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Finger or Pick

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by juve400g, Apr 5, 2000.

  1. juve400g


    Apr 3, 2000
    Can someone tell me whether using my fingers or using a pick would allow me to play better and play the widest range of styles?


    Mar 3, 2000
    learn both....
  3. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    This discussion has been carried out very recently 2 or 3 times in other places on this board - I would suggest you read through these to get an idea of the arguments on both sides.
  4. sparticus


    Mar 20, 2000
    in my opinion finger style is better by far. you can do more with it from a bright finger funk to a full, rich jazz tone.
  5. DoctorFunkiest


    Apr 11, 2000
    I think whatever feels more comfortable. If you like to use a pic use one if you dont use your fingers. If you want to
    use a pickle use a pickle just watch out cause the pickle juice can mess up your pickups and sometimes becomes sticky
  6. i'd say both are good and each for it's own reason. i feel that it's easier to use a pick to play songs that only require a few constant notes (some blink 182 and so on). but a pick often gives a different tone to the note, it has more of a sharp sound to it, rather than the smooth and softer tones you get by using your fingers.
    an example of this is some stuff i play. i find it easier to keep pace and pound in a solid sound to the chorus of For whom the bell tolls by Metallica, with a pick. the other example is the Red hot chilli peppers Otherside, which i feel sounds great when u use your fingers; it comes out fresher and cleaner than a pick.
    but hey that's just me.
  7. Learn to play so cleanly and consistently with your fingers that it sounds like you're playing with a pick. That's my goal, and I'll probably take it to the grave with me.
  8. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    For recreation purposes, play the one that suits you best. For professional purposes, learn both.

    Will C. cool.
  9. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    Picking's for noses, tomatoes, and guitars!
  10. in_exile


    Feb 14, 2000
    Guitar players use picks. Real men play bass with their hands. Got to fufill the need for speed. Slap and pop that monster.

  11. Jasnewsted


    Apr 1, 2000
    Hey hey,

    You're claiming that guys like Jason Newsted and Bob Daisly aint' real men????
    (do i smell lots of conservativity??)
    It's time to move on now..........

    I think it is very childish to say these things, "real men dont use a pick".

    My advice is to master both......
    One of the arguments of using your fingers is that you can do more with them and with a pick. If you combine both of the styles then you'll get the widest range of techniques.

    Well thats my opinion.... tongue. !!

  12. Acacia


    Apr 26, 2000
    Austin, TX
    being a beginner, I am using a pick...there's just not enough damn room in between the strings for my fingers!!!!! wink.

  13. basspsycho


    Apr 27, 2000
    Learn both. There's times when a pick is needed(like fast and constant notes) Some albums that require a pick are all of Metallica albums(except for a few songs),Chamber Music by Coal Chamber,Blink 182's stuff,some Videdrone stuff,some Orgy stuff,etc. Fingers sound good on the strings cuz they have a smooth sound. I do all 3 though. I slap,pop,and pick.
  14. gweimer


    Apr 6, 2000
    Columbus, OH
    Here's my rule of thumb, because you should learn both:

    Finger bass, pick nose confused.
    Pick bass, finger butt tongue.

    You can't go wrong...well, if you do, you're gonna regret it!
  15. rojo412

    rojo412 Walnut is fun! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    Learn both, but who uses fingers?
    Wooten, Jaco, P-Nut, Flea, Claypool, Clarke, Gary Willis, Mingus, etc, etc.
    Pick? Punks!

    "I'm no hero. I just like to hit people on the head." - Nelson
  16. sergeantsquirlie


    Apr 29, 2000
    Learn both.
    I like fingers though.
    It makes me feel like i can do more and I am not as restricted.
  17. gustat


    Apr 11, 2000
    I don't use a pick ...

    but Michael Gordon does - fast funky ****e too!

    There is no shame in using one, if that's your thing.
  18. sdmfbass


    May 2, 2000
    It all depends on the sound that you want,I find myself using both. I can move around faster with my fingers but get a better, sharper sound from a pull-off with a pick
  19. Saint


    Mar 2, 2000
    DC - USA
    I'm for learning as much as you can. Versatility is a virtue, IMHO. Although, I guess you should start with your fingers and try a pick later.

    I started with my fingers, but started using a pick when I couldn't quite get the Chris Squire tone I needed for some things.
    Now I'm trying to learn slap, which I used to despise as a style, but have come to really like.

    If you don't want to learn how to pick, you could always get a pair of Tony Levin's Funk Fingers to get that more percussive sound.
  20. demon53


    Mar 27, 2000
    Rojo, you said it best man. Look at all the greats from the past. These are men that in some circles could be considered Gods in their own right. Finger picking is fast becomming a lost art with punk and ska crap out there now, everyone thinks a bass should be picked like a guitar, NOTTTTTT!!!!!! If you want speed and are having trouble keeping up with your fingers, learn a three finger gallup (spelling?) and learn it well.

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