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Resonator Guitar Lovers Online


Nov 26, 2023 - 5:00:12 PM
1087 posts since 6/13/2012

Have any of you had to play in the dark, either on stage or at a camp site ?
I use a LED headlamp to see the fretboard.
Let's hear from you on this unusual topic !

Nov 26, 2023 - 5:07:28 PM
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wlgiii

USA

1475 posts since 9/28/2010

Last campout I actually did okay with the light of the campfire. But I usally wear a light that hangs aorund my neck and shines down onto the instrument; I move my head too much for a headlamp. If it's a bad jam, I use the dark as an excuse to extract myself.

Nov 26, 2023 - 5:12:16 PM

resotom

USA

1087 posts since 6/13/2012

Thanks for the reply ! Anyone else can chime in here !!

Nov 26, 2023 - 8:44 PM

LukeL

USA

381 posts since 5/11/2018

I play around a lot of campsites- but it's not usually pitch black. It only takes a minute for my eyes to get used to the fretboard in lower light... Thinking about this kind of makes me want to go to a pitch black room and see if I could even play anything! laugh

Nov 27, 2023 - 7:12:06 AM
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sapbush

USA

11 posts since 10/10/2012

Use a headlamp with a red light. The red gives you plenty of light without blinding the rest of the jam as you move your head

Nov 27, 2023 - 7:53:48 AM

768 posts since 1/18/2012

This has been covered before (here, or maybe another forum?) and someone had mentioned that dobros with real frets are better for navigating in low light than are light colored wooden in-lays, because real fret's raised dimensionality cast a bit of a shadow, or catch the limited light in such a way that you can be more accurate with bar placement.

I have guitars with both, and I would say that I do indeed prefer real frets for fretboard navigating in low light.

Edited by - Lounge Primate on 11/27/2023 07:54:41

Nov 28, 2023 - 6:46:08 AM

587 posts since 11/28/2012

Tough condition for me is near darkness, with a sole source of dim light causing the strings to throw shadows against the fretboard. So 1) you can barely see the fretboard, 2) what you do see is something other than 6 strings (due to shadows), with odd spacing intervals…lol.

Complete darkness is a non-starter for me. I occasionally do the “no look” practice drill, but that’s not public performance or jam-caliber stuff.

Nov 28, 2023 - 11:34:16 AM

wlgiii

USA

1475 posts since 9/28/2010

Regarding the red light- good thought for others, but not for me. I used a red light camping last summer and tumbled over a boulder. I was carrying the foodbag and not an instrument, and luckily did not crush the graham crackers. My nose eventually stopped bleeding, and we were able to have our s'mores.

We have an extra small light at home that clips onto music stands. Tonight I'll see what happens when I clip it onto the cover plate or head stock. Stay tuned....

Nov 28, 2023 - 5:53:15 PM

LukeL

USA

381 posts since 5/11/2018

Pretty cheesy to have a personal light on my instrument so I can see to play. I’d rather practice and get to where it’s as much ear accuracy as it is visual. Both are equally important.

Nov 28, 2023 - 9:07:14 PM
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wlgiii

USA

1475 posts since 9/28/2010

Not with lap style - there's no point of reference to play by feel. Guitars, etc. have frets one can feel and gauge where they are. I've finished a gig on double bass in the dark when the power went out due to a thunderstorm- no problems with that.

Dec 1, 2023 - 12:24:28 PM

4660 posts since 7/27/2008

Sometimes stuff happens.

Years ago with my church band  as the finale during a Christmas Eve service my task was to play the first verse of Silent Night solo  (key of A)  prior to having the rest of the band and congregation join in on vocals. 

The people had just lit hand held white candles before I started into the song.

No one had warned me that someone was going to shut off the lights as I began. The candles helped a little, but it was still pretty  dark in the church. 

I instantly began sweating bullets. I just did not see this coming. Luckily  I had practiced the song so often  in the couple weeks prior that I played only a couple clams. 

I advise you not to try this in front of a large group of people. wink

Edited by - MarkinSonoma on 12/01/2023 12:25:39

Dec 1, 2023 - 12:42 PM
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Anonyrat

Australia

27 posts since 3/28/2022

Should have just stopped, then it would have been a silent night ??

Dec 1, 2023 - 12:46:14 PM

4660 posts since 7/27/2008

quote:
Originally posted by Anonyrat

Should have just stopped, then it would have been a silent night ??


If I had I don't think all would have been calm along with not being bright...smiley

Dec 1, 2023 - 12:47:08 PM

wlgiii

USA

1475 posts since 9/28/2010

Well done. In the the dark, and with a sweaty bullet also. Those are hard to hold.

Dec 2, 2023 - 8:50:10 AM
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joeyd

USA

85 posts since 8/4/2008

We were at a Bill Emerson (Sweet Dixie) show several years ago at a small Korean Church. As they were about to finish the final set, the power failed and it was clear that it wasn't coming back on (all the lights in the neighborhood were out). Ever the showman, Bill had us round up flashlights and they finished the set with the audience holding the lights. Never missed a beat!

Dec 4, 2023 - 6:40:04 AM

50 posts since 6/11/2022

Nice use of a red light, as a photographer we use that for night photography setting up so as not to mess with the night vision. Side note, I was shooting and my friend kept walking around with red flashlight! Told him to stop because I was in middle of exposure, he said, but it is red.).

I was thinking of some sort of small clip on light for headstock to shine down neck. Red of course.

Dec 4, 2023 - 6:56:59 AM

50 posts since 6/11/2022

Brain storming, I have a nice headlamp with the red light, I have some clips that would securely attach to headstock. Now to see some way of mating them. Looked on Amazon, couldn't find anything as described. Might need some short gooseneck for aiming. Great for night jams at festivals.

Dec 4, 2023 - 1:04:12 PM

50 posts since 6/11/2022

I was at ACE, they had a bike rear taillight, one led, red lens, will strobe or steady, a spring clip and some kind of mounting to figure out, turn out the lights and try. It was only $2.59. cheap experiment.  Just hel by hand, will work out better angle with a clip.  But get the idea.


Edited by - PancakeBillW on 12/04/2023 13:14:01

Dec 4, 2023 - 3:14:56 PM
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50 posts since 6/11/2022

OK, put my redneck thinking cap on. Using parts from my GoPro, fashioned a headstock clamp to gooseneck. Attahched quick connect to the light. This gives the option of interchanging lights, camera etc. Aims right down the neck.

Have not yet tried out in the dark, other than lighht off in room, but seems pretty goog. Nice and solid.




Dec 4, 2023 - 3:46:03 PM

wlgiii

USA

1475 posts since 9/28/2010

Cool, but let's see the strobe feature in action.

Dec 4, 2023 - 3:58:17 PM

50 posts since 6/11/2022

Adjustable strobe to the beat, like a metronome.

Dec 4, 2023 - 5:59:28 PM

1044 posts since 1/10/2009

Back in the mid seventies I played steel in a busy country bar 6 nights a week. This was a joint that had been there forever and hosted some famous country stars along the way. One busy night the lights went out due to an outage, but part of the bar still had power! Turns out there were two power companies in that building and the bar and registers still had power as well as the bandstand but pitch black! Since they could still sell drinks and the amps were on we kept playing….that’s a challenge playing pedal steel in the dark! I recall eventually there was a little light nearby, like a music stand or something. WAY before led headlamps!

Dec 4, 2023 - 8:04:12 PM

tomkatb

USA

404 posts since 1/31/2015

My vision at night has never been good. I need a lot of light to read.

I have three battery reading lights mounted on clips. I put one on the music stand. Small led bulbs. From Costco. $10 as I remember for two.

One on the guitar would work.

Dec 5, 2023 - 1:23:59 AM
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58 posts since 8/31/2009

A few years ago I was playing my own build double neck Dobro resohangout.com/archive/44375 at an outdoor gig. It got darker and darker and the organiser had not thought about lighting the trailer we were using as a stage. The flat fret and position markers were barely visible and playing was, to put it mildly, rather difficult.

After the gig, I thought about a solution and bought a sheet of glow in the dark self adhesive vinyl and cut thin fret width strips and round position markers for the fretboards. It worked a treat and emits an eerie green glow when I walk into the room! Since then I've played on adequately lit stages, but they're still more visible than before and I'm ready for the next gig in darkness.

Dec 5, 2023 - 4:35:02 PM

50 posts since 6/11/2022

I call it the RedNeck. Look for Kickstarter. Just kidding. but it really works pretty good.

Dec 29, 2023 - 1:10:45 PM

424 posts since 9/9/2016

Our corner of the dive honky tonk is dim , but not dark .

Light enough to see the frets , dark enough to need the pocket flashlight to tell my nickel plated finger pick from the brass one .

But that bicycle taillight and glow in dark vinyl sound interesting.

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