View Full Version : that professional sound

01-04-2003, 03:36 AM

does anyone here notice that when they started off playing guitar,, even if they mastered a song they could still not play it as well as other guitarists who hav been playing for many years, even if they get the same notes at de exact same time,, it still does not sound as proffesional as the other guitarist

does anyone know what im talking about

and does anyone know what i can do to fix it

01-04-2003, 03:56 AM
Live to be old enough to have played for a while and have experienced life PAIN, SORROW, HAPPINESS, JOY, LOVE.

And work on your vibratto and phrasing, and feel.

01-04-2003, 03:58 AM
thanks man

so there is no special technique to getting that kind of sound,, just many years of practise

01-04-2003, 04:16 AM
And work on your vibratto and phrasing, and feel.
This is the part you can do something about.

01-04-2003, 05:41 AM
yeah i know

i think my vibrato is good enough

my feel for my level is pretty damm good

but what does phase mean?

01-04-2003, 01:07 PM
Hi there,

"Phrasing" includes a lot of things, i.e. vibrato, bendings etc. YOu can take one simple melody and phrase it many different way, using different techniques such as vibrato, bends, slides etc.
I used to do that for hours, taking a simple melody such as "Amazing Grace", playing it straight ( no vibrato, no bends... just plainly fretting the notes and picking them ) first, then adding lots of different things like bends, grace notes, trills etc.

I think the way to get that "professional sound" is just to play a lot. See, if you play for a long time, if you constantly have a guitar in your hands, your "tone" ( not "sound" ! ) changes, you start to add dynamics, phrasing, more mature vibrato etc.
In the beginning, you tend to think way too much about all that. The vibrato usually is too exaggerated, it all sounds kinda "stiff". Once you feel comfortable with the guitar, once you play for a while, your tone ( which comes from the hands / fingers ) improves.
And also, even though your tone might improve, you might not be able to get the exact same tone as some other players. What I mean is, you can spend years learning a lot of Jeff Beck-melodies and -solos, but it might be that youīre never able to have them sound exactly like they sound on the record, even though you play the right notes at the exactly right time. Itīs a matter of tone.

Check out my article "Studio Log II" ( http://www.ibreathemusic.com/play/article/24 ... this one has some MP3-soundfiles )
In that one, I am talking about a recording session where we recorded a cover of "People Get Ready" ( originally written by Curtis Mayfield, while we were trying to go for the arrangement of a cover version by Rod Stewart and Jeff Beck ).
Although I played these solos a million times, I never would say that they sound a 100% like Jeff Beck, although I play almost the same notes and use some of the techniques he uses on that one.
Itīs my tone, and I donīt mind :)

01-04-2003, 02:11 PM
When you are speaking you 'Phrase' things a certain way.
The words you choose, the pitch, inflection, the rhythm, pauses, the rhyme. This is all very personal and unique to you. When you hear a foreign person speak they may use different inflections and choice of words that appear akward. Read some Mark Twain, Shakespear or Poe. Then notice how these people use phrasing.
Music is very similar to speech. The rhythm and rests are very important, as well as the pitch. Vibratto and bending make the guitar more expressive like a human voice. Careful application of these is critical to finding your sound. Most young players tend to overplay and play over their head. Play things you can comfortably 'pull off' not things that tax your system. Practice things that tax your system. I suggest singing a solo before you play it. Sing it with all the little inflections and vibbratto the way you want it to sound when you play it. If you are lucky enough to hear the solo in your head, try to get that exact sound and feel.
Then map it to the fingerboard, and work on execution. Try to phrase the way you speak or sing. Listen to lots of different types of music, so you have many examples to choose from.

01-05-2003, 05:51 AM
thank you all
i can relate to what u are all saying
n im working on it to improve


01-11-2003, 04:19 PM
Part of "that Professional SOund" might just be the fact that someone else is doing it. It is OK to play like YOU, you just need to make sure today's playing is better than yesterday.

01-12-2003, 03:51 PM
Amen to that! Finding your own voice in this world is what itīs all about.

01-21-2003, 04:30 AM
but the thing is my voice is all
unlcear n screetchy

but it hit it that it might be the distortion i play with
(well thats a minor part of the problem)

and i just need to feel more comfortable with the guitar and i made up my own excersize for it
which i will post in practise and peformance

01-23-2003, 07:04 AM
I'm not sure if someone has said this yet, but you should record your playing and listen for the parts that you don't consider to be "professional" sounding.

Then comes the hard part. Analyze why it doesn't sound professional, and figure out how to fix it!

One thing I had a bit of trouble with was when I was studying classical guitar. I had really good technique, but I didn't sound as good as my instructor on even the easiest songs. My problem was that I wasn't holding all the notes for the proper duration.

An easy example that everyone knows (but isn't classical...) is "Dust in the Wind". It's really easy to play (fretting and finger picking), but if you don't let all the notes ring out like the original it's not going to sound like the record.

This problem took a great deal of effort for me to overcome, but it made me become a better guitar player.

01-23-2003, 10:57 AM
.. been there done that

The Mechanix
01-23-2003, 12:25 PM
Hi Guys,

This thread reminded me of something Marty Friedman said in his video "The complete Marty Friedman" (or something like that, the one with the psychadelic cover).

He stresses the importance of the left hand and states that in order to get something to sound "right" (as in, the same as the original you are trying to copy), you should be using the same left hand fingering as the original, because different fingers will alter the tone slightly.

So, if you're playing the same notes, but it doesn't sound right, it's probably because you are using a different fingering.

In my experience, when working on the left hand, don't neglect the positioning of the thumb. If there is something you can't quite do, it's usually because your thumb isn't in the most efficient position.

I'm out like the G'n R tour

01-31-2003, 10:12 AM
A problem i encountered when learning was the " i must have really expensive equipment to sound good" theory.

It aint the case!!!! Mt bank balance is drained as a result and my learning suffered for many years !

All the good players can get thier tone outta any half decent guitar and amp, not top of the range Marshalls and Gibsons.

From the years i spent working in guitar stores, it always pained me to see kids (and many adults too) buying equipment that they didn't really need. Faced with the choice of an all singing, all dancing amp or a few months of guitar lessons i know what i'd choose!!!!

02-01-2003, 12:54 PM
No kidding :)

Yeah, many ( most of us ) have been at that point. Thatīs hwta makes that whole endorsement-biz work out so well.
- Extreme cases ? I know a guy whoīs a big Petrucci-Fan. He owned an Ibanez JPM ( John Petrucci signature model ). When Petrucci switched from Ibanez to Music Man, this guy posted on some board... "Hey guys, man, now I need to sell that JPM... itīs gonna take a while to get together enough money to buy the Music Man model".
I mean, as if the JPM all of a sudden didnīt sound good anymore, just because JP wasnīt using it anymore.

Also, a few weeks ago I saw someone post on some message board "Hey guys, I wanna buy a Marshall Guvīnor pedal. Is that any good ? And what exactly does it do ?"
I mean... HUH ?

How can you have the wish to buy something without knowing what it does or sounds like ?!?
But again, many of us have been there... :(

02-01-2003, 04:31 PM
What's up?

Its like in my college where there are like 95% pianist and a lot of them own a Triton. The sad thing is some of them tell me they dun actually know how to use it. But they can go, "Yap Triton is the best keyboard in the world!!!!"

A lot of it has to done with people thinking that if they use the exact same equipment as their favourite artist, they think that they will sound like them. But they won't unless they have been practicing for like a really long time.


02-01-2003, 06:44 PM
And even if you manage to sound like your favorite guitarist, youīll most likely find out soon that that should not be the goal. That you actually might appreciate when people go "Cool, this sounds like YOU" instead of "This sounds like Yngwie / Paul / Slash / whoever".
A good friend of mine who watched me development as a player constantly can spot my playing immediately... whenever he hears a recording I am playing on, even if I am just jamming with other players, he can very quickly pick out which one is me.
And that is a good feel.

When I i.e. hear John Petrucci, I sure can hear his influences ( Steve Morse, Steve Vai, Al Di Meola, Steve Howe... ), cause he sometimes quotes them or plays something similar to what those guys would play... but at the same time, he has a very unique style and tone, so he obviously went through the same thing... trying to copy his favorite players and then developing his own style & sound...

And seriously, in 99% of the cases, even if you have the exact same guitar your "hero" has, you wonīt sound like him... because there still is something to the old "Tone comes from the hands" things, and because often, many artists are not telling EVERYTHINg regarding their gear... who knows what hides behind that amp-panel ? Is it really a stock Marshall ? Or actually a heavily modified or even custom-built amp ? If ya know what I mean...


02-01-2003, 11:21 PM
but still
a pro cant get a good sound out of a zoom

02-01-2003, 11:56 PM
LOL... nope, probably not. But he can get decent sounds out of a lot of crappy gear, and does not have to rely on effects and other stuff to hide anything...

( LOL, I am wondering whatīs the issue with Zoom-stuff. I mean, I never owned one of their products, and I havenīt tested one at a store in years, but your comment was like the third one dissing Zoom-gear I read TODAY ! ) :)


02-02-2003, 01:34 AM
A lot of times the pros can't sound like the pros!

For example, the recording process involves a certain room with mic's placed in several strategic and exact locations. These mic's are mixed together to get a sound. Then everything is mixed with the band, panned left or right, EQ'd, you name it and it's probably happening.

Recordings are just a snapshot in time. It's admirable to try get a certain sound, but don't go too far to sound "just like the first Van Halen" album!

02-02-2003, 02:55 AM
eric the thing with zoom is that it is cheap
but just does not have the qualitiy sound
every effect is rushed and does not sounds as clear and not scratchy kinda thing

02-02-2003, 01:17 PM
Oh I see now...