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Muting

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Fishbrain, Apr 9, 2001.


  1. Fishbrain

    Fishbrain

    Dec 8, 2000
    England, Liverpool
    Endorsing Artist: Warwick Bass and Amp
    What is this meant to do? I have tried it but it seems awkawrd, do i need to reposition my palm or something? And what is it meant to be? Just a ded note or something else?
     
  2. samoth

    samoth

    Apr 9, 2001
    France-Le pontet
    I'm french so sorry for my english.


    Yes it is ! You find the answer.It's just a dead note that improves your groove.You can use it with fun !!So let's enjoy it !!!!

    Aurevoir et bonne chance !
     
  3. PLaying a "dead note" is usually called playing "ghost notes" - usually you mute with your left hand & play ... muting is also keeping notes you aint trying to play from muddying your sound.

    Both take lots of practice to get right.
     
  4. Fishbrain

    Fishbrain

    Dec 8, 2000
    England, Liverpool
    Endorsing Artist: Warwick Bass and Amp
    is it meant to sound like the note or just a beat?
     
  5. samoth

    samoth

    Apr 9, 2001
    France-Le pontet
    The two at once....
     
  6. Fishbrain

    Fishbrain

    Dec 8, 2000
    England, Liverpool
    Endorsing Artist: Warwick Bass and Amp
    i mean is it meant to have a pitch like have a high thud or a low one. or just a thud?
     
  7. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Well "muting" usually refers to keeping the strings quiet that you are not actually intending to play, so you shoudn't hear anything ideally!

    If you are talking about ghost notes, they are very short percussive sounds with no pitch.

    I suppose a third alternative is that we are talking about "palm-muting" where you place your palm close to the bridge and flat on all the strings, then pluck with you thumb. In which case the sound is rounder with less decay and more bass - closer to an upright bass sound. I use this a lot in Afro Cuban music to get a good approximation of the "Baby Bass" sound that is popular in Salsa music.

    The fourth alternative is the use of mutes - e.g. foam mutes - like under the covers of vintage Fenders which dampen the strings at all times and stop them ringing out and usually cuts out most of not all of the treble.

    So that's four and I'm sure there are more contexts or references where "muting" could be something different! ;)
     
  8. malthumb

    malthumb

    Mar 25, 2001
    The Motor City
    Bruce Lindfield wrote:

    << If you are talking about ghost notes, they are very short percussive sounds with no pitch. >>

    And for the most part he is correct, but listen to some old Motown stuff with James Jamerson, or even the CD set that comes with the book "Standing In The Shadows of Motown" and you'll hear examples of how a ghost note can be percussive and have just enough tonal value that you can tell where it's being played. Jamerson was a genius and his use of ghost notes is stupifying.

    If you study Marcus Miller's "The Sun Don't Lie" CD you'll also find examples of ghost notes with faint tonal value being thumped and plucked, especially on "Panther" and "Rampage".

    As I said earlier, Bruce is for the most part correct, but Jamerson and Miller are examples of virtuoso players who can make a ghost note jump out and grab you.

    Peace,

    James