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Bluegrass set up question.

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   Forums Archive -> The Vault: 2007Message format
 
Slipkid
Posted 2007-12-29 9:51 AM (#68463)
Subject: Bluegrass set up question.



Joined:
September 2003
Posts: 9301

Location: south east Michigan
Why do “Bluegrass” guitars require a high setup to be “Bluegrass”? What is the advantage of cheese grader type action??
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moody, p.i.
Posted 2007-12-29 9:56 AM (#68464 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
March 2002
Posts: 15307

Location: SoCal
Volume and tone....
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Jeff W.
Posted 2007-12-29 10:43 AM (#68465 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
November 2003
Posts: 11039

Location: Earth·SolarSystem·LocalInterstellarCloud·Local Bub
As usual, Paul's got it wrong...

Tone and volume.
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stephent28
Posted 2007-12-29 11:26 AM (#68466 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.



Joined:
April 2004
Posts: 13287

Location: Latitude 39.56819, Longitude -105.080066
Paul & Jeff are both correct....which is downright scary!
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an4340
Posted 2007-12-29 12:41 PM (#68467 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
May 2003
Posts: 4389

Location: Capital District, NY, USA Minor Outlying Islands
(Though if you get right up next to the mic you don't need your action so high ... or ... you could just plug in your ovation into a nice amp and forget about it).
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moody, p.i.
Posted 2007-12-29 2:00 PM (#68468 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
March 2002
Posts: 15307

Location: SoCal
Plugging a guitar will give it volume, but raising action will often (plugged in or not) increase tone. According to his sideman, Paul Yandell, the first thing Chet Atkins would do with a new guitar would be to raise the action for better tone....
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cliff
Posted 2007-12-29 2:07 PM (#68469 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
March 2002
Posts: 14836

Location: NJ
Having low action also increases the chance of fret-buzzing when you really "dig-in" to your runs (not that I ever DO that . . . )
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muzza
Posted 2007-12-29 2:07 PM (#68470 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.



Joined:
August 2005
Posts: 3736

Location: Sunshine State, Australia
If it ain't hurtin', it ain't bluegrass.
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lanaki
Posted 2007-12-29 3:25 PM (#68471 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
October 2006
Posts: 5575

Location: big island
it's more than just the setup on the guitar that makes it "bluegrass". there's a certain sound and attitude that goes with it. with few exceptions, ya pretty much gotta play bluegrass guitar on a wooden dreadnaught.
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guitarwannabee
Posted 2007-12-29 5:10 PM (#68472 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
January 2006
Posts: 1442

Location: Michigan
Thanks Lananki for the info,
Maybe thats why when Im playing Purple Haze by Jimmi Hendrix I cant quite catch that sound of his when I play it on my Mellissa Etheridge 12 string , its plastic and I need wood . GWB
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Weaser P
Posted 2007-12-29 5:27 PM (#68473 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
October 2005
Posts: 5278

Location: Cicero, NY
It's not bluegrass but I've read that SRV always played with very high action for the tone as well (which kinda makes his playing all the more impressive). Along with that, he supposedly played with extra heavy guage strings to get the sound he wanted. Apparently he could run on and bend anything smaller than hanger wire.

That's somewhat relevant, ain't it...?
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an4340
Posted 2007-12-29 7:00 PM (#68474 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
May 2003
Posts: 4389

Location: Capital District, NY, USA Minor Outlying Islands
Ah fret buzz ... one of the signatures of my sound.
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auchencrow
Posted 2007-12-29 10:05 PM (#68475 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
November 2007
Posts: 37

Location: Detroit Mi
I have wondered why bluegrassers DON'T use Ovation. Some O's, such as my old Balladeer, have several characteristics that could work well for bluegrass: An extremely strong fundamental, excellent intonation all up the neck, hard, crisp trebles and VOLUME which makes them true "banjo killers" as much or even more so than Brian Sutton's Bourgeois Slope D.
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Tupperware
Posted 2007-12-29 10:27 PM (#68476 - in reply to #68463)
Subject: Re: Bluegrass set up question.


Joined:
January 2005
Posts: 4903

Location: Phoenix AZ
Originally posted by auchencrow:
I have wondered why bluegrassers DON'T use Ovation.
There's probably exceptions, but in general they don't have the volume of a good dread. The other thing is the looks. I love the looks of Ovations, but for some reason in a BG band a gay fig leafed elite just looks totally wrong, at least to me. I saw a good BG band last summer in Flagstaff and the mando player used an MM-68. Even that seemed oddly out of place.

Dave
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