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A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

 #110534  by lunchbox
 Sun Mar 04, 2012 8:30 pm
Hello there family. New to the fourms. I could really use some help with the solo(ab) for box of rain. Jdarks has a tab but I cant follow it, seems like he has to much going on.
I am so very thankful for any help/tab.
Thank you!
 #110537  by Adam Deckard
 Sun Mar 04, 2012 9:06 pm
I think that solo was played by garcia's old bluegrass buddy David Nelson. I Think another dude came in and played bass while Phil lesh played acoustic guitar. The Solo interested me too because I could not understand how dude was making his guitar sound like that until I found out about a little thing called a "b-bender" guitar made by fender which has a "whammy bar" type deal built into the strap so that when the guitarist tilts his guitar the strap actually bends the b string in order to achieve that unique sound! I think alot of country players use these guitars for "chickin pickin" stuff lol. Try watching some Grateful Dead performances on youtube and see if garcia plays that solo, i bet he doesnt!
 #110555  by Mr.Burns
 Mon Mar 05, 2012 7:19 am
Benders can be set up for both the B and E strings, one strap button bends B, the other E. I can think of no modification which requires as much cutting and customization as these benders, and for non-trem guys like me, they are an absolute nightmare. It seems like the technique required to properly use one would be difficult to perfect, trying to apply the correct downforce on the strap button while playing...Anyone that has a guitar set up this way deserves props, even more so if they can play it... :hail:
 #110558  by Tennessee Jedi
 Mon Mar 05, 2012 7:36 am

Check out this vid
I am pretty sure I asked them about this solo and the guy ( he is a member here I forget his name ) said his guy didnt use a B Bender on the solo .... so it can be nice and sweet in the standard way
Maybe he will chime in ...
On Darks ... its been awhile but I remember getting some good stuff out of it. Sometimes its a jumbled mess but keep poking around ... the solo wasnt as hard as remembering the chords :D
Also have you tried searching youtube for Box Of rain solo vids ?
What a great tune
:smile:
 #110575  by jeffm725
 Mon Mar 05, 2012 11:21 am
Here ya go,

Just substitiute the B-Bender notes (you can tell the B-Bender is used when he pushes down on the guitar) with Full Step bends on the B- String:

 #112347  by zambiland
 Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:31 am
I heard a rumor it was Clarence White with his infamous B Bender. Maybe just a rumor. I know plenty of Tele players who can do that with their fingers. Ross Martin and Jim Lewin come to mind.
 #145899  by oceanbear11
 Sat Apr 11, 2015 10:46 am
Tennessee Jedi wrote: the solo wasnt as hard as remembering the chords :D
:smile:
I agree there. This is one of those songs (I think they do this on Uncle John's Band too, but don't quote me on that) that has changes in the order and pattern of the chords that are kinda subtle if you're listening, but that really stand out if you're playing! Then there's the bridge (I suppose that's what it'd be called even though it's at the end of the song--I think that's a good place for it in this tune), with a totally different progression. I've been at it for months, and I can usually memorize these things in a couple of days, but I still ain't got this one.
I might suggest this tune to one of my bandmates who I'm going to start independently jamming with soon. She's not a Deadhead, but we've been doing "Touch of Grey" in the band and she seems to like it, but anyways, hope it goes over well. Wish me luck.
:smile:
 #145918  by DHM
 Sun Apr 12, 2015 11:19 am
This came up a couple years ago on the TDPRI and a guy posted what seemed like a credible story, the jist of which was that David Nelson didn't get a stringbender until several years after the tune was recorded...which makes sense because at the time (1970) there were not many people selling them...no Fender, no hipshot, no Parsons-White, no Glaser, etc. Dave Evans-PullString was starting to make some but apparently didn't make one for Nelson...Evans benders are prominent in the early Eagles-Bernie Leadon had one, and some players built their own-Bob Warford-backed Linda Ronstadt was one ....

So my guess is he played the solo "digitally"-with his fingers...its one of those solos that is easier to play with a string bender...and maybe a bender was used in subsequent performances...but not on the record....

Image

Ive been playing a stringbender for about 20 years...my Nashville West "Clarence " clone from a festival gig a few years back...

Dire wolf is the queen mother of changes.....each verse has a different progression
 #145921  by oceanbear11
 Sun Apr 12, 2015 9:01 pm
DHM wrote: Dire wolf is the queen mother of changes.....each verse has a different progression
Boy, you've got that right! I've tried to learn that four or five times and just said, "Forgeddit, I'd rather just listen!" :? So many Dead songs from 1970 seem to do that, don't they? Good old Casey Jones is pretty easy, but I usually don't do the chorus as much as the dead do.
 #145922  by oceanbear11
 Sun Apr 12, 2015 9:02 pm
Sorry for taking off like that, folks. . .
Back to Box of Rain.
 #146182  by oceanbear11
 Tue Apr 21, 2015 8:12 pm
By the way, for the American Beauty solo, there's a great tab in the Grateful Dead Guitar Tab Anthology, if you haven't already looked. The book is released by Alfred Music, and the solo is on page six in mine, though others might be paginated differently. Anyway, you might try that. They show the b-bender work as manual bends in this one.