Whammy & Harmonic Lick

In this lesson I’m demonstrating a lick which uses the whammy bar and a tapped harmonic. I’m also showing a way of getting much the same effect for those of you without whammy bars. I’ve slowed each lick down, and split it into sections, I’ll now go over each section in as much detail as I can.

With Whammy: 

1 – 2nd fret on the G String, using my second finger. I’ve also got my first finger behind it, on the first fret, to provide some stability. I’m actually strumming all the strings here, but muting everything except the G with my thumb and other fingers. This gives it a more percussive element, which does sound a bit cluttered and messy, but I’ve found that to be a reasonable compromise, given the amount of movement you’re about to do. By all means, if you feel you can be a bit more accurate with your picking, or you’re struggling to mute the extra strings, try it different ways.
2 – Bend on the same fret, then return it, pulling-off to the open string when you do. By pulling-off you’re increasing the amount the string vibrates, (if you haven’t read-up on hammer-on’s and pull-off’s, you probably should have…)
3 – Whammy Dive! You create a wider vibration when you dip the whammy bar, which means it’s easier to apply any natural harmonics, as per step 4.
4 – Using your second finger, (left hand), tap the 5th fret, (right above the wire). This creates a natural harmonic. Because the only string currently vibrating is the G String, we can afford to be a bit messy with just what strings we his, as long as you get the G in there somewhere. I’m also pulling the whammy bar up, which increases the pitch above what it would be if the bar were in it’s natural position.
5 – Bring the whammy bar back to it’s natural position and vibrato with the bar.

Without Whammy: 
1 – As before, play the 2nd fret on your G string, muting the unwanted string if you feel like being a bit haphazard with your picking.
2 – Pull-off to the open G note. This creates extra string vibration which makes the next step easier.
3 – Hammer-on to the 5th fret of the same string.
4 – Use your second finger, (right hand), to hit the harmonic above the 12th fret on the G string. Bend the note with your left hand a bit.
5 – Bend or vibrato to taste.

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