1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Geddy Lee's 1 finger plucking

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by i2k, Feb 7, 2001.

  1. i2k


    Oct 31, 2000
    On Rush-Grace Under Pressure Live video, I saw Geddy pluck his Steinberger only with his index finger, and only uses his second fingers when necessary. Still, his 1 finger did better than my 2 finger...:-(
    Any comment on this folks ?
  2. james jamerson played that way also, i find it gives a smoother tone than the two finger galop. but i all way forget to use just one. sometimes i will put the two fingers together and use it as one. geddy also seemed to keep his nails long so he could get close to a pick tone.
  3. i2k


    Oct 31, 2000
    I did that too for a deep & smooth tone. But I'm still don't understand how Geddy pluck that fast with only 1 finger. Anyone can recommend a good exercise ?
  4. MJB


    Mar 17, 2000
    Get the January 01 issue of BassPlayer and read the Geddy article. He plays the opening riff on My Favorite Headache this way, practice the riff over and over. When I read the article I thought it would be awkward but its really pretty easy, sounds cool too. :D
  5. Yeah, They called Jamerson "The Hook" cuz he only played with his index.I'm still amazed at some of his lines.
  6. PetZombie


    Feb 7, 2001
    I use my index and middle fingers one at a time, depending on which string i'm playing, and it's a lot more comfortable for me. I've only been playing for a year, but i can keep a steady and quick speed fairly easily. If i don't play for awhile i can definately notice it in my endurance, though. The song i used to practice this technique was "Bambi Slaughter" by Nirvana. It's played with a pick, but it's great for training individual fingers.
  7. PetZombie


    Feb 7, 2001
    Lately, i've also been looking into playing with both sides of my fingers. Fingernails can make doing that sound pretty nasty, but if you file them down enough and hit the meat on both sides it works quite well.
  8. neptoon

    neptoon Supporting Member

    Jul 25, 2000
    Melbourne, FL
    yeah, really...how the heck does he pull that off??? i like to watch him play that riff from YYZ with one finger...that dood rules
  9. Rockinjc


    Dec 17, 1999
    I love the one finger thing myself (just like picking a booger). Watch a good upright player if you want to know where the two sided plucking thing comes from.

    Still I like how triplets go with three fingers and what can be done with the thumb in addition to fingers.


    BTW - ik2 and PetZ... Welcome aboard!!!
  10. i2k


    Oct 31, 2000
    And don't forget...he does that all the time while singing. Only one guy can do those 2 jobs at the same time as good as Geddy : Mark King of Level 42.
    BTW, Geddy is a traditional guy. He said once that he like to saw other players using such pyrotechnic like tapping, 3 or 4 finger plucking, slapping, etc, but he never used that because he can't find a good use of that fancy stuff. Why bother to use lot of fingers if 1 finger did well ?
  11. You don't like Les Claypool or Sting?
  12. i2k


    Oct 31, 2000
    I like Sting. He's a good bass player with his super effective basslines. But he never (or rarely) did a complex basslines while he singing, unlike Geddy or Mark did all the time. Another great bassplayer/singer is John Wetton of Asia/King Crimson.
    For Les, I don't listen much of his work with Primus.It's hard to find Primus materials in my country.
  13. mayfairmistress0


    Oct 26, 2000
    i do that. i find it easyer to keep up with an alternating rythem that way (only using the middle finger occasionally on accentuated notes or different strings)
    as far as speed is concerned, i think im pretty good (for sombody who hasnt been playing that long)
    i can keep up with daphne descends (the smashing pumpkins, off adore) using only my index.

Share This Page