Fingers vs pick

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by tycobb73, Jan 1, 2012.


  1. tycobb73

    tycobb73

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2006
    Location:
    Grand Rapids MI
    I prefer the feel of fingers but the sound of a pick. I found the sound in my head with a pick. With my fingers its meh. I think the pick won out. Anyone else go through this?
  2. PDGood

    PDGood Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2010
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    Yes, but in reverse. I'm faster and more accurate with a pick, but prefer the sound of fingers.
  3. VitalSigns

    VitalSigns

    Joined:
    May 8, 2011
    Location:
    Central NY
    Try using your finger nails.
  4. jabsys

    jabsys

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    I'm the same, I prefer to play fingerstyle and I'm more comfortable with fingers but they just don't work for the tone I want, so I play with a pick. I've tried with nails and it still doesn't sound right, might have to try the fingerpicks classical guitarist use.
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  6. cableguy

    cableguy Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2009
    Location:
    North Bend, WA
    maybe use both for whatever feel the music needs.
  7. john grey

    john grey

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2011
    Location:
    Oracle, Arizona
    Took the letters right out of my keyboard. Differing positions (close to the bridge or neck), thumbs, picks, finger are all colors. I frankly wish I was better with a pick as the sounds are substantially different. The only "Problem" I would ever foresee is an individual not experimenting.

    In the world of painting there may be 18 different "greens" from one base pigment. It would be a limiting factor to stop at a mid-level green The eyes and ears go so far beyond that mod-level root color.
  8. klejst

    klejst

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2010
    To each their own style of playing and tones based on whatever method you choose. The fingers or pick debate could go on and on about how real bass players don't use picks blah blah blah.
  9. Tupac

    Tupac

    Joined:
    May 5, 2011
    Pick = Small learning curve, moderate effectiveness
    Fingers = Very large learning curve, giant effectiveness


    In other words, you can become good with a pick very fast, but you can't do much once you're at the pick's "skill ceiling". Fingerstyle takes decades to perfect, but you can do amazing things once you've mastered it.
  10. Topspin

    Topspin

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2010
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    Love the sounds I can make with both fingerstyle and a pick, but I suck at using a pick.
  11. aServantLeader

    aServantLeader

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2011
    Location:
    Gratiot County, Michigan
    I am confined to a pick, due to physical limitations. I use old gift cards as my pick, cut up in a manner that my right hand can hold them.
  12. jabsys

    jabsys

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    Not for me it wasn't, I've always found it very easy to play fingerstyle, playing with a pick feels completely unnatural and took loads of practice to be able to play any where near as well as I can with fingers.
  13. JavierFarias

    JavierFarias

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    Location:
    Chile
    for me it depends on the music, usually it's like 90% pick 10% fingers .
  14. Jisais

    Jisais

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2012
    Often it does depend on the music that is being played and even your mood. Personally i love the tone that you get with fingers, but when it comes to playing at 220 BPM my fingers cramp up a little to easily :scowl: have to work on that quad technique. Pick on the other hand also gives you a legit tone, but theres only so much that could be done with a pick!
  15. SactoBass

    SactoBass There are some who call me.......Sactobass

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    Location:
    Sacramento California
    Now I finally understand why Chris Squire's bass playing is only moderately effective and why he just can't do much.;)
  16. Hamlet7768

    Hamlet7768 Here to chew gum and rock. Still have gum. Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2011
    Ditto to Macca. :D
  17. SactoBass

    SactoBass There are some who call me.......Sactobass

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    Location:
    Sacramento California
    Big +1!
  18. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2008
    Location:
    Colorado
    +1
  19. Geroi Asfalta

    Geroi Asfalta

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2011
    i prefer fingerstyle. I can't use a pick to save my life. I can pick a guitar ok, but not a bass.....plus, I almost always have coloured DR's on my fretted basses. I like keeping the colour as much as possible.

    The only time I ever get a pick near my bass is:
    - When I have a little overdrive and my non-coated DR's
    - When I'm messing with my fretless to Pink Floyd

    Otherwise, I sound like somebody killing a goat with a bass when I use a pick
  20. SurferJoe46

    SurferJoe46

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2010
    Location:
    The Bitterroot Mounts, Montana


    What? Use what you need when you need it.

    Simple, and you won't need any couch time if you don't agonize over it.
  21. carlthegroover

    carlthegroover

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2011
    Location:
    Mexican Megalopolis
    I'm still undecided as to which one I prefer. I do love the pick because of the "aggressiveness" and prominence, which is perfect for rock. I'm also getting much faster with a pick.

    But it is always good to play with fingers, due to the feel with the strings and the different sound.
    Edit: I'm also more accurate with fingerpicking.

    I will let you know in a few years when I decide.

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