|Lyle Ronglien >> Guitar Essentials >>
Part 4 -
This lesson is about harmonics, those cool chime sounds that you can make on
your guitar, whether it's on acoustic or electric. If you're going to use an
electric for this lesson, use the bridge pickup. It works better for picking up
the harmonics. The "natural" harmonic is simple to
Lyle: Strike the note while
the fret-hand lightly touches the string directly over the fret indicated.
You can use harmonics to help you tune.
wes: yeah I
find harmonic tuning really helpful. Especially on
Lyle: I find it helps you hear the notes a little
Lyle: All the metal heads love to do "pinched"
wes: :) :)
The note is fretted normally and a harmonic is produced by adding the edge of
the thumb or the tip of the index finger of the pick hand to the normal pick
You can also tap the strings with your picking hand to produced...."tapped"
I find them very hard to do consistantly.
sometimes they sound good, but sometimes they are very dull
tuning with harmonics, it sometimes make a vibrating sound on my
Lyle: Right. Slow down the vibrations by tuning
one of the strings.
Steve: does that mean my intonation is
Lyle: Once the sound waves come to a stop, you're
Lyle: Could be, or you're just out of
wes: I like
that tapping harmonics video. I could never understand how to do it until
There are basic points along each string that hold harmonics. The 3rd, 4th, 5th,
7th, and 12 frets of each string have harmonics that stand out
Lyle: Here's these harmonics on the 6th
zz: hard to do
on an acoustic
Lyle: When you produce these harmonics, the
resulting pitch is noted above the TABs.
wes: haha yes. The 12 fret one is easy on
Lyle: Use the bridge pickup if you're using an
Here's the resulting pitches for all the same harmonic points on the 5th
Here's the pitches off these same points on the 4th
zz: do you
typically play that much using these?
In just a minute I'll show you how to play an Em pentatonic scale all with
Lyle: Here's the G string
Here's the pitches on the 2nd string:
And here's the 1st string:
There are many notes that can be played by making harmonics all over the string,
not just on these frets. Here's a video to expain it:
You can also make a couple simple chords using open string
Lyle: Here's a cool exercise using harmonics.
This makes the notes of an Em pentatonic scale:
There are more harmonic tricks out there. A vibrato arm is a good tool to make
it easier and to prevent ugly sounds from the pick. Push the vibrato bar down
and hit/touch the string at one of it's harmonic points while it's slack. Then
pull it back to normal position.
zz: cool.......really like that
Lyle: Here comes a video of the whammy bar in
Well, that's about enough for this lesson about
Steve: great, thanks Lyle
Lyle: I'm sure I didn't cover everything there is
about harmonics, but it's a good start for the student that wasn't aware of
these cool sounds.
Lyle: Have a good night and see you next
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