I blistered my finger...now what?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [DB]' started by Jerry J, May 18, 2002.

  1. Jerry J

    Jerry J Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2000
    P-town, OR
    This kinda reminds me of the "I want my MTV" song by Dire Straits. Something about getting a blister on his little finger.

    I've got, not one, but two blisters on my forefinger of my right hand. Of course, not from an aggressive arco technique. I got a bit carried away the other night, at practice.

    The blister is under a nice callous. Is there something that I should do about it or just lay off any playing until the blister is gone.
  2. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    I'm sure everyone's experience will vary. That said, in my own case I know I have two choices in this situation: Lay off for a bit, or keep playing and lose the callous. Several things I've found that can be helpful if I decide to keep playing are shaping the callous with a pedicure block (to provide a smooth surface on the string with as little pulling as possible), and a slight lubrication of the string with face or scalp oil.

    I've heard several high level bassists mention this in masterclasses and lessons, and it really works. Not terribly appetizing, but effective.
  3. Andrew Jones

    Andrew Jones Banned

    Feb 28, 2001
    Northampton Mass
    Whenever I need to play and have developed (or better yet know Im getting one) I reach in my gig bag and pull out the ELASTOPLAST!!!! I cant say enough good things about this stuff it has saved me countless time .Its tape, thats all ,but its tape that stays on your finger and has a surface that while takes a little getting used to is deffinetly playable. Learned about it from a rockabilly friend. Its a I may not have a american express card but I got my Elastoplast.

  4. Jerry J

    Jerry J Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2000
    P-town, OR
    Hey guys, thanks for the replies. I've decided to give the 2x a rest for a couple of days to let the blister go away. It looks like it's forming a nice big callous in it's place.

    My band's first gig isn't for another couple of weeks so I'll still have enough time to practice before then.

    I'll look into the Elastoplast for my survival bag.
  5. Joe Taylor

    Joe Taylor

    Dec 20, 2001
    Tracy CA
    My fingers crack open and bleed some times so, I tape them. I have not used the stuff above but I have used duct tape, electrical tape, friction tape and masking tape. It all helps just don't wrap it too thick.

    You also can lance the blisters by poking a sewing needle into the blister from the side, about a 1/4 inch away) entering the pocket of liquid from under side (ouch), that way you don't have a hole that opens up.

    Good luck Joe
  6. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    I pull air pockets under my callouses all the time. It seems to be a cyclical thing. Eventually the air pocket makes it to the surface, I have a rough set or two and then problems is gone, and a week or so later I notice another air pocket on its way. I generally chew off the 'catchy' bits of flesh with my front teeth after the pocket breaks open (often during trades with the drums, or artistically placed right before my solo -- phrasing, man, phrasing!). By the end of the night there is only subtle evidence of any problem.

    Straight blisters. which I haven't had in years, I would just play through. You can pop 'em early, if convenient, or just wait for nature to take its course.
  7. Andrew Jones

    Andrew Jones Banned

    Feb 28, 2001
    Northampton Mass

    Elastoplast is a medical product so if you have a hard time finding it try a medical supply store.

    It a strechy tape and it adhires to skin well. its not thick so it feel sort of natural, its flexable so it wont imobalize the knuckles.

    It really works for me and most people who try like it

    Good luck
  8. yeah..

    don't be a pussy, blisters are part of being a bassplayer ! :D

    no blisters = no bassplayer :D
  9. lermgalieu

    lermgalieu Supporting Member

    Apr 27, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    I haven't actually gotten a blister on my fingers in the normal playing spots for like 10 years (not even 3 years ago when I started playing DB) - I used to get them (though I used to play heavy slap bass in an instrumental rock band and didn't have very good technique), but now I just have hard fingers, they don't *look* calloused, but they are. However, I do get blisters on my left thumb as I don't practice thumb position nearly enough, and also on my right hand thumb lately as I have started playing the toy bass with the thumb/palm mute technique.

    When I used to get blisters alot, I noticed that you can drain a blister kind of from the edge/side with a pin and oftentimes it will just kind of go away or turn into a callous overnight. I know people who put super glue on their fingers but they tend not to be "nuance" players if you know what I mean.
  10. Andrew Jones

    Andrew Jones Banned

    Feb 28, 2001
    Northampton Mass
    Yah every time I gt a blister its from some technique that I may have under my belt but have not been playing alot of lately

  11. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin
    Make sure you sterilize your finger and the needle before proceeding with this. Also, don't do what my dumbass did and pour alcohol into the open hole -- I'm no stranger to pain and I literally did a little "pain dance!"
  12. All I've got is one word:


  13. Steven Green

    Steven Green

    Jul 25, 2001
    Pacific NW
    I hear ya!!!:eek:
  14. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    That's not pain:)

    When I worked at a job in the mall in Wichita I happened upon a gallon jug full of a clear liquid. Since there was no label I decided to find out what it was by taking a big old sniff.

    That was over twenty years ago and I still remember the feeling of a hot spike piercing my skull.

    Ah, commercial grade ammonia;)

    Back on topic, I barely have anything resembling a callous. Wierd, kind of like stealth callouses.
  15. tummage


    Apr 23, 2002
    New Orleans, La
    In a pinch, superglue works great. May have to redo between sets, but it'll get you through a gig. I used to tour for several years and found changes in climate would affect the frequency of calluses and blisters.

    On a side note if you're not gigging for a few days, lay off and use the time to practice using your other fingers. Wouldn't it be great if you found you could turn yourself into a true five finger player.
    Wish I had the discipline to get there.
    Just my opinion,

  16. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin
    You want stink? One time, I was an ultra dumbass and mixed bleach and ammonia, to make a "super-duper cleaning agent" -- all I did was burn the hairs out of my nose and give myself a super-duper headache!
  17. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    I don't remember the smell as much as the pain.

    It was my right nostril, shot through the nostril and it felt like it went through the right side of my skull, just inside of my right ear and right through the back of my head. There should have been an exit wound afterwards.

    Thinking about it hurts;)

    BTW Hategear, that was about as stupid as what I did:D
  18. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Jerry, did you know that the fine for a glissando is $50 per? Yes sir, I'd say you've been overusing the ol' gliss. Knock it off, willya? You got what you deserved.
  19. Jerry J

    Jerry J Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2000
    P-town, OR
    I'm not sure how or why this thread ended in the BG section. I've been able to play my electric bass with no problem. The blisters are from playing my 2X bass, pizzicato. My right hand index finger is the culperate.

    I'm using my 2X in my new band since we are playing some West Coast Jump Blues.

    Thanks for all the advise. I've just given the offending blister a chance to form a nice new callous.
  20. frankencow150

    frankencow150 Guest

    Oct 17, 2001
    Ahhh...i remember...the blisters,the bleeding,the pain,the urge to keep playing even though my finger looked like it had been through hell and back...

    I just kept playing with the pain and eventually the calluse got really strong and thick.Go through with the pain,it will pay off in the long run.