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Author Topic: Charlie Patton lap-style?  (Read 3528 times)

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Offline Stumblin

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  • Posts: 521
  • Got the Blues, can't be satisfied
Re: Charlie Patton lap-style?
« Reply #15 on: September 25, 2010, 12:18:02 PM »
You're correct, Stumblin, Magnolia and When Your Way Gets Dark followed each other in the studio.

Bring your screwdriver to the pub and try this out on them  :D:

That was great, thanks  :)

Offline civilwar65

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  • Ah sho
    • Delta Blues, Folk, Gospel and More
Re: Charlie Patton lap-style?
« Reply #16 on: June 16, 2013, 01:46:31 AM »
To my ears, it sounds like Patton uses a resonator guitar on the slide recordings. On When Your Way Gets Dark & Magnolia Blues, the tone sounds to me like lap-style, but I can't for the life of me figure out how to play it that way with a slide, bar or anything else. The easiest way to play it, I've found, is bottleneck style. In fact, it is the only Patton slide piece I've come across where I thought it might not be lap style but bottleneck, in order to fret the three high notes while maintaining the droning low notes.

Let's face it, Charlie had some serious (and often impossibly subtle) tricks up his sleeves...some secrets he took with him perhaps. But then, he learned to play in the days before phonographs (were widely available), and probably played according to his imagination at least as much as according to what other people were playing. He had such a rich musical background as well. If anyone has any idea how WYWGD & MB could be played lap style (i.e. with a bar? slide? if slide, what kind, how long, etc?) do please post for us! These tunes really do have a magical kind of resonance and patient power to them. Very difficult to imitate, though let's keep trying.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2013, 01:57:40 AM by civilwar65 »

Offline Rivers

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Re: Charlie Patton lap-style?
« Reply #17 on: June 28, 2013, 06:38:00 PM »
I'm in the lap style camp myself. Pitched up so high on the top string, even with a high action, is pretty tough to do consistently spanish (upright) style. Overhand is much easier. Re wood versus metal, I think wood.

The fairly recently released full shot of Patton playing in that configuration tends to support this argument. Could be a fake, it's almost too good to be true that the uncropped shot was only found so recently. I believe it to be the real deal though. I'll go with Colonel Mustard in the library with the lead pipe, or maybe Occam's razor.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2013, 10:01:19 PM by Rivers »


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