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Ever played like this?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by philzbass, Jan 11, 2006.

  1. About 2 years ago I was playing in a Metal band and I started using this technique. Instead of the standard 2 finger back and forth rotation;

    First finger
    Middle finger
    First finger
    Middle finger

    I started kind of flicking back and forth with the same finger, Very fast. Almost a pic like effect but with 1 finger. Opened up new doors for me. Took a while to really get good at but it seems to fit in well with metal.

    So now I can play parts on other strings while maintaining a real heavy, fast low end.

    Just wondering if anyone else is using this tech regullarly.

    Maybe a dumb question??
  2. keb


    Mar 30, 2004
    Geddy Lee does this, real aggressively. Kinda like double thumbing but with his middle finger instead of his thumb.
  3. Audiophage


    Jan 9, 2005
    I'll occasionally mess around with stuff like that, but I have yet to really woodshed any of it.
  4. de la mocha

    de la mocha

    Aug 20, 2005

    Hmmmmm, I should try that. I'm always experimenting on my bass playing techniques.....
  5. fr0me0


    Dec 7, 2004
    Winnipeg Canada
    yeah i was messing around with that While working on my right hand three finger technique. Was play middle first middle first repeatedly to try and help myself lose the gallop.

    wait nm i didn't realise what you meant til I saw the pic. ignore this
  6. I do this technique when I want a continuous tone without any attacks for a background sound. For instance, when the leader is talking with the audience and wants a soft stringy "pad" sound from the keyboard player, I will usually back him up with this technique. It's like bowing without the bow :)
  7. BassChuck


    Nov 15, 2005
    I've used this technique very effectively in music theater for long 'bowed' notes. I find that I can only do this on the E string. And it really doesn't come up that much.

    I was practicing on time before a show and found one of women violinist staring at my hand.
  8. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    Yeah I do that, too, except with my middle and ring finger together:

  9. Bassic83


    Jul 26, 2004
    Texas, USSA
    Dude, she was just looking for the wedding ring...;)
  10. BillytheBassist


    Aug 18, 2005
    Steve Bailey is one who uses that technique in a big way.
  11. As mention before, Geddy Lee (Rush) does this, but I also heard he is having problems with his fingers now..

  12. Oh Yeah,

    after I started messing around with this I read an article about Geddy Lee. Actually it was an interview with Tim Commerford talking about Geddy Lee, he was saying that Geddy uses 1 finger alot to create more of a pulsating sound.

    I forgot about that till you mentioned him.

    Thanx for the replies
  13. deaf pea

    deaf pea

    Mar 24, 2005
    Cuernavaca 1 hr S Mexico City
    Seymour Duncan/Basslines SMB-5A Endorsing Artist
    Yeah, I do it ("flicking" the finger back and forth rapidly) for that ocasional long "arco" note and often at the end of a song to make it so the last note does't just "die". I can do it on any note on any string, but it sounds best (more even) when I use the middle or the ring finger.
  14. I started doing the same thing a few months ago. It's cool, but really hard to use practically. I like throwing it in as a kind of "effect". In my opinion, it sounds better when done very lightly. I have a really cool, very eery sounding harmonic piece I made up with it.
  15. I'm confused (as usual).

    I believe people are talking about two basically different techniques....one is flicking the finger back and forth through the string like a pick, quickly...to get a very rapid "machine gun" type of feel (this alternates a sharp attack (finger nail side) with a normal attack (finger pad side) )

    the other technique is more of a soft, but rapid sideways "rubbing" of the string, the result is a weak, but very long tone.

    I use both techniques occasionally.
  16. Mixmasta J

    Mixmasta J

    Dec 4, 2004
    my guitarist uses this technique, because he cannot play with a pick. He uses it for fast singles string notes, and then uses hs fingers for strumming. IMO he is a wannbe bass player :p

  17. I think your right.

    Peaple are talking about 2 different techniques. I was originally refering to the "machine gun" effect, but now I'm gonna try this other tech. Getting more of a "bowed" sound without a bow.

    I love this site!
  18. TheEmptyCell

    TheEmptyCell Bearded Dingwall Enthusiast

    Jul 16, 2005
    Belfast, UK
    I've used this technique on occasion as a means of trem picking. It requires quite a bit of control on both strokes, and my hand tenses up pretty hard when I do it. I still prefer to use three fngers in a fluid motion for any trem picking I may do.
  19. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    I recall Chuck Rainey describing this technique back in the '70s; in fact, there may have been a Rainey WOOD SHOP about it back when he wrote a monthly column in Guitar Player mag.
    In a somewhat recent issue of Bass Player, Rainey tells the story that he showing the technique to Jamerson...Jamerson's response? "That's sissy stuff, right there".