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A Very Specific Question about Three Finger Style

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by rabid666, Sep 3, 2008.

  1. rabid666


    Sep 30, 2006
    I've been trying to hone my skills with my right hand 3 finger style and I've come across a problem where neither way I move it feels unnatural.

    The debate is whether to keep the 1-2-3-2-1 pattern or to use 1&2 to pick most of the strings and use three as an auxilary.

    Tab Ex.



    or to use the finger pattern


    So, what feels right to you, how would you do it differently?

    Bye like
  2. Connor


    Jun 21, 2007
    i tried using only 3 for a while (321321) and decided on using it only for super fast parts & Triplets, i find 1&2 are really alot better for expression & dynamics
  3. XylemBassGuitar

    XylemBassGuitar Supporting Member Commercial User

    Aug 14, 2008
    Durango, CO
    Owner and Operator, Xylem Handmade Basses and Guitars
    The more you practice with three (or four) fingers in different rhythms and orders, the more natural it will feel and the easier it becomes to be more expressive with all your fingers.

    I started out playing with three fingers (playing mostly 123 123). Later on I started using different patterns (213 213 321 321 etc.).

    It kind of depends on the song/run/riff as to how I play with my fingers. Overall, I think it's advantageous to try playing something you've learned a certain way, in a different way. That way you keep your brain and muscle memory limber.

    When you're learning, things will feel unnatural. Just keep practicing, they'll start to feel more natural over time.

    I'd stick with three fingers and start with the way that feels the easiest first, then move on to other ways.
  4. If you use 12321 you better just play with two fingers because you gain no speed at all, all you get is an inconsistent sound because of the different sizes of the fingers.

    If you want to use the 3 finger technique you have to use 321 or 123 in alternating patterns of four notes like 1231, 2312, 3123, that way each fingers has two strokes to get back in place in pluck the string again, with your current technique, every other note is played with the middle finger, there is absolutly no gain at all.
  5. Traver


    Sep 25, 2007
    For a part like that I don't see any reason to use 3 fingers, 2 is plenty.
  6. HaVIC5


    Aug 22, 2003
    Brooklyn, NYC
    Tell that to Steve Bailey.

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