Pick hand drifting to the far left.
New band I am working with plays some really fast stuff. Having just come back into playing my pick hand is not quite up for the speeds.
My pick keeps drifting to the far left as far as right before or on the fret board.
Seems if I keep it center I run out of stream.
Why is this happening? Should I care? :bassist:
If it feels more confortable that way, don't see why care about it
If you're trying to play fast, that's counterproductive. :scowl:
You want to hit the string closer to the bridge where there's more tension for quicker response. ;)
What thickness is the pick you're using? How hard are you gripping the pick? Both of these could affect your ability to pick faster passages for extended periods.
Although it is generally true that you can play faster where there is less vibrational movement of the string, which is near the bridge, I would argue that this is a short-term solution for greater speed in your case. If you keep migrating to near the edge of the fingerboard, this is where you naturally want to play, so it might be best to work on where you naturally gravitate. In the long run, it's likely that you'll be able to play the tempos you need to play more cleanly and more comfortably (hence longevity) where you naturally like to play in contrast to the generally-accepted location where faster = easier. I would also add that this is a great argument for bridge/pickup covers. Anchor your wrist on either/or and then don't move.
But there are limitations. Just how fast is fast? Give us 16ths at a metronome setting for context.
If I was playing just the root notes fast that would be easy but I am playing an ascending scale C, D, E, F, G, A, B sharp to C then D, E, F sharp, G, A, B, C sharp to D. using A, D and G strings with a connecting descending run. All in the span of 1:25 to 1:58 I believe and picking 4 notes out on each change in the scale.
That is black metal fast.
I use heavy gage picks same shape as the large Fender picks but I think I got the ones I am using from Musicians Friend and they are house picks or their own MF brand or something.
Ah just found the package, Clayton's Friendly Picks Rounded Triangle 1.52.. celluloid picks. I like em a lot.
Simple issue to work out, do you move your hand or does the bass move?
Either way if you move the bass to the left (assuming you are right handed) then you will have the bass in the position you migrate to already set, so you play constantly in the same string area, when finished you can move the bass back.
Many players re-set or change positions when playing parts, so you learn to do the same. Just remember a bass hangs on you and can be moved either left or right, the neck angle can be parallel or more up-right etc.. Check out the links
Why pick one...
1. I love the Clayton acetyls, which is what you are probably using. I personally think the "snap" of the lighter ones (like .80mm) creates better speed than the really stiff, heavy ones.
2. Not to stereotype (okay, so maybe it is), but "black metal fast" might include, as an image thing, a bassist wearing their instrument somewhere around their knees. You might try shortening up that strap a notch or two and see if the natural picking spot changes, just as a function of arm angle.
3. I have this habit of anchoring my ring finger of my picking hand against the G-string, and beginning most pick runs with an UPstroke rather than a downstroke (I am not completely weird in this respect, watch Will Lee playing with a pick as an example). The "recoil" provided by the G-string, combined with gravity, makes for a very quick up/down tandem attack.
I'm pretty sure I could pick along to that song of yours, although I'd have more issues with my LH. I'd also have a very tired RH pretty quickly if you do that all night!
As my wrist gets tired my hand just starts moving over. Because I start missing notes I found I miss less as I move over to the left but it seems funny to me. Maybe as I regain stamina it won't do that so much.
I wear my bass not too low or high.
I believe your hand gravitates to the neck because it's easier to play there. Carol Kaye says as much when she discusses her style. The strings are loosest there and put the least strain on your hand. You can use lighter strings and have more range of ease of playing farther down if you'd rather, but for using a pick, it's important to be able to keep holding the pick without your hand cramping up, so you should stay closer to the neck. You'll be able to play just as fast there IMHO.
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