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Punch...how to get it?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by BluesHarp, Sep 3, 2002.

  1. BluesHarp


    Sep 3, 2002
    I'm a harmonica/guitar/keyboard player who took up the electric bass 5 years ago so I could round out my home recordings, mostly Blues and Country. My gear consists of a Fender J bass with vintage 60's pickups, Art Studio V3 tube preamp, Yamaha NE-1 EQ, and an MDX4400 Beringer compressor. I'm getting some very nice recordings but the one thing I'd like to have on some of my tracks is more "punch", at least I call it that. It's that "tic-tac" kick (almost a click) at the beginning of the note (even though a tic-tac baritone guitar isn't being used). It's almost like a Tele low E string being plucked, and slightly muffled with the palm, while using the bridge pickup, that good old Nashville "pop". I don't know if this is an effect that can be added or if I'm using the wrong gear or if it's a learned technique. Any help would sure be appreciated.

  2. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    Use a pick and solo your bridge pickup. That should get you something close to a tic-tac tone, though to get the real thing, you'll need one of those baritone guitars like an Ernie Ball Sillhouette.
  3. BluesHarp


    Sep 3, 2002
    Thanks Christopher,
    I recorded a track last night doing that very thing...cranked the bridge pickup, used a pick and muffled the strings lightly with my palm really close to the bridge. The best way to record it was with an SM57 in front of the amp. I panned this track at about the 10 o'clock position. I then recorded a regular bass track direct through a tube preamp and panned it to about 1 o'clock. The blend of the 2 tracks was pretty stunning and is REALLY close to what I'm looking for. I found that just a hint of reverb really sets off the "picked" track nicely!
    I know this effect is not super popular but it really adds a lot to some songs. On second thought....enough guys are obviously doing it. I mean 2 or 3 guitar makers are selling baritone guitars for this purpose. Seems like Boss (or Somebody) would make a stompbox for this effect.

  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Well you could be really irritating and make silly jokes, right in front of the nose of one of those huge nightclub bouncers dressed all in black.....? ;)
  5. BluesHarp


    Sep 3, 2002

    Love it.... "Left Hook...how to get one". Thank goodness those days are behind me!


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