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thumb position metal versus classical

Discussion in 'Chris Broderick' started by todcos, Jan 19, 2011.

  1. todcos

    todcos New Metal Member

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    HI Chris,
    I am a big fan of your playing. I saw you with Megadeth in Melbourne Australia last month. I was amazed how effortless your playing appears to be, amazing!
    Anyway my question is.

    I have been learning classical guitar for about two years. My teacher & Segovia consider one's classical technique to be sloppy if the thuumb behind the fretboard protrudes over the top of the fretboard. Since being told this I have a very close look at rock/metal players as well. a lot tend to have their thumb poritrude over the top nearly all the time. I notice that you also do that, but rarely compared to all other players. Do you think that there are times when playing rock/metal your thumb has to protrude a little bit?

    I hope you het the time to answer my question.
    Regards
    Todcos
     
  2. da.benson8r

    da.benson8r Member

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    There are some cases in rock and metal where you almost have to use your thumb that way, especially if you're bending. It's more painstaking to bend to the right intonation and pitch (at least whenever I've seen it) if you have your thumb flat against the back of the neck, since the pushing force is strictly on your fingers and not based in the palm of your hand. That's why you always see the big time blues players with thumbs that hang way over the neck.

    On the other hand, there's not a whole lot of bending in metal, so if you keep your thumb glued to the back of the neck, it shouldn't make too big a difference, especially if you're articulate.

    But to answer your question, it's all based on your playing style. If you're a bender (like I am), the thumb will have to protrude sometimes. If you're not, it really doesn't have to. However you're comfortable.
     
  3. todcos

    todcos New Metal Member

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    Thanks for your reply, whoever you are.
    I'm not sure what metal you listen to.
    The metal players I listen to nearly always use bending in their solos.
    So I couldn't disagree more with your comment about not a whole lot of bending in metal, it's everywhere.
    Once again, thanks for your reply though.
    It would be nice to get some feedback friom Chris himself.
    Regards
     
  4. da.benson8r

    da.benson8r Member

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    Not a problem.

    I listen to a wide variety of metal, and bending doesn't seem to be as prevalent (at least to me) as opposed to other styles, such as rock, blues or jazz. There's a lot of metal guys who don't really bend very much in album solos - Jeff Loomis is an example in a lot of his passages. I'm not saying that he doesn't bend, he just doesn't do it as often as a lot of other players. In a lot of exotic solo contexts (which I listen to fairly often) some of the intervals are farther to bend to than players want, so they'll opt out of it in favor of a tapped note or a legato technique.

    I don't blame you about feedback from Chris, it's really nice to get. He has been busy a lot lately though, with Megadeth, touring and designing the new Jackson. I wouldn't be surprised at all if he left a reply soon, though.

    Regards to you as well.
     
  5. Kohlrabihaus

    Kohlrabihaus Minister of Silly Walks

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    ok, I study classical guitar at the university, and now I always try to use this technique besides when I am doing bending and slides. everything else really works perfect with classical position for me, only those explicit rock/ metal techniques I chose to grab it different, for the feel and tone I want.
    I also think if you use lighter strings bending is no prob at all, but I also use 10- 62 on the seven string (Bb tuning) for the tightness. when I tune down 2 steps (to A) for my other band, which is slower music, I like the feeling when I am bending, though... maybe I will go for a mixed set next time!

    hm, maybe Jeff uses not too much bendings, but he does a lot still, and he has an awesome vibrato with this "rock grip". well, the classical vibrato is done differently anyway, so....
    long story short, for me its about what works best in a particular situation, but for the most time I have chosen to go with the thumb behind the fretboard, which is effective because your' re only using the fingers to do the work and you do not need much motion of the hand. and classical player do this for a reason.

    take care! =)
     
  6. Chris_Broderick

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    Hey Todcos,

    your thumb position should only serve the functionality of your left hand playing, so if you are doing large extensions you almost have to be dropped down on the lower side of the back of the neck. However if you are up around the nineteenth fret on the first string my thumb will most likely be above the neck, and then there were some other good comments in the prior posts as well. This probably wont make sense but I view the left hand as holding a sphere, so if I am playing the 1st and 2nd strings my thumb will be typically high, and if I am playing the 6th and 7th strings my thumb will be low, and course there are exceptions to every rule.

    hope this helps, Chris.
     
  7. todcos

    todcos New Metal Member

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    Thanks Chris & everyone else for the replies, I really appreciate them.
    Regards
    Todcos
     

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