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How Do You Double-thump Your G-string?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Bryan R. Tyler, Jan 29, 2005.

  1. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Or C, F, etc., whichever your highest string is. I bounce off the string below to get an upstroke on all of the other strings, but once I get up to G, there's no more strings, or even fretboard to bounce off. I've been moving my thumb down to where the neck pickup is and basically bouncing off of the pickup cover to do it. This sort of changes the fluidity of double thumping over several strings though, as I have to go from an up/down motion near the fretboard to a diagonally in/out motion a couple inches lower, so I was wondering how everyone else handles it.
  2. I figure the amount of motion i need to complete in order to rest my thumb on the string below when i'm double thumping. Say I need to thump the string then go an extra 3 cm to bump into the next string and head the other way.

    So I just teach my thumb to stop at about a little past 3cm, say 4. So when I've gone 3cm, the string hits me and I'm already slowing my thumb down. Smooth landing.

    The benefit there is that when I'm playing on the G, since I'm already focused on a short distance with the other strings, my thumb stops just a bit longer than the distance it would normally go, but still stops itself in midair so I can thump back up. I need more practice to stop it at 3cm, so :bassist:
  3. Whafrodamus


    Oct 29, 2003
    Andover, MA
    When I double thump, I actually dont' bounce off the string below. I just use magic whafro powers.
  4. MrWr0ng, your string spacing is 3cm?

    I don't bounce either, as I also have magical powers. They aren't whafro powers, but the are evil, so it works out all right. For the G I just reverse direction in midair.
  5. ...like all my other strings. ;)
  6. I don't know what my string spacing is, I just made up a # :)

    I was just referring more to the fact that instead of letting the thumb go all the way, an effort should be made at ALL the string levels to reverse without having to bounce off the next string, then doing it on the G is a lot easier
  7. Yeah, I agree.
  8. karrot-x

    karrot-x Banned

    Feb 21, 2004
    Omicron Persei 8
    I still can't double-thump the E string :(.
  9. EmmSee


    May 23, 2004
    Boston, MA
    Exactly. It's just a technique that can be applied to any string(s)!
  10. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    That depends on how you use it. As I said in my first post, I bounce my thumb off the string below to thump all the other strings. So obviously I can't apply the same technique that I use for all of the other ones to the G string. I'll either have to use two separate techniques (as I've been doing), or change how I thump the other strings.
  11. That's strange because I find that string the easiest to double-thump on precisely because there's no string under it.
  12. Hmm...

    When I first started exploring double thumbing, I read about it on Vic's website. I misunderstood what I read, and thought that he was using his "open-hammer-pluck technique" in Classical Thump. So instead of double thumbing, I started learning that piece with --slap open string--hammer fret--pluck on upstroke with index finger--

    I find this the easiest way to play on the g-string. It's easy enough to remove the "hammer" step. Essentially, my index finger is curled under my thumb, so that the first joints (from the fingernail) are touching each other. In this way, my index finger sticks out a bit. I use it like a pick on the upstroke. So for E A D strings I double thumb, and when I get to the G-string I slap on the downstroke and "pick" on the upstroke. This transition is very smooth and comfortable for me, and I find I have more accuracy with this since I bounce off the other strings. The tone is good too.

    I dunno, I haven't really heard of people who play like this, but it works for me. Hope it helps
  13. JazzBassvb


    Aug 5, 2003

    I actually very recently started using this same technique. The thumb and index finger together look like a + sign and you angle the combo slightly towards the bass and that's how I can double-thump the G. What I've been teaching myself to do is the 'down-up-pluck' on the G and it's coming along. If you can do that, you get incredible speed.

    The next step after that is plucking with your middle finger along with your index. I just can't seem to get stability from that, but I'll keep working on it.

    Hope that helps.
  14. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    Ditto. I don't use the next string over as a tramopline for the upstrokes. For me, the upstroke comes from a combination of wrist and thumb motion.