What is a tremolo effect? How variation in volume produces a cool sound

by Joost Nusselder | Updated on:  May 3, 2022

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In music, tremolo (), or tremolando (), is a trembling effect. There are two types of tremolo.

The first type of tremolo is a variation in amplitude as produced on organs by tremulants using electronic effects in guitar amplifiers and effects pedals which rapidly turn the volume of a signal up and down, creating a “shuddering” effect an imitation of the same by strings in which pulsations are taken in the same bow direction a vocal technique involving a wide or slow vibrato, not to be confused with the trillo or “Monteverdi trill” Some electric guitars use a (somewhat misnamed) device called a “tremolo arm” or “whammy bar” that allows a performer to lower or raise the pitch of a note or chord, which is known as vibrato. This non-standard use of the term “tremolo” refers to pitch rather than amplitude.

The second is a rapid reiteration of a single note, particularly used on bowed string instruments and plucked strings such as harp, where it is called bisbigliando () or “whispering”. between two notes or chords in alternation, an imitation (not to be confused with a trill) of the preceding that is more common on keyboard instruments. Mallet instruments such as the marimba are capable of either method. a roll on any percussion instrument, whether tuned or unturned.

I'm Joost Nusselder, the founder of Neaera and a content marketer, dad, and love trying out new equipment with guitar at the heart of my passion, and together with my team, I've been creating in-depth blog articles since 2020 to help loyal readers with recording and guitar tips.

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