Artificial Harmonics in "Amerika"

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by EternalRest, Feb 22, 2006.

  1. EternalRest


    Apr 22, 2005
    I can play this whole song except for the segment containing the artificial harmonics. I have my own way of doing of them but it's very inefficient.

    Are they tapped harmonics, or are they similar to pinch harmonics?
  2. Jaco played them (and so do I) by muting the string with the thumb and plucking with the index finger.
    The really hard ones are the double-octave ones (I think those are the ones you mean). You fret the note at the 14th fret, and you mute it at the 19th fret. It's REALLY REALLY hard to make them sound clear. I don't know if it's your technique, but I know I'm doing it the same way Jaco did and I can't get it.
    Probably just because we're not Jaco.
  3. EternalRest


    Apr 22, 2005
    Haha, that's a little different from my technique.

    That works though..It's hard to get them to ring out nicely but that can be fixed with practice. Thanks man.
  4. cpach


    Feb 28, 2006
    Santa Cruz, CA
    I'm working on that now.

    I play them like I was taught to do it on classical guitar. I pinch with the index finger and pluck with the thumbnail. I do this over the body of the bass instead of way up on the fingerboard. You don't have any reference, but it requires less movement.
  5. Agent000


    Jan 23, 2005
    I cheat by doing a tapped harmonic, fret the 14th and tap directly onto the 19th fret with your right hand. Obviously not the way Jaco does it (no frets), but it's a lot easier and sounds the same. Hope that helps.
  6. Mark Wilson

    Mark Wilson Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    Toronto, Ontario
    Endorsing Artist: Elixir® Strings
    Place you thumb an octave above the note you're trying to play. If you don't have that many frets, imagine it.
    Now, pluck the string with your first finger while lifting your thumb at the same time. This will result with a harmonic.

  7. skewh


    Sep 5, 2005
    Ithaca, NY
    Rather than trying to imagine where the octave fret would be, place your hand on the note you want to sound as a harmonic, and look at the distance between your fretting finger and the saddle of the string you are fretting. Place your thumb, lightly, half of the way between the fretted note and the saddle, and pluck with your index finger, and the note should sound as a harmonic one octave above the fretted note. For the double octave, cut the distance between your thumb and the saddle in half, place your thumb at the half-way point and pluck. As always, practice makes perfect.

    Good luck,
  8. DaBassman


    Mar 25, 2002
    Oneonta, NY
    He does a nice demonstration on that video he put out years ago.