Jeff Buckley's Grace Notes
GP contributor Vinne DeMasi delivered this one. “Despite a career cut tragically short less than three years after the release of his 1994
debut Grace, Jeff Buckley was recognized as an avatar of his era. Rush drummer Neil Peart considered him “one of the few great ones,”
and Jimmy Page sang his praises in multiple interviews. Although most lauded for his impassioned vocal style, Buckley was an imaginative
guitarist and a kindred spirit to Page, distilling elements of Delta blues, jazz, folk, Indian music, psychedelia, and rock into his own
intoxicating elixir. The open-G droning lick below summarizes motifs Buckley plays and expands upon during the hypnotic intro to ‘Dream
Brother.’ Stretch your pinky to the 4th fret, allowing the notes on the top two strings to sustain against each other as much as possible.”
Why Didn’t I Think of That?
Steve Miller bandmate Kenny Lee Lewis brings this knowledge. “This is so simple it’s ludicrous,” he enthuses. “Steve Miller showed this
to me years ago and I couldn’t believe how useful it was. It’s a technique that old blues guys in Chicago learned decades ago so they could
rock those classic patterns all night long without killing themselves. Follow the fingerings and prepare to be amazed. Lift your pinky up
off the fifth string when playing the E on the fourth string. Relaxing your fingers will automatically mute the fifth string. Once you get
this coordinated, you can do it all night long in any key, with no cramps or fatigue.” Damn, dude.
Poor Man’s TransTrem
The supremely badass David Torn revealed in his latest interview
that when using a standard trem (with standard string
gauges), certain pairs of strings will change pitch diatonically—
at least for a time—and certain pairs will raise and lower at
the same rate. Strange but true—he’s right. This lick, when
played on a floating-trem guitar, will give you (mostly) sweet
diatonic up-bends on the G and B strings in bar 1, and cool
parallel descending bends on the E and G strings. Who knew?