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Old 10-06-2019, 11:42 AM
LemonCats LemonCats is offline
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Default Pressure of slide against the strings (all 6 strings)

Hey boils n goils
So I've got my first resonator recently and I decided Id give slide a little whirl for the first time (ever, on any guitar)



The instructors on the videos I've watched say to use or 'glide' the slide over the string lightly so that you dont hear the frets clicking while you pass over them.

And yeah this definitely works when on a single string or even a couple strings on one side of the neck

But I'm noticing when a song calls for a slide on all six strings I have to sort of press down pretty dang firmly to get all the strings to play or specifically to not buzz against the slide. Harder than I imagined because i was told to use the slide lightly. Its almost like half way between fretting and gliding

Is this normal?

I did notice the neck appears to have a very slight radius to my eye, not sure how much it is or if im hallucinating, i was hoping to get a completely flat neck as i heard they are good for slide and its what im used to playing on (on my nylon guitars and old harmony guitar) but yeah.
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Old 10-06-2019, 11:44 AM
roylor4 roylor4 is offline
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It's a touch thing. It will come with practice.

I prefer heavier, thicker slides over thin, light ones. You can let the weight of the slide do most of the work that way.
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Old 10-06-2019, 11:55 AM
LemonCats LemonCats is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roylor4 View Post
It's a touch thing. It will come with practice.

I prefer heavier, thicker slides over thin, light ones. You can let the weight of the slide do most of the work that way.
What material do you prefer? I'm using a dunlop clear glass slide right now.

And i think i need to go up in size as it can get stuck on my pinky sometimes and that freaks me the f out when that happens lol. I might try ceramic, a bone slide sounds like a cool idea too
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Old 10-06-2019, 12:33 PM
BudHa BudHa is offline
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Take a look at Rockslide, Diamond Bottlenecks, and Rocky Mountain Slides. They all three make excellent slides. You just need to try different brands, sizes, and styles to figure it out.
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Old 10-06-2019, 01:23 PM
roylor4 roylor4 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LemonCats View Post
What material do you prefer? I'm using a dunlop clear glass slide right now.

And i think i need to go up in size as it can get stuck on my pinky sometimes and that freaks me the f out when that happens lol. I might try ceramic, a bone slide sounds like a cool idea too
I prefer glass made out of real bottlenecks over to the pre-made straight ones.

I understand the getting stuck thing, it's happened to me too.

I like using my pinky and buying them a little too big. Then I use slices of medical tape on the inside to make a proper fit and keep from "walking" off my pinky. I do lots of shuffles and big ones are prone to move.

I have never had a proper store bought slide that I liked. I have never bought a real nice one either though like those mentioned by BudHa.

I got mine at festivals for $5 each.
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Old 10-06-2019, 02:25 PM
ManyMartinMan ManyMartinMan is offline
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As stated above, even pressure coming from LOTS of practice will make that much easier. I never slide all 6 strings so my technique would leave a lot to be desired as well.
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Old 10-06-2019, 03:03 PM
SpruceTop SpruceTop is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LemonCats View Post
Hey boils n goils
So I've got my first resonator recently and I decided Id give slide a little whirl for the first time (ever, on any guitar)



The instructors on the videos I've watched say to use or 'glide' the slide over the string lightly so that you dont hear the frets clicking while you pass over them.

And yeah this definitely works when on a single string or even a couple strings on one side of the neck

But I'm noticing when a song calls for a slide on all six strings I have to sort of press down pretty dang firmly to get all the strings to play or specifically to not buzz against the slide. Harder than I imagined because i was told to use the slide lightly. Its almost like half way between fretting and gliding

Is this normal?

I did notice the neck appears to have a very slight radius to my eye, not sure how much it is or if im hallucinating, i was hoping to get a completely flat neck as i heard they are good for slide and its what im used to playing on (on my nylon guitars and old harmony guitar) but yeah.
Listen to John Hammond play. Even the best slide players will click the slide on the frets in the frenzy of playing and its all part of the sound.
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Old 10-06-2019, 03:28 PM
FrankHudson FrankHudson is offline
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I'm not a clean or highly proficient slide player, but here's a couple of things.

As said upthread, IMHO some fret noise and such doesn't really hurt some kinds of performances. If the energy and overall performance is there, it might add a bit of funky charm.

I used to have my main electric (9.5 radius) setup so that that it did not follow the fretboard radius curve on the treble strings. I did that for two reasons: I like a slighter higher action when doing string vibrato and because it gave me so extra height for slide playing on those strings, while still not being much of a hindrance when making a barre chord. However most acoustics are already flatter radius than Fender electric guitars.

As I've gotten older I find that I rarely need to fret all 6 strings for blues style slide work, and with that outlook I don't really have much more to help you.
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Old 10-06-2019, 03:35 PM
Silly Moustache Silly Moustache is online now
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Hi Lemoncats,

it's the ol' guy here.

In fact it is rare that you need to play all six strings at once, (you only need three to make a full chord after all, and presumably you aren't playing Hawaiian style.

The "art" to playing bottleneck style is to use a pretty heavy slide, and apply the minimum possible pressure whilst putting the power into the note with your picking hand.

Anoyher thing to remember is that there are no "rules" to this style, and there is little point in trying to copy anyone else - best to develop your own style/sound, but one of the "cleanest" slide players I know is Mike Dowling, and you can find some examples on Y/T.

I don't pretend any great abilities on bottleneck, but here's a couple of examples of "my" style.



and

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Old 10-06-2019, 04:51 PM
SpruceTop SpruceTop is offline
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'Stache, as usual, you've captured my attention with your great playing, and I Thank You, Sir!
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Last edited by SpruceTop; 10-06-2019 at 05:12 PM.
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  #11  
Old 10-06-2019, 06:38 PM
ziapack ziapack is offline
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Another technique to work on is muting the strings with your free fingers, distal to the slide. Just a light touch as your working your slide will help tame your sound, give your notes a little more clarity.

I have collected a hand full of slides, just getting a feel for what I like. I change up from time to time as the mood fits me. I tend to like the ceramic slides on my pinky.
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Old 10-06-2019, 06:42 PM
ziapack ziapack is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LemonCats View Post
a bone slide sounds like a cool idea too
Taylor has their ebony slides, they have a mellow sound, light weight, kind of cool.

What resonator did you end up bringing home?

Last edited by ziapack; 10-06-2019 at 06:45 PM. Reason: content
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Old 10-08-2019, 04:16 PM
Silly Moustache Silly Moustache is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpruceTop View Post
'Stache, as usual, you've captured my attention with your great playing, and I Thank You, Sir!
Gosh, thank you sir!
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  #14  
Old 11-15-2019, 05:37 AM
Howard Emerson Howard Emerson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LemonCats View Post
Hey boils n goils
So I've got my first resonator recently and I decided Id give slide a little whirl for the first time (ever, on any guitar)



The instructors on the videos I've watched say to use or 'glide' the slide over the string lightly so that you dont hear the frets clicking while you pass over them.

And yeah this definitely works when on a single string or even a couple strings on one side of the neck

But I'm noticing when a song calls for a slide on all six strings I have to sort of press down pretty dang firmly to get all the strings to play or specifically to not buzz against the slide. Harder than I imagined because i was told to use the slide lightly. Its almost like half way between fretting and gliding

Is this normal?

I did notice the neck appears to have a very slight radius to my eye, not sure how much it is or if im hallucinating, i was hoping to get a completely flat neck as i heard they are good for slide and its what im used to playing on (on my nylon guitars and old harmony guitar) but yeah.
The lighter the mass of the slide/bottleneck vs the gauge/tension of the string set, the more pressure you have to apply.

The issue of a straight sided slide vs a radius fingerboard is another issue. Trying to engage the surface of the slide with all 6 strings is problematic because of the extra pressure needed to engage the outer strings because in doing so you've added more pressure to the inner strings.

Heavy slides with a concave surface are not as readily available as straight heavy slides.

I've been playing bottleneck/slide/lap dobro since 1970, so I have some experience with most of these issues.

Your observations are correct, so trust your hands, ears and logic, first & foremost. If you're watching a video it's a one way street, but just because someone on a video says something doesn't mean it applies to your situation, and if they're not available to question, then by all means take what they say with a grain of salt and a Margarita.

Here's a video where I'm using my Telecaster build with a very curved, very heavy bottleneck that I cut from a magnum champagne bottle. The strings are .013-.054 in open D tuning. You'll see plenty of moments where I'm playing 3+ strings spanning from 6 to 1 simultaneously. Although it's probably premature to start trying it, watch my right hand carefully. Even though the bottleneck is covering all 6 strings sometimes, you'll only hear the ones I intend to sound.

THAT'S where the majority of the string muting/selecting is being done.



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Howard Emerson
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Old 11-16-2019, 09:19 AM
slide496 slide496 is offline
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I'd like to offer several suggestions for consideration.

The first is visit Michael Messer's slide guitar forum as there are a number of resonator players and post your concerns, make sure you include the model of the resonator, string weight and key you want to play in. As on this forum, the members will get back with suggestions they've tried.

The second would be if there is a teacher in your area you might want to see if he can help you in person with observations and demonstrations.

The third would be dvd or download lessons from Tom Feldmann either through Stefan Grossman's guitar workshop or his own individual where he demonstrates what you would like to learn. He regularly instructs to guitarists who are acoustic players and are set up for that who now want to add slide guitar. He does include tips occasionally to temporarily adjust the guitar in a reversible manner and the like although the focus is learning the material.

Good luck,
Harriet

Last edited by slide496; 11-16-2019 at 03:40 PM.
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