What is "twang"?

Discussion in 'THE Gretsch Discussion Forum' started by Geckomecca, May 25, 2019.

  1. Chris MC

    Chris MC Gretschie

    Oct 27, 2014
    Orange, Aus
    This to, is twang - intro

    savofenno likes this.
  2. Stefan

    Stefan Country Gent

    Jan 20, 2016
    Brilliant :rolleyes:
    savofenno likes this.
  3. hcsterg

    hcsterg Country Gent

    Feb 13, 2012
    savofenno likes this.
  4. Lee Erickson

    Lee Erickson Country Gent

    Apr 20, 2009
    Eagan, MN
    Well, I like to think that "twang" is a sound that is produced straight from a guitar pickup with no frequency filtering. This sound includes great deal of reverberation effects and may have a bit of slow vibrato effect.

    First: Duane Eddy using the neck pickup:

    Then: Don Rich using then bridge pickup:

    And every thing in between.

  5. MrAstro

    MrAstro Gretschie

    Mar 5, 2015
    Sydney, NSW
    I'm not sure it's even about pickups. A banjo is a twangy instrument too. I think it's just a bitey trebley sound from a string with not too much sustain. Even Jerry Reed has been described as twangy and he played a nylon!
  6. Rusty Silver

    Rusty Silver Gretschie

    Jun 25, 2017
    Italy (Rome and Genoa)
    For me guitar Twang is expecially played on first frets, close to the nut, often with open strings single notes
    Wjensen and Jena like this.
  7. JeffreyLeePierre

    JeffreyLeePierre Gretschie

    Nov 11, 2018
    Paris, north down Montmartre hill
    To me, that's something aggressive in the treble range but not too much, with tremolo. Whether an actual tremolo or something your ears & brain are quick to interpret as light tremolo or close to it.

    I'd always thought about it for guitars only. Still wondering how you hear twang in Hank Williams' voice. Is that the tremolo he sings? Is that the kinda rough treble in his timbre?
  8. Fredo

    Fredo Synchromatic

    Jan 18, 2010
    Georgia, USA
    Twang is characterized by overtones, which can be brought out by playing close to the bridge. In comparison, pluck a note in the middle of a string's length. You'll mostly get the first harmonic. For Duane twang, add tremolo.

    Teles are twangy, but you have to play close to the bridge. Consider Bill Kirchen's sound in Hot Rod Lincoln. He's playing behind the bridge pickup. How does he mute strings? Is he using his left hand?

    There's twang versus woodiness too. I tend to equate the two.
    new6659 and Jena like this.
  9. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Admin Post
    Good call, Henry. I remember a fellow that described Gretsch guitars as sounding “sproinky”, and I think he was getting at the same thang. The word “thang”, as opposed to “thing” is, IMHO, somewhat twangy. When I got my first electric guitar, I was disappointed that it didn’t seem to have a twangy sound.

    For my money, a Gretsch with Filtertron-family pickups is a good platform to achieve twang. When I heard a Brian Setzer concert on DVD, I knew I had found what I was looking for. It’s easy to take for granted, but every now and then, I’ll be playing as part of the band and take note of the guitar sound, always with great pleasure.
    savofenno and Henry like this.
  10. Twang . . .
    that "electric twanger" makes me think it is an amplified sound . . .
    that . . . that . . . "electric twanger" . . .

  11. Geckomecca

    Geckomecca Electromatic

    Feb 1, 2018
    Gore, VA
    I step out of the room for two minutes, and look what happens!!!! Thank you friends and forgive me for not responding to each comment, photo, or video. You have enlightened me beyond expectation and i really appreciate your take on "twang". (Those last four words sounded a bit odd.) Anyhow, thank you. Personally i now feel that my tele foots the bill for twang more so than my 5420. But as much as i love teles, i find my 5420 more inspiring for some reason. Either way, its all a win-win!! Thanks so much friendly Gretsch people. Gecko
  12. Sabato

    Sabato Gretschie

    Mar 22, 2019
    Jeff Beck is pretty "Twangy" here on his Gretsch tribute to Cliff gallup, but I like Setzer's better...
  13. Stefan

    Stefan Country Gent

    Jan 20, 2016
    Jeff Beck is close to 100% Cliff Gallup tone & notes, Brian is...Brian. And afaik he‘s playin a Strat or Telly on the ROCK THERAPY Album.
    savofenno likes this.
  14. Sabato

    Sabato Gretschie

    Mar 22, 2019
    Anything's possible:
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  15. Sabato

    Sabato Gretschie

    Mar 22, 2019
    Double Twangy
    MrAstro likes this.
  16. speedicut

    speedicut Friend of Fred

    Jun 5, 2012
    Twang is also the sound you hear when your guitar falls off the stand :(
    Wjensen likes this.
  17. HypotenusLuvTriangle

    HypotenusLuvTriangle Country Gent

    Oct 27, 2010
    Whittier, Ca
    Learn to pronounce
    noun: twang; plural noun: twangs
    1. 1.
      a strong ringing sound such as that made by the plucked string of a musical instrument or a released bowstring.
      • a nasal or other distinctive manner of pronunciation or intonation characteristic of the speech of an individual, area, or country. "an American twang"
    Think about how any American Actor sounds whenever they perform as Robin Hood.

    This is how you produce it with your voice....
  18. MrAstro

    MrAstro Gretschie

    Mar 5, 2015
    Sydney, NSW
    I think Bugs Bunny did a stand up job of that but honestly how can an American actor play Robin Hood - no one can understand their accents haha :) although I guess Errol Flynn did and he was Australian.
    Last edited: May 30, 2019
    savofenno likes this.
  19. Sabato

    Sabato Gretschie

    Mar 22, 2019
    No Twang here as Englishman John Cleese plays the role:
    MrAstro likes this.
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