Face it, your tone is irrelevant 90% of the time.

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by rze99, May 4, 2018.

  1. OwenHu99

    OwenHu99 TDPRI Member

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    I agree that when you are serving the band, the extent of your obsession on tone is probably irrelevant and indistinguishable (unless you play in a jazz trio or solo with a backing band etc.). But in my opinion, as long as YOU can hear the difference in tone, it will make a difference in your playing and therefore your contribution to the band.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2018
  2. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Yeah you say "in a band like that", which sums up the issue of guitar sound being unimportant today compared to back when the electric guitar was central to Rock music.

    So why is the electric guitar so unimportant today?

    IMO it is largely due to where the skilled guitar players have collectively gone with style and technique, which is IMO largely the fault of Rock becoming big business requiring a college degree to play, thus college trained guitar players all study identical pedagogical guitar method and end up sounding pretty near exactly the same.
    Nobody wants to hear that shred **** any more so guitars become props.

    Seems like this would leave a lot of room for a player with some natural talent to shine as being unique and interesting to listen to.

    Maybe pop Rock is dead?
    Blues is Blooze and Rock is Pop or Classic Rock.
    Seems like an awful lot of the last good run of great Rock front men have been killing themselves.
    Seems to me they still had valid stuff to say.
    Maybe nobody's listening?
     
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  3. blues bondsman

    blues bondsman Tele-Afflicted

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    My tone matters 100% of the time.

    I think its funny that some folks think that unless your a gigging musician your not relevant and your love and enjoyment of the guitar, amps and Tone doesn't matter.

    It sure matters to this cute chick who has been following me around the last 22 years.
    My one and only Groupie and the only one that matters to me !
     
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  4. awasson

    awasson Poster Extraordinaire Gold Supporter

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    This is something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. At some point I hope there’s another music disruption on the scale of the Punk Rock scene in the 70’s or Grunge in the 90’s to take music back to the street and out of the corporate offices where music is manufactured with the same level of creative spark as a Big Mac.

    Thanks... Now, where should I put this soapbox :D
     
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  5. william tele

    william tele Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Even in a sound stage environment built to optimize all sonic events through state of the art production equipment...I have heard some REALLY crappy guitar tone. So, as much as I will agree that "hairsplitting" conversations about the difference in tone between alder and ash in a tele are just ridiculous, there are some guitar sounds that will not appeal to a huge number of ears...
     
  6. Wrong-Note Rod

    Wrong-Note Rod Poster Extraordinaire

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    reported
     
  7. JL_LI

    JL_LI Friend of Leo's

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    I must disagree that tone is irrelevant. I've been on this forum for almost a year. My reason for joining was the pursuit of tone. I'll confess that I play mostly for my own amusement but that doesn't mean that I'm not serious about my playing. In the time I've been here, I've changed my amp settings, changed the pickups in my Telecaster and Strat, changed the pickup heights on my Gretsch and changed the way I use the tone switch and volume controls, learned to use a compressor to get the tone I want, and more. What I've found is as a result, my playing has improved. I no longer spend my time tweaking and fiddling. I just play. Tone, for me, is relevant 100% of the time. It's a distraction when it's not there.
     
  8. Frank'n'censed

    Frank'n'censed Doctor of Teleocity

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    ”Face it, your tone is irrelevant 90% of the time.”

    Watch your step, my tone wood’s having a bad day!
     
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  9. Wrong-Note Rod

    Wrong-Note Rod Poster Extraordinaire

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    reported
     
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  10. jhundt

    jhundt Doctor of Teleocity

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    I agree completely. Really, the only person who cares about 'your tone' is yourself. Not that it doesn't matter - we all play better when we sound great to ourselves! But if I think back over all the guitars I have ever heard - live and recorded - the tone rarely impressed me. I can think of a Beatles track, one or two Stones things, Mick Ronson, and Steve Vaughan on that Bowie record as stand-out tracks. But the rest just sounded like cool guitars played by inspired players through whatever they were using. I have seen enough great guitar players who can make whatever they are using sound just right; and I have seen plenty of standard-quality (or even sub-standard) who can capture the exact sound of any known guitar recording.
     
  11. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    So in the '60s and '70s the electric guitar was core in defining Rock music, where today if Rock even exists the guitar is often totally irrelevant.

    How did this transition take place?
    Here is a gentleman who has had huge importance in popular music for decades, explaining what may have been somewhat pivotal in the demise of the electric guitar, even as it possibly made the career of one if not two great guitar players.

    What I consider somewhat defining is that the other guitar player was hired for his great guitar playing, but then told not to play much at all, and subsequently fired for playing too much.

    I looked for some Nile Rodgers guitar because I've always considered him a master of using somewhat weak tones to great effect, like essential rhythm parts that make people dance, yet sound thin and not at all epic-guitar-tone.

    This interview was somewhat enlightening though:



    Of course the other guitar player who got fired for playing too much has one of the most copied guitar sounds in history, and almost nobody wants to hear that famous sound any more.

    I'm also wondering if the release of Lets Dance with the intro of SRV to the pop music world also kicked off the vintage gear craze, where players all wanted to know how he got that sound, which happened to be with a '59 Strat and a vintage tube amp.
    Guitar players en masse followed him down the rabbit hole...
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2018
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  12. jimgchord

    jimgchord Tele-Afflicted

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    Hmm. It's relevant to me 100% I play guitar because I like the sound it makes.
     
  13. Zepfan

    Zepfan Poster Extraordinaire

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    Your tone gets somewhat lost in the mix and volume as it's blended in to make nice music. If your guitar's tone isn't good, all the volume in the world won't make it sound better. It gets hidden by the others around you.

    So, if you guitar can't be heard in the mix well, your sound man might be covering you up.:p
     
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  14. FrontPU

    FrontPU Tele-Holic

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    As an audience/listener at a large loud venue, might say yes, but as a player at a small~medium sized venue, no.
    Tone can be more important for players than for listeners, which is a part of playability for those who choose the instrument for its large tonal color palette, even if it's not heard by audience.
     
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  15. GFrank

    GFrank Tele-Meister

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    Totally. We should all just play Squires through Crates.
     
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  16. SolidSteak

    SolidSteak Friend of Leo's

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    If I add up all my time on Earth, I suppose 90% of that time I was not playing guitar, so... yeah!
     
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  17. SweetClyde99

    SweetClyde99 Tele-Holic

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    It’s not so much that I disagree with the premise of this thread. It just happens to conflict with a worldview I have invested too much time and money in to change now, so I choose to ignore it.

    On that note, if anyone has any dirt pedal recommendations, I’m all ears. The 18 I’m sitting on right now are not nearly enough.
     
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  18. bluescaster72

    bluescaster72 Tele-Holic

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    I noticed this early on that in a live setting all the effects you use generally get lost in the mix especially outdoors. I mean you may hear them on stage through your monitor but the audience won't be getting the full effect. I think effects when properly used sound best when your recording as opposed to live performance. Doesn't mean you don't want to use them but I think live the effect is lessened to a great degree
     
  19. bluescaster72

    bluescaster72 Tele-Holic

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    I think it matters to you as was earlier stated as it affects how you play . But when it's all put together it doesn't seem to matter as much . I know if I can't find my sound I don't play as well when I do . The funny thing is my so call my sound doesn't always sound as good when I see a video of myself so was it that big of deal in the first place? Placebo effect maybe ??
     
  20. Zepfan

    Zepfan Poster Extraordinaire

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    If tone gets lost and doesn't matter, then why do we all want to have that particular sound of our favorite player?
     
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