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lubricants

Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by Phee, Feb 22, 2001.


  1. Phee

    Phee

    Jan 2, 2001
    Maryland
    i just started playing upright, and my fingers are really sore. does anyone have any tips for lubricants to make my playing easier and less painful? i was reading in a magazine, fender bass streets, i think, that hemp oil was good (as well as the grease off of your nose!) do they really work? does anyone know of anything else that works good (and is cheap?)
     
  2. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Weird as it sounds, the grease off your nose (or if you're not a spring chicken, off your scalp) is great for easing the skin stress of hours and hours of RH pizz playing before your callouses are built up. I had a lesson with Sigi Busch recently, and he gets it from behind his ears. (too much information? sorry if so...) When I was just starting out & was getting blisters a lot, I would even use chapstick on my 1st & 2nd RH fingers if I thought I was gonna die before the gig was over. It left a funky residue on the fingerboard but didn't seem to hurt anything.

    Someone told me once that peanut oil works for the strings to help the LH, but I never tried it because for some odd reason my LH fingers hurt when I play a lot but never blister.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Tim Ludlam

    Tim Ludlam

    Dec 19, 1999
    Carmel, IN
    Oh Chris.......what, are you from Kentucky? (I know the answer, I too was raised in the hills.....Danville that is.. ya all come back now, ya here)

    Anyway, I want no more talk about bodily secretions.

    Thank you.
     
  4. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Shoot, yaa'lls frum DANvul? Whyn'tja say so? Hell, we're practically kinfolk! I tell you WHAT, bud, I's down ere laist week, an ah'll be danged if it wudn't colder'na three peckered billygoat in a SNOWdrift, even in the middle uh FEBuary, by gowd.....
     
  5. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    I play electric but I have friends who play double. Some of us use any of the super glues when a callous breaks or a finger gets painful. It makes your fingers hard as a rock and doesn't get tacky. It meets your criteria, "good" & "cheap."
     
  6. In the bad old days, before amps, I used tape, which was very uncool, or benzoin, which supposedly toughens/thickens the skin. The fallacy there is that a blister would form anyway, only deeper under the surface, and you'd get a bubble that was too thick too lance.
    Not by choice, a few times I had to play on raw skin with no protection, and made a weird discovery which I never checked out with a doctor. The first 5 minutes were so bad my eyes would water, then the pain subsided and the raw skin seemed to get slippery, and I could make the set Ok. I speculated that the body was going into a self-defense mode. Maybe it was mental. Since then, I've 'played through'. With today's setups, I'm surprised that it's a problem. One drawback of benzoin was that it seemed to prevent this natural lubrication, to the point of increasing the friction. Totally counterproductive.
     
  7. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Don,

    not to be gross or unseemly, but are you talking about you right hand or your left? If it's your right, it almost sounds like you're talking about "pus" there, or have I got the wrong picture? What happened to your fingers after a gig you played like this?
     
  8. The right; the tips of the plucking fingers. No pus, thanks, just a moistness to the skin. And after the gig they hurt.

    I think this is sending phee the wrong message. Rereading, phee is new to the bass, that's all, and my opinion would be to slow down. Play, but not so hard. The process takes time, and you can't rush it.

    Anything else is training wheels.
     
  9. Phee

    Phee

    Jan 2, 2001
    Maryland
    everything i've read seems helpful. i guess i'll just have to take it slow and find out what works best for me.