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How many fingers do you use?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Intrepid, Feb 26, 2002.

  1. Intrepid


    Oct 15, 2001
    We are always talking about picks and fingers, but how many fingers do you use to pluck....I only use one because I found that two fingers didn't have a cosistent enough tone for me...my finger got relatively fast because of that too.
  2. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    One?!?! :eek:

    What kind of stuff are you playing - bluegrass?, U2?, or Lawrence Welk??? ;)
  3. Usually two. Sometimes three. Workin' on four even though I can't think of any reason to do so.
  4. Oh, and one definitely ain't gonna cut it. Even for some U2 (he he)
  5. I play with my first three fingers and when I slap I use my thumb and I pop with my first and second fingers
  6. Actually, James Jamerson aka the claw used mainly one plucking finger. I bet he could have handled those U2 bass lines.;)

    I think Jack Bruce also uses mainly one plucking finger.
  7. Intrepid


    Oct 15, 2001
    Yeah I definitely don't drive very often U2 style...it does get tiring...if someone says I should drive a song then I use two...I can use all my fingers cuz I'm coordinated from playing piano, but I just don't have a reason to use more then 2 fingers and thats for only dexterity sake....
  8. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Maybe it's who hit you as a major influence. The first time I saw Entwistle around `70, my mind totally turned around about how to approach the instrument......lil finger, do your stuff!!!
  9. Prague77


    Aug 20, 2001
    Waco, TX
    usually 2...
    3 for triplets...and i use my thumb for slap so....4 fingers total
  10. Pretty much the same as prague
  11. 2 mostly. As many as I need for a particular song.
  12. maxvalentino

    maxvalentino Endorsing Artist Godin Guitars/ Thomastik-Infeld

    Usually two (idex and middle) for fairly straight-ahead tunes, three (index, middle and ring) when I wanna stretch out a bit...and I add the thumb in a modified apoyando flamenco tecnique. That's fingerstyle..
    for slapping it's thumb and all three!
    Tapping: thumb and index and middle
    ....check out the mp3s of "A Caravan Of Dreams"http://www.mp3.com/max_valentino
  13. Funkster


    Apr 6, 2000
    Wormtown, MA
    Two and three depending on what I'm playing!
  14. Intrepid


    Oct 15, 2001
    Well I meant at one given time...I use my thumb for ballads and slap plus I could use all my fingers counting pinky, but I don't....one time I did have t o do that, cuz I was playing for like 10 hrs...not straight, but almost and all my fingers were burnt out...I had some thick callouses after that though...
  15. i usually use 2, sometimes 3... how can you get by on one???
  16. Prague77


    Aug 20, 2001
    Waco, TX
    maybe he double strokes with one finger? anyway i think geddy lee plays with one finger sometimes.
    but i wouldnt suggest it :p
  17. jljohnson85


    Nov 27, 2000
    Woodstock, GA
    I use 3 most of the time, my index finger, middle finger, and thumb. On occasion I will use my ring finger for triplets and I try to coordinate it with my index and middle finger while doing sixteenth notes. I have tried to use my pinky in the past, but it's about half the length of my ring finger, and not strong at all.
  18. Erlendur Már

    Erlendur Már

    May 24, 2000
    I usually use 2, but sometimes 3.
  19. Intrepid


    Oct 15, 2001
    OMG...how do I get by...its called muscle and speed
  20. MatW


    May 10, 2000
    UK, Swindon
    For fingerstyle 3. Index, middle and ring. I don't get huge speed with 3, but for me it just feels more natural, and flows better.

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