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Left-hand ring finger!?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Davidoc, Dec 9, 2000.

  1. I seem to mess up whenever I fret with it. I think it's weak; weaker than my pinky.

    Do you have this problem? Know how to get around it?
  2. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    There was an exercise in BASS PLAYER a couple months ago; several here have posted & talked about it...it goes something like this-

    1st finger goes on the 9th fret/"D"-string/"B" note.
    2nd finger goes on the 10th fret/"G"-string/"F" note.
    RING finger goes on the 11th fret/"D"-string/"C#" note.
    4th finger goes on the 12th fret/"G"-string/"G" note.

    Now TOGGLE(ie. move back & forth)between ONLY your 1st finger & RING finger. DO NOT MOVE THE OTHER TWO FINGERS! Use your plucking hand to assist(you'll probably need it!) ;)
    Next, move the 1st finger to the 9th fret/"G"-string & move the 2nd finger to the 10th fret/"D"-string & TOGGLE between the 2nd & RING fingers(again, move only those two fingers!).
    Eventually, move the 2nd finger back to the 10th fret/"G"-string & move the 4th finger to the 12th fret/"D"-string. TOGGLE between the 4th & RING finger.
    Do the exercise with a MINIMUM of movement(stay as close to the strings as possible). It's gonna take CONCENTRATION & some effort on your part. It's also gonna hurt & be frustrating at first...stick with it & don't get hurt! :)

    [Edited by JimK on 12-09-2000 at 04:29 PM]
  3. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    Hell, when I started I only fretted with my index finger... that lasted about three days when my friend/future teacher laughed at me.

    Good old fashioned exercise. A lot of people have a weak finger, the best way I've found is to just stick with it and increase how much you use said finger. There was an article in Bass Player (i just checked and they didn't post it on the website otherwise i'd supply the link... damn them) on a finger workout, it worked pretty good.

    Focus on the finger by changing your patterns on the bass lines you normally play to include your ring. When you pracice, fret a note with your middle finger and then alternate playing that note and a half-step up using your ring... do that a couple of times each practice and it should get better... you'll be doing ring finger hammer-ons in no time.

    Focus on your weaknesses and you'll ultimately have nothing left to focus on...
  4. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    Good call, Jim you posted that one while I was still typing... I'm glad someone could find that BP article, it really helps..
  5. i may be wrong but the ring finger will always be a slight weak link in the design of the hand, it just isn't as independent as the other fingers, a quick test would be to put your hand flat on a table and lift each finger by itself, the ring finger will not lift as easily or as high as the others, but this in no case means it can't be improved

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