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Jamerson used the floating thumb,?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by cire113, Oct 9, 2010.


  1. cire113

    cire113

    Apr 25, 2008
    Correct me if I'm wrong all videos I've seen of jamerson playing he is using the floating thumb...,,??
     
  2. sikamikanico

    sikamikanico

    Mar 17, 2004
    no
     
  3. Fergie Fulton

    Fergie Fulton

    Nov 22, 2008
    Braintree
    Retrovibe Artist rota
    No one really invented it, but some are linked to it because they popularized it.
     
  4. krzysztof

    krzysztof

    Jan 12, 2008
    London-U.K
    what he did was rest his fingers on the pickup cover, so technically suppose it is a 'floating thumb' but i dont think he intended it to be about that.
     
  5. mambo4

    mambo4

    Jun 9, 2006
    Dallas
    it floated, but he didn't use it for muting or anything like "real" floating thumb users.
    jamerson used only his index finger and I believe he muted with foam under the bridge.
     
  6. I recall in the videos I saw of his technique, he anchored his little finger on the Pickup ashtray and plucked with his index finger.

    The way Fender designed the Precision, you were supposed to anchor the fingers of your right hand on the "Tug Bar" below the G string and pluck with your thumb. The Pickup cover was there to keep your sleeve and forearm from catching the strings.

    The bridge ashtray on a P had a foam mute glued to it as standard back in those days.
     
  7. One Drop

    One Drop

    Oct 10, 2004
    Swiss Alps
    He definitely used the floating thumb to mute strings, but not in the way most do these days, namely resting the thumb on the string lower than the one being sounded.

    Instead he let his thumb hang straight down over and against those strings, and I suppose he muted strings higher than those being sounded with his LH.

    You can see this clearly on the few minutes of footage around of him playing, and if you try to play the way he did with your index finger only, this thumb muting technique feels very natural and logical.

    The bridge mute he used was standard for the era and reduced sustain and overtones, making for a fat, pulsing thumpy tone. It's a gorgeous sound with flatwounds.
     
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    Primary TB Assistant

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    Mar 5, 2021

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