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Let's Talk Dynamics.

Discussion in 'Tab, Tips, Theory and Technique' started by KrenarCilku, Feb 24, 2021.

  1. cousinpaul

    cousinpaul Friend of Leo's

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    I'm not above using the universal hand signal to get the band to back off. Softer sections can give the singer or soloist something to build on, as well as making the music more interesting for a listener.

    As for playing my parts with dynamics, I need enough volume to be heard when picking softly or with the guitar's volume rolled back, as well the right amount of compression (or drive) when picking harder. It has a lot to do with playing the amp or pedal in it's sweet spot.
     
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  2. johnny7

    johnny7 Tele-Meister

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    I believe that part of the problem with dynamics is the overuse of compression during the mastering process and in the FOH mix during live performances.
     
  3. GreatDaneRock

    GreatDaneRock Tele-Holic

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    I like them and I use one by moore, yellow compressor. But just barely compressing and adding a tiny bit of sustain and sparkle, that's its function. Not to level everything like a bulldozer.
     
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  4. fretWalkr

    fretWalkr Tele-Meister

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    No, rhythm is the most important thing in music. Of course you also have to be in tune, the fundamentals have to be there. But the rhythm is what makes it music and what grabs the audience.

    Dynamics is extremely important and something I'm always aware of when I play. Dynamics are critical if you want to have good vocal-like phrasing. I tune out guys that have no finesse or subtlety and play triple forte all the time. Their lines start out on a peak and stay there...there's nowhere to go.

    But if you can't play in time then all the dynamics, theory, fancy chords, and hot licks don't matter.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2021
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  5. GreatDaneRock

    GreatDaneRock Tele-Holic

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    B I N G O
     
  6. drumtime

    drumtime Tele-Afflicted

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    As I read this and countless other threads on here, I'm realizing what a great pleasure it is to play with a drummer who understands dynamics. The drummer I play with is actually more aware of dynamics than most of the other players. In that way, especially in improvised pieces, he controls the dynamics a lot of the time, and it makes a huge difference in how the whole band sounds.

    As a pretty limited guitar player, I find that phrasing, dynamics, and especially rhythm, are all ways I can sound better and help the band sound better.
     
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  7. Tom Grattan

    Tom Grattan TDPRI Member Silver Supporter

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    Every time I play.
     
  8. bigjohnbates

    bigjohnbates Tele-Meister

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    Everything is great until someone gets excited ...
     
  9. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Doctor of Teleocity

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    One of my favorite expressions, (especially with bass players) is "Embrace the Space".....meaning, take a breath every now and then. To my ear, it makes the notes you DO play even more significant.
    Possibly the BEST example I can mention (in rock) was Andy Frazer of Free. Every other measure you thought his amp had gone out for a beat or two, and then he was right back in. Free was the "tightest loose" band I'm aware of.
     
  10. jaxjaxon

    jaxjaxon Tele-Meister

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    You want to have your band to practice fade outs to get use to dynamics then once familiar with how to do fade outs introduce them to dynamics in the middle of a song. I only use a compressor when I finger pick and it is set at 2 to 1. I have played with drummers that only played full out and some times I would stuff there drums they sure did give me dirty looks. If you want to teach a guitarist or bassist about dynamic playing have them play thru a quality OD.
     
  11. Sixstring3370

    Sixstring3370 TDPRI Member

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    Nobody does it better than Mark Knopfler. There is this new kid Chris Buck nice dynamics.
     
  12. Sixstring3370

    Sixstring3370 TDPRI Member

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    David Lindley and of course another David the Gilmour.
     
  13. drmordo

    drmordo Tele-Afflicted

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    Like Bill Bruford said, sometimes the most difficult part to improvise is none at all.

    I agree that dynamics are critical, which is much of the reason why I struggle with modern recordings. All the instruments are squashed down so the dynamics are just non-existent, and the rest is samples.

    20 years ago I was in a alt/punk/pop band. At full tilt, we were LOUD. Way too loud, I realize now. But we had parts of songs that were whisper quiet. When we went into the studio, the engineer complained about how hard it was to capture to the dynamics.

    This topic reminds me of Sinatra's line about recording with Jobim: "I haven't sung that quiet since I got the laryngitis."
     
  14. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Have to listen tomorrow when my wife isn't asleep.

    But dynamics?
    Damn, massively essential and I'm too often amazed by dirt pedal demo videos where the player slams the strings throughout.

    I think compressors are kind of an alternative to player dynamics, but I can see the need for some playing styles, like fingerpicking.
    I must have spent a year just developing my ability to make upstrokes and downstrokes sound the same.
    My RH technique is not very common, usually only 1/8" to 1/16" of pick protrudes between finger and thumb, so flesh is always muting a little or a lot, and amp volume is set higher than the volume I want to hear so I have to reign it in much of the time.

    Ideally this means clean and dirty sounds come from RH dynamics with no vol knob adjustment, but not always.
     
  15. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I love silence in music, particularly the silence during passages, where you hear a voice in the space afforded, and it is made more distinct by the players who are stilled.

    That's why I bought a $180 NR pedal, dead silent when I stop, then sound explodes when needed.
    Kind of eerie after years of noisy distorted amps.
    I love silence!
     
  16. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I don't know if you can really say rhythm is the most important thing in music, depends on what kind of music.
    Some of the most sophisticated music has pretty simple schoolboy rhythm.
    Some of the dullest music has massively compelling rhythm and not much else.

    Rhythm is important to me for sure.
    Playing with people who do the washing machine rhythm thing just kills me, can't stand that dull beat that never budges.
    I need it to breathe, need some funky rhythms going on.
    There are many kinds of music though.
     
  17. kplamann

    kplamann Tele-Holic

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    Think of Led Zeppelin which is obviously considered one of the primordial hard rock bands. Yet, half of the time they were playing mandolins and acoustic guitars in open tunings.

    Led Zeppelin III starts with hard rocking "Immigrant Song". Where do you go from there? To "Friends", an acoustic song. Then "Celebration Day". And so forth.
     
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  18. Larry F

    Larry F Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    For me, dynamics are mostly expressed through density. More silence between notes vs louder with more notes, especially in a band setting.
     
  19. BerkshireDuncan

    BerkshireDuncan Tele-Meister

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    As the sole guitarist in the band I have the opposite issue.

    We play Classic Soul covers so my 'solos' tend to be more rhythmic, chord-based horn section substitutions, rather than screaming leads. Problem is the rest of the band tend to sit WAY back and give me too much space, allowing the dynamics to tail off rather than build just before the big last verse comeback, etc.
     
  20. johnnylaw

    johnnylaw Tele-Afflicted

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    Every song.
     
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