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Is My Technique Very Bad

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Digo, Mar 14, 2006.

  1. Digo


    Mar 14, 2006
    Edinurgh, Scotland
    I use various technique, tapping, picking, i even use my thumb when i want to. But what gets me is with my left hand (im right handed) i dont use my pinky as it gives me pains in my joint, my tutor is very strict about this and gives me new way to try and get the tension out but it dont work.
  2. Schwaa


    Feb 25, 2006
    I'd say if it really hurts don't use your pinky. Injuring your hand won't make you play better.

    Are you trying to stretch it really far?

    I haven't been playing very long and my hands aren't really flexible. I probably have to move my hand more than flexible players do, but I guess that's part of the game. I do feel like my hands are getting looser over time though.
  3. Digo


    Mar 14, 2006
    Edinurgh, Scotland
    well i dont stretch it too far often, but what makes a big difference is that i have always played with my thumb coming up from the neck and not firmly behind it, i play fine but is it a BIG DEAL
  4. anglophilia


    Jan 21, 2006
    It's important to get your thumb position squared away now for a lot of reasons. Your hammered on notes are always going to sound a lot softer than your picked notes because your hand won't have support it needs to really bring down those fingers hard. Also dropping your thumb increases the notes you can cover by one fret on each string.

    Try playing this:

    Unless you were blessed with giant hands you'll have a lot of difficulty managing that with three fingers and your thumb extending down the neck. Making 8 note exercises for yourself where you hit all of the above notes once can really improve your speed and control. At first try to use both your ring finger and pinky as one to play the 8th fret notes, eventually leaving the ring finger out of it.
  5. Digo


    Mar 14, 2006
    Edinurgh, Scotland
    i dont have massive hands like the ones of those who suffer gigantism like Matthew McGrory and Andre the Giant, but i do have quite long fingers
  6. Digo - You might want to see a doctor to make sure your hand is OK.
  7. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    Can you describe the pain?
  8. Digo


    Mar 14, 2006
    Edinurgh, Scotland
    well the pain is a stiffening where ur pinky meets the joint
  9. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    I also found using my pinky uncomfortable when I first started using it. You just have to build strength.
  10. anonymous278347457

    anonymous278347457 Guest

    Feb 12, 2005
    i used to avoid useing my pinky all the time, so i have a really strong "4th" finger
  11. scuba steve

    scuba steve

    Dec 28, 2005
    Hillsboro, Tx
  12. Digo


    Mar 14, 2006
    Edinurgh, Scotland
    can u give any technique on how, my tutor said hold out ONLY your index and your 4th then keep trying to quickly switch to middle and pinky?
  13. morf

    morf Banned

    Feb 17, 2006
    I dont use my pinky. For alot of stuff I should, but the way I learn bass is odd I guess. I do it one finger at a time. Started playing with only my index finger, next was middle, then the third. I'm developping my technique on the third until I am satisfied like the other two, and will move on to the pinky whenever that is done. Point is, you dont need your pinky to play alot of stuff well. Just keep playing the way you like, dont make playing bass a drag, take your time with it, your tutor is being paid to teach you and you're the one paying no? Tell him to let you do whatever you want and teach you whatever you think matters, period.
  14. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN

    I'm not sure what that means, but start using it in simple chromatic scales (1 finger per fret walking up the fretboard.)
    Just practice 1-2-3-4-4-3-2-1. Do it slowly at first, but build speed. You should also practice different scales, and be sure to use your pinky.
  15. Kenbuntu


    Jun 6, 2005
    HEy man, I used to have this problem. Until i listened to Phantom of the opera by Iron Maiden. I had to play it. In the beginging( not the beginning beginning but the majority of the first half of the song) its like


    I could never get that 5th fret because my pinky killed me, but i kept playing, and i got used to it... Try this song out. It helped me alot

    Hope this could help :D
  16. MD


    Nov 7, 2000
    Marin Co. CA.
    ["Digo - You might want to see a doctor to make sure your hand is OK."]

    Agreed. You don't want to inflame a possible medical issue.

    If you're dealing with a "weak" pinky, this exercise will help.
    My cello teacher had me doing this when I was ten, and I still do it.
    You can start on any note, I usually begin on a low G and play....
    1-4-3-4 x 4 - one finger per half step(fret).
    1-4-2-4 x 4
    1-3-2-3 x 4
    2-4-3-4 x 4
    Then shift up a half step and repeat for two octaves.

    Morf, you should do this too. Five year old kids with half size violins learn to use ALL their fingers. Suggesting to a student ["Tell him to let you do whatever you want and teach you whatever you think matters, period"] is probably not the best advise.
  17. Have you tried different basses? I used to have this problem with my starter bass (a cheapo Danelectro) and it magically disappeared when I moved to a Carvin with a different shape to the neck (thinner did the trick for me, your mileage may vary)
  18. WillBuckingham


    Mar 30, 2005
    I had the same problem. I'm not advocating "playing through the pain" but I'll tell you what I did. When my pinky started hurting, I'd take an apsirin and rest for a while (if not on a gig/rehearsal) and then pick it up again, it almost always stopped hurting after the asprin. Now it hurts a little bit very occasionally on long gigs on upright, but almost never on electric anymore. Good luck, and don't hurt yourself. And you definitely need to use all four fingers if you want to play well.

  19. flatwoundfender


    Feb 24, 2005
    Much of the time that I use my pinky it's assisted by my ring finger, a method upright players use.

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