IF you’re a fan of country music then you`ll be familiar with the sweet, mellifluous sounds of the pedal steel – that smooth sliding, portamento characteristic of country music. Unlike other types of steel guitar, it uses foot pedals and knee levers to affect the pitch and a slide, (the steel), to fret the strings. The pedal steel owes it’s genealogy to the invention in Hawaii in the late 1800s, where strings were played by sliding an object such as a comb or the back edge of a knife blade along the strings above the neck of the guitar.
A pedal steel guitar has no specific resonant chamber or conventional guitar body but also has one or more guitar necks mounted on a stand and equipped with foot pedals and usually knee levers. Many models often use a C6 tuning and an E9 tuning. The most common configuration is one or two necks of ten strings each, but eight-string and twelve-string necks are also popular. SO if you haven`t got the spare cash
So without any further cottonpickin’ ado I’m going to show ya`ll how to get your chitlins on and achieve that intoxicating country style on your very own gee-tar. Yesiree we’re talking string benders baby. We goin’ look at the Parsons White stringbender and the HIPSHOT systems.
The B-Bender was invented by Gene Parsons and Clarence White of Nashville West and The Byrds, and was originally called the Parsons/White Pull-String, later changed to StringBender.
Their early prototypes included multiple bending devices for the E, B, G and D strings, but White decided he preferred a single B string bender in the final design. The B string is bent up a full tone by pulling the guitar neck down.
This puts pressure on the strap, which is attached to a spring-loaded lever at the base of the neck. The lever arm passes through the body of the guitar and is connected to the B string behind the bridge.
Hipshot make a range of bending devices including the palm bender option shown in the video below so check out their website and have a listen to their featured player.
Here`s a fantastic video demonstrating some of these awesome devices.
Well, That`s all folks,