How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Discussion of history's greatest guitar player.

How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Postby craigdobbins » Tue Mar 04, 2014 4:04 pm

So what's Lick of the Week all about? Check out this video (with a link to free notation/tab) to find out.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1DBFhl ... e=youtu.be



In this sample, I'm demonstrating how to use the Bigsby in Trambone.


Remember, subscribe to Lick of the Week now and receive all 4 previous years as a bonus! The package is only $60, a savings of nearly 40%.

http://www.craigdobbins.com/lotw-special.html
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Re: How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Postby Norm » Tue Mar 04, 2014 6:46 pm

When I was a kid, first listening to Chet I was fascinated by his subtle use of the Bigsby (and the "Vib-Rola" by Kaufman at the end of his phrases. I wanted a guitar with a Bigsby in the worse way and could not afford one (a Gretsch Tenesseean) until I was twenty one.

I took to it immediately and got a stationary bracket a year or so later and bent my own handle out of 1/4" rod after looking closely at Chet photos.

It seems so strange to see YouTube clips of people who go through so much trouble to have their guitars "look just like Chet's" but never ever seem to apply the Bigsby to their music.

It isn't just for novelty dips, like Craig demonstrated in the Trambone song. The thing was made so the guitarist, like the steel guitarist, could add a little vibrato at the end of their musical phrases just like a good singer does. Chet used vibrato tailpieces a lot until his later years when he got into nylon strung guitars

Paul Bigsby's gadget has the potential of really sweetening up one's music if people would get acquainted with it a little more like Craig describes in the first part of his vid
...that's how it looks to me...The opinion expressed above is my own and does not necessarily reflect the views of this station. Your mileage may vary...

Audio samples: http://www.youtube.com/user/acountrygent/videos
That should do it.
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Re: How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Postby Richard Hudson » Tue Mar 04, 2014 10:25 pm

I agree with Norm. I also like the very first thing Craig did in the video when he was slurring into the note. That may not be the proper term but doing the ad lib part of Trambone he would slur into the first note, which gives an effect that can only be done with the vibrato. Chet was the master in putting all of this together to sweeten every note.
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Re: How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Postby craigdobbins » Tue Mar 04, 2014 11:13 pm

Check Chet at 2:32 in this video. The "pre-bend" slurs with the Bigsby, and a little dip and vibrato at the end of the phrase.

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Re: How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Postby craigdobbins » Tue Mar 04, 2014 11:19 pm

And also in this live video of Snowbird. Watch both of Chet's hands- sometimes he uses left hand vibrato, sometimes with the Bigsby.

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Re: How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Postby Richard Hudson » Wed Mar 05, 2014 1:16 am

Wonderful illustrations, Craig. Chet had so many little "secrets" that made him what he was. My generation has been so lucky in growing up listening in wonderment to the greatest that ever lived. There will never be another like him.
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Re: How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Postby DagerRande » Wed Mar 05, 2014 12:36 pm

I agree with you, Richard. More and more people either have or are discovering Chet after he has left us. Those of us who were exposed to him early in life and have had a chance to see him in concert and have possibly even interacted with him are more fortunate than we ever knew at the time. While I was growing up listening to him I always felt like he'd be with us forever. It has felt like a great loss to me since he left us but I'm glad for the personal memories as well as for the information left behind by those who also had their own stories to share. Chet had so many facets to who he was and the particular combination of all of these will never be duplicated.
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Re: How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Postby craigdobbins » Wed Mar 05, 2014 4:02 pm

I've always been intrigued by Chet's left hand vibrato. It's a kind of circular motion, very different from most players. (You can see it in the Snowbird video.) I asked him about it once, and he said it came from playing the fiddle. I also noticed that Nato Lima had the same kind of circular motion, so he may have been an influence as well. Nato's vibrato, on a scalloped fingerboard, was an incredible sound. Another master of left-hand vibrato is Mark Knopfler, who can apply vibrato to double stops and even chords as easily as he can to single notes.

Craig
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Re: How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Postby craigdobbins » Fri Mar 07, 2014 8:07 pm

Here's a link to my email newsletter:

http://www.craigdobbins.com/hello-3-6-14.html

It includes a link to the LOTW Trambone video that started this thread, plus a link to download a free Reed lesson.

Craig

P.S. The free Reed lesson download will be available through the weekend. And don't forget the Lick of the Week Bundle and the AGW Back Issue Special.

http://www.craigdobbins.com/lotw-special.html

http://www.craigdobbins.com/agw-special.html
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Re: How to use a Bigsby like Chet- Lick of the Week

Postby Doug Working » Sat Jun 07, 2014 8:47 am

A Bigsby is something I've always dreamed of having. I have always thought it would be wonderful to be able to do those sweet vibrato effects that Chet so easily did. They are sprinkled throughout all his recordings if one is careful to listen.

Anyway, I've always wanted to afford one of Chet's pure electrics. But they are way out of my reach. I'm pretty fortunate to have my nylon string electric, so I can't complain, but still the option of a Bigsby would be so cool.
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