Tapped Harmonics


New member
Hi guys my first post here though I've been surfing the forum for a long time =)

So I really want to master the 3 types of harmonics: natural, pinch and tapped on the electric guitar.

I can't seem to get tapped harmonics out though. Every video, method book and demonstration attributes the main concept of tapped harmonics to be fretting a note and tapping its octave. Some go further to preach tapping on the fret. Sounds simple enough.

Here's the problem: I've done exactly that. Fretting the note and tapping (with as little force as possible, mind you) on the octaved fret. I have not accomplished even an accidental chime of a tapped harmonic. The note does sound off, albeit a normal note one gets when he taps normally. That sweet, saturated chime remains elusive and mythical.

But here's something I've discovered that no video, method book or demonstration has highlighted. And this was, by fate I'm sure, accidental. I picked a note normally and, while the string continued to vibrate, tapped as you would a tapped harmonic. The beautiful, singing tone was like a sonic epiphany.

So I can play tapped harmonics if I first pluck the note; the C would be immediately followed by a C an octave higher in the harmonic realm. But this sounds like an "assisted" technique of playing harmonics. I simply cannot get an "independent" harmonic. Does it have to do with amp settings? Perhaps high distortion would help, or just more volume. But harmonics should be able to be played even unplugged, shouldn't they? After all, pinch and natural harmonics can be played just fine without an amp. So why not tapped?

Would love some insight, or if anyone shares this problem, fellow ranting ;)

Its pretty hard to get tap harmonics unplugged. Do try with more gain for the 1 octave higher harmonics. It helps.
hi! i've been teaching students to do this for quite a long time, i might be able to help! you can come over to my place at bishan if you want, and i can show you how!(completely free) here's my youtube: www.youtube.com/nimnuedream you can see me doing some of these harmonics in my vids.
text me at 96369202 if you're interested
Cheers! :)