How to learn to play better with fingers

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by ThePsionicOne, Nov 27, 2003.

  1. Hey, I started bass over the summer, and I started off with a pick. Eventually, I realized that that was not the way to go, so I'm trying to learn to play with fingers now...any suggestions? I mainly have trouble with playing on multiple strings, especially non-consecutive strings. Any advice?
  2. i just got a bass yesterday, i have no clue how to play it and i'm also wanting suggestions on how to use fingers with your right hand better
  3. Joe Turski

    Joe Turski

    Jul 29, 2003
    My personal opinion is there is nothing wrong with using a pick. I'll use a pick when it requires one.

    I use fingers 98% of the time. Finger style is something that will come to you with practice.
    There are many different styles of playing, and if you stick with playing bass you will learn new things as the years go by.

    Experiment with your fingers. try as many different things as you can. Find a teacher, they can work one on one with you and show you the ropes.

    Watch and learn from other players, observe their styles, see what they do. If you have an opportunity to jam with bass players better than yourself, go for it!

    Good luck and welcome aboard the bass express!

  4. steve_man


    May 15, 2002
    aside from your own technique I'd try the following...

    This I find helps generate a geat sounding tone that you can grow around for years to come.

    rest your thumb on the bridge pickup and let your fingers hang over the strings. try and keep your thumb parallel to the bridge pickup.

    Now practise your major scale and chromatics.

    I stress the word rest in "rest your thumb". it is supposed to be simple although it might not be at first.

    take your time and only play for a half hour to as long as you can comfortably bear.

    You may find this awkward at first but over time this you'll find this to be very comfortable.
  5. Matthew Bryson

    Matthew Bryson Guest

    Jul 30, 2001
    Good advice here - also: make sure you use your index and middle fingers and keep alternating fingers.
    FWIW - I never rest my thumb on the bridge P/U - I use the neck P/U and play between the two. Another important tip - play soft. turn your amp up for more volume.
  6. I got a book titled "Bass Fitness" that is full of exercises to help strengthen your hands as well as improve technique for moving across the strings and up/down the fretboard. You might want to give it a look. should have it along with reviews.


  7. That is a cool site! Lots of info there about dang near anything bass.
  8. steve_man


    May 15, 2002
    thanks creepy.

    although I'm still pretty biased towards learning how to generate tone from your fingers and I've always done it through the bridge.

    many greats however use the neck pickup.

    so it's a matter of taste

    in other words try both;)