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Am I doing this wrong? Bad technique?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by drd07, Jun 22, 2003.


  1. drd07

    drd07

    Jan 19, 2003
    I've always played bass using a type writer technique with my right hand. I use 4 fingers: thumb on E, index on A, middle on D, and ring on G. Is this a bad technique to use? Should I switch over to something else? Thanks in advance!
     
  2. there is no right or wrong way, if it works then its good. the only prblem i see is using one finger per strin could limit speed.
     
  3. drd07

    drd07

    Jan 19, 2003
    I think that is where I run into problems. When I do scales or riffs, having a seperate finger for each string makes things go really smoothly. However, if I want to go a little faster and need to hammer it out on one string, it's kind of tough.

    I've been doing a lot of research about proper right hand technique. I have tried using the index, middle finger approach, but it feels really foreign to me. Is it bad to use a combination of techniques, or should I just buck down and learn the "proper" right hand technique?

    Does anybody else use the typewriter style?
     
  4. i think that you should use your current technique if it suits you, but try other ways too. you could try playing faster with one finger by plucking and then flicking quickly. that might not be a good way of explaining it, but i can play pretty fast with one finger that way so it might work for you.
     
  5. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    while it is indeed true that these is no "correct" technique there are a whole bunch of standard techniques that are standard for very good reason.. i.e they allow you to play in the most efficient manor.

    the technique you use sounds like a real beauty... for certain lines, but I expect you'll run into difficulties unless you develop a standard two finger technique, like the yellow pages "walking fingers" logo!

    best abvice here is get some lessons!
     
  6. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    ...oh and the more different techniques you can master the better, more tools for the tool box. every technique will come in handy at some point, so dont, whatever you do, quit on the one you're currently using.. just learn some newies as well :)
     
  7. This is quite an odd technique! I suggest you try to learn the standard two-finger technique, or if it feels too weird, maybe you should try the pick. Although there are lots of pick bashers in the bass community, it is still a totally valid technique. Good luck!

    P.S.: BTW, what music style are you playing, and what kind of bass(es) do you have?
     
  8. drd07

    drd07

    Jan 19, 2003
    I mainly play rock. I play on a jack casady. For the past 2 days I've been really trying the 2 finger style method. It HAS been feeling a little bit better. I've noticed a new clarity with what I've been playing. My other typewriter style sounds a little mushy. I'm determined to learn the 2 finger style though. It's just kind of puts me off in weird place. I have a ton of songs down, not to mention a gig on Sat., that I have to relearn with a different method. I should probably get some lessons...

    When you use the 2 finger method, what is your ring and pinky supposed to do? Does anybody have any good links that have lessons on this or show pictures?

    Thanks for everybody's input so for. I really appreciate it.
     
  9. You can use them to help mute the strings. When you're playing, say, on the D string, your thumb and your ring and/or pinky should be muting the E and A strings, while the G will be muted by your fretting hand. Hope this helps and good luck with nailing the songs with the new technique.
     
  10. I started out playing exactly like that.
    it's great for keeping unplayed strings muted.

    but the problem with that method is speed as previously mentioned- difficult to get fast eighths and especially sixteenths- and also the tone from your thumb will never be the same as with your fingers.

    after a year I switched to conventional two fingers, then three fingers.
    I still use the sideways style for chordal playing and fast ascending string-skipping, and certain string-muting moves.
     
  11. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    Be sure and keep your other technique up to snuff as you learn the two finger method. The method you call 'typewriter' is very handy for arpeggiating chords, among other things.
     
  12. Actually, I use a variation of this technique for playing octaves. That is, playing the low note with the index and the high one with the middle. I never use my thumb, except when palm-muting to emulate an upright.
     
  13. drd07

    drd07

    Jan 19, 2003
    I think I'm going to use both. I'm going to try to learn newer songs with 2 fingers. But I will use "typewriter" for songs that require that style. Thanks for everybody's input. I really appreciate it.
     
  14. Matt R Miller

    Matt R Miller

    Apr 27, 2003
    Wisconsin
    in my opinion, you should start working on nothing but the accepted "proper" method. sure, your current technique may work for you, but as you get better, you willl get to the point that you can't improve because of poor technique