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#3114224 05/06/21 04:11 AM
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When I play something that with a slower temp, I usually use the sustain pedal at least slightly to make the notes blend together so I don't get a separate "plink plink plink" as I play. This seems to work fairly well when I just play any of the piano sounds and when layering stuff like piano and guitars, but if I use the layering function with certain other sounds (like the piano sound and the strings sound together) everything sort of turns into a muddy mess after the first few notes.

What am I doing wrong here? Should I not be using the sustain pedal to blend the notes this way? If not, then what is the right way to do that? Is it a problem with the way that I'm pressing the keys? Or is it just an issue where the strings and piano sound together just sound crappy on my piano and that's the way it is, and if that's the case then the solution would be simply to not to play using that combination.


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Sounds to me as how the VCA works (ADSR...Attack, Delay, Sustain, Release)
A piano sound dies off after a short while
The string sound keeps on going...ad infinitum. If it won't get a Not Off event it will blend into whatever Note On event follows.
This post is likely more more suited to the Digital Piano section though.


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Originally Posted by FrankCox
Or is it just an issue where the strings and piano sound together just sound crappy on my piano and that's the way it is, and if that's the case then the solution would be simply to not to play using that combination.

Yes.

Piano sound decays. Strings don't.

When piano+strings is played as piano is played, it often just doesn't work that well. Especially if the sustain pedal also sustains the strings. You'll need to relase the pedal often enough to silence some of the dissonant strings notes.

My Kawai doesn't sustain the strings (forever) when layered with piano, only as long as a specific key is held down. When the key is released that strings note dies away even is the sustain pedal is still held down. I think my old Casio behaved differently.

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Thanks for the insights, folks! That's pretty much what I suspected is going on, but I was wondering if there was something wrong with my technique.

I play a lot of old-timey ballads, torch songs and "he done gone and left me" (and if it's country then he took the dog and the pickup truck too), and I've found that holding the pedal down just a bit makes the whole thing sound a lot smoother and more like what I think it's supposed to sound like. Too heavy on the pedal or not releasing it between "phrases" (if that's the word) also turns it into a muddy mess but not to the extent that those strings do -- five or six notes on that and all I've got is a discordant whine.

I guess my question is, am I using the pedal correctly when I'm blending notes with it like that? While it seems to work and sounds pretty good (as long as I keep the strings out of it) I've never been sure if it's actually the right way to do that kind of thing.


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Frank - Let the pedal up and down a little more often or too many notes will get muddied together.

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