< Back to Blog
Original link:

2023-07-11 06:57:29

How to Play Pinch Harmonics on the Guitar - Steve Stine Guitar Lesson

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

Hey , Steve Stein from Guitar Zoom here and I've had a lot of requests to , to uh talk about uh pinch harmonics .

So I thought real quick , what I would do is just show you um how I do them and that they are or might be different than you think they are .

Um I always used to think pinch harmonics were like you got to bite into the string and all this sort of thing and uh you really don't .

Um what it really comes down to is just the technique that you're using with your guitar pick .

So , what I wanna do is before I actually show you the technique , I want you to hear something that I think is kind of cool here .

So if I just go up to the , uh I'm tuned down a half step right now .

But if I go up to the seventh of the fifth straight , just play that note and I pick it a little bit harder .

Now , all I'm doing is just picking the string .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

But what I want you to hear , if you can listen very closely , you're gonna hear a bit of that harmonic uh tone changing in the background as I pick this string .

And I'm not even doing anything other than just picking the string .

OK .

That's what we want to grasp on to , to get our harmonic .

So what we're gonna do this is a pinch harmonic , of course .

So what we're gonna do is if you think about it , what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna turn the guitar pick .

So my thumb , the flesh of my thumb is gonna touch that string .

So as soon as I pick through the string , the last thing to touch the string is going to be the flesh of my thumb .

Now , I'm not picking hard , I'm not doing a vibrato or anything like that .

I'm just turning the guitar pick here's normal years .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

Now , if I push in just a little bit more with the , the pick as I play through it , you can see that the , that pinch harmonic starts really becoming prominent .

OK .

So the trick for you is now again , we'll talk about tone and all that sort of thing in just a second .

But the trick is , is to understand that when you turn that guitar pick and your , the flesh of your thumb touches the string right after you're done .

Now , I don't stay there .

You know , I leave .

Obviously , I'm not , I'm not staying there , but the string would die .

So as soon as I get the harmonic now again , I'll pick it normally .

Now turn the pick , I'll turn my fingers so I'm touching the key .

Now , push in a little .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

So when I push it , I mean , I'm , I'm really biting that string , but I don't need to , I mean , I can just turn the p and get some harmonics .

OK .

But if I , but if I push in a little bit , I get a bit more .

Ok .

Now , what I want you to notice is how , as I move across the guitar with my pick , I'm getting different harmonics .

OK ?

Now please understand that the guitar that you're using , especially the pickups , the output of your pickups , um how hot they are and the distortion that you have on your guitar makes a difference in how easy it is to get these harmonics .

Now , you can get harmonics off of an acoustic guitar .

There's no doubt about it , but it's harder than it would be if you just had higher output pickups and you know , distortion , the right amount of distortion .

And again , I'm not gonna tell you what the right amount is because everybody's different , but it does make a difference .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

So when I go to play , OK , I know where I'm gonna be .

Now , for me , I normally pick right around the middle position pickup .

That's where I get the majority of my arm .

But I am aware that if I move around a little bit , I'm gonna get different kinds of marks .

OK ?

Now , the vibrato that I'm doing and stuff is just to enhance the situation .

But it's , it's really not adding to the , the actual harmonic , in my opinion .

Anyway , so the big thing here is to start off by just learning how to get that harmonic sound right .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

So you're just , you're picking , normally you start moving , I can kind of hear those overtones back there .

I can hear that , that harmonic change .

OK .

So then what I'm gonna do is turn that pick and turning it up , just kind of looking around finding the right spot that I can do this in .

I've got emg pickups on here .

So it's pretty easy to do these just about anywhere uh with these picks , but that's how you do it .

OK .

So step one exploring a little bit right .

Step two , the big step is to turn .

So the , when the pick goes through and the pick is picking at an angle , my thumb is the last thing to touch the flesh of my thumb is the last thing to touch .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

Now , I'm basically kind of touching on the side of my , my thumb right here .

If you can see that , that's kind of where it's happening .

Um But it might be different for you , but that's where my , my pinch is happening from the pinch harmonic .

And then what I can do is just explore where the best place is on my guitar to get that sound .

So it takes a little bit , you just have to be patient .

Um , but I'm sure you'll find it and then just understand that you can enhance the harmonic with , you know , proper , you know , pick or well , pick two , I suppose .

Uh but certainly proper , um , um , pick ups , you know , distortion , things like that .

And please understand that , you know , somebody will say , well , I can get it without much distortion .

You can , you can get pinch harmonics , like I said , on an acoustic guitar .

But if you're looking for ease of use and you watch the players that you might like that use pinch harmonics , look at the gear they're using , look at how much distortion they're using when they do it .

video content Image generated by Wilowrid

Um You know , and again , of course , you can do it without uh distortion , but distortion is going to add uh the functionality of that and make it easier for you to do .

So , hopefully that helps you a little bit .

Have a wonderful day .

Keep practicing , uh stay positive and I'll talk to you soon .


Attention YouTube vloggers and media companies!
Are you looking for a way to reach a wider audience and get more views on your videos?
Our innovative video to text transcribing service can help you do just that.
We provide accurate transcriptions of your videos along with visual content that will help you attract new viewers and keep them engaged. Plus, our data analytics and ad campaign tools can help you monetize your content and maximize your revenue.
Let's partner up and take your video content to the next level!
Contact us today to learn more.