View Poll Results: Do you prefer to stand or sit when you play jazz?

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  • I prefer to stand when I play

    39 24.38%
  • I prefer to sit when I play jazz

    121 75.63%
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  1. #51
    I will do what the situation calls for. Usually sitting but I like standing more.

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  3. #52

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    For big band I sit regularly but if I have a solo I stand up. I suppose it doesn't matter much because my guitar strap is set so that my guitar is about the same level while I stand.

  4. #53

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    I prefer standing.
    ofcourse sitting is better than standing for playing.

    but standing is better to communicate with other members.(for example,turn back and eye-contacts...)

  5. #54

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    sit for jazz, stand to rock.

  6. #55

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    I find that the balance of the guitar is very important, whether I'm sitting or standing. I use the classical guitar type position when sitting, but with a strap, so I want the guitar neck head to stay at shoulder height at all times, without any adjusting. Neck heavy guitars don't work for me, I find that I'm constantly adjusting the neck height.

    The guitar's balance is not as critical, if you play sitting with the guitar on your right knee like Barney Kessel in this video:
    “I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.”
    ― Mahatma Gandhi

  7. #56

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    playing standing is more relaxing. i sit playing my nylon string only because i have yet to buy a strap for it.
    plus, george benson stood when he appeared on don kirshner !!
    ...and if pat metheny stands, then i stand, too.

    cheers !
    dm

  8. #57

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rgarvey93 View Post
    I have a strong tendency to sit whilst playing the guitar in nearly almost setting, unless of course I am in a quartet with a bassist lead instrumentalist other than myself and a bassist, then I just feel awkward sitting.

    I honestly believe it is more intimate, as the guitar was conjured to be.
    Huh?

  9. #58

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    Quote Originally Posted by BigDaddyLoveHandles View Post
    As long as we are all sitting down (well, mostly) I'll re-ask a question i dropped into another thread. If you are playing a Tele, or other small-bodied guitar, which leg do you rest it on?

    I find it easier to put it on the "wrong" leg (left leg -- and I am right handed). My gut gets in the way when going for the higher frets if it is resting on my right leg
    Recently switched to right leg+footrest with my tele. Can't imagine going back- I don't see how folks maintain proper thumb position using their right leg with a solid-body. I think the classical guys are right, it's simply the correct way to hold a (smaller bodied, at least) guitar- though I open myself up for getting laughed at by all sides for doing a Segovia impression on a country guitar.

  10. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkRhodes View Post
    This reminds me. Years ago I bought a drummer's throne (-the top was more like a bicycle seat than a stool) and enjoyed it. (We parted ways when I entered seminary.) I use a chair from Goodwill now and it's fine but I wonder if any other guitarists have tried drummer's thrones / stools.
    I use a drummer's throne. Hydraulic adjustment and it's quite comfortable. I wouldn't mind standing but with this back, it's not happening.


  11. #60

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexArkansas View Post
    Recently switched to right leg+footrest with my tele. Can't imagine going back- I don't see how folks maintain proper thumb position using their right leg with a solid-body. I think the classical guys are right, it's simply the correct way to hold a (smaller bodied, at least) guitar- though I open myself up for getting laughed at by all sides for doing a Segovia impression on a country guitar.

    i agree. if you're going to sit ( boooo ) then a footrest is the way to go. my rule is that your back must be completely straight and shoulders are down and you're spine is curved. that's the only way for me, anyhow. but the footrest is crucial. whichever leg you use to rest your guitar must be raised with the help of a foot stool. make one cheap with a 2 x 4 !

    sitting without a footstool will not work. shoulders are crooked, back is hunched and you're smothering and pressing against madame.
    madame does not want to be smothered or else she will not vibrate.

    wowaaaaaa!!!

    rock on, dudes !!!
    d

  12. #61

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    Bar stool works if the rungs are at different levels so I can keep my left thigh higher. Footstools also work. If I'm at a spot without a footstool, I just tuck my right foot under my left. The closest I can get to a classical position, the better.

    Joe

  13. #62

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    Prefer sitting with deep bodies (acoustic, archtop). Don't mind standing with solids or semi-hollows.

  14. #63

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    I like sit down when playing jazz, cause it is more comfortable

  15. #64

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    I like to sit when playing solo and stand when playing with a group (or lean casually on a high stool pretending that I'm James Dean or something).

    It feels weird to stand when performing solo for some reason. I think the more intimate sound deserves a more intimate setting.

    Marvin Gaye, of course, mastered the third possibility: performing while reclining on a chaise lounge.

  16. #65

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    The barstool works well for me. I can rest my feet when needed and stand when appropriate. Of course, standing is always preferable when things are going badly and I may need a quick escape....
    Some days it's not even worth chewing through the restraints...

  17. #66

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    Sitting with a strap where I can keep my back straight!

  18. #67
    Somehow to me an archtop needs to be played sitting down,otherwise it feels ungainly.About 20 years ago I saw Mr Kenny Burrell onstage doing a set standing up and he is obviously very comfortable with it.As is Mr Martin Taylor,both superlative players.
    But chacun a son gout.If it works for you...do it.

  19. #68

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    Both... funny Henry, I use those cheap stools also, lose at least one every other week. But they make for one trips to gigs, My AER is in bag over shoulder with gig bag and carry Gui. except when too far... use a small gig dolly.

    I use the taller stools... somewhat have the appearance of standing... propped up.

    Most jazz festivals and bigger venues...I sit if I can get away with it... but usually only play one set. The problem when I stand... I start to almost dance...way too much movement. Of course there were the R&B/Funk days, the hotel late night contracts...I'm glad those are gone...always stood, always four hour gigs.

    I do tend to move around on stage at gigs... BS about what were trying to do...

    Yea Both

  20. #69

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    I sit playing acoustic most times, and stand playing electric most times.

  21. #70

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    If I have a choice I much prefer to sit.

  22. #71

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    when I play solo, I sit.

    in my trio, I always stand

    duets, I prefer to sit, but whatever you want to do, I will do the same.

    when I play bass, I always stand

    and naturally, when I play classical guitar, I always sit, but I use one of those leg cushions rather than a footstool

  23. #72

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    I used to stand, but I realized that I always sit when I practice. So now I sit all the time.
    "I'm opposed to picketing, but I don't know to show it." --Mitch Hedberg

  24. #73

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    Really depends on the gig. I ain't gigging much at all right now, so it's sit, at home
    Jeff Matz, Jazz Guitar:
    http://www.youtube.com/user/jeffreymatz

    "Jazz is like life...it goes on longer than you think, and as soon as you're like 'oh, I get it,' it ends."

    --The Ghost of Duke Ellington

  25. #74

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    99% of time I prefer to stand. I like to move when Im playing. Whether it fits with the jazz tradition or not is not a concern, but when I see a small combo players sitting down, I tend to yawn. Pictures look boring too. Stand up and swing it!

  26. #75

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hep To The Jive View Post
    99% of time I prefer to stand. I like to move when Im playing. Whether it fits with the jazz tradition or not is not a concern, but when I see a small combo players sitting down, I tend to yawn. Pictures look boring too. Stand up and swing it!
    I'd rather sound good than look good.
    "I'm opposed to picketing, but I don't know to show it." --Mitch Hedberg

  27. #76

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    Well, I prefer to stand; but my body says I have to sit!

    And to make it worse I have to sit in a way that lets my left leg take some of the arm weight off that [destroyed] shoulder, so my left arm pivots around the elbow, which is resting on my thigh.

    On the other hand I was at a recent gig where I bumped into a lady that I knew [in the non-biblical sense] 40 years ago and had not seen since. Her comment was "of all the people I have ever known you are the last one I would have expected to still be alive today!"

  28. #77

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    I'll often start the standing, but will sit when my back tells me it's time. Varying my position seems to keep me more comfortable.

  29. #78

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boston Joe View Post
    I'd rather sound good than look good.
    Of course of course! Never sacrifice the quality of music, its given. I was thinking from the perspective of entertainment value, the visual aspect of a live show. To some it dont matter, to me it does! I love to see people are getting into it.

  30. #79

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hep To The Jive View Post
    Of course of course! Never sacrifice the quality of music, its given. I was thinking from the perspective of entertainment value, the visual aspect of a live show. To some it dont matter, to me it does! I love to see people are getting into it.
    That's why I try to play with people who have more stage presence than I do. :P
    "I'm opposed to picketing, but I don't know to show it." --Mitch Hedberg

  31. #80

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boston Joe View Post
    I'd rather sound good than look good.
    don't be silly. You are there to entertain the nice people.

  32. #81

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate Miller View Post
    don't be silly. You are there to entertain the nice people.
    No, I'm there to practice my art where people can listen.

    I'd have to get paid to entertain.
    "I'm opposed to picketing, but I don't know to show it." --Mitch Hedberg

  33. #82

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boston Joe View Post
    That's why I try to play with people who have more stage presence than I do. :P
    LOL!!! Thats great! Anyone has more stage presence than me! LOL!! I sit these days.

  34. #83

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    I prefer to stand and move with the groove but my back demands I sit when Arthur Itus visits. I always use a portable, altered barstool (Legs shortened) with a back support. A Walmart barstool with a back support works great after I cut about 6 inches off of the Legs and it allows me to stand up when I need to.

    wiz (Howie)
    Howie

  35. #84

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    Quote Originally Posted by wizard3739 View Post
    I prefer to stand and move with the groove but my back demands I sit when Arthur Itus visits.
    Man, I hate that Arthur Itus.

  36. #85

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    Standing is certainly better for your overall physical condition, unless you do have back problems, and proper adjustment of the strap and placement of the strap buttons goes a long way toward getting the guitar into a good, solid playing position. Even classical guitars can be outfitted this way. I'm thinking about 3 important jazz guitarists (to me): Kenny Burrell, Jim Hall and Pat Metheny. All favored the standing position, Jim had to sit after a back operation for the last few years of his career. Practicing while standing is not hard, but probably should be limited to similar lengths of time as gig sets, alternating with sitting for a while. There are gigs that are more sitting gigs, like background music or big band, but I have found that relating to the audience while standing, as well as interacting with the other musicians, is much easier. Those who have small frames but play 17" or 18" guitars will find that standing is a very smart way to go, especially for the right hand.

  37. #86

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    I used to stand, but my back has not been happy about that lately, so now I sit.
    "I'm opposed to picketing, but I don't know to show it." --Mitch Hedberg

  38. #87

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    I used to stand. Now, I’m fucking old and always sit. My stool is part of the gig rig

  39. #88

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    Hard core stander. Even big band gigs if I can get way with it. I did recently lengthen my strap for my 3" archtops since I was finding that after 30 minutes or so of practice, my back was aching. But my straps were just way too short...now that they are slightly longer, it's all good.

  40. #89

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    Really don't have a preference. I suppose it depends on the gig. There's gigs where I think standing would be awkward, there's gigs where I think sitting would be boring.
    Jeff Matz, Jazz Guitar:
    http://www.youtube.com/user/jeffreymatz

    "Jazz is like life...it goes on longer than you think, and as soon as you're like 'oh, I get it,' it ends."

    --The Ghost of Duke Ellington

  41. #90

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    Quote Originally Posted by ronjazz View Post
    Standing is certainly better for your overall physical condition, unless you do have back problems, and proper adjustment of the strap and placement of the strap buttons goes a long way toward getting the guitar into a good, solid playing position. Even classical guitars can be outfitted this way. I'm thinking about 3 important jazz guitarists (to me): Kenny Burrell, Jim Hall and Pat Metheny. All favored the standing position, Jim had to sit after a back operation for the last few years of his career. Practicing while standing is not hard, but probably should be limited to similar lengths of time as gig sets, alternating with sitting for a while. There are gigs that are more sitting gigs, like background music or big band, but I have found that relating to the audience while standing, as well as interacting with the other musicians, is much easier. Those who have small frames but play 17" or 18" guitars will find that standing is a very smart way to go, especially for the right hand.
    I suspect there are a lot who sit when practicing, playing at home... and when they have tried to stand in performance found it uncomfortable. And I suspect that those of us who strongly prefer standing have figured out "how to stand" with the guitar.

    Personally, I have always been a stander and prefer it because it allows much more contact with other musicians and the audience. All the mechanics of my playing are best when standing and I routinely perform four hours and feel like going a few more afterwards.

    What I do:

    - feet together, not apart; this makes all twisting and turning motions light and easy
    - knees very slightly bent with the upper body leaning slightly back (this last is to balance the weight of the guitar and unload my back)
    - guitar slung high and positioned so my picking hand is on my center line and left hand is extended (neck is not in front of me but out to my left)
    - run the strap out over the corner of my shoulder (so it does not rest on the muscle between neck and shoulder)... this goes along with getting the guitar neck out to the left
    - wear good shoes

    ...basically the opposite of what rock stars do.
    "Bent my ear to hear the tune and closed my eyes to see."

  42. #91

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    I like to stand it’s a bit more vibey.

    Background gigs it’s fine to sit...

    But you know that they say - the chair is the killer...

    just make sure you support your body and the guitar properly with you core when you stand ..... can be easy to slump or slouch and get back problems... but the same is true in a chair....

  43. #92

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    Do I sit or stand while playing? Yes. One or the other, depending on the situation. But in my mid to late 60s I started sitting more.

  44. #93

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    Standing is better for both hands with electric but you dont feel like it after working on your feet all day. I like classical guitar position.

  45. #94

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    Sit

    Makes it easier to reach for my glass of Maker's Mark.

  46. #95

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    And the pot pipe if your in WA USA.

  47. #96

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    I prefer sitting in an ordinary straight backed chair. I don't think it looks best, but that's the way I'm most comfortable.

    If I'm going to sing, then I use a stool. The problem is then that I can't reach my volume pedal easily.

    I could solve that problem, but I don't end up singing enough to bother.

    Oddly enough, I'm most likely to stand on an outdoor gig.

  48. #97

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    All my heroes sat...I wonder why?

    When Jim ditched the Les Paul he graduated from the floor to a chair.


  49. #98

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    Never had a sit down gig.
    No rest for the wicked I guess.

  50. #99

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    I saw Jim Hall many, many times in the past 50 years, he stood for 90% of his gigs until him back operation. I think he realized at one point that when he went out on his own as a leader that standing gave him more presence and also made it easier to communicate with the rest of the group. Standing is, in general, better for your physique, and it also is more interesting to look at, from the audience point of view. However, it is situational; if you have to dance around pedals, sometimes sitting is easier. Of course the rockers with their large arrays of effects have to stand to be able to reach them all, but the showmanship in the rock genre often makes up for the limited musicianship.

  51. #100

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    I'm standing, always during gigs, and most of the time when I practice at home.
    I have some issues with my back and my shoulders, and I find it difficult to find a good position when sitting for more than 5--10 minutes.
    I also have to say that my shoulder issues prevents me from playing deep bodied arch tops, like the ES-175 or L4 etc.
    I had to sell my L4 because of this.
    So I'm only using either teles or ES-335 type guitars.