I prefer the trio format for guitar

Discussion in 'Band Wagon' started by Mr Perch, May 9, 2021.

  1. Mr Perch

    Mr Perch Tele-Afflicted

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    There's a lot to be said about the power of a large band to move audiences. But for playing the guitar, I prefer a trio (plus vocalist(s)). I like to be able to hear myself clearly, which I can't always do with a lot of other instruments, and I also like having the responsibility (and freedom) which comes with being solely responsible for all chording and solos. I don't have to worry about colliding with another guitar or keys (although admittedly, collaborating with another guitar or keys can be great fun.)

    This may be due to some of my influences. When I was a young whippersnapper it was all about Cream and the Hendrix Experience, and some of my contemporary influences, like Oz Noy and Julian Lage, play often in trios.

    Right now I'm in two bands -- one is a larger one with two keyboards, and the other is a small Latin band with guitar, bass, drums and congas (I like having extra percussion. I wouldn't mind even another percussionist on timbales or misc. Latin percussion.)

    Let's compare notes.
     
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  2. NoTeleBob

    NoTeleBob Tele-Afflicted

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    I like four... a rhythm guitarist (which is sometimes me, sometimes not) allows for much more flexibility when playing lead. MHO.
     
  3. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I play in lots of trios.
    I too like unfettered guitar playing.
    I don’t like having to dodge and weave around other guitar players.
    I was fortunate to have learned to play rhythm, so (hopefully) the bands sound full and cohesive.
    I very rarely get to play with compatible guitarists.
    It’s a great joy when I get to.
    As a working player/hired gun, you get what you get.
     
  4. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I'm partial to trios+a fourth member.....like a vocalist who also plays another lead instrument like sax, flute, or violin. A sax is especially nice because it can sound very similar to a guitar's lead lines. My favorite band's lineup was Traffic, with keys, drums and sax, with occasionally a fourth member on guitar. I love a "minimal" number of players.
     
  5. VonBonfire

    VonBonfire Tele-Meister

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    Basically done with trios forever. By choice or necessity because lack of musicians and/or economics of making any money. And a lot of work if you are singing too. Not worth it when getting tight with a good rhythm man with a counterpoint style to ones own is the best experience and that itself can generate income producing gigs that cover that cost. I'll take the fattest rhythm section a gig affords to pay.
     
  6. johnDH

    johnDH Tele-Meister

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    I also like trios, or trio plus vocal. Most of my favirite bands fall into this format,eg Free, Zep, Police, Queen.

    I've nowhere near the playing chops to hold that down myself, but I like to try.
     
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  7. aging_rocker

    aging_rocker Friend of Leo's

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    I played mostly in 3-piece outfits (and/or 3-piece + vocalist) back in the Jurassic era...or the late 70s/early 80s as we also know it.

    I always found it difficult to 'gel' with other guitar players but when you did, wow. Incredible vibe when that happens.

    That was pretty rare though, and I've never been a 'play it like it says on the sheet' player myself, so yeah, small is beautiful.

    These days I just play with myself....:rolleyes:
     
  8. srblue5

    srblue5 Tele-Holic

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    I can make do with a trio but I’m more inspired to play by having another guitarist to “weave” with (in the tradition of the Stones and a few other two-guitar bands).
     
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  9. Old Plank

    Old Plank Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    I've been a Pat Metheny fan for a long time, seen him many times over 40 years; in the end I've found it's his various trio line-ups/albums scattered throughout his catalog that I really like best. Just the classic guitar-bass-drums format, you can't beat it for uncluttered inter-play.
     
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  10. kbold

    kbold Friend of Leo's

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    That's not a trio.
    Neither of these are a trio either.o_O

    Perhaps you prefer a trio + other musicians/singers.
     
  11. Jowes_84

    Jowes_84 Tele-Meister

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    Seems you like instrumental trios or quattros.
     
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  12. trev333

    trev333 Telefied Ad Free Member

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    My first foray into bass playing was with a local guitarist and drummer. They had played together in bigger bands for years, but the members kinda fragmented. I played with them for 2 yrs or so once or twice a month until the guitarists voice gave out. He needed a break.

    A trio was a great way to learn with only two other guys playing, easy to keep eye contact playing in a triangle looking at each other. I could drift off with the drums or with the guitar as songs required.

    I was watching the guitarists chords/fingers and listening to the drums... it didn't take long to fit in.
     
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  13. Lucius Paisley

    Lucius Paisley Tele-Afflicted

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    I get what you're saying, but here's an idea... MORE guitars.

    [​IMG]
     
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  14. Grandy

    Grandy Tele-Holic

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    I used to like guitar, bass, drums trios lot. The same creamexperiencezeppelins everybody else was listening too. As a player the responsibility of keeping it interesting was so daunting that it outweighs the freedom and its possibilities. Jazz bands without a piano sound exciting for the same reason.

    On the other hand the interplay with another guitar or keyboards is the most rewarding thing in music. I've had experiences with a Rhodes piano where I haven't been able to hear my guitar and the piano as separate instruments but more like one and the same. It's like the the music is playing you, not the other way around.

    A quote from Malcolm Young seems appropriate: "When the band is really cooking, it's better than sex."
     
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  15. omahaaudio

    omahaaudio Friend of Leo's

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    Three guitarists?
     
  16. BerkshireDuncan

    BerkshireDuncan Tele-Meister

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    Guitar, bass, drums and a dedicated vocalist. In the Real World (well mine at least) this is an ideal set up.
    Everybody has to think, listen, compromise, contribute.. and do BV's.
     
  17. Gaz_

    Gaz_ Tele-Meister

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    This is where I thought the thread was going.
     
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  18. Tele-friend

    Tele-friend Tele-Meister

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    I used to play in a trio. I was a rhythm & lead guitarist + vocalist. It was fun, but really hard to do all this things together. Now we have a singer and I prefer it that way, because I can focus more on my guitar playing. I still have a lot of work to do, but I like the fact that I am the only guitar player.
     
  19. ScottTunes

    ScottTunes TDPRI Member

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    My preference is multiple vocalists that play something... 3 singers, who can sing lead as well as harmony, sounds incredible, when done right! This usually means 2 guitars, bass and drums for me. Bigger is not necessarily better, unless it improves the vocals (for me, anyway). I've yet to find a capable drummer who can also sing well. Otherwise, I'd be happy being the only guitarist. But it does lighten the "load" a bit to share guitar work. I like that.
     
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  20. AJBaker

    AJBaker Friend of Leo's

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    I've done a lot of playing with a pianist or with a acoustic player (both with and without a drummer or sometimes bass player).

    I like being able to lean on them for the rhythm and filling out the sound, but on the rare occasion I've played in a trio, is both fun and scary.

    I don't always trust my rhythm chops when I'm singing, but it's fun to fill out the sound with my guitar.
     
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