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peterng_20
07-30-2008, 06:02 PM
BB King has the coolest vibrato, and I can't seem to master it (I first attempted it yesterday). It's the one where you use the index finger and bend the string slightly back and forth making the cool vibrato sound. I tried doing it, but it looks and feels wrong, but sounds all right (but never as good as BB). the only way i can vibrato is if I have my thumb clamped to the neck, but that prevents my hand from fanning back and forth, which is improper (according to what I see in the videos). I saw a tutorial video and it says to release thumb from the neck and let your hand fan while the index finger does teh vibrato. Basically it's all in the twisting of the wrist to do it properly. However the problem is that my wrist does not twist that fast, my index is not bending the string much, and it really burns.

My guess is that it takes a lot of practice to master the movement and over time your wrist gets faster and stronger. Eventually, you can do it properly and it no longer hurts.

However, does anyone know the proper method?

Lanark
07-30-2008, 11:49 PM
I suspect that you're going to be at a disadvantage with the ukulele. BB King uses an electric guitar with tons and tons of sustain. He could hit a note on that thing, leave, have lunch, take a nap and then come back and it would still be playing. Not quite the same on uke. Plus he's got a strap and doesn't have to hold the neck up at the same time.

But you have to remember that some of BB's big vibrato move is showmanship. He kind of inflates the gesture a bit and makes with the guitar face at the same time for the sake of the audience. (or maybe did, it's got to be completely unconscious and ingrained at this point)

You can get vibrato though. It'll just be a much shorter burst.
And the only real solution there is going to be practice practice practice until you don't need to think about it.

I think there was a UU video about it not too long ago.

Boozelele
07-30-2008, 11:56 PM
BB King has the coolest vibrato, and I can't seem to master it (I first attempted it yesterday).

BB King is like what 130 or so? I think it might take more than a day....;)

peterng_20
07-31-2008, 03:29 AM
BB King is like what 130 or so? I think it might take more than a day....;)


Lol. Even though he is old, his wrist muscles are still sharp. Imagine how much wrist power there is, he can probably do other crazy thigns with it. It will take a while for me to get used these new muscles, which are so slow, weak and rusty.

VengefulTikiGod
07-31-2008, 10:08 AM
The trick to that is to point the fretting hand fingernail towards the bridge while you're doing in (as much as is comfortable, you'll get a larger angle with your index than your ring finger) and let your thumb move freely (don't anchor it to the side of the neck). Instead the pinching action being between your thumb and your finger, it should be between the pad right below your index finger on your palm and the finger you're using.

I wouldn't consider it a showmanship gimmick myself, it really does give you a good angle for making rapid, soulful vibrato. I use it all the time. It is, however, of limited usefulness on ukulele, but if you incorporate it into a lick with lots of sliding and double stops to help fill out the sound, it works great.