Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

hand trouble

Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by christ andronis, Sep 13, 2004.


  1. christ andronis

    christ andronis

    Nov 14, 2001
    Chicago
    I played my first gig with a big band the other night. Everything went pretty well considering I've very limited experience on playing out with the upright. However, during the last set we were playing an uptempo swing number ("Sing, Sing,Sing") and first my left hand then my right hand froze up on me. At first I thought I was having a stroke cause the hand curled and I had no control over it. After shaking it out, the same thing happened to the right hand. I guess my question is: Anybody ever had a similar experience? I'm chalking it up to fatigue because the next night I played a four hour gig (on electric) and had no problems.

    I'm just interested in others experiences.....it was pretty frightening.
     
  2. MartinT

    MartinT

    Apr 16, 2003
    San Mateo CA
    It happens to me every now and then, mostly (as in your case ) at the end of a gig or practice, on furiously fast tempos, often in hot (as in temperature) environments. These cramps are often the results of a combination of fatigue (and resulting sloppy technique), dehydration and electrolyte loss.

    Ways to prevent:

    - Take in plenty of fluids (but go easy on the booze)
    - Do stretch excercises (palms, wrists, shoulders) before, during and after playing
    - Eat a banana or other potassium-rich food in a break

    Works for me.

    MT
     
  3. abaguer

    abaguer

    Nov 27, 2001
    Milford, NJ
    I second the suggestion of increased fluids. Also try to keep your shoulders relaxed. I had to play a tap dance show last week with no amp and a few really fast tempos. Keeping my shoulders relaxed helped my RH and arm free from tightening. :cool: Also remember the breathing thing.
     
  4. LM Bass

    LM Bass

    Jul 19, 2002
    Vancouver, BC
    Double bass is a physical sport.
    It's really a good idea to not play out until you've had
    about a year of daily practice and lessons.
    Please be careful not to injure yourself, and
    build up your strength gradually. . .

    Have fun with the bull fiddlel!
    LM
     
  5. jstiel

    jstiel Jim Stiel

    Jun 5, 2004
    Lake Orion, MI
    I think you should get out as soon as you get your chops to the point where you won't make a fool out of yourself. You can practice all you want but there's no substitute for the challenge of a gig.
     
  6. LM Bass

    LM Bass

    Jul 19, 2002
    Vancouver, BC
    I beg to differ.:hyper:

    I teach bass at a couple of Community Colleges, and I have seen MANY students switch to double bass from electric. They quickly find out that they can make money playing out, so they dash off into playing some gigs, get tendinitis or carpal tunnel problems, then have to take a year off.

    And these are guys I have warned repeatedly about getting in shape first.

    Playing jazz walking bass is very physically demanding. You have to play every quarter note of every tune, and you can never stop. Tendinitis forces you to STOP playing, and you lose all that time you have built up.

    I agree that playing a gig is a challenge.
    Just make sure you are up for it, please. . .
     
  7. abaguer

    abaguer

    Nov 27, 2001
    Milford, NJ
    Playing jazz walking bass is very physically demanding. You have to play every quarter note of every tune, and you can never stop. Tendinitis forces you to STOP playing, and you lose all that time you have built up.

    Just make sure you are up for it, please. .


    Wise words.