What makes country guitar sound 'country'??

Author
paulf707
Max Output Level: -89 dBFS
  • Total Posts : 87
  • Joined: 2016/07/12 14:11:45
  • Location: Wiltshire
  • Status: offline
2017/07/16 10:52:01 (permalink)

What makes country guitar sound 'country'??

I've been lurking around the 'Kompoz' site recently - I really like the idea of random sharing and collaboration of ideas...
Spent a bit of time working on this project:
https://www.kompoz.com/music/collaboration/670226/file/772639
The original poster put up some lyrics which he'd sung (with only a drum track backing).
I took these and edited them (heavily) with Melodyne and built a track around them - great fun as a project (both musically and technically). He wanted the final track to be sung by a female, so I didn't worry about moving the key up significantly - which inevitably makes his vocals sound a little 'smurf like' :)
 
Anyway, I was relatively happy with my rough demo - I'm no guitarist (I'm a drummer!) but I put together some guitar parts which I thought sounded OK-ish.
 
The response (which I don't disagree with) was that it wasn't very 'country' sounding - and he wanted it to sound more like this track:
https://www.kompoz.com/music/listen/release/765454
 
Which again, I totally agree is far more 'Country' than mine. Obviously it sounds significantly better due to 'proper' vocals, but I'm trying to analyse the guitar parts (and other arrangements) to understand 'what makes it more country' ??
 
From my perspective, the track I worked on was much faster (and remember the original vocals were sung to a fast drum beat at that tempo) - so I tended towards a different type of country sound - more along these lines:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PuBoUHU_UFk
I didn't put any rock and roll piano in mine (as the original poster had commented on a previous suggestion that he didn't like the piano so much).
 
I'm not offended or concerned about the feedback I got - but I would be grateful for any other opinions about the tracks.
I'm never going to be a great guitarist, but I would like to do some more 'country' stuff, so any thoughts on how to make my parts 'more country' would be appreciated.
 
I love Country Music (I listen to a lot of Big and Rich, Montgomery Gentry, Rascal Flats, Garth Brooks, Keith Urban etc.) - but find it hard to 'define' what makes a track 'country'..... Apart from any fiddle / banjo / pedal steel parts!
 
 
Any thoughts / comments greatly appreciated....
 
 
 
 
 
 

Sonar X3, Dell XPS 2720 All-In-One Touchscreen PC, Focusrite Scarlett Solo, Miditech Midistart Music 25, EMU XBoard 49, AKG K702
 
https://soundcloud.com/user-795249686
https://blend.io/perpetualmotion
 
#1

7 Replies Related Threads

    timidi
    Max Output Level: -21.5 dBFS
    • Total Posts : 5380
    • Joined: 2006/04/11 12:55:15
    • Location: SE Florida
    • Status: offline
    Re: What makes country guitar sound 'country'?? 2017/07/16 13:42:07 (permalink)
    Pretty sure it's the hat.

    ASUS P8P67, i7-2600K, CORSAIR 16GB, HIS 5450, 3 Samsung SSD 850, Win7 64, RME AIO.
     
    http://www.cdbaby.com/Artist/TimothyBowman  
    #2
    paulf707
    Max Output Level: -89 dBFS
    • Total Posts : 87
    • Joined: 2016/07/12 14:11:45
    • Location: Wiltshire
    • Status: offline
    Re: What makes country guitar sound 'country'?? 2017/07/16 14:00:21 (permalink)
    timidi
    Pretty sure it's the hat.


    😁


    Can I get a cowboy hat VST?

    Sonar X3, Dell XPS 2720 All-In-One Touchscreen PC, Focusrite Scarlett Solo, Miditech Midistart Music 25, EMU XBoard 49, AKG K702
     
    https://soundcloud.com/user-795249686
    https://blend.io/perpetualmotion
     
    #3
    Sixfinger
    Max Output Level: -74 dBFS
    • Total Posts : 803
    • Joined: 2007/09/22 07:55:26
    • Location: Branson MO
    • Status: offline
    Re: What makes country guitar sound 'country'?? 2017/07/16 14:47:43 (permalink)
    Hahaha on the hat.
     
    One thing bends seem to be fast, get the the correct pitch straight off as opposed to a blues thing that may be a slow bend then vibrato.
     
    lots of double stops usually using hybrid picking, pick and 2 or 3 fingers on the right hand often kind of pulled and snapped.
     
    I'm more of a blues guy, those things I mentioned are things I don't do lol.

    Sonar Platinum , ADK Computer -Intel - Penryn Quad Core Q9400 Processor, Windows 7 Home premium 64, RME Fireface UFX, Grace 101 Pre's, A-800 Pro, assorted mics, Strats ,Les Pauls, Mesa Boogies
    http://lionfeather.com
    #4
    paulf707
    Max Output Level: -89 dBFS
    • Total Posts : 87
    • Joined: 2016/07/12 14:11:45
    • Location: Wiltshire
    • Status: offline
    Re: What makes country guitar sound 'country'?? 2017/07/16 14:49:49 (permalink)
    Good thoughts, thanks....

    Sonar X3, Dell XPS 2720 All-In-One Touchscreen PC, Focusrite Scarlett Solo, Miditech Midistart Music 25, EMU XBoard 49, AKG K702
     
    https://soundcloud.com/user-795249686
    https://blend.io/perpetualmotion
     
    #5
    markno999
    Max Output Level: -65 dBFS
    • Total Posts : 1274
    • Joined: 2007/08/27 18:09:30
    • Status: offline
    Re: What makes country guitar sound 'country'?? 2017/07/18 00:27:27 (permalink)
    This does sound country stylistically, if you applied suggestion above from Wayfarer for a Tele through a Fender Blackface with a little grit, you would be 80% there.   Add a pedal steel or Fiddle and bring the LVOX up front more you would be 100% there.   I think it "doesn't sound country" because the vocals are buried and the guitar sounds like it is just recorded dry into your DAW.   Otherwise, really fine demo...
     
    Regards
    #6
    paulf707
    Max Output Level: -89 dBFS
    • Total Posts : 87
    • Joined: 2016/07/12 14:11:45
    • Location: Wiltshire
    • Status: offline
    Re: What makes country guitar sound 'country'?? 2017/07/18 08:00:37 (permalink)
    @Wayfarer - thanks for all your thoughts (and more importantly, thanks for reminding me about Little Liza Jane - haven't listened to that in ages  - superb track!)
    I only have access to a Strat at the moment, but with the rear pickups I (think) I can get close to a twangy Tele sound - my struggle is that I like to play with the strings slightly dampened by the heel of my right hand - but then I can't get far enough 'back' with the pick to get that real 'twang'. I probably need to experiment more with finger style to see what sounds I can get from that - I obviously need to be playing more than one note at once!
    I also think I need to be more confident in playing - I need to picking at the strings quite hard to get that twang. I think I tend to be more hesitant, which then ruins the sound....
     
    @Marko - thanks for your thoughts on the recording. The guitar was recorded through amplitude using Silver12 (Ch2) and British Blue Tube amps - I'll try experimenting with a BlackFace and/or TubeScreamer to see what different sounds I can get
    I tried to get a fiddle sound in there, but the samples on SampleTank didn't sound great. I'm still looking for ideas to get a half decent Pedal Steel sound out of SampleTank / Dimension Pro...
     
    The vocals were always going to be week (as they are heavily pitch shifted).
     
    Really appreciate all your thoughts / comments, and thanks for taking the time to listen and respond.
     
    Cheers!
    Paul

    Sonar X3, Dell XPS 2720 All-In-One Touchscreen PC, Focusrite Scarlett Solo, Miditech Midistart Music 25, EMU XBoard 49, AKG K702
     
    https://soundcloud.com/user-795249686
    https://blend.io/perpetualmotion
     
    #7
    Wayfarer
    Max Output Level: -90 dBFS
    • Total Posts : 14
    • Joined: 2017/07/15 02:32:25
    • Status: offline
    Re: What makes country guitar sound 'country'?? 2017/07/18 17:08:27 (permalink)
    The 4th pickup position on a Strat works fine for country too. (Speedy Haworth - When You and I were Young MaggieA volume pedal along with your Strat's whammy bar can mimic a steel guitar perfectly. You can do it.
    post edited by Wayfarer - 2017/07/19 16:21:21
    #8
    Jump to:
    © 2017 APG vNext Commercial Version 5.1