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Thread: This Van Halen Riff is IMPOSSIBLE

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    This Van Halen Riff is IMPOSSIBLE

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    Hang 'Em High ain't impossible.

    Isn't even that tough to play.

    This youtubers problem is he is over-analyzing and trying to be note-perfect, rather than just letting it rip like Ed did.

    If you listen to the recorded performance on DD, you discern that it wasn't 100% dead-on with what Ed was doing. Probably because Ed wasn't being that clinical about it.
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    Did you get to the end?

    I dunno Ben Eller is one of the best guys for online lessons and getting things right and I like that he is pretty funny too.

    The question is whether Ed's timing is sloppy or swinging and whether it matters at that speed.

    I'm inclined to trust Ben because he is much better than me but maybe it's like those people that obsess over the quality of speaker cable or who can only listen to vinyl.

    He definitely has a point on some stuff being wrong in many places and if I was ever going to play VH in a live situation he would be my first place to check.

    For example I would be surprised if most players didn't find out at least one or two things from this.



    That said Zack Wylde played Jake E Lee stuff a little incorrectly to millions of people for 20 years and it didn't seem to make much difference to anyone.

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    EVH is the swing king, it's insane, same as I'm the one...I'll never get to come close to replicate it.
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    It's cool to hear the "swing" discussion. Ray once told me if a drummer couldn't "swing", he'd never last with Dave. Like Ben says, this is the 10,000 + hours Dave, Ed, Al and Mike put in in dive bars, backyard parties and just jamming, together and otherwise.

    I seriously believe this is one reason Van Halen in its original form could cover absolutely any song ever recorded, and make it Van Halen. Van Halenize it.
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    Yup a fine line between stupid and clever.

    The absolute classic example is AC/DC. They are so much better than the other 1000 copies but why?

    https://youtu.be/g-ssiNeTgwc

    Literally millions of people in bedrooms spending billions of hours on guitar soloing while completely missing that the successful bands were built on songwriting and swinging drums
    Last edited by Seshmeister; 05-14-2023 at 10:02 AM.

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    The problem with today's technology is musicians using click tracks to manage their timing and then analyzing it digitally and in many cases adjusting the recorded timing signature to fix tiny little fractions of a second in variations... That completely ruins the organic human timing which to my ears if much preferred than doctored up perfect digital timing...

    Ed didn't use a click track... he used a fucking Schlitz track...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seshmeister View Post
    Did you get to the end?

    I dunno Ben Eller is one of the best guys for online lessons and getting things right and I like that he is pretty funny too.

    The question is whether Ed's timing is sloppy or swinging and whether it matters at that speed.

    I'm inclined to trust Ben because he is much better than me but maybe it's like those people that obsess over the quality of speaker cable or who can only listen to vinyl.

    He definitely has a point on some stuff being wrong in many places and if I was ever going to play VH in a live situation he would be my first place to check.

    For example I would be surprised if most players didn't find out at least one or two things from this.



    That said Zack Wylde played Jake E Lee stuff a little incorrectly to millions of people for 20 years and it didn't seem to make much difference to anyone.
    Nah, I didn't get to the end, because fuck youtuber guitar players sitting alone in front of a camera playing other people's licks ; )

    But as you, Von and So say...the swing is the king.

    It was said of Chuck Berry's stuff, for example, that the vast majority of white bar bands who would try and do his stuff in the 1960s and 1970s - along with those countless numbers of white pickup bands Chuck would play with for a single night - couldn't get the material to swing, which is far different than getting the material note-perfect correct: the way the music naturally surged, receded, ebbed and flowed re: the rhythm. And it isn't a case of clinically studying the rhythms and replicating them since you can't copy the feel of it.

    Like, you take Feel Your Love Tonight, post-solo where the band are singing the chorus and Ed is playing the chorus riff and makes a chording error that sounds glaring but feels so fucking right...or the AC/DC example you mentioned, especially when Bon was in the band. Like, the hammer-on part at the end of the solo on Dirty Deeds (Done Dirt Cheap) where Angus is going up the neck and fumbling the fingering in parts...it wouldn't sound right if it were fixed and re-done note-perfect.

    Ritchie Blackmore was once asked about Joe Satriani and said he thought Satriani was an incredible player on a technical level but not an exciting one to listen to because he never made a mistake thus there was no sense of drama when Satriani pulled off a technically brilliant guitar solo because he always pulled off a technically brilliant guitar solo. That's the way I feel about these youtuber guitar vids: doubtless more than a few of them result from many recordings/takes in order to get the perfect one. Thing of it is, a lot of the rock music I really like is full of mistakes. Mistakes resulting from too much adrenaline or improvisation (vs. repeating a rehearsed solo night after night) or too much booze or whatever. Note-perfect bands who play the exact same sets night after night have all the inspiration of watching factory work.

    But, you know, whatever. The youtuber in question seems a decent-enough chap. As usual, I'm just being a cunt about it.

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    I find myself watching a few of them these days, it started during lockdown.

    The crazy thing is I almost never actually try to learn the stuff myself, it's like because some one else is doing it I don't need to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ZahZoo View Post
    The problem with today's technology is musicians using click tracks to manage their timing and then analyzing it digitally and in many cases adjusting the recorded timing signature to fix tiny little fractions of a second in variations... That completely ruins the organic human timing which to my ears if much preferred than doctored up perfect digital timing...
    In some cases using a click track so that the bass player can mime!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seshmeister View Post
    I find myself watching a few of them these days, it started during lockdown.

    The crazy thing is I almost never actually try to learn the stuff myself, it's like because some one else is doing it I don't need to.
    I bought tab books for the 6-pack stuff maybe...20 or 22 years ago. Fairly accurate and I was finally able to get a handle on the stuff I couldn't figure out by ear in the 1980's.

    In the 1980's if I had those tab books I would have practiced the stuff to the point where I would have sounded as close to how Eddie did it as I was capable of.

    By the time I actually got the tab books in 2000 I was content just to have the correct fingerings and be able to play the tunes correct in a general sense while throwing in licks of my own here and there, because why not? Come 2000 I wasn't going to be playing publicly in bands nor filming myself playing to put it up online thus it was purely for fun.

    I found it interesting that with the Roth tours in the 2000's that Ed wasn't playing the CVH material exactly the way he had 20 + years prior.

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    I talked to Dave Friedman a few years back. I have a Marshall he modded. He has done work for Ed over the years. In fact he was the last guy who worked on Ed’s favorite Marshall. He said when Ed would play an unplugged guitar he got all the dynamics unplugged as he did going through an amp. The amp just amplified and shaped the sound.

    If you want to sound like Ed try and get it down unplugged.
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    Dave also said Ed had super strong hands. He said Ed wasn’t a big guy he was only 5’8” but he was strong. He said when he was doing carting he had to deliver a bunch of speaker cabs to 5150. Ed was outside shooting hoops and came and helped him load the speakers into the studio. He said Ed picked up the heavy speakers and carried them with no problem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seshmeister View Post
    Yup a fine line between stupid and clever.

    The absolute classic example is AC/DC. They are so much better than the other 1000 copies but why?

    https://youtu.be/g-ssiNeTgwc

    Literally millions of people in bedrooms spending billions of hours on guitar soloing while completely missing that the successful bands were built on songwriting and swinging drums
    Ha! If you can’t play rhythm guitar you are fucked.

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    Ed and Al were classically trained piano players but more importantly they had musical genes. Their father was a clarinet and saxophone player so those kids grew up listening to swing. Then they liked Cream. Cream was basically a jazz band and Ginger Baker had the swing.

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    Play how you fuck. Some people fuck really fast.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    I bought tab books for the 6-pack stuff maybe...20 or 22 years ago. Fairly accurate and I was finally able to get a handle on the stuff I couldn't figure out by ear in the 1980's.

    In the 1980's if I had those tab books I would have practiced the stuff to the point where I would have sounded as close to how Eddie did it as I was capable of.

    By the time I actually got the tab books in 2000 I was content just to have the correct fingerings and be able to play the tunes correct in a general sense while throwing in licks of my own here and there, because why not? Come 2000 I wasn't going to be playing publicly in bands nor filming myself playing to put it up online thus it was purely for fun.

    I found it interesting that with the Roth tours in the 2000's that Ed wasn't playing the CVH material exactly the way he had 20 + years prior.
    Shit I’ve bought tabs that were off by half a neck.

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    Some of those tab books back in the day were horrible.

    I was laughing at this one the other day, the fact it's official the riffs are miles out and then sometimes you get to the solo and it just says Ad Lib. WTAF!


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    Quote Originally Posted by Nitro Express View Post
    Shit I’ve bought tabs that were off by half a neck.
    The CVH ones I bought were Authentic GUITAR-TAB Edition published by Warner Brothers Publications in 1997. 3 tab books, each book containing the music for 2 albums (VH1 and VH 2 for the first book, WACF and FW for the second book, DD and 1984 for the third book). All the books contain all the guitar parts including solos. And I must say they were pretty accurate and detailed including the tunings.

    A lot of the major online tab sites over the last twenty years I HAVE found to be pretty inaccurate at times, where they contain multiple submissions for a single song by various people and THOSE are the ones I have found to be more along the lines of that shite official Ozzy Ultimate Sin tab book Sesh was talking about, where a submission will say "I haven't figured out the intro yet, but here's the main riff..."and the riff won't have been tabbed correctly and then it will say "for the guitar solo, just solo in the key of E" or whatever.

    I've had good luck with the Hal Leonard Recorded Guitar Versions tab books I bought for Chuck Berry (Greatest Hits), KISS (Greatest Hits + Alive!), The Rolling Stones (Exile On Main Street + Tattoo You), Led Zeppelin (Physical Graffiti), Jeff Beck (Blow By Blow + Wired) and The Beatles (Abbey Road) in that the tabs for all those books were pretty accurate.

    Guitar World as a magazine has had a lot of accurate tabs over the years, although I'd say in the last 15 years or so the actual tunes they tab...like, by the time 2005 or so rolled around the magazine had already done tabs for the stuff I wanted and had devolved down to tabs for, say, Green Day's Time Of Your Life and other such tunes I had no interest in learning.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ZahZoo View Post
    The problem with today's technology is musicians using click tracks to manage their timing and then analyzing it digitally and in many cases adjusting the recorded timing signature to fix tiny little fractions of a second in variations... That completely ruins the organic human timing which to my ears if much preferred than doctored up perfect digital timing...

    Ed didn't use a click track... he used a fucking Schlitz track...
    Itís a machine that fucks with one stroke. What makes rock and roll good is all the little mistakes and imperfections. Some freckles on the ass makes it more interesting.

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    Shit. What’s this I don’t have a cabinet on stage. So what’s going to generate the feedback and add dynamics to your playing? I learned way back when with my Japanese Les Paul knock off and my Fender Champ amp feedback was part of the thing.

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    Even on a big stage a 2x12 punching the font from the backline makes all the difference. You can run a line out to the front of house but mike that stage cab and run that line to the mixer as well. Then blend them both and put that through the PA. It works great. Even a little 20 watt Friedman Runt can sound huge if you do this.

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    Nothing beats experience and common sense at the mixing console. Not only is technology making the musicians lazy it’s making the sound engineers lazy too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nitro Express View Post
    It’s a machine that fucks with one stroke. What makes rock and roll good is all the little mistakes and imperfections. Some freckles on the ass makes it more interesting.
    Some of the new tech is pretty extreme...


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    The whole band could have one up their ass.

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