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 Songs that would make great stick songs 
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Post Songs that would make great stick songs
I know I'm about a million years from playing a whole song or creating my own stick arrangement, but thought it would be interesting to see what songs you all might think would be cool stick songs.

Here is one I think is begging to be a stick tune:

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Fri Oct 13, 2017 4:35 am
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Post Re: Songs that would make great stick songs
I have an opinion on the subject, and it is this; The Stick is highly adaptive and can accommodate any player. That is, it's limited only by the imagination and ingenuity of the player arranging the tune... Any tune could be a Stick tune in my opinion... (Metallica to Paganini and everything in between!)

Now, having said that I have had some tunes turn out better than others. No fault of the instrument or the tune, all on me... :D


And yeah, that tune you posted would sound great on Stick, I bet!

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Fri Oct 13, 2017 6:57 am
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Post Re: Songs that would make great stick songs
Love this thread. Would love to see this performed on Chapman Stick.


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Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:46 am
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Post Re: Songs that would make great stick songs
Yo Ratatat is my JAM! 17 Years would be an excellent Stick tune and an interesting challenge. I think Loud Pipes would work well for Stick also, especially the combo of the opening bass line plus the guitar chords. I think Scott hit the nail on the head, it's not the song or the instrument but rather whoever's playing it and their imagination that determines what will and won't work.

I have been trying for the life of me to figure out how to do Them Bones by Alice In Chains in a way that does the song justice. That'll require much more research before I have anything concrete.

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Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:28 am
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Post Re: Songs that would make great stick songs
The_Afro_Circus wrote:
Yo Ratatat is my JAM! 17 Years would be an excellent Stick tune and an interesting challenge. I think Loud Pipes would work well for Stick also, especially the combo of the opening bass line plus the guitar chords. I think Scott hit the nail on the head, it's not the song or the instrument but rather whoever's playing it and their imagination that determines what will and won't work.

I have been trying for the life of me to figure out how to do Them Bones by Alice In Chains in a way that does the song justice. That'll require much more research before I have anything concrete.


I love Them Bones. I know every AIC song off by heart as a guitarist/bassist/drummer/singer...
I can't wait to hear you do a version of that tune!

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Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:07 am
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Post Re: Songs that would make great stick songs
We'll see. The part I've had trouble with is getting the palm muted guitar sound that makes the intro so distinct, while simultaneously playing the melody. Rail muting doesn't have the same beef that a good palm muted distorted guitar has, but a clean Stick also doesn't have the same beef a distorted guitar has in general, so there might be some leeway there just from the translation.

I come back to this one every now and then with different ideas but so far nothing has stuck. We'll have to see what time and persistence will yield.

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Last edited by The_Afro_Circus on Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:26 am, edited 1 time in total.

Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:15 am
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Post Re: Songs that would make great stick songs
The_Afro_Circus wrote:
We'll see. The part I've had trouble with is getting the palm muted guitar sound that makes the intro so distinct, while simultaneously playing the melody. Rail muting doesn't have the same beef that a good palm muted distorted guitar has, but neither does a clean Stick also doesn't have the same beef a distorted guitar has in general, so there might be some leeway there just from the translation.

I come back to this one every now and then with different ideas but so far nothing has stuck. We'll have to see what time and persistence will yield.


It's a tough one to be sure, lots of decisions to be made! I love Cantrell's solos on that album... Would is my favourite, #2 is Them Bones. Brilliant.

Yeah, the Stick doesn't have the same type of percussive power and sustain that a guitar has, it's true. Just not the same, plectrums DO make a difference... But... the Stick has some other stuff it does really well that more than make up for it in my opinion. I can't wait to see what you do!

Could be a Tap Theory topic >hint hint< :D

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Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:25 am
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Post Re: Songs that would make great stick songs
Interesting, I'm curious about what kind of guitar rig you use, I've always felt the Stick has crazy sustain and percussion compared to a guitar.

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Fri Oct 13, 2017 11:28 am
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Post Re: Songs that would make great stick songs
The_Afro_Circus wrote:
Interesting, I'm curious about what kind of guitar rig you use, I've always felt the Stick has crazy sustain and percussion compared to a guitar.


Uh-oh, I don't want to argue because I am a big Stick fan... Definitely not trying to pit one instrument against another. Both have their strengths, and both are amazing instruments. It's important though to recognize that they ARE different animals, and they type of power generated is simply different. (Just my opinion, don't wanna get anyone all mad)

But I know, that through the same rig, my Stick will have to be much louder just to be heard whereas on guitar, I can just plug in and play (Peavey Classic 30 combo and a Fender Mustang and I guarantee that you will be terrified for your life! hahaha) No effects, just me and my guitar and I will probably annihilate the rest of the band with volume. I DO have a lot of high end gear, though. And lots of it...

Because a guitarist uses a pick, by default it's instantly more percussive - in a different way. Because we can control and throttle the note in a different way, a guitarist can access a very powerful, sustaining sound. As far as sustain goes, well I'd say there are a LOT of great examples of guitarists with excellent sustain, from Vai to Santana, Schon to Gilmour, Yngwie to Satch, Trucks to Bonnamassa. A guitarist can strum, that's a very, very big difference. yeah, it can be done on Stick, but it's not an inherent part of the way it's played. Not saying better, just different.

I humbly submit the below clip, let me know if you have any ideas on how I can make a Stick sound like that (I can if I just play it like a guitar and pick the notes :D )... Notice how hard I hit? lol Guitar players are notoriously loud... Even when I don't pick... Even if I pick/fingers, and even when I tap.... It just is. But I'm open to suggestions! :D

And I am considered bottom of the barrel as far as guitar players go... :D


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Fri Oct 13, 2017 12:20 pm
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Post Re: Songs that would make great stick songs
Nice shreds!

Not trying to argue either, I'm genuinely curious. The pickups on the Stick are tuned differently from guitar pickups as well. You're absolutely right in the kind of dynamic access a pick will grant a guitar player, ranging from very gentle to really digging into the strings. I'd say that a guitar has a wider top and bottom limit to the volume. As such the Stick pickups are tuned differently to adjust.

In my search for a good treble side amp over the better part of a decade, one problem I've really had is that the signal from my Stick has hit harder on the front end than a guitar would. As such, turning any tube amp I was plugged into past 3 or 4 would start to add grit to the signal that I wouldn't have gotten from a guitar. Even on pretty clean amps like Fender twin reverbs, my guitar would come in way cleaner at a 4 than the treble side of the Stick.

On the other side of that, at least with my instrument, I can legitimately get 40ish seconds of sustain on fresh strings with a single note, bass or treble side. I've never even approached that on guitars I've played, and I am curious if that's also a pickup phenomenon.

As for punch, yeah I think you're right about guitar being the punchier of the two when comparing the treble side to a guitar range, but I personally think the bass side beats out a guitar. Again this is coming from guitars I've played, but the tapping technique on the low end has slightly less punch than a slapped bass in my opinion, and can be played just as, if not more percussively than what a pick would allow.

I wouldn't rule out strumming either. It's a completely valid technique that guys like Bob Culbertson uses all the time, and it certainly makes its way into my playing pretty regularly a la my Nirvana cover or 3:44ish of GEPH's tune Splinter.



You can get a few different strumming sounds too, depending on if you're using the meat of your finger or your nails. Strumming and plucking have definitely made a permanent and frequently visited home in my technique wheelhouse and I honestly can't imagine getting as much out of the Stick as I do without them.

You're certainly right in that the Stick is a different beast than a guitar. One thing I've learned over the years from sharing gear and transitioning myself from a young guitarist to a full time Stickist is that any amp you use will have to be adjusted for the instrument. I've noticed Guitar amps often don't naturally have enough lows or mids and too much highs, and bass amps have too much mids and not enough highs and you wind up losing a lot. It makes sense to me, these amps were made with different instruments in mind.

The closest I've gotten to what I would consider the perfect treble side amp is the Boss Katana. It was almost the tone I imagine in my head the first time I plugged it in, and it took minimal adjustments to get what I wanted. Also, the amp was so clean that I actually had to put some gain BACK IN at higher volumes to keep the Stick from sounding anemic.

Anyway, just my experience.

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Fri Oct 13, 2017 12:56 pm
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