1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Harmonic question/harmonic minor penatonic scale

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by 5intheface, Jan 10, 2006.

  1. 5intheface


    Dec 18, 2004
    Can anyone help me out with a tab or a diagram or something of which harmonics sound which tone?

    I mean, like when you play the harmonic over the seventh fret D string you get an A, and what not?

    Oh, and is there an easy way of figuring out a note using false harmonics? And can the minor penatonic scale be played entirely with harmonics?
  2. theshadow2001


    Jun 17, 2004
    Some one posted a site here with the harmonics and their notes. a little bit ofa google or a search on TB should turn up something. You could probably play the minor scale using false harmonics.You cold also use a chromatic tuner and play harmonics into it to see what they are. By the way the harmonic minor scale isn't playing a minor scale with harmonics it's the minor scale with a major seventh instead of a minor seventh
  3. Maverick Blues

    Maverick Blues Being a Thumper is all about ATTITUDE!

    Apr 28, 2005
    Richmond, VA
    The Shadow's right on the mark; a Google search will unearth lots of resources. Here's one I hit right off the bat. It's guitar-relative but just ignore those two thin girly strings and concentrate on the meaty manly strings and you'll be fine. ;)

    "Easy" is relative. :) You can work it out yourself if you're not afraid of a little math. The harmonic series is very easy, because the number of the harmonic is what the fundamental frequency is multiplied by. So the second harmonic is two times the fundamental, or an octave up. The third harmonic is three times the fundamental, or an octave and a fifth up. The fourth harmonic is four times, or two octaves up, and so on.

    For any given place you touch your finger to a string to create a node, you're dividing the total string length into some fraction. For example, if you touch the 12th fret you're dividing the string in half. 1/2... flip the fraction and you get 2, and that's the second harmonic, or an octave. If you touch the 7th fret you're dividing the string into thirds. 1/3 flipped = 3 = the third harmonic = an octave and a fifth up. The fifth fret divides the string into quarters, so two octaves up, and so on.

    When it comes to false harmonics, it's the same deal. Fret your base (not "bass", heh) note, then look at the length of the string left free to vibrate. If you touch a third of the way between where you've fretted and the bridge, you'll get an octave and a fifth above the fretted note. (And keep in mind you can touch 1/3rd of the length from either the fretted end or the bridge end... the latter being what you'll probably find more workable.) Watch Steve Bailey sometime for an excellent example of how to work false/artificial harmonics.

    I can't think of a reason you couldn't play any scale/mode/melody with false harmonics (with practice :) ). As for natural (open-string) harmonics, take a look at the chart on that URL I listed above, and I think you'll get your answer.

    Not sure if that's what you're looking for or not, but I hope it helps.


    EDIT: Deleted a reference to pinch harmonics; Steve Bailey doesn't use a pick, what was I thinking!