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ARTIFICIAL HARMONICS


Artificial Harmonics are those that can be produced anywhere on the fretboard. Like Natural Harmonics, they also divide the string length into equal parts, which produce a bell like chime when the string is picked.

In order to play an Artifical Harmonic you must finger a note on the fretboard, pushing the string right down to the fret ( for this example lets play the note A on the second fret on the third string ). Then lightly touch the string with your other hands index finger exactly 12 frets higher ( in our example we would lightly touch the third string above the 14th fret with our index finger). Then in order to produce the chime you must pick the string behind your index finger. This can be done by holding the pick between your thumb and middle finger, or just using your thumb. As soon as the chime has sounded remove your index finger so you don't accidentally stop the harmonic from ringing.

Using this method, any note can be played as a harmonic. This means that whole single note passages , or chord arpeggios can be played with the chime sound of the harmonic. Harmonics should be used sparingly though as too much of a good thing can spoil the effect.


The possibilities for incorporating harmonics in your playing are endless. Once you have mastered them try playing all the notes in a chord, moving across the strings from low to high and back again, or for a heavier sound, use the whammy bar on an electric for another type of effect.