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How do you get a percussive sound when strumming?

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Postby Rich_Halford » August 14th, 2010, 3:07 am

Hi all, long time since I posted, but I am still a regular visitor.....

Anyway, if you take a look at this video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KvypHGNt ... 1&index=28

the guy has a percussive strum which I just can't get. Can someone try and talk me through the technique? Or feel free to point me to an existing lesson, or even make one for me if you are so inclined!

Thanks all,

Rich.
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Postby jase36 » August 14th, 2010, 4:43 am

Rich I think you could do it a couple of ways or use both . By hitting the strings with the palm of your strumming hand (almost a slap )just before strumming down it gives you a good click, so as you strum down your palm has muted all the notes. Secondly you could release the fretting hand slightly untill all notes are muted (easier for barre chords than open as you have to mute any open strings as well). Its quite commonly used in solo acoustic covers to add a bit of a percussive sound , I'm not sure of any particular video lessons but you could try Jack Johnston ones or maybe something like Maceys day parade by Green day.

I'm not sure if David covered it in any of his strumming podcasts but it might be worth a look.
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Postby jason brann » August 14th, 2010, 3:14 pm

yeah, you just strum while muffling the strings.
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Postby Rich_Halford » August 22nd, 2010, 11:51 pm

Thanks for the replies.

I can do 'okay' at best with lightening the load on a barre chord, but I can't get anywhere with 'palm muting'. More practice required I guess.

Had a poor guitar week last week, didn't pick it up that much and when I did it was just poor. In a bit of a rut at the moment. I am still 'usually' playing quite regularly, but the same stuff and not much improvement, so I was (am) looking for something to turn me on again. Have tried fingerpicking, blues you can use, and a few strumming styles that are still beyond me (Robbie Williams 'Angels' still alludes me: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFI5uYlxW54). I even went to a friendly guitar store yesterday and played a few Yamahas and Martins.

Ah well, off camping with the family for a week today and am going to leave the guitar at home. Maybe I will come back better.

If anyone has any tips on how to break down and learn palm muting or the Robbie Williams song, I'd still be pleased to hear them.

Rich.
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Postby jason brann » August 23rd, 2010, 4:21 am

if you're just asking how to strum the song, it's mostly a case of playing just a bass note, or playing it twice, and then strumming all the strings. it's a pretty common technique, and you have to have just a little pick control to play just the string you want to when you want to. you hear it a lot in old country or folk songs, where there's a bass line alternated with a treble strum. all it is, is you pick one string, and then you strum all the strings normally, or strum just the treble strings normally, depending on the sound you want to get out. being able to play a bass note separately adds depth to your playing, and being able to play lines while strumming can make it sound like you have 2 guitars going simultaneously.
if you want to know what's going on with the left hand, he's keeping the high strings ringing as a drone for some of it, and playing the chords on the middle strings. it starts with a C-shaped 006450 E chord, then an F-shaped 007650 A, back to E, then B. then f#m to A to c#m to that f-shaped a chord. then the D A E bit. the chorus looks like it's B to a c#m , to A to E, all using partial chords with the middle 3 strings.the b is just an a slid up, and the minor chord is x 11 11 9 (i can't tell if he's using the thumb for a bass note), and that last rest chord's a partial f#m before the walk down.
jason brann