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String Bending

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This is a few tips on string bending, to make it a little easier for you to do. All great guitar players bend strings, and this useful technique has been heard on country recordings, and other genres as well. James Burton, Roy Nichols, Brent Mason, Danny Gatton, Albert Lee, Vince Gill, and many of today's great players do a lot of string bending in their solos.

All of these tricks will require some practice to get it right, and it may take some time to get used to bending the string without overbending, or underbending. You will have to learn where that sweet spot is, so your bends will be consistent. All of the bends in this tutorial are whole step bends, and are all played the same way.

The first tip is using the middle finger to give you more power, and control over the bend. With your middle finger in the fret behind the one you're bending in, you'll be able to push the bent string up to pitch. It will also help you hold the bend, or add some vibrato to it after you get used to doing it.

The next tip is using the index finger to block the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th strings, this will take care of those unwanted notes. It just gives the bend a clear sound, without other strings ringing out because you touched them with a nail, or a finger, or something like that. This will take plenty of practice, but will be worth it in the long run.

You can do all sorts of things after a bend, and using the pinky in the same fret on the 1st string is a great way to start. You will have to hold the bend, and then play this note.

When you do this try to hold the bend in position, and you can hear the difference as you bend the string using the tips we covered in this lesson. First use the middle finger, and then add your index finger to block the strings. After you get used to this, hold the bend, and add your pinky on the 1st string.

Lesson Info
Instructor J.D. Jarrell
String Bending