Don Wilson - Playing Technique

fishyfish235
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Don Wilson - Playing Technique

Postby fishyfish235 » Sun Jun 13, 2010 12:43 pm

Hey people. I've noticed that on Don Wilson is able to make a clicking noise when playing Rhythm. This is very noticeable on the Live in Japan '65 album on some of their songs. On Penetration, Diamond Head, Pipeline, Walk Don't Run '64, I notice this.

Here's on example on youtube of Penetration at their 1965 Japan Tour: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G7ZOf-tD3rw
From 2:45 to 3:04, watch Wilson. I've tried random things like Palm Muting and other stuff and have not been able to imitate the noise. Some would argue that he's not even playing notes, but if you watch his fingers he's actually playing certain notes.

Oh, and keep in mind that I was trying the techniques on my son's guitar, which is a Yahama Pacifica, a Strat mockup. Can anyone try to imitate this sound on a Mosrite or a Hallmark and teach me how?

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Re: Don Wilson - Playing Technique

Postby rog43win » Sun Jun 13, 2010 2:08 pm

I've always been able to duplicate that "clicking" sound by using reverb and muting the strings...
Maybe you need to adjust the settings on the amp....I don't know of any other way to do it....
Maybe some other members have other methods.........

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Re: Don Wilson - Playing Technique

Postby Dillon » Sun Jun 13, 2010 2:08 pm

Do you mean where he's strumming and it makes sort of a clinking noise, but still sounds like a chord? If that's what you're talking about, it looks like he's strumming the chords behind the bridge, i.e. the part between the bridge and tailpiece. Strats don't have an area like that, so you wouldn't be able to do it with a strat type guitar. Hope that helps but maybe I'm completely off here.

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Re: Don Wilson - Playing Technique

Postby MWaldorf » Sun Jun 13, 2010 2:47 pm

In Penetration, Don is palm muting the rhythm part. I think he may be using the bridge pickup, but I could be wrong. In most surf music, the palm muted parts have heavy reverb on them, creating a "drip", but Don isn't using any reverb so it's much more percussive.
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Re: Don Wilson - Playing Technique

Postby Veenture » Sun Jun 13, 2010 3:57 pm

yeah, like Roger and Mel said...muting and picking (one or two strings only from a chord) but still keeping his left hand in 'chord position' if you like. He does not mute-pick behind the bridge; only Nokie does that on some of the tunes but that's another story (see another thread). I agree with what Mel said; "Don isn't using any reverb so it's much more percussive". Don's percussive style originated from the time when The Ventures started out as a duo-act and it was Don's way of trying to make up for the abscence of a drummer. And moreover, Don plays LOUD, so the effect is max :D
Here's a clip from the same period/performance in Japan (1965) where this time Don has added a maximum dose of REVERB to his 'clicking' technique -the famous "tiki-tiki" sound as dubbed by Japanese audiences ;)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vqnzH2x ... re=related

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Re: Don Wilson - Playing Technique

Postby ZacJM » Sun Jun 13, 2010 4:01 pm

Its like doing the intro to Pipeline after the slide and before the melody.
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Re: Don Wilson - Playing Technique

Postby fishyfish235 » Sun Jun 13, 2010 5:11 pm

Yeah, they always liked their clean sound and rarely used effects. But I mean, you can see that he's moving his fingers on his left hand to change notes and plays while making a clicking sound. When I try to duplicate with palm muting, I still hear the note but its muted. It doesn't create a clicking noise.

EDIT: Okay, I tried again with the palm muting and the reverb like some of you suggested and it got closer to my goal. However, I don't think it works well with the Nokie Amp settings that Veenture gave us on a different thread. Does anybody have any Amp settings that will work better for this technique?

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Re: Don Wilson - Playing Technique

Postby ZacJM » Sun Jun 13, 2010 9:41 pm

I use a Fender Frontman 16R amp right now which is a small practice one, have the reverb cranked to 10 and I can get the clicking on it. If you want I make a video on my YT account showing how its done?
http://www.youtube.com/zacmoritz

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Reissue Epiphone Willshire
Marshall Mosfet 100 Reverb amp
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Golden Cup Chromatic B-System

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Re: Don Wilson - Playing Technique

Postby jfine » Mon Jun 14, 2010 1:18 am

Don is one of the players I recommend that my students listen to so they can hear how important rhythm guitar is. (Keith Richards and John Lennon are two more.) Back when I was learning to play, "Walk Don't Run" was a must-learn for aspiring rock 'n' roll guitar players--it was one of the first things I learned--and I always played it Am-G-F-E7, as that C in the melody, even though it occurs over the G chord, suggests a minor tonality--and I'd laugh at guys who would play the A as a major. So in 2005 I went to the NAMM Show and got to hang out with Don at the Wilson Bros. booth--nice guy, by the way--and darned if he didn't play it as an A major! He recorded the original version--well, the Ventures' version anyway--does that mean all of us who play Am are wrong? The original jazz version by Johnny Smith, who wrote it, is definitely minor, although he does it in Dm. I have yet to hear Chet Atkins' version, and I guess that's the one the Ventures learned it from. I guess what this means is that you can play it any way that sounds good to you!

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Re: Don Wilson - Playing Technique

Postby fishyfish235 » Mon Jun 14, 2010 7:25 am

Well, I can pretty much get the clicking already. However, the settings I have for playing lead don't exactly work well for this technique. What I now need are some Amp settings for it. But, I'm too impatient to sit there and turn every knob for a trial and error process :P


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