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finger technique

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by bass_player_cd, May 23, 2002.

  1. bass_player_cd

    bass_player_cd terminated.

    Aug 21, 2000
    I dont know why this happens but I rarely ever use my pinky when i play. I can still do the scales and riffs to the fast songs I play I just mostly use my other 3 fingers only. Is this bad? I know I probably should learn to excercise my pinky to make me even more faster, but it just curls under. I do use it when I cant reach high frets when tapping. Do other people have this problem?
  2. misterk73


    Apr 11, 2002
    Flagstaff, AZ
    First, out of curiosity, are you concerned with the fretting hand only?

    Irregardless, I'm not a strong pinky player primarily because my pinkies are not straight -- on each hand, the last joint of my pinky bends toward the ring finger at about a 45-degree angle.

    However, I am making good progress with my fretting hand lately. What's worked for me is this: When practicing scales -- chromatic, major, and minor would be good starting points for this -- go slowly, keeping each finger firmly in place until you HAVE to move it to play the next note.

    Does that make sense?

    Here's an example (my apologies if this is too rudimentary): You're working a C-major scale, and you start with middle finger on the 3rd fret. Play the second note (D at the fifth fret) with your pinky but try not to move your already placed middle finger. Then play the third note in the scale with your index finger (2nd fret, next string), again without moving already placed ring and pinky fingers. For the fourth note, you'll need to move your middle finger from the C, but try to keep your index and pinky in place. So on and so forth...

    Anyway, you can use this method up and down any scale and it's done a lot for my finger strength and independence while also getting me in the habit of keeping all my fingers over the fretboard at all times...

    Good luck!
  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    As it's been stated before, it's so much not a matter of strength but of dexterity.

    Don't do gymnastics, just do playing exercises that include the use of the pinky, and you'll be on the right track.
  4. bass_player_cd

    bass_player_cd terminated.

    Aug 21, 2000
    I was planning on doing some exercises, I was just wondering if anyone else had that problem too. thanks for your suggestions, I'm definitely going to do that scale practice. I do fine with my plucking hand; I just use two fingers and I can do all the fast stuff I want.thanks again.

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