Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

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Re: Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

Postby keener » Thu Dec 16, 2010 10:55 am

Clearly, my Dad was such an important inspiration for me being a picker, and obviously Chet was, too. When I first learned guitar, Dad and Chet were my motivation for playing (I hadn't heard of Jerry or Paul at the time I started ... that came a few years later ... at least if my memory is right: we're going back over 45 years on my first learning guitar).

So, I thought it would be fitting to end this thread with a tribute to Chet and Dad, which I originally posted on this Board back in July (on what would have been Dad's 84th birthday). You may have already seen it and don't want to see it again. But, if you do watch it, I think you can sense the reverence with which I played it.



By the way, the CG I play in this belonged to my Dad, and is the same one I played behind Mom and Dad on Waiting At The Alter.

Merry Christmas to you all.

Bruce Keener
Last edited by keener on Sat Dec 18, 2010 11:04 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

Postby Roger Pratt » Thu Dec 16, 2010 2:01 pm

BEAUTIFUL Bruce!! Thanks and a very Merry Christmas to you my friend!
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Re: Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

Postby RandeDager » Thu Dec 16, 2010 2:38 pm

Bruce, I really admire your harmonic technique. It's somewhat different from mine and I would like to study yours
a little more closely. It all sounded very nice!

Rande
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Re: Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

Postby keener » Thu Dec 16, 2010 3:07 pm

Thank you Roger !!!

Rande,
I believe it was Jimmy Atkins (Chet's nephew) who taught me, some 40+ years ago, how to do single-string harmonics. Anything beyond that (rolling harmonics), I learned myself, and I probably learned the wrong way. I was always good at figuring out how to do something, only to later find out that it was the wrong way, i.e., that there was a better way to do it.

If I were going to study anybody's harmonics it would be Tommy Jones' and Lenny Breau's. Not a lot of it on video, of course, but there's tabbed material for a good bit of it (reminds me that I need to someday dig into Dr. Knowle's transcriptions of Lenny).

You may note that I use my "a" finger in the rolling harmonics, rather than the "m". The "m" would probably be better, but at the time that I figured out how to do rolling harmonics, I also figured out how to play bass rhythm (and/or walking bass) while doing single string chimes on the first, second, and third strings. That's where use of the "a" finger came in for plucking, while I used the "m" to do the touching of the string at 12 frets from the fretted note. Since I learned the rolling and that all at the same time, the "a" finger became the natural choice for me for plucking.

Anyway, thank you for the very nice compliment. I never thought of my harmonics as all that good, so it's nice to get a "thumbs up" on them.

Bruce
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Re: Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

Postby RandeDager » Thu Dec 16, 2010 3:59 pm

Hi Bruce,

Yes, a "thumbs up" on your fingers down harmonic technique.......lol. It's interesting that you mentioned Jimmy Atkins. I had a close army friend, Robert French, who introduced me to Jimmy in 1971, right after we both got out of the army.
I haven't heard much about him over the years.

Thanks for describing your technique. I might try to further develop mine. I learned what I needed to for "When You Wish Upon a Star" but there's so much more. I'd love to learn Tommy E.'s "Somewhere Over the Rainbow". I can always hear the notes but to choose the most efficient position for them and the necessary technique can take some time.

thanks,

Rande

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Re: Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

Postby Ray Bohlken » Thu Dec 16, 2010 4:25 pm

Bruce, you were excellent and it was a great song. I always enjoy your playing.
Ray
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Re: Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

Postby keener » Thu Dec 16, 2010 5:20 pm

Ray,
Thank you very, very much. Makes me feel good, sir.

Rande,
Just a couple of thoughts about "relearning" things. While I think it's great to learn new stuff, and that we should do it throughout our whole life, I've found that Relearning things is sometimes a waste of time, and that it makes me a lot more mistake-prone. (The mind, especially at our age, has a hard time deciding whether to play something the "wrong way" that we played it 100 times, or the "right way" that we've played it 5 times. For example, in the latest video I did, I had worked on a couple of "tweaks" to The Claw, to make it more like Jerry played it, and that led to me making mistakes. Of course, I always tense up on video anyway, but sometimes I just "beg for trouble" by trying to change how I've played something for years into a "more correct way.")

That's why I have a bunch of books of tabs, and instructional DVDs, that just lay around. I have learned that if I try to learn something by tab, "exactly the way Jerry played it," instead of just sticking with the way I learned, that I do learn a bit, but that the cost of it is not worth my time and the uneasiness it creates in playing a tune that used to be easy to play. However, if I flip through the books and see a lick that I can put to use in something new, then it is time well spent for me in learning the new lick.

Anyway, that's just me, and you may be different and want to be a perfectionist on everything, including relearning stuff that you already play well enough. For me, at my age, I am finding that relearning is something I should do only when I've really messed it up big-time in the past.
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Re: Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

Postby RandeDager » Thu Dec 16, 2010 6:53 pm

Bruce, one thing that I have learned over time is that many of the licks that we hear on recordings are those that have become natural to the guitarist recording them. I've noticed that by just changing a few things in favor of my own technique that I can play much better. This is why I prefer to arrange as much as possible myself. We often don't feel that we are "worthy" of making changes or personalizing what we hear recorded by our heros, but if we have enough creativity, we can come up with something that we're more proud of and others notice too.

Beth Sand (Kirk's wife) told me back in the mid 90's that when she first met Richard Smith he was meticulously playing everything note for note right off of the records, including every little string squeak that he heard. He eventually loosened up and inserted more of "himself" into what he does. The bottom line is that I agree with you.....lol.

Rande
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Re: Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

Postby Billy Anderson » Sat Jan 22, 2011 8:03 am

Ah so, just read post and now we know secret to Mr. Keener's playing and writing. No. 1, son, appears he is Ramblin' Wreck from Georgia Tech! This explains ability to engage brain and move fingers at same time. No. 2, son, there is something in Georgia water that is responsible for leading one to play guitar with thumbpick and fingers. Case is now closed!
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Re: Mom and Dad Singing, Me Picking [Updated]

Postby keener » Sun Jan 23, 2011 3:56 pm

Hi Billy, I think all it shows is that I was a lot smarter back then, and better picker then, too. That's the way life goes, I reckon.
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