on an acoustic. I used to play banjo and I am in awe of how Danny Gatton fits banjo style rolls into any kind of music.
    When playing with no electricity at all I like to have a good loud acoustic guitar and I've learned how to get the biggest possible sound on electric style leads. Most strummers actually play pretty quiet, so they are kind of amazed to hear me playing leads. It is not really like an electric sound, but it is fun. Listen to Django Rinehart to hear somebody getting the maximum big tone on acoustic leads.
    Although they are different, I like to be able to imitate one on the other.
     
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  5. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Doctor of Teleocity

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    There was a time ( years ago now) when our electric band ( classic rock/blues).had a steady gig ( weekly and for years!) at a venue where we had to use 1/2 PA System, just a few drums/cymbals and I had to play acoustic guitar ( plugged into PA)
    For this stint I played and wanked-off ( guitar leads) as if my Martin were my Strat or Tele.
    Now it's mostly fingerstyle or flatpicking on acoustic ( Bluegrass, blues, folk, '70's songwriter stuff) and R&R and blues on electric.
    But I've always been comfy playing anything I know on any kind of decent playing and sounding guitar, including fingerstyle on electric- it really doesn't matter to me, I LOVE PLAYING THE GUITAR!
     
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  6. Matt G

    Matt G Tele-Afflicted

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    Allowing for some of the subtle (but important) differences mentioned above, I play them both pretty much the same. It's usually fingerpicking, full stop. I keep 11s on the Tele, and lights on the acoustic, so not a huge difference there. Usually straight into the amp on the electric. Back porch playing, not with a band.

    That said . . . the guitars still sound nothing alike.

    This may change in 2018, if I start putting the pedals to more use.
     
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  7. Tommy Biggs

    Tommy Biggs Friend of Leo's

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    I do incorporate some of the same things on both, but play them differently. Not bending strings (much) made me slide into things more. Needing to find different types of transitional notes made me think more about sliding double stops and 2 note chordal things, using hammer ons and pullofs in Open (cowboy) chords, and bluegrass style walk ups. Plenty of it has migrated from my acoustic playing to my electric playing over the years.
    I like getting the change of perspective, and finding the things a guitar does well (or I can make happen passably). Dabbling with a cheap Classical guitar opened some more new doors for me too.

    I'm not a real technical player, and hyper speed is not really my thing - so having the same set up or rig is not critical to what I'm doing with guitar.
     
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  8. Doug 54

    Doug 54 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yes, except radical bending. (I bend on acoustic alot still)
    I play all over the neck on both too. That's why on acoustic my action allows this w/o a capo.

    .
     
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  9. Frank'n'censed

    Frank'n'censed Doctor of Teleocity

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    Same hack, different instrument
     
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  10. JL_LI

    JL_LI Poster Extraordinaire

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    My sincere thanks to everyone who posted on this thread. One of my guitar resolutions for '18 is to practice and improve my skills on acoustic. I'm seeing it as a really different instrument from my Strat and Tele. The neck on my acoustic is thick and fat like the neck on my SG making it more difficult for a thumb over player like me. I play barre chords well enough but have trouble transitioning from open chords to barre chords. That's something that can be improved on with practice. The numerous posts on this and my recent capo on an electric thread have given me a lot to think about and a lot to practice. Thanks everyone. You're a great bunch.
     
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  11. rand z

    rand z Friend of Leo's

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    "I finally realized that each instrument has aspects to it which require me to alter my technique and, as long as I pay attention and keep my ears open, I can figure out what those are. When I do that, it opens up the opportunity for cross pollination while maximizing the potential for each instrument's unique character to shine."

    I've been bouncing back and forth between the two, for many year's.

    I enjoy the challenges that each presents and have adapted (imo) very well. My approach is very similiar to Clapton's approach... and in many way's I've intentionally followed his musical direction(s). Probably because he is a "Songster", a singer/guitarist/writer, and I am too. And he enjoys the different sonic palette of the acoustic and electric guitar.

    I play out a lot, and the versatility of being able to comfortabily jump back and forth between acoustic and electric, make the necessary adjustment's, and play both fairly well, have kept me working for a long time. (Also singing lead and harmony)

    I highly recommend working at competency on both... (and singing).
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2017
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  12. bowman

    bowman Friend of Leo's

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    I play both, always have, and other than the fact that the notes are in the same places, they are different things. They sound different, obviously, and play differently. There are some tunes that I play on both, but the way I do that has to be adjusted, depending on the guitar.
     
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  13. Charlie Bernstein

    Charlie Bernstein Poster Extraordinaire

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    Not always. Attack, tone, action, and sustain are different on each, so the playing has to be different sometimes, too. For instance, Chicago electric blues-style playing has to be different than Delta acoustic blues-style playing.

    But I pretty much play the same tunes on both.
     
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  14. cousinpaul

    cousinpaul Friend of Leo's

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    There's some crossover. I palm the pick and use my fingers quite a bit on electric for rhythm work, particularly while singing. Depends on the song, I guess. I do find I need to edit my lead playing on acoustic. Some of the things I do on electric don't translate well.
     
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  15. A.B.Negative

    A.B.Negative Friend of Leo's

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    I sit down to play acoustic and stand up for electric.
     
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  16. Count

    Count Friend of Leo's

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    When you sit for acoustic do you use the Classical position like Segovia with guitar on the left leg or the more usual, nowadays, folk position with guitar on the right leg?[emoji48] More seriously, I find that some playing techniques are transferable between acoustic and electric and some are not. That applies even, but to a lesser extent, between nylon string (classical) acoustics and steel string acoustics. Only way to find out what works or doesn’t is to experiment.
     
  17. A.B.Negative

    A.B.Negative Friend of Leo's

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    Usually folk position but occasionally classical if I'm attempting something complicated.
     
  18. Count

    Count Friend of Leo's

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    Ditto, even use the classical position with electrics sometimes, it seems to put the left hand in just the right position for fretting single notes and chords.
     
  19. RoyBGood

    RoyBGood Doctor of Teleocity

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    ^...Me too. Especially when someone bends the wound G, not far enough! :eek: Tommy Emmanuel, the best acoustic player in the world, imho, can pull off bending the plain strings a semitone in terms of pitch, but I still don't like the sound of it.
     
  20. Controller

    Controller Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    To me, two completely different instruments that share the same fretboard layout. I played 99% acoustic for years and when I got semi-serious about electric it was a whole 'nother deal.
     
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