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If you can play the tune better than me, it's yours - Big Bill Broonzy

Author Topic: women slide players  (Read 1358 times)

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Offline Stuart

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Re: women slide players
« Reply #15 on: July 14, 2018, 03:02:27 PM »
Hi Vermonter: I'm a little late here, but I'll chime in anyway. You said that  "your pinky is much too short for a slide," but didn't say anything more than that. How short is "too short?" If you were to put a 6" ruler between your pinky and ring finger, what would the measurement be?

I've played with a slide since the late 60s and worked on cars longer than that, so IMHO save the spark plug sockets for spark plugs. However, if there aren't any music shops in your area with a selection of slides that you can try out, and you are within driving distance of store that has an open stock of deep sockets, it can be a good place to try a few on for size. Look for 12 point 3/8" drive and 1/2" drive deep sockets, both standard and metric. Try to find one that will slip down over your pinky without being too tight or too loose. There will be a difference in the wall thickness between the 3/8" drive and 1/2" sockets. If you find one or more you like, you can then take it to a machinist and have him drill out the end that the ratchet connects to. Then you can have him cut it down to length, deburr it, smoothing out the rough edges. It will cost you a few extra bucks, but it will put you in the ballpark and might be better than buying several slides sight unseen and being stuck with the ones that don't work for you.

Not all hands are the same and not all fingers are the same (to state the obvious). And not all guitars, necks widths, fretboard radii, string height at various places along the neck, action and string gauges are the same (to overstate the obvious). Therefore, the slide that is the best choice for one guitar may not be the best choice for another guitar, even though it fits our finger to a tee. "The right tool for the job," and all of that.

Speaking of Vermont, back in the early 70s there was a small scale Blues fest at UVM. Ry was one of the artists and held a workshop in the morning--in Billings Center back when it functioned as the student union. Hardly anyone in the area knew who he was and only a few people attended his workshop. I brought several of the slides that I had around, just to get his opinion. He picked out the one I had made from a wine bottle (my favorite) and I remember him saying that he preferred glass and that it had to have a certain weight in order to produce the right sound. --And also that you had to be in control of the slide. Too heavy and/or too much slop won't work. Sage advice from the master.

I'm lucky insofar as a Dunlop 211 slides over my pinky and does most of what I want in this stage of my playing days, although it doesn't have sufficient wobble for when I'd like more vibrato, but I have a real bottleneck for that. There are currently a lot more choices of both off-the-shelf products and custom slides than there were back in days gone by, but finding them all in one place so you can try them out is another matter.

Another thought is if you find that something like a glass Dunlop fits your pinky, but is too long, you could take it to a glass shop or ceramic shop and they might be able to cut it down for you.

Yep--There's a lot of great music to choose from and play. And Tampa Red's single string runs certainly differ from playing Frank Hutchison's "Worried Blues" in the upright position. Hopefully you'll find the right slide(s) that will allow you to play both as well as everything in between.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2018, 04:22:27 PM by Stuart »

Offline Booker Matches

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Re: women slide players
« Reply #16 on: July 22, 2018, 12:40:32 AM »
Ellen McIlwaine plays a mean slide using her pinky. Saw her in the early 80's when she toured Down Under. Acoustically she seems to prefer those big juicy Guilds.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2018, 12:50:30 AM by Booker Matches »

Offline Prof Scratchy

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Re: women slide players
« Reply #17 on: July 22, 2018, 10:46:15 AM »
Ellen McIlwaine plays a mean slide using her pinky. Saw her in the early 80's when she toured Down Under. Acoustically she seems to prefer those big juicy Guilds.

What a racket!

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Offline blueshome

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Re: women slide players
« Reply #18 on: July 23, 2018, 01:24:41 AM »
I?m with Scratchy there on Ms. McIllwaine. Tasteless!

Re slides and slide playing, it?s too easy to get carried away with what slide, what strings, what guitar to use rather than getting on with playing. You?ll soon sort out what works for you. Break the neck off a wine bottle and go, first enjoying the wine.

Tags: slide 

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