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  1. #1
    Eruption DaleT's Avatar
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    12.26.11 @ 07:47 AM
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    Natural and Artificial Harmonics

    Could some of you ol' pros help this beginner? Please explain how to do natural and artificial harmonics.

  2. #2
    Good Enough Wolfgang Slinger's Avatar
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    03.03.17 @ 11:34 AM
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    Man, that stuff is just too hard to explain. Maybe it's because I'm a dumbass, but I just don't know how to explain. On the 5th, 7th, and 12th fret, just touch the actuall fret ever so gently.

    As for the aritficial harmonics, the way I do it, I just make sure that the string I'm hitting get's just a piece of my index finger nail, my pick, and the end of my thumb at the sametime.

    Dale, this is probably the worst way anybody's gonna explain this to you... lol

    Sorry.

  3. #3
    Baluchitherium VanHalenMetallica's Avatar
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    04.30.08 @ 04:06 PM
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    Gonna try to remember what mama told me...

    Like Wolfgang Slinger has already said,they lie on the 5,7,12,and 19th frets.Just lay your finger but play the string like it's open.So leave your finger on top of the string.Like your afraid of touching it

    Pinch Harmonics are a bitch to do on my rip-off strat! and to explain...but anyway,the way you do so is you pick the string with the side of your thumb first but with your pick somewhere in between.Use alot of gain.Thats the way it works for me.If this doesn't work.Talk to Zakk Wylde or Eddie Van Halen!

    Good Luck.
    Last edited by VanHalenMetallica; 01.08.05 at 12:28 PM.
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    03.30.13 @ 09:28 AM
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    It's easier to get someone to show you how to do a pinch or forced harmonic, which is more of a pick squeal than a harmonic.
    Natural harmonics can be sounded all over the neck on any fret at all. Some ring better than others, like those mentioned, but you can get a natural harmonic anywhere by hitting the string while you touch your finger lightly over the fretwire itself at any position on the neck. It doesn't have to be limited to the 5th, 7th, 12th fret etc...
    If you do it right you can sound them anywhere.

    What I consider an artificial harmonic you acheive by holding down a note with your fingering hand and then tapping a note higher on the neck with one finger of your picking hand. Depending on where you tap, you'll produce a harmonic. Some people do it by tapping 12 frets higher than the note you're holding down, but again, you can tap in a variety of places.

  5. #5
    Eruption DaleT's Avatar
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    12.26.11 @ 07:47 AM
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    I appreciate the input guys.

  6. #6
    Romeo Delight austxdan's Avatar
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    07.15.12 @ 04:57 AM
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    Ed's Whinny & pinched harmonics

    The way to do it properly is to play the "G" string at the second fret and push up on the string using a pinched harmonic as you do. You have to play the note as a pinched harmonic to make it squeal. If you're not sure how to do that let me know.
    As you're pushing up on the string use your whammy to drop the note in pitch, vibratoing as you do at about the speed a horse will whinny. Your amp should be set for a good amount of gain to get the squeal from the pinched harmonic. If you did it right then you should hear that whinny.


    If you're not familiar with pick squeals or false harmonics I'll try to explain it, although it's much easier and quicker to show you. Anyway, you have to learn false harmonics to do a no. of things that Ed does. The right way to do a picksqueal is like this.

    First make sure your amp's gain is turned way up. Volume isn't important. It can be low volume but the amp has to have a considerable amount of gain, especially when you're learning.
    Start off by hitting a string, let's say your G string at the 7th fret. Use your 3rd finger(ring finger) to hold the string down. With your picking hand, hold the pick so the tip or point of the pick only protrudes about 1/8" or just a hair more past your finger. When you
    pick the string downwards as the pick hits and moves past the string, the string will touch your thumb lightly as it passes. If you do it right you'll hear not the note itself, but a high pitched kind of squeal of the note you hit. You can repeat it anywhere else on the same string and if you do it right the same thing will happen. As you become proficient at it you can do it on any string, anywhere on the neck. It does take some practice to get it to sound right and because I'm not able to show it to you, you'll have to practice till you get the sound. You may get it right off the bat, or you may have to try for awhile till it
    squeals and the squeal sustains as well.

    The next step once you can get a clearly defined picksqueal or false harmonic is to go back to the 7th fret on the G string and this time using your 3rd finger, bend the string up till it sounds like you're hitting the 9th fret on the same string, and at the same time getting the note to come out as a false harmonic as it rises in pitch. If you're able to get that, then you go to the 2nd fret on the G string and bent the note up till it sounds like the 4th fret, at the same time picking the way I described to get a picksqueal. At the 2nd position the false harmonic is heard rising as the string is stretched up, and the
    whammy bar is depressed to sound like a whinny. That's how Ed does his
    horse whinny.
    The first thing to accomplish though is the picksqueal. As I said, if I
    could show you in person it would probably take you about 2 minutes to
    get but unfortunately this is the way we've got to do it, so I hope you
    understand what I mean.
    Good luck, tribb

  7. #7
    Eruption DaleT's Avatar
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    12.26.11 @ 07:47 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by austxdan
    The way to do it properly is to play the "G" string at the second fret and push up on the string using a pinched harmonic as you do. You have to play the note as a pinched harmonic to make it squeal. If you're not sure how to do that let me know.
    As you're pushing up on the string use your whammy to drop the note in pitch, vibratoing as you do at about the speed a horse will whinny. Your amp should be set for a good amount of gain to get the squeal from the pinched harmonic. If you did it right then you should hear that whinny.


    If you're not familiar with pick squeals or false harmonics I'll try to explain it, although it's much easier and quicker to show you. Anyway, you have to learn false harmonics to do a no. of things that Ed does. The right way to do a picksqueal is like this.

    First make sure your amp's gain is turned way up. Volume isn't important. It can be low volume but the amp has to have a considerable amount of gain, especially when you're learning.
    Start off by hitting a string, let's say your G string at the 7th fret. Use your 3rd finger(ring finger) to hold the string down. With your picking hand, hold the pick so the tip or point of the pick only protrudes about 1/8" or just a hair more past your finger. When you
    pick the string downwards as the pick hits and moves past the string, the string will touch your thumb lightly as it passes. If you do it right you'll hear not the note itself, but a high pitched kind of squeal of the note you hit. You can repeat it anywhere else on the same string and if you do it right the same thing will happen. As you become proficient at it you can do it on any string, anywhere on the neck. It does take some practice to get it to sound right and because I'm not able to show it to you, you'll have to practice till you get the sound. You may get it right off the bat, or you may have to try for awhile till it
    squeals and the squeal sustains as well.

    The next step once you can get a clearly defined picksqueal or false harmonic is to go back to the 7th fret on the G string and this time using your 3rd finger, bend the string up till it sounds like you're hitting the 9th fret on the same string, and at the same time getting the note to come out as a false harmonic as it rises in pitch. If you're able to get that, then you go to the 2nd fret on the G string and bent the note up till it sounds like the 4th fret, at the same time picking the way I described to get a picksqueal. At the 2nd position the false harmonic is heard rising as the string is stretched up, and the
    whammy bar is depressed to sound like a whinny. That's how Ed does his
    horse whinny.
    The first thing to accomplish though is the picksqueal. As I said, if I
    could show you in person it would probably take you about 2 minutes to
    get but unfortunately this is the way we've got to do it, so I hope you
    understand what I mean.
    Good luck, tribb
    Thanks! Able to do the natural harmonics now pretty easily, and this eve. I'll give the artificial harmonics a try according to your directions, I think I understand. If I understand what you and tribb are saying, then artificial harmonics, pinched harmonics, false harmonics and pick squeal, are of all the same in reference?

  8. #8
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    03.30.13 @ 09:28 AM
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    When you finger a note and then use your picking hand to get it to rise into the higher register octaves by picking and getting your thumb to mute the note, it's not a harmonic, true, false, or other wise. It's a pick squeal.
    Natural harmonics are made using open strings, false harmonics are made by fingering notes and then tapping higher up to produce harmonics based on where your fingering hand is. Your fingering hand acts like the nut, shortening the length of the string to produce a tapped or artificial harmonic.

  9. #9
    Hang 'Em High perticelli's Avatar
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    11.30.15 @ 02:22 PM
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    tribb is correct..a natural harmonic is a natural, period. a false is a note that is tapped 12 frets higher..it changes the vibration of the string you originally fretted somewhere else on the neck. the reason 12 frets works easiest is because that is one octave higher than the note you fingered...this change in vibration allows the harmonic to sound...it is a true harmonic, it's just created by you doing something to the string after you created a note with it, hence the term artificial harmonics.
    using the pick or your fingers to get the squeal is called a pinched harmonic. it is the same principle as an artificila one...and im still practicing the pinched and tapped harmonics...the pinched is tough for me...i love the tapped ones...

    any input on how to set your amp to get the tapped harmonics to really ring loud and clear like ed gets them?
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