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 Post subject: Re: Finger play or Pick that's the question...
 Post Posted: Wed Dec 07, 2005 3:39 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2005 2:00 pm
Posts: 37
Location: Bloomfield, NJ
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There is no set "proper technique." If what you do works, sounds good, and doesn't injure you or destroy the bass, then your technique is good. This is true whether you use a pick, your fingers or a hammer.


While I agree that you should do what works for you, and there's nothing wrong with experimenting, most of the time what "works" is just because you have been doing it that way, right or wrong, and are used to it. There *is* a proper way to use a pick, just as there are proper left hand fingerings for scales and such.

When you have players suffering from RSI, that's from doing things the wrong way. Also a LOT of players have very sloppy technique, both with picks and fingers.

When I hear a player playing with a pick, and they can't cleanly articulate any notes, or play with any speed, that's from bad technique. Some people like to sound like crap... and that's OK too! :)


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 Post subject: Re: Finger play or Pick that's the question...
 Post Posted: Wed Dec 07, 2005 3:45 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2005 2:00 pm
Posts: 37
Location: Bloomfield, NJ
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One question for any of you thumb slappers. Do you set your action really high? Whenever I try this method on my normal low action the strings hit the frets so hard that the individual notes don't really come through.


Stanley Clarke likes to use high action when he's slapping. I have my action set very low. You are probably using too much force... just slap a little lighter.

Also it depends on your technique... (there's that word again!)

Your thumb should be more or less parallel to strings, and you should pivot from the wrist. I like to strike with my thumb over the last few frets.


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 Post subject: Re: Finger play or Pick that's the question...
 Post Posted: Wed Dec 07, 2005 5:05 am 
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Joined: Fri Aug 12, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 186
Location: on a mountaintop in WV
Quote:
Quote:
There is no set "proper technique." If what you do works, sounds good, and doesn't injure you or destroy the bass, then your technique is good. This is true whether you use a pick, your fingers or a hammer.

There *is* a proper way to use a pick

Yes. And it can be with a flexible pick or a completely stiff pick.


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 Post subject: Re: Finger play or Pick that's the question...
 Post Posted: Thu Dec 08, 2005 12:40 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2005 2:00 pm
Posts: 37
Location: Bloomfield, NJ
Quote:
And it can be with a flexible pick or a completely stiff pick.


When you use a flexible pick a good part of your force is lost to the bending of the pick. Plus you get a thinner sound. It's easier to play with a flexible pick, but it's slower. But with practice you can do a lot more with a hard pick.

And that's the thing... how many bass players practice picking exercises?

We can take as an example some virtuoso pickers. Two of my favorite guitar players are Robert Fripp, John McLaughlin, and both use very thick picks. Both of these players can play very fast and pick every note, which to me is proper pick technique. So the question is, how many bass players that play with a pick, can play as fast as either of these musicians? I really can't think of any. I think this is partly due to the fact that few bassists learn correct picking technique.

If you want to play very fast you really need a stiff pick.


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 Post subject: Re: Finger play or Pick that's the question...
 Post Posted: Thu Dec 08, 2005 12:49 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 23, 2005 2:00 pm
Posts: 144
Location: Deep in the rockies
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Yes. And it can be with a flexible pick or a completely stiff pick.


I always perform better with a stiff pick, once it becomes flexible I generally get dressed and go home.

Sorry ;) I just couldn't resist.


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 Post subject: Re: Finger play or Pick that's the question...
 Post Posted: Thu Dec 08, 2005 1:04 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 371
Location: Atlanta
And on that note, I think we've covered this topic well. Thank you!


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 Post subject: Re: Finger play or Pick that's the question...
 Post Posted: Thu Dec 08, 2005 1:48 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 309
Location: Santa Ana
Quote:
Quote:
Yes. And it can be with a flexible pick or a completely stiff pick.


I always perform better with a stiff pick, once it becomes flexible I generally get dressed and go home.

Sorry ;) I just couldn't resist.


You should ask "MPN" what happens when you make enough posts like this. Wait. You can't. Because he got banned. Let's keep it clean folks. This is a corporate website.... etc etc.


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