June 29, 2015

Electromaniacs | I Miss You So

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About this Video
In my view "I Miss You So" is the signature tune for the Electromaniacs, a 60's based Filipino band whose musical influence is still heard today, primarily in the worlds of Youtube and other popular video hosting sites, enjoying cult status. The tune has all the elements I like to hear and play in music; a nice flowing melody, dramatic breaks, smooth guitar lines and is easy on the ear, all in one neat package.

It might be me in old age talking, but this tune covers a lot of musical ground for me.

Penned and played by Ernie Delgado on lead guitar, this tune has not lost any of its appeal. It just grows on you.

Though disbanded some years ago, several attempts were made to re-assemble the band as short as a few years ago, but to no avail. The band itself may be a memory for now, but not its music.

Cesar Manalili, another Pinoy legend has taken on this tune as well and made a few changes to suit his style, but for the most part the musical arrangement has stayed a intact. Adding yet another sound to a great tune.

This musical work is composed in the Key C and set in 6/8 time (get my TAB sheet from links below). In my version an entire post section of the tune (the second bridge section) has been removed and replaced by a shorter improvised more driving section played to the end. I feel it brings another dimension to the tune, yet still keeping the same chord progressions. Let me know what you think after having a listen.

As in Faithful Love, I have had a fully orchestrated backtrack produced that is more modern sounding with a jazzy driving feel. That's why the guitar has to be played with the neck pickups selected and tone controls set to a mid to high roll off to get that smooth jazzy sound the Jazzmaster can produce. I am not using an EQ pedal like before, but now use just a delay and reverb pedal only, to get the 'plucky' Delgado sound. I'll post a video on how this is done. Suffice it to say the sound track recorded for this video uses my pedal combo setup. I'm still experimenting.

 
...oops pay attention to this...
This is not so obvious, but the opening note sequences before the main melody begins appears to be deceptively slow. It sounds mellow and smoothly paced by the original artists but you will find out this is not the case when you get down and practice these first set of bars. There is a lot of notes to play in those early sequences over what feels to be short period of time.

To learn it, you will probably be slowing down the tempo to get all the notes in those early bars played on time, then slowly speeding it up towards the actual recorded tempo. As you progress, you may find out that you will get to a speed cap - a personal limitation. No biggie of course, but don't be surprised if you don't get to full speed. I slowed down my version by about 5% -7% from the original speed just to get the timing correct and still having the backtrack sounding right and the pace feeling good. I use RIFF Station software to slow or speed up the tempo along with its looping ability so you can play a selected section of bars. A real boon to learning the tune faster.

If you adapt and accept a much slower tempo just to get the opening sequence squeezed in, means the rest of the tune will also be played slower, resulting in a plodding along effect, unless you add more filler notes. This doesn't have to be the case as the rest of the tune can be played comfortably faster.

Conclusion, learn to play the opening and closing sequence as fast as possible, yet keep its intended smooth flow. The rest of the tune will benefit.

Still on the opening sequences. There is some question in my mind regarding the use of a slide or a hammer-on to the intro notes. See notes in TAB below on just the D string. It just sounds bad.

E --------------
B ---------7-5--
G ---------6-5--
D -----4h5------
A --------------
E --------------
Hammer on or
 
E --------------
B ---------7-5--
G ---------6-5--
D -----4/5------
A --------------
E --------------
Slide on D string

I've played with it and it always sounds choppy. I slowed the note sequence down in RIFF Station and discovered there is no hammer or slide, it's just plain picking the notes. I use a down stroke on the first note and an up stroke on the second. See my updated tab sheet to see what I mean on the Resources page. The intro now works well in terms of tonal sequence. To get the sound with less of an attack or more mellow sounding, choose the neck pickups and flatten out the tone control. Now it really sounds the way I think it should.

Equipment Used and Settings

  • Fender Jazzmaster. Neck pickups, flat tone controls, max volume
  • Strymon Flint Reverb - heavy, tremolo effect to very subtle
  • No vibrato needed, though it may sound more dramatic if you plan to experiment for your sound. Try it out yourself and let me know how she goes.
  • Digitech X Series, Digital Delay set for short rep (I'll explain in my equipment video)

Audio and Video Production Tools
Audio recording is done using REAPER DAW, ART DI boxes and an ART USB based audio interface to get guitar sound to DAW.

Video production work is done in Adobe Premiere CS5. Original and final Video resolution is 1280x720p. Compression is about 7-10mb/s MP4. Youtube will transcode to their transmission specs anyway.

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