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? for Those Who Play 6 or More Strings

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by rickbass, Feb 4, 2004.



    Jun 1, 2003
    Orlando, FL
    very interesting topic

    i have had my conklin 7 string about a week now. my brain is just now adjusting fully. i found that my hands (the physical aspect) had no trouble adjusting to 7 strings (the ease of playability and quality of the instrument may be a factor here), but i found that my brain had a hard time thinking about 7 in regards to theory and such, however, after some major woodshedding and sightreading practice my brain caught on little by little, and now i pretty much have the hang of it physically & mentally.

    btw, i am a senior in high school and have always had the higher level maths. honors algebra, honors geo, honors precal, and now AP calculus. i guess math is my strong subject (though i have all honors classes in all subjects and make all as), though im not sure how much effect mathematical ability has on being able to handle a large number of strings as much as it effects general musical aptitude. i have heard numerous times through my high school career about how much better band students (such as myself) do in math, as music is very math oriented etc. i'd like to see a good study on this subject.
  2. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    I played 6 for about 10 years exclusively, and sucked at math. However, I have a good feel for spacial relations. Interestingly enough I never felt I had a hang for 5 strings - 6 or 4. However now I play 4 or 5.
  3. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    It probably just has ties in with being able to naturally handle, organize, and utilize large amounts of data on the fly, nothing deeper than that or anything.
  4. You may have done precalc in third grade, but I tihnk yuo tiiped that too quickly. ;)
  5. As a statistician I could bore you with the subtleties between correlation and causality but I won't. Suffice to say that I reckon this theory is bunk.

    An extended range bass allows more permutations of note choice, so it could be argued that people playing these are more open to permutations, but I don't think that has anything to do with maths ability per se .

    But think about Michael Manring's Hyperbass. It's only 4 strings but more permutations than I think you could ever imagine... 4 strings x 4 different tunings on each string plus the ability to change 1-4 strings tuning at a time via the bridge lever (x2). His composition "The Enormous Room" involves over 100 changes in tuning during performance. Now that's without having more than 4 strings... :D
  6. wulf


    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    And, for clear proof that playing a six+ stringed instrument doesn't require you to be a mathematical genius, look at most guitarists.... :)D)

    There are valid, mathematical approaches to playing an instrument and valid non-mathematical ones... but I don't think most players bother too much about delighting in the mathematical permutations of note choice however many strings they've got to play with.

  7. VS


    Jun 6, 2002
    Mountain City, Tennessee
    Discounted Gear: Peavey
    IMHO,I believe it has nothing to do with Math. Just your memory. -Luke

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