Rapid no-note fretting hand neck slide?

not sure what the name for this is but have seen it a lot: players will rapidly slide their fretting hand up then down (or down then up) the neck super fast but not to play a note or a slide — is there a purpose/reason for this? to me it almost looks like they are “resetting” their fretting hand in terms of neck position?

an example of what i am talking about is Joe Dart at about 1:42 in this video. it does not look like he is playing a low note nor is he playing a slide:

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I think he’s sliding, but it’s supposed to be a fast 16th note or so. Due to the speed, doesn’t sound like he’s actually making sound til the 7th fret or so
edit: I should add that I have seen players do what you’re talking about (the only one that comes to mind is Rudy Sarzo with ozzy). I’m guessing they may be considering playing something different in a live setting or improvising but deciding not to.


I think it’s a bit of showmanship.


Joe Dart and showmanship? C’mon @John_E , he NEVER would.

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Pretty sure it’s this because he does something similar a few bars later and does play notes there.

It’s an old school move I’ve seen in metal. Check out this video around 1:10 - both the bassist and guitarist do it. It’s done as a muting and timing technique afaik

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It might be for muting harmonics. I know i sometimes have this issue when playing. When i lift up fretting finger, string would continue to ring harmonically and only way to stop it from ringing is to move fretting hand to approx. middle of the neck or mute with plucking hand.

I find myself doing this at the end of each “A” and “B” pattern when I’m playing “Song for my father”. Don’t really know why, but I think I’m subconsciously stretching/relaxing my hand and lower arm before starting the next pattern.

FYI @Wombat-metal if you ever want to start a YouTube video from a certain point to illustrate something, then stop the video at that mark. Hover your mouse over the red dot on the timeline at the bottom of the video and right click. Choose ‘copy video URL at current time’. Then when peeps click on your video it’ll play from that point.

Screen Shot 2022-01-09 at 11.03.21 AM
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Or, if you click “Share”, there’s a checkbox for “Start at” that will allow you to select a time (defaults to your current point in the video, I believe) which then gets added into the link…

Yes! I also do that when playing Song for my Father, and also on several McCartney bass lines that feature an abrupt stop on beat one. It’s feels like a relaxation and reset.

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There are also many that feature him zipping up and down the bass but playing it vs. no sound. I am finding that out as we speak.

Yeah, that is definitely true of the later period like Abby Road. I’m thinking of songs from the early days like All My Loving and Baby It’s You.

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